We are blogging about sewing with cotton lawn (and swoon! crochet lace trim) over on the Cali Fabrics blog – come see the beautiful La Tulipe Dress Gina made with Robert Kaufman’s London Calling cotton lawn in Swirling Leaves and Flowers in pink and orange! (affiliate link with a coupon discount for you) She’ll tell you all about her experience sewing this gorgeous dress with these materials.
Some of my favorite pictures are found in children’s books. Their illustrations always make me think to myself, “Now wouldn’t this look so cute on fabric?”. That is exactly what you have here with Maude Asbury’s upcoming new collection, Sweet Dreams for Blend Fabrics. It will be hitting your favorite quilt and online shops any day now, so keep an eye out for it or ask your local quilt shop to stock it.
These sleepy woodland creatures look so charming all snuggled up together, and the soft colors would look so lovely in a baby nursery. Although I no longer have a baby nursery to decorate, I do have a little one! I chose the Jon and Janie Romper and Bubble pattern to show off this sweet fabric collection, plus I’m going to show you a simple appliqué tutorial to personalize your romper.
The Jon and Janie Romper and Bubble is definitely a favorite! It comes with a classic and quick to sew romper version, and an adorable bubble version, both short and long in sizes 0-3 years. It also includes a tutorial for turning it into a dress!
I threw in the Knot or Not Headband, without the knot in size small. It’s perfect for keeping my girl’s hair in place! It’s available in sizes newborn all the way through adult and can me whipped up in minutes.
I made my girl the short bubble version in size 18-24 months. Since she’s much taller than the height range for this size, I added length per the pattern’s instructions.
Simple Appliqué Tutorial
Now before assembling your bodice, you will want to add your appliqué. Go ahead and choose the image you want to appliqué to your bodice, or wherever you want to add some decoration. First, you will need double sided fusible web or paper-backed fusible web for appliqué. I used Pellon 805 (Wonder Under) for this simple applique tutorial, but there are other brands available that serve the same purpose. Cut your piece of fusible web larger than the image you want to appliqué, making sure there is plenty of space around your image.
Fuse your web to the wrong side of your fabric image per your fusible web’s instructions, making sure the paper side is facing you and the iron. I always use a pressing cloth when I’m applying any kind of fusible interfacing or web.
One of the issues I’ve found with Wonder Under is that the paper backing tends to “fall off” before you want it to, especially if it’s been sitting around for awhile. If you were drawing shapes on your paper for a more complex appliqué project, this would definitely be a problem, but for this project, that’s not an issue because I’m just cutting around my fabric image. This is why I simply peeled off my paper before cutting around my image. It’s not harming the fusible web doing it this way.
After peeling off the backing, I cut around my image, then fused it to my bodice per my fusible web’s instructions again, using my pressing cloth.
Now there are several different ways to sew around your appliqué, but here I’m using a simple zig zag stitch. Make sure to sew a few practice zig zag rows on scrap fabric to get the size and stitch length that you want. This really is just personal preference and there’s no rule other than you want it to look nice and keep your appliqué from fraying. My zig zag setting for this tutorial is a stitch width of 3.0 and length of 0.5. Jen likes a width of 3.0 to 3.5 and a stitch length of 0.3 or 0.5. You can also use a satin stitch that would look like a stitch width of 4.0 and length of 0.4, but again, play with a fabric scrap to get the look you want.
If this is your first time doing this, just go slowly when sewing around your appliqué. Your hand wheel is your friend! To begin, you will want to make sure that the outer needle placement of your zig zag stitch is at the outer edge of your appliqué, in your main fabric, and the inside zig zag is on your appliqué.
If you need to reposition your fabric piece while stitching, make sure to leave your needle in the down position so you don’t lose your place. This is very important when sewing around curves and corners. It’s also ok to sew one or two stitches at a time around curves and adjusting fabric in between. This will give you the cleanest look.
When sewing around an outer curve (like the outside of a circle), stop with your needle in the appliqué, then lift your presser foot and adjust your fabric to continue sewing around.
