Oliver + S Hide-and-Seek Dress

18 Mar

Oliver + S released 3 new spring patterns last week!

Even though I got a sneak peak at them since I was a pattern tester and sample sewer, I was simply giddy when the new patterns arrived in the mail late last week.

My favorite of the three new patterns is the Hide-and-Seek Dress.  I adore the welted pockets along the front seams.   I opted to use one fabric  for the outer part of the dress, and another for the facing.

I made H. using organic cotton from Cloud 9. The outer fabric is from the Up, Up, & Away collection from Skinny Laminx.

Hide and seek dress  

For the facing, I used a print from the Nature’s Walk collection.


While I was testing the pattern, I made a 0-6 month version using prints from the O + S City Weekend collection I had in my stash.


I love this pattern so much that I have a tunic version in the works.



Weekend Binge Sewing

18 Mar

Our weekends have been packed as of late, so it was nice to finally have one with a bit more downtime.  I took full advantage of having some extra time this weekend by tackling a few sewing projects and finishing up some knitting.

Using organic canvas by Rashida Coleman-Hale for Cloud 9, I made this large tote bag and wristlet. The tote will go a dear friend of mine as part of her birthday present.

tote and wristlet  

I’ve been admiring some of the creations made from the Coco pattern so much so that I was inspired to make my own.  I made a very simple dress version using Ponte de Roma knit in charcoal.


I’ve also been sewing some of the new Oliver + S spring patterns, but I’ll save those for future posts.

We are still in winter mode up here in Boston, so I’ve been knitting a few accessories to get us through the rest of the winter.

H. & J. have new mittens.  I made these using bulky variegated, merino wool from Morehouse Farms.

mittens  mittens


For me, I finished the Elena Cowl using 4 skeins of Quince and Co.’s Chickadee in Iceland.


I’m trying to knit my way out of winter and sew myself into spring.  More spring sewing projects coming up…




Knitting and Sewing for a bit of Winter Warmth

2 Mar

This winter has been a bit too snowy and cold for my taste.  Over the past two months, I’ve been knitting and sewing garments to help keep us all warm.

Shortly after the new year, I knit another Falmouth Hat for myself using a skein of Quince and Co. Osprey in chanterelle.  This has been my go-to-hat on these cold New England days.

Falmouth Hat


I knit the Vines cowl using four skeins of Lark in honey.  I’m donating this one to an upcoming raffle for a friend who is running the Boston Marathon.

Vines Cowl

I recently purchased a second hand serger, and have been easing by way learning how to use it by experimenting with all the different settings.  This weekend I sewed the Lola dress from Victory Patterns using sweatshirt fleece.  I love this dress.  The fleece I used has a tweedy, nubby texture on the outside, but the softest and coziest fleece inside.  I could live in this all winter.  The finished dress reminds me of a garment that Prairie Underground would make, so of course, I want to wear it nonstop.

Using this adorable fawn print knit I picked up a JP Knit and Stitch  yesterday, I made H. a new Hopscotch Top.


I also finished a new School Photo Dress for H. just in time for her to wear it for last week’s 3rd grade tea party.


I used a print from Sarah Jane’s Out to Sea collection for the main fabric and navy blue leftover uniform fabric for the lining.

For J., I made him a tooth pillow just in time for him to send off his first baby teeth.


H. and J. have a number of friends who recently celebrated birthdays.  I made most of them birthday shirts.  A handful went out without photos taken.

For one of H.’s dear friends, H. helped me make a birthday shirt,  a reversible Hula Hoop skirt, and a matching gift bag.



Hopefully, warmer weather will arrive soon.  I’m ready to start sewing spring and summer clothes!



Cowry Hat

2 Jan

Over the winter recess, I knit a Cowry Hat using Finch by Quince and Co.  I seemed to make a terrible mistake when I started the bubble stitch pattern.  You get the neat bubble effect by dropping a series of stitches.  When I dropped first set of stitches, they dropped all the way down to the ribbing.  The hat was knit on teeny tiny needles, so I wasn’t about to rip it all out and start over.  I’m not sure exactly what I did wrong, but after a some much needed time with my crochet hook, I was able to repair the damage I had done.  I haven’t blocked it yet, so don’t mind the lumpy knitting in the photos below.

I’ve already managed to put the hat to good use since we are getting hit with our first snow storm of the year.

Massive backlog

31 Dec

I’ve neglected this old blog for months now.  New job, new responsibilities, lack of time, work-life balance…fill in the blank with any number of reasons keeping up with this blog has fallen to the bottom of my list. You can’t imagine the number of false starts and half written posts I’ve sitting in draft mode.

