Simple Life Pattern Co. Anniversary Tour


It’s a two year celebration over at Simple Life Pattern Company!  I was lucky enough to be in on several of the recent tests for releases during the anniversary celebration and to get to share with you one of my most recent creations to help celebrate the fun.  Be sure to make it to the end of this post for details on sales and a bundle giveaway.  After you enter, be sure to hop to the rest of the blogs to see some amazing SLPco creations. *This post does contain affiliate links.


I didn’t really start sewing up Simple Life Patterns until about a year ago.  I confess.. I was more of a stalker than a buyer.  I just don’t buy a ton of patterns in general.  I do more fabric hoarding really.  I’m not really sure what started my string of makes, but as I look back on the year I do have several that I have ended up making, testing, and/or blogging.  Along the way I’ve made some great friends too!  I’ve enjoyed the patterns that I’ve sewn and almost every Simple Life creation I have made has been in the “most loved” category with my little girls.  I know there were tears shed when several of the dresses were passed on to other homes.  I’m going to share a collection of a few makes to reminisce at then end of the post.  But for now, let’s check out my latest make!

I don’t know if you saw my Dolly and Me Ayda dress creations or not, but my girls really loved those dresses.  So what is better than a great dress pattern? It’s a great dress pattern created for knits! My girls love comfy cozy knits and they will never turn down a new dress.  The Ayda Top and Dress pattern is so popular, I know people are going to eat up the fact that they can now make it in knit fabrics.


The crossover back on Ayda helps to make it such a quick sew.  Throw in a circle skirt that doesn’t need to be gathered and it is a match made in heaven.  I could crank several of these out at any given moment if needed.


Let’s talk twirl factor!! Do you need this in a dress? My girls are growing more and more fond of twirling now that they have started ballet.  The circle skirt is a perfect match for the twirler inside every little lady.  The fit is great and I love that there are options for both with and without sleeves.

There are so many possible combinations on the site for Ayda when you look at baby sizes, girl sizes, romper add-ons, bundles, and get the look kits.  Here is a quick link to scope out all the options.


Sale Alert!!!

To celebrate the 2 year anniversary there is an awesome sale happening right now that is almost over.  You have just a few days left to jump on board and get the tiered pricing as that will end soon.   All 10 new releases are 25% off, all other patterns are 40% off!!!! All the get the look kits are 30% – that’s like $8.40 per yard for Art Gallery fabric! And to top it off, tiered pricing is in effect right now… (Discounts appear once items are added to your cart…add them in to see your savings.)



Congrats to Amy Y. for winning the pattern bundle!!

Enter Below to Win a Dolly and Me Pattern Bundle

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Visit The Rest of the Bloggers!!

 2/13 Ruby Rue Creations

2/14 Sew and Tell Project

2/15 Sunflower Seams

2/16 Wonderfully {hand}made

2/17 Pearberry Lane

2/18 Sewjourners


As a random side note…  Did you notice this fabric is the same that I used for my post here? I just love that it looks so great for all ages.

Let’s Look Back

Thanks to Katie for bringing little bits of happy along with a lot of style to these little ladies of mine! Here are a few of my SLPco makes I could find from the past year.

The Bella in the right hand corner… That is what it’s all about.  Seriously… I’m kinda tearing up on that one.

Favorite moments in your favorite dress.

Winter Wear Magnolia Dress and Top {A Review}


I’m so excited to get to share my review of Winter Wear Designs Magnolia Fit and Flare Dress and Top.  I was drawn to this pattern for two main reasons.  First, it is LOADED with options. This pattern doesn’t just include top and dress options, but it has so many hemline options, an optional back insert, color blocking directions, two different pockets, and more.  I thought I might geek out and calculate all the possible combinations of creations you could make, but there were so many I was afraid I would make a mistake and didn’t want to leave anything out.  The second reason I was drawn to this pattern was that it is on point with popular fashion right now.  If you creep my Pinterest fashion board, you would find many looks that could be recreated using the Magnolia pattern.  Magnolia even includes a link to a Pinterest search for even more inspiration.  


For my look I settled on the ¾ length sleeve, scoop neckline (v-neck is also an option) tunic with the shirt tail option in both the front and the back.  I had originally planned a different length, but that didn’t print when I had selected my size layer.  I later played around and discovered it was in the size 00 layer rather than the appropriate size group. This was somewhat annoying to me.  There were a few other small issues with lines missing within pattern pieces and typos, but nothing that prevented me from completing my look.  


I didn’t have to make any adjustments to my pattern pieces, but the instructions include quite a few details about how to make adjustments for your body type.  If you are someone that finds you get a better fit by making a few adjustments, this pattern would give you some good resources one making these changes.  I was impressed with the amount of information provided.