If you’re sewing in an inner curve (like the inside of a circle), stop with your needle at the outer edge of the appliqué, in the main fabric, lift your presser foot and adjust your fabric to continue sewing.
When sewing around an outside corner (like the point of a square), sew up to the corner, with your needle in the down position in the fabric, pivot your fabric and continue sewing.
When sewing around an inside corner (like the inner points of a star), sew to the inside corner and with your needle in the fabric, lift your presser foot and adjust your fabric to continue sewing.
When you’re done, don’t back stitch, just pull your threads to the back and tie them in a knot. It’s important to practice as you’ll get better once you know your machine and the stitch length/width you like best.
I have to admit I’ve gotten a little sloppy with the zig zags since I haven’t done them in awhile (and getting used to a new machine!), but those little hedgehogs make it all better with their cuteness!
I assembled the rest of my bubble romper and just look at how adorable it is?! The pink crescent moons and sleeping cuties look so peaceful, not to mention those tiny little cabins. They make me want to sit around a campfire and sing songs while roasting yummy smores!
The color palette is fairly mellow, but I just love the pop of gold. I loved it so much I decided to cover my snaps with it! The geometric print definitely gives this collection a fun spin and pairs well with the other prints.
I’m going to be honest with you, I’m already crazy about chickens, owls, daisies, books, basically everything you see in the Garden Roost collection by Elizabeth Grubaugh for Blend Fabrics, so it was love at first sight! When I saw this collection I knew I needed the perfect pattern to showcase these playful prints. I mean come on, there are owls riding on handlebars!
Right from the start I knew the Storybook Pinafore Dress would be perfect. It’s a vintage style pinafore pattern available in baby and girl sizes, or as a bundle, and it has that old-fashioned farm-girl look that I was going for.
Also, if you select this pattern from the drop down menu on the blog, you’ll see that there are already a couple of pretty adorable hacks available, but I had to add one more. I found my inspiration here with vintage Simplicity 7197 (picture borrowed from Vintage Patterns).
My girls often help me on our little suburban homestead, and although I would love for them to do so in full dresses, it just wouldn’t make the most sense. The green short dress version in this simplicity pattern seemed most practical, so I included the Potato Chip Shorts pattern to complete my ensemble. These shorts are perfect for the upcoming warm weather, don’t require a lot of fabric, and they’re available in sizes 12 months to 9/10 years.
Today I’ll show you how to use the Storybook Pinafore Dress and Potato Chip Shorts patterns to create this sweet vintage look. Whether or not you want to throw in some chickens is up to you!
Storybook Pinafore Short Dress
To make the short dress, let’s begin with our pattern pieces and the changes we’ll need to make to them.
I started by using the measurements from the Cross Back Pinafore Tutorial for the added width to the waistband pieces and front skirt piece since I was eliminating the ties at the sides. Here’s the chart for the added width for the waistband pieces (add this measurement to both sides of your waistband).
To the front skirt piece, just add 5″ to your width (I’ll get to the length a bit later). I cut the back skirt width, straps, ruffles, and 2 bodice pieces per the pattern’s instructions. I waited until my top portion was sewn together before cutting my skirt pieces.
First, assemble the bodice pieces, straps, and ruffles according to the pattern’s instructions.
Then place your waistband front and back pieces right sides together, sew at the short ends, and press seams open. Repeat for lining waistband pieces.
Now place your waistband main fabric and lining right sides together, matching side seams.
Center your front bodice piece to your front waistband, and sandwich between the waistband and waistband liner.
Do the same with your back waistband and back bodice.
Sew around this seam using a 1/2″ seam allowance.
Trim your seam allowance to a 1/4″.
Pull your waistband pieces down, wrong sides together, and press. Edge stitch around the top of your waistband, close to the seam. I love how this pinafore pattern frames these chickens too.
I did cut the skirt pieces shorter, but I didn’t cut them until after I put the entire top portion together. I really wanted to ensure the proper length (actually I just really wanted to highlight those bike riding chickens!). The Storybook pattern provides a chart with finished length measurements, so you can use that to figure out how much length you want to remove from the skirts if want to cut your pieces before constructing the top. Keep in mind your hem allowance.