With a few hours left before 2013 ends, I’m determined to try and list the projects I’ve been working on for the past few months.  I’ve chunked them up using arbitrary categories.

Holiday Crafting

I love giving away handmade gifts for the holidays, but I scaled back slightly.  I still managed to get some sewing, knitting, and baking done in time for the holidays.

Using super soft flannel, I made Oliver + S Bedtime Story PJs for H., J., and my youngest nephews.

I used Riley Blake’s A Merry Little Flannel  for the H. and my youngest nephew’s sets.

pjs   IMG_2592  pjs

For J. and my nephew J., I used cotton flannel that was in my stash.

PJs   pjs

Using leftover fabric, I made a few Straight Stitch Society’s Forget-Me-Not jewelry pouches and put earrings and rings for a few dear friends.

jewelry pouch

For H. & J.’s teachers and friends, we made hand warmers, cookies, and two different kids of marshmallows.  It was fun having them be part of the holiday crafting this year.

teacher gifts

I knit the Falmouth Hat for my husband using a skein of Quince and Co.’s Osprey in bark.  I added some extra length to the bottom of the hat, so my husband could flip it up.  In the photo it’s a bit uneven.


I knit two scarves for two of my brother in laws, and a pair of Fetching wrist warmers for my mother-in-law.  But forgot to take photos.  You’ll see this is an on-going theme in this post.

I knit a Honey Cowl for one of my sisters-in-law in MadTosh Vintage, and an Atwood Infinity Cowl using Cephalopod Yarns Bugga for H’s Brownie troop leader.  I didn’t follow the directions exactly, so the chevron pattern is a bit off.

Christmas Cowls

For my sister, I sewed her a Staple Dress, but I forgot to snap a photo before I shipped it off.


This version of the Atwood Cowl turned out much better.  Sure does help to pay attention when knitting.  This was made using MadTosh Merino light.


Back in the early part of the spring, I started working on the Julissa sweater using MadTosh Vintage.  I added more length on the sleeve and the bottom of the sweater.  Now that the cold weather is here, I am grateful to have such a warm, cozy sweater.


Inspired by Eloise’s Vitamin D cardigan, I made one of my own using Firefly.

Vitamin D  

Pattern Testing and Samples

One of my favorite things to do is to test patterns and sew samples.  This year, I’ve been fortunate enough to test patterns and sew samples for all of the Liesl + Co. lines as well as sew samples for JP Knit and Stitch.

You’ve already seen some of the results on Oliver + S, Straight Stitch Society, and Liesl + Co patterns and sites, so here are a few garments you may not have seen.

For both of these Oliver + S Library Dresses, I used prints by  Rashida Coleman-Hale for the main fabric.



These Forget-Me-Not Jewelry Pouches were made using fabric from Cloud 9.


I love the new Liesl + Co patterns that were released this year.  Here are a few pieces I made as I was testing the patterns.  I made two different versions of the Weekend Getaway Blouse.  One I could wear to work and another I could wear on the weekends. For the work version, I used a Dealtry and Wiksten in Silk Crepe de Chine. Unfortunately, the vibrant print faded and became distressed when I pre-washed the fabric.   I still love the results.  The folks as Spoonflower were kind enough to send me replacement fabric after I finished the garment.

I used a double gauze print from Nani Iro for the casual version of the blouse.

I sewed a warmer weather and cooler weather versions of the Everyday Skirt.  Using more Nani Iro double gauze, I made this metallic polkadot skirt.

For the fall and winter, I used flannel plaid print to make this skirt.

JP Knit and Stitch has some lovely knit fabrics.  Back in the fall, I made an Oliver + S Playdate Dress and Leggings using these two adorable prints.


This Hopscotch knit top and skirt is for the shop.


I sewed this Staple Dress using cotton voile from one of Rashida Coleman-Hale’s lines for Cloud 9.

Starting this weekend, I’m teaching a 4-week session on the Date Night Dress and Slip.  In preparation for the workshop, I sewed these two samples for the shop.  The dress is made of Nani Iro double gauze, and I used a rayon  print by Joel Dewberry for the slip.

I made a Wiksten Tank Dress sample for a workshop I taught over the summer.

As you can see from the last two samples, I’ve been on a hot pink bias tape kick.

Sewn Gifts

Potholder for A.

For H’s 8th birthday, she had a cupcake decorating party.  I sewed aprons for all of the guests.


I have a number of good friends who have fall birthdays, so I made them tote bags.

For a few other friends, they received mini iPad sleeves.

For one of my sister-in-law’s baby sprinkle (her mini shower), I made the baby some cozy flannel pants and a knit cardigan.