Overall, I like the look of this top.  It hugs in just the right places and flares out exactly where you would want to hide possible “mom tummy” issues.  The scoop neckline definitely pushed this dress/top into the sexy zone rather than just another comfy mommy top.  I definitely can’t wear this to work without flashing the kids my goods. I would describe it as classy cleavage. I teach middle school, so I typically opt for higher necklines to prevent any wardrobe malfunctions.  I may bring the neckline up for the next one so I can wear it to school.  The drape of the double brushed poly I used was a perfect match for this pattern.  Be sure to check out the line drawings in the Magnolia Fit and Flare Dress and Top listing.  Those really helped me to make a plan on what options I would choose.  

And lastly… how about this floral print? Do you love it?  I have a little girl make that will be live on Friday in this same print.  Don’t miss it.



Simple Life Pattern Co. Goes Dolly


Ah!!! I’m so excited about this little dolly creation! My very good bloggy buddy Becca of Sunflower Seams released her very first patterns with Simple Life Pattern Company this week!  She designed patterns for several of the most popular girls dress designs so that we can make great Dolly and Me creations.  Hang with me to the end because I have a chance for you to win the Girls Ayda and Doll Pattern Bundle!!! *This post does contain affiliate links.

I don’t know if you are aware, but the Little Ps got Wellie Wisher dolls for Christmas this year, along with matching Wellie boots that are ever-so-popular in our house.  I was super excited about these patterns because currently there is not a ton of options in the pattern world for the Wellies.  They are much smaller than the typical 18″ dolls and proportions are quite different.  The new doll patterns include pattern pieces for 18″ dolls and the new smaller size (14″) that fits the Wellie Wishers. Woot Woot!  We made the Ayda Dolly and Me set for this post.


Along with some new releases, SLPco is celebrating two years of business!! And they are having the BIGGEST sale of the year. All new releases are 25% off, all other patterns are 40% off and all Get The Look kits are 30% off!!!!  Have you seen my look that you can get in a Get The Look Kit? I just loved that dress!

Check out the Options Here for Dolly and Me Makes

Ayda Doll Pattern

Girls Ayda Dress Pattern (For wovens) or NEW Knit Girls Ayda Dress Pattern

Molly Doll Pattern

Girls Molly Pattern

Becca did a great job with this pattern.  She worked to keep the doll pattern similar in construction to the Girls version while making accommodations for doll needs in dressing.  It really is hard to dress something that doesn’t have bending limbs.  Have you ever thought about that?


How adorable is this?! Seriously I’m dying!  I also had a lesson in humility as people passed by me laying on my stomach in a public walkway to get these fabulous dolly photos.  I guess it comes with the blogger territory?  I’m working on getting over it.


And because we take our matching dolly and me makes seriously, we went with the matching boots to complete our look.  It is a great combo, plus we can walk through the rain puddles without issues, right?  Presley has already claimed this make as her Easter dress, so I guess I’m seriously ahead of schedule! That literally never happens for me.

So how about a chance to win a Dolly and Me Ayda Pattern Bundle?!  Check out the rafflecopter below to enter.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

 Congrats to Laura S. for winning the Dolly and Me pattern bundle!!!


Orbis Skinny Harems


Do you remember my One Thimble Tour post about the Orbis Skinny Harems?  Well the Orbis Harem pattern has now been release back to the designer and there is a little celebration to kick them off for a second time.  I do love this pattern.  It’s a fairly quick sew and my girls think they are super comfy.  It’s a co-ed pattern, so if you sew for boys and girls this pattern will go far for you.  We’ve had a hard go with weather being super cold this week, so please hang with us and don’t miss out on the great features of this pattern.

For this post I wanted to try a few things with my Orbis.  The first thing that I did was to stitch my pocket on making the loopers from my coverstitch visible. This is such a fun look, and to be honest with you, it is a lot easier to sew the pocket on in this fashion.  I love the character that this gives the pants.

Isn’t the pocket detail so fun here?

The second thing I did was to change up the waistband.  The waistband is a knit band with elastic casing.  I thought I would switch things up a bit and eliminate the elastic and make a yoga waistband instead.  My girls like a yoga band and I do too, so it was a good choice for us.  To make the yoga waistband I simply doubled the height of the waistband piece and removed and inch from the width.  It worked out great.

This pair is a perfect layer for heading to and from ballet class.  I definitely need to put together something for a matching top.   We loved this knit I snagged from JoAnn’s with the metallic stars.  I sure hope it washes up well after a few rounds with the Gobin girls.  They really do wear things down quickly these days.