I made size 18-24 months for my girl, so I cut the front skirt piece 7.5″ long by 24.5″ wide and the back skirt piece 7.5″ long by 19.5″ wide (the back skirt piece gets some added gathering from the elastic added at the back waist). The finished length for my dress according to the pattern is 17.5″, and my short dress from shoulder to hem came to 14.5″ (I’m going to add a little note here. My girl’s chest measurement falls in the 18-24 months size range, but she is 4″ taller than the max height for this size. If your child falls within the 18-24 months height range, you may want to cut your skirt pieces shorter than I did.).
Once your skirt pieces are cut, place them right sides together and sew them at the short sides, finishing these seams. Sew gathering stitches along the top like step 2 of your pattern, then hem the bottom.
Press you waistband lining bottom edge under 3/8″, then push the lining out of the way.
Place your bodice inside your skirt piece with right sides together, matching up raw edges. Before you gather your skirt, pin at your side seams, at center front, and at center back.
Gather your skirt and sew to the waistband using a 1/2″ seam allowance.
Pull the skirt down and press at the waistband, careful to avoid pressing your gathers. I also added an elastic channel to the back waistband so it can be worn without a top underneath. To do this, just sew the back portion of the waistband down first, making a casing for your elastic.
I derived my elastic measurement by taking my child’s chest measurement and subtracting her waistband measurement from it. Her measurement looked like this: 20.5″ – 12.375″ = 8.125″ or 8 1/8″.
You can use 3/4″ elastic, or simply cut off 1/8″ of your 1″ elastic like I did, and it fit perfectly. Pull your elastic through and secure it at the side seam line when the elastic peaks out 1/2″, then pulling it through and securing at the other end in the same way. I tend to sew another row in the middle to keep the elastic from rolling by pulling the waistband taught as I sew.
Then sew your front waistband down and your short dress is done!
The Potato Chip Shorts are absolutely adorable in a mix of these prints. The back yoke is a contrasting print that ties into the pinafore.
This really was a fun collection to play with, as you can see from my little chicken poking out of the pocket! The little chickens and owls have so much personality, my girls just loved looking at them and figuring out just what they were up to. The Garden Roost collection will be available in May so you can have some fun with it too!
I’m also thrilled with the way the Storybook Pinafore short dress hack turned out! Isn’t it just so cute with leggings too?
You can find the Storybook Pinafore Dress and Potato Chip Shorts patterns in Tie Dye Diva’s new pattern shop! If you haven’t seen the new site yet, take a look. Also don’t forget the bundle and save discount, you know, to make your own sale!
I hope you enjoyed this little vintage inspired hack for the Storybook Pinafore Dress, and remember to look for our patterns in our dropdown menu, “See Posts by Pattern/Category”. There are always lots of ideas and inspiration so you can get the most out of Tie Dye Diva’s patterns. Enjoy!
In continuing with our seam finishing tutorials and making our clothing gorgeous on the inside too, I thought I would share with you another simple and lovely seam finish, the French seam. If you would like to see our previous post on seam finishes, you can find them here at Quick Seam Finishes.
French seams are probably one of the more popular seam finishes because they’re so easy to sew and hide raw edges well. It’s also the perfect seam finish for lightweight or even sheer fabric. Today I’ll show you two different ways to sew a French seam.
I absolutely love this pattern with its curved bodice and twirly goodness, not to mention those large lovely pockets for all kinds of treasures!
This pattern is available in sizes 12 months to 9/10 years, includes tunic measurements, ruffles and a hem finish, and is also available in the 14.5″ doll and 18″ doll sizes.
Let’s get started, shall we? Ok, one more picture of that amazing twirl…
The French Seam
Most importantly when sewing a French seam is to know your pattern’s seam allowance (SA) before cutting your fabric. Also note which seams are enclosed in the pattern and which ones you will need to finish using a French seam. Using the Lemon Drop dress’s SA of 1/2″, I know I will have enough SA to sew a French seam, and I will be applying this seam finish to the side seams as the bodice and straps are enclosed.