School Uniforms

Back in August, I gathered up all my khaki fabric and embarked on my annual bout of uniform sewing.  H. has a new Seashore Dress for the year.

She also has another Birthday Party Dress.

I also made her another Hopscotch skirt and Music Lesson skirt, but don’t have any images of her wearing them to share.  I fear the same is true for all the pants I made for J.  By now, they are so tattered, there is no point even taking photos of them.

Sewing for Me

Lastly, here are a few additional items I made for myself over the summer.

I made yet another Staple Dress using this wonderful print from Anna Maria Horner.

Using this amazing double gauze print from Nani Iro, I made another Easy Kimono Dress.  I love the gold lettering on the selvedge, so I kept it on the hem facing.


I’ve received a number of questions about the differences between the Staple Dress and Easy Kimono Dress patterns.  They are very similar, but the Kimono Dress is a bit more polished and has a better fit.  It does take a bit more time to sew, but I do think it is well worth it.

I’ve been using the knitting bag I made for H. for over two years.  Since she has started knitting in earnest, I thought it would be nice to give her bag back to her.  Using leftover fabric, I finally made myself my own knitting bag.

Whew, well that should do it.  Hopefully, it won’t be another 6 months before you hear form me again.

Happy New Year!

Summer Sewing

9 Jul

Oh, summer!  I have a long mental list of summer sewing projects.  Of course, I meant to start on them before the hot weather hit, but here we are right in the middle of summer, and I am just now starting on summer sewing projects. This past week, I was able to tick off a few sewing projects on the top of my list.

I was hoping to finish making a new summer hat for H. before she went off to camp in Vermont, but that didn’t happen.  I’ve had the Betz White Cadet Cap pattern for while, so it was nice to finally dig it up and use it.  For the main part of that hat, I used twill from Lisette.  I used a lovely pale green floral print from the Liberty of London’s Bloomsbury collection for the band and lining.  I was able to finish it in time for H. to bring pack it and wear it during her week-long vacation with my lovely in-laws.

Cadet Hat  Cadet Hat

I used the rest of the Liberty of London Stile to make a Wiksten tank for one of my sisters-in-law.

Wiksten Tank

I made another Wiksten Tank for me using Liberty of London Tana Lawn that I purchased at Purl Soho during a recent trip to New York.

Wiksten Tank

H. now has a matching pair of Oliver + S Class Picnic Shorts I made using leftover fabric.

Oliver + S Class Picnic Shorts

Using more leftover fabric, I made a cute little iPad mini sleeve from extra yardage from Rashida Coleman-Hale‘s Tsuru collection for Cloud 9.

iPad mini sleeve


Finally, I made yet another Staple Dress using voile from Anna Maria Horner’s Loulouthi collection.  This time with the dropped hem.  I added 5 lines of shirring to make the waist fit a bit better.  Even though I love the pockets, I think the next time around, I’ll make one without the pockets since they make the dress poof out ever so slightly in the hip area.

The Staple Dress Staple Dress

Why so long, stranger?

26 Jun

Well, hello there.  It has been a while since I have posted.  My apologies for neglecting my little ‘ole blog.  My spring semester has been filled with a whole slew of fall pattern testing and sample sewing, kids’ activities, teaching, work events, and job interviews.  Now that summer has arrived, and things are starting to quiet down, I catch you up on a few projects I managed to complete.  For this post, I’ll focus on the items I’ve sewn since I have a small pile of knitted items I completed that still need to be blocked.   I must admit, I’ve been lazy and just taking photos with my phone, so ignore the blurriness.

Here is a quick run down of some of the sewing projects I completed.

I snatched up a digital copy of The Staple Dress as quickly as I could and couldn’t wait to start sewing.  I decided to use Marc Jacobs voile I purchased at Mood last year to make my first Staple Dress.

Staple Dress in voile

I made another one using AMH voile.  I thought the single line of shirring wasn’t quite enough, so I added 3 more lines.

Staple Dress  Staple Dress

I really like this pattern.  It is so straight forward and easy to make.  I highly recommend it.

H.’s really close friend celebrated her 8th birthday back in April.  For her present, I made her a pair of O + S Class Picnic Shorts and added 8 appliquéd balloons to a tee-shirt.

Bday present  bday present

For H. & J.’s school auction, I made a yoga bag.  I made another for a friend’s birthday.

Yoga Bag

yoga bag lining  yoga bag lining

For a wee friend who visited us a few weeks back, I made him an O + S Sailboat Top in seersucker leftover from fall sample sewing.  I used lime green thread and buttons to add a bit of color.


I’ve been sewing a few things for H.’s upcoming birthday as well, but I’ll save that for a future post!