Here is the Orbis Scoop

Unisex Skinny Harem

Size 1-14

3/4 or full length

Optional Pocket

Faux Fly

Home Printing and A0 File, Layered Printing

Dont miss out on all the other stops along the tour!  There are some really great makes for you to see!

Orbis Re-Release Tour

Monday – Sew A Piece of Joy, Droomstoffen

Tuesday – Colorita Design, Pattern Revolution, Adventures With Bubba and Bug

Wednesday – MoonStar – WonderMirakel (for the Sofilantjes blog), Ronda B. Handmade, Sew Cucio

Thursday – Annas HeirloomBoutique, TurtleBirdies, Inspinration

Friday – Tales of a Tester, Kreatita, Pear Berry Lane



And lastly, she thought this angle was important.  Take it as you will.  It’s a great hiney shot. 🙂

Highlander Dolman from Striped Swallow Designs


I’m finally back in the game doing some pattern testing for Striped Swallow Designs.  This is one of my very favorite designers to work with (and now its two designers) working with the brand. You can see one of my other favorite SSD makes here. I just haven’t been able to make my schedule work with tests for quite a long time, so when I saw this dolman I just had to jump in.

The Highlander Dolman has several options to choose from.  There are two sleeve lengths, two back options, as well as several features you can add to the back options.  For my version I stitched up the long sleeve with the high back and tie option.  The low back falls well below the bra line. I personally can’t pull that off in my 30s but I know a few of my sassy blogger friends who will rock that look all day long.  Whether you choose the tie back option, the t-back, or the back strap doesn’t matter, but for sure you can not go without something.  This shirt really needs the support of something to keep the shoulders up.


I love that this dolman is a perfect balance of batwing affect and fitted sleeve as it works its way down the length of your arm.  Along with the sleeve length options there are also two styles of hemlines.  I chose to use the curved hemline.  The hem allowance on this top is a nice thick 1 inch. Have I had time to share with you my crazy love for wide hems, especially on knits?  If not, I’ll put that on my calendar.


Total Pattern Scoop: Highlander Dolman

Sizes: Xs-XXL

Relaxed Scoop Front

Multiple back necklines with features including:  high, low, t-back, tie back, back strap

Short and Long Sleeve options

Curved or Straight Hemline


For this version, I used a the Ruth Double Brushed Polly from Sincerely Rylee Fabric.  I grabbed it for a great price during a sale a while back.  The color tones are totally in my Autumn palette which I basically sport year around.

Beginning Sewing Class Ahead {Matilda Dress}


Recently I was approached by a local sewing shop about teaching some sewing classes on the things that I love to sew, children’s apparel. If you are interested in joining, register here.  I thought it sounded like a fabulously fun project, so I got right to deciding on a pattern that would be great to use for a beginner class.  I asked around for some ideas on patterns that would be great for beginners and I ended up selecting the Matilda dress pattern from Violette Field Threads.


Matilda is a great little peasant style dress that offers three sleeve options.  I think this will be a great way for people to get a little taste for selecting options within a pattern.  for my samples I used the cap sleeve option and the flutter sleeve.  I just love the flutter sleeve! It’s so feminine.  I also think this is a great time to point out how fabric choice can really affect the look of your creations.  These two dresses with just a simple sleeve change and different fabric look completely different from each other.  I LOVE that! By the way, you can order these Dear Stella Fabrics from the shop I’m teaching at.  I also love that I can make two dresses and know which child will pick which one.  There wasn’t any fighting over who got each dress.  It was like they knew which was theirs right away.  That makes a mommy happy.


After deciding on patterns, I went to work thinking about how I could use this pattern to give people the confidence to embark on what could be the beginning of a long sewing adventure.  While sewing up the pattern I noted the parts I liked, the parts I thought could be improved, and tips that beginners could take with them to use with future projects.  Aren’t there things that you wished you would have learned through a pattern but didn’t until much later along in your sewing adventure?  Some of my big points I plan to share are about the importance of pressing regularly.  I especially love to memory press all my hems and casings.  This saves so much time and really simplifies the process in the long run.  I also think there are a lot of ways to gather, and some ways give better results than others. People need to know and see this, especially if they are planning to do dresses.  What are some things you always do on projects that aren’t included in pattern instructions? I’d love to hear.



Simple Life Pattern Co. Bella

Hey everyone! I’ve been slightly silent for the last few weeks.  Mostly, I’m still getting back into the swing of things now that Christmas break is over.