This first method is the most common way to sew a French seam. First, take your fabric pieces and place the side seams wrong sides together.
Sew your seam using a 1/4″ SA.
Press your seam open to set your stitches. This also makes it easier to get a clean fold at the seam.
Fold your fabric wrong sides together again and trim your SA to 1/8″. Here I’m trimming and removing 1/8″ of my 1/4″ SA.
Now fold your fabric right sides together enclosing your SA inside your seam.
Sew using a 1/4″ SA.
Press your seam open and there you have your French seam! Your raw seam is completely encased and hidden. I love how finished a French seam looks!
Here is the front view, seen clearly by the headless unicorn.
Method 2 (the serger method)
This method is very quick, but I will caution that it uses a bit more SA. When using this method, you may want to increase your SA by 1/8″ (if your pattern calls for a 1/2″ like the Lemon Drop). If your pattern has a 5/8″ SA, you’re good to go and don’t need to add anything. I didn’t increase my SA and you will see why in my note below.
First, take your fabric pieces and place the side seams wrong sides together.
Now instead of sewing, serge this seam making sure not to cut off any of your SA.
Press this seam open and fold your fabric right sides together to enclose your serged seam. Since you’re not trimming this seam, you will need to make sure you’re sewing with a SA wide enough to completely enclose this serged seam, otherwise you will see it from the front. I’ve highlighted my serged seam on the ruler so you can see exactly where it is inside my fold.
A little note about the importance of seam allowance here. This is where I will be using a 5/16″ SA to completely enclose my serged seam. This is just a smidge wider than the 1/4″ serged seam and ensures it will be completely hidden.
If you had cut your fabric using an extra 1/8″ SA at the sides like I mentioned above, you would just sew this next seam using a 3/8″ SA and be done. This is most important if the garment you are sewing is fitted and every 1/16″ makes a difference (I’ve been there, it DOES make a difference in a fitted garment!). Since the Lemon Drop dress has a gathered skirt portion, I didn’t see the point in making a larger SA, or maybe just do as I say and not as I do!
Now press open and you’re done!
Why use one method over the other? The serger method is quick and can make the seam a little sturdier, making it easier to turn over and sew the French seam. It is a bit of a heavier French seam than method 1 is, and if your child has sensitivity to thicker seams, I would definitely recommend method 1. Here’s a picture comparing the two.
You can see the serged French seam on the right is a bit stiffer. It’s not a huge deal, but for those looking for a seam finish that’s “softer”, method 1 may be your best bet.
You can use this seam finish in many of Tie Dye Diva’s patterns, not just the Lemon Drop. Here are just some of my favorite patterns that would look great finished with French seams!
Patterns from left to right, top to bottom: Fair and Square Dress and Top, Peasant Blouse for Girls, Every Day Top, Butterfly Dress, Jon and Janie Romper, Day Dreamer Dress, Potato Chip Pants and Shorts, Seaside Sailor Dress for Baby, and the Easy Peasy Peasant Dress for Girls.
You can find all of these patterns and more in Tie Dye Diva’s pattern shop. Now you can French all the seams! Just pay attention to those seam allowances, alright?
If you’re anything like me, then you want your handmade clothing to look as pretty on the inside as it does on the outside. Finishing your seams doesn’t need to take a long time, but it’s definitely worth that extra effort to keep them from unraveling! Today I’m going to share with you a few quick seam finishes, the faux flat fell seam and 2 bias tape finishes that will give you neat and professional looking garments.
Both types of seam finishes are excellent when working with thicker fabric, but they can also be used with other fabric weights. The faux flat felled seam gives you a nice top stitching on the right side of your garment, and the bias tape seam finish gives you a beautiful look on the inside and can even add a fun pop of color! You can sew these seam finishes with just a traditional sewing machine too.
To demonstrate how lovely these seam finishes are I used the Potato Chip Skirt and Potato Chip Shorts and Pants patterns. Both classic patterns are great in a variety of woven fabrics and provide ample opportunity to trim with piping or other fancy trim. The Potato Chip Skirt can also be made reversible and includes a large range of sizes, 12 months through 13/14 years.