Spring Dresses

5 Apr

Spring has finally arrived in Boston.  For the past few weeks, I’ve been getting ready for the warmer weather by sewing a number of spring dresses.

I made a sample of the Oliver + S Roller Skate Dress for JP Knit and Stitch.  This is another reversible version, so I used a print from Erin McMorris’s Moxie line accompanied by orange gingham .

Roller Skate Dress

For the reverse side, I used a small peacock print from the Birds and Berries line by Lauren and Jessi Jung.

Oliver + S Roller Skate Dress

I recently taught a workshop on the Schoolhouse Tunic.  As my demo tunic, I used this lovely fabric a friend brought back for me from Yu Chau Street in Hong Kong.

School House Tunic

I made two Kimono Dresses to give a birthday presents.

For K., I used AMH cotton voile.

Kimono Dress

I used boarder print rayon to make this one for A.


I’m scheduled to teach a workshop on the Washi Dress, so I made two versions of the dress to help me prepare.  I loved doing the shirring at the back of the dress.  There was something so satisfying watching the elastic stink up after I blasted it with steam.

I made the scoop neck version using “Raise the Roof” by Jay McCarroll from my stash.

Washi Dress  Washi Dress

For JP Knit and Stitch store sample, I made the cut out version of the Washi Dress using organic cotton from Cloud 9’s Tsuru collection.

Washi Dress  Washi Dress

I have another spring dress lined up, so hopefully, I’ll be able to share that with you soon.

Roller Skate Dress

6 Mar

I love sewing samples and testing sewing patterns.  It’s been a fun way to be part of someone else’s creative process as well as get a sneak peek of forthcoming patterns.  I still get excited every time I get an e-mail from Liesl asking if I would be up for testing.  You can read more about what goes into the making of and Oliver + S pattern here.  I feel pretty lucky to have a small role in the whole process.

In December, I started testing and sewing samples for the Spring/Summer ’13 Oliver + S patterns.  As soon as I saw the Roller Skate Dress, I knew this pattern would be in regular rotation in my sewing queue.  In fact, I can’t stop making these dresses.

I made H.view a of the Roller Skate dress in size 8 using the Flora print from Julia Rothman’s Miscellany line for Cloud 9.  Since it is still winter here in New England, H. has been wearing this dress with layers underneath.

Roller Skate Dress  

I made another version of the dress in size 10 to see if it could be reversible.  To make the dress reversible, I added another button loop to the lining, sewed on buttons to both sides in the back for the dress, and left the hem length the same for both sides of the dress.  I decided to leave off the center bow since it might be a bit uncomfortable if it were facing the body.

I used 1000 Cranes in Indigo from Rashida Coleman-Hale’s latest line for Cloud 9.  There are so many beautiful prints in the Tsuru line.  Of course, the fact that all of Cloud 9’s fabrics are made out of organic cotton is a bonus.  For the other side, I used Alexander Henry’s April Showers print.  I’ve had this in my stash for quite some time.

This dress will be given to a very very special Portland girl for her April birthday, so it seemed only natural to use this print for the reverse side (Sorry for the spoiler, Nance).  I’m hoping my niece loves it as much as I do.

For dress number 3, I made view B with the contrasting yoke.


I used a print from Erin McMorris’s La-Dee-Da line and polka dots from Delphine Cubitt for the yoke.

the lining, I used poplin from the Spring Little Lisette collection. Can you tell which side H. prefers?


Didn’t I warn you that I can’t stop sewing this dress?  The simple silhouette is so versatile   I love the capped sleeves; they were one of my favorite details in the Bubble Dress. I can’t wait to try adding applique to a future iteration of this dress.  Oh, the options.  I can’t wait to see what your Roller Skate dresses/tunics look like!

Pinwheel Dress + Tunic

5 Mar

Every season, I get so excited when the new Oliver + S patterns get released.  There are so many different options in each little O+ S package.  Take the new Pinwheel Dress + Tunic, you get three different looks with this one pattern.

I had a bunch of leftover red bias tape from this sample, so I wanted to choose that would work well with a little pop of red.  I choose two Modern Workshop prints to make the slip dress and tunic for H. For the slip dress, I choose to use two different prints for the bodice and for the ruffle. That decision was based on the fact that I didn’t have enough fabric in the same print, but I do like the result.

This will be a great simple dress for H. to wear in the summer, but for now, we are still in layering mode.

H. wore the tunic on top of the slip dress this weekend while she performed a little dance routine with her friends.


She loves the twirl factor with the double flounce.

For H.’s 6th birthday, we threw a pinwheel themed party.  H. was excited to see the Holly paper doll on the cover the  Pinwheel Dress/Tunic pattern.  Perhaps another pinwheel themed party is in order.