I do have a little something to share. I got a new sewing machine! Woot Woot.  Thanks to my husband for supporting my VERY expensive hobby.  Bless his heart, as soon as I get a new machine, I put another on my wish list.  I should be good to go for a while with the set up I have right now.  That should help take the pressure off the man of the house… at least until my birthday in October.

IMG_1704 (1).JPG

Here is a close up of my new toy.  I don’t have a fabulous set up, so you are going to have to be okay with this angle. You can read more about this machine here. Maybe my next wish list item should be a table area.  I’m still working at a folding table with metal folding chair.  But, one step at a time I suppose.  I gotta pay my dues.  Who knows, maybe a sewing machine table company will contact me to feature their furniture. How awesome would that be?!


So, what was my first project with my new baby?  I knocked out a project on my unfinished project pile because getting a new machine meant reorganizing my space.  I found all kinds of things that needed to be finished.  Shhh, don’t tell.  I’ve had this Bella cut since it arrived this summer and things just kept being pushed ahead of it.  In truth, I actually had three cut out, so I still have two to go.  This pattern is seriously fast, so I’m not sure how I haven’t squeezed them in. Life I suppose is the answer to that… and sleep… the need for sleep.


I shared a few snapshots of this make on Instagram (Follow me!) and in the SLPco group.  I got lots of positive response, which makes me even more sad that I took so long to finish it.   We also grabbed a few photos today outside in the 40 degree weather.  I want you to know that Porter asked if she could put on this dress and go out and take some pictures.  I said okay because a blogger mom should never turn down a model offering to work for free.  I did try to get her to put on a nice sweater, but that was not going to happen.  So please enjoy my very freezing cold, just delightfully happy daughter in her lovely pink dress.


I just love this sequin lace I added here.  It was a simple addition but definitely goes great with the Sarah Jane Magic Parade from Michael Miller.  I love so many things about Sarah Jane designs.  They are youthful and magical all at the same time.  You can’t go wrong with that when thinking about little girls.


And just for fun, here are a few of the shots where she is admitting she is slightly cold.  But really, she did a great job for a self-volunteering,  middle of the driveway shoot.

Shwin Designs Glass Onion Top

Alrighty!! One down and eight more to go on my #2017makenine adventure.  For more detail on that, read my post here.  Nine projects seems like a lot, but when you just decide to sit down and tackle one you may get the impression that it isn’t hardly enough.  What do you think? Is nine too many, too few, or just right?


I started with my first make being the Glass Onion Top from Shwin Designs.  I don’t know about you, but I have been all sorts of confused about Shwin and Shwin vs Shwin Designs.  I hadn’t followed closely and always thought it was two different designers and then I couldn’t remember what pattern went with which designer.  It turns out it’s all the same… I think.  Maybe it was an issue with names/addresses not being available on different platforms. I get that, but phew… call it a blonde moment or something because I have struggled.  Are you in this boat with me?

Okay… So without further delay, here is my first make.  I will say that I finished this last night and Presley found it laying on the couch this morning and snatched it right up.  We have a snow day today, so I told her to grab some leggings and stand by the window for a little light.  These photos aren’t the most amazing due to indoor early morning pics, but you get the idea I think.


The Glass Onion Top has several options to choose from. This top features a gathered front and a crossover back.  It includes three sleeve options, and two back options.  I chose the pleated back, but there is also a flat crossover back.  The neckline is finished with a facing, and there aren’t any closures to deal with because the scoop back provides ample room to get on and off easily.  Overall, I would describe this as a fairly quick sew for a woven make.


I think this pattern is right on point with the high fashion looks I’m going for!  I plan to make more for certain, and Swiss Dot being my next fabric to go with.  I think it is going to be absolutely stunning!  I can’t wait for good weather to get quality photos of these tops.



What do you think? Would you give this pattern a try?  I think you will like it if you do.  Let me know in the comments.  Don’t forget to follow all the awesome #2017makenine creations on Instagram.  There is so much inspiration to be seen!


#2017MakeNine Adventure

This week I decided I was going to be joining in on some maker fun with the fabulous people participating in #2017makenine.  Basically, you select nine projects that you want to complete for 2017.  You can find more information about the leader of this fun project here, then join in on the maker fun!

I was having a hard time deciding what I wanted to commit to.  In truth, I really want to do two sets of make nine.  I needed one for the girls, and one for myself.  I just started with the girls and if I crank through it quickly, I’m going to do one for myself too.  You can see my projects below.


How did I choose my nine?  I started by thinking about patterns that I already have and have been wanting to make but haven’t gotten around to it yet.  I put together a list and then started thinking about what patterns would pair well together and the “look” I prefer to go for these days.  You see, I started out sewing a lot of boutique-y type stuff and now I feel like I’m pulling away from some of that look and going for more of a high fashion, sleeker vibe.  I guess I’m developing my own sense of fashion.  That said, there are a few patterns here that can swing either way based on option and fabric choice.  A lot also depends on styling too.

So, here are the details from left to right and top to bottom on my collage of nine.

  1. Chalk and Notch Fishtail Kimono
  2.  Shwin Designs Glass Onion Top
  3.  Simple Life Pattern Company Sarah Ann’s Cuff Leggings and Capris*
  4. Tadah Library Blouse
  5. This one is a mystery.  I don’t even know what it is yet.  Keeping my options open.
  6. Tadah Tulip Skirt
  7. Simple Life Pattern Company Isla’s Infinity Tunic and Dress*
  8.  Sewlosophy Serendipity Beret and Swing Coat.  These are no longer available for purchase as far as I’m aware.  This designer put out a collection and then literally disappeared. I’ve always wondered what happened.  I purchased the entire collection at release: pants, shirt, coat, and beret.  I’ve only made the pants and the top, but they were super adorable! I’ll share a little pic of those.
  9.  Mix It – Make It Millie Dress (Free Pattern!)


See.  Isn’t that super cute?! I love the trousers and the top was a perfect match.  This was way back at the beginning of my sewing adventure.  In fact, I think this top may have been my first ever button holes.  Peyton’s school pictures were in this outfit.

Okay… I think that wraps up my plans for #2017makenine.  Come back in a few minutes because I have already made one of my nine and need to tell you about it!



Itch to Stitch Holiday Tour


It is finally my day to share a creation on the Itch to Stitch Holiday Blog Tour!  I was excited to get the invite to join in.  Itch to Stitch (and awesome helpers) along with Stylemaker Fabrics have helped to put together a great tour.  This post does contain affliate links, but as always my opinions are my own.

So far we have seen an array of different looks on the tour.  Some are classy and elegant while others are comfortable yet stylish.  I stitched up the Idyllwild Top and Dress which I love. You can see a short sleeved version I did here on the Itch to Stitch Blog. Idyllwild is a t-shirt pattern that includes so many fun extras.  There are 2 necklines, 7 sleeve options, and 3 length options.  That is a total of 42 different combinations.  I’m a math teacher, so I can confirm that 42 is a correct number and Kennis did a good job on her math when she wrote the listing. 🙂  I used some fabulous French Terry supplied by StyleMakers Fabric.  I love how warm and cozy this dress was in French Terry.  It has a 4 way stretch too!  You can find the fabric HERE. I really hadn’t gotten into the French Terry craze that has hit all the sewing groups I belong to.  I had bought some, but used it for items for my kids so I hadn’t really figured out what the craze is all about. I get it now.


The only adjustment I did to this dress was to shorten the length.  I did this using the shorten and lengthen lines provided within the pattern. I don’t know about you but I’m short, so basically all my dresses have to be adjusted for a flattering length.  Due to the heavier nature of this fabric I probably could have shortened a tad more, but since it cool here in Indiana I kept it as is.


I’ve been wanting a tee-shirt dress for a while.  I’ve been talking about it with teacher friends about how comfy they would be for our long days at school, so this was easy to pick for the tour.  I added a scarf for styling for a touch of holiday spirit.  You may also see a belt in a few photos. I’ve recently discovered that belting your scarf give a fun look that is slightly out of the norm of what we usually see with scarves.  Belting it makes me feel like there is a part of me that is fashion forward.


When I chose this neckline for this dress I opted for the larger neckline. I’ve made both necklines with this pattern now and think they are great.  Sometimes I like a higher neckline for comfort and easy of dealing with children without fear of flashing my goods.  I think the larger neckline works pretty well for this too.  It is still modest, but does allow for you to wear pop on a necklace and look great.



I’ve sewn up several Itch to Stitch patterns and I must say they are top notch.  I love the clear concise illustrations and how there are detailed measurement charts to help you select exactly what size you need for your perfect fit. Some patterns even include cup size options so you don’t have to do bust adjustments. That is huge!


Well that raps up my feature for the Itch to Stitch Holiday Tour.  I hope you liked my make and take the time to look over all the patterns offered at Itch to Stitch.  There is a special discount code during the tour. Use code holiday16 for 16% off your entire cart. StyleMakers fabric is offering a great deal too! $5 shipping on all fabric from Style Makers, no code needed. There’s a discount for international shipping as well!

Don’t forget to pop in on the other posts! There are so many lovely creations featuring StyleMakers Fabrics and Itch to Stitch Patterns.