There is also the Chocolate Chip Skirt for women which runs from size XS through XXXL if you would also like to make one for yourself too! The Potato Chip Shorts and Pants pattern includes a cute optional belt and comes in sizes 12 months though 9/10.
Now let’s get started making our clothing beautiful on the inside!
Faux Flat Fell Seams
The faux (or mock) flat fell seam is a very quick seam finish that provides durability and a professional looking finish to garments. It definitely looks great when working with heavier weight fabrics like denim.
I used this seam finish when I made this unlined denim version of the Potato Chip Skirt.
I also used upholstery thread to topstitch (regular thread in the bobbin) my faux flat fell seams with a slightly longer stitch length and a denim needle.
I just love the finish on both sides of this one! I completed my skirt using a hem facing because I love that extra bit of surprise color and finish. If you want to use this same finish you can find out how here in our hem facing tutorial.
For this tutorial I am using scrap fabric, but I used the exact same procedure on my side seams for the Potato Chip Skirt.
Taking one of your pieces to be sewn together, finish one seam edge with a serged or zigzag stitch. Be careful not to remove any of your seam allowance if using a serger.
Place your fabric right sides together and pin.
Sew your seam according to your pattern’s instructions.
Press your seam open and trim the unfinished seam to 1/4″.
Press your finished seam allowance piece over your trimmed piece and pin in place.
My personal preference is to sew from the right side of the garment since I’m usually topstitching at this point (and you definitely want to do this if you’re using topstitching thread). Stitch a straight line just within the seam allowance and catching the finished seam below; use your first seam as a guide. When you’re done, you should only see your finished seam underneath which should be hiding your trimmed seam allowance. If you’re not using special top stitching thread, you can sew from the wrong side of the garment too. You can see my stitching line in red below.
Here is what it looks like on the right side. Gorgeous!
Bias Tape Finished Seams
This is probably one of my favorite ways to finish seams. It does take a bit longer than the faux flat fell seams, but it adds that something extra to the inside of a garment that it makes it worth it. I typically use single fold bias tape, but you can make your own too. I will be showing you two different ways to quickly finish seams using bias tape.
Bias Tape Finish 1
I used this seam finish for these denim Potato Chip Shorts.
I eliminated the pocket to make it easy to finish the side seams using this method. Of course I had to add some trim to the back yoke!
The green bias tape and waistband provide a finished and colorful look! It takes these shorts to a whole new level right?!
I’m using scraps again for this tutorial, but it’s the same procedure I used making these polka dot Potato Chip Shorts.
Take your pieces and place them right sides together and pin.
Sew your seam according to your pattern’s instructions.
Press your seam open.
Taking your bias tape, open it up and pin the right side edge of your bias tape to the right side edge of your seam allowance.
Move your fabric out of the way to expose the seam allowance and bias tape edges.
Sew together using the fold in the bias tape as a stitching guide, or approximately a 1/4″ seam allowance.
Fold the bias tape over and press.
Now you will wrap your bias tape towards the back of the seam, encasing the raw edge of your seam allowance inside the bias tape. You may need to trim just a little of the seam allowance to get a good fold, and pin in place.
Edge stitch your bias tape in place using coordinating thread. I used contrasting thread so you can see them. You would repeat these steps for the seam allowance on the other side as well.
Bias Tape Finish 2
This finish is essentially the same as bias tape finish 1, except you enclose both seam allowance pieces together inside the bias tape. I used this method for these striped Potato Chip Shorts since I included the pockets.
The pockets increase the bulk of the seams, and I didn’t want to increase it even further with extra bias tape.
This bias tape finish makes it easier to finish the seams and topstitch where necessary, like at the sides and the back yoke.
I used faux flat fell seams along the legs and U-shaped center seams to avoid the added bulk of the bias tape. This seam finish also provides reinforcement here which is important. Aren’t these shorts just gorgeous inside? The outside is pretty cute too, and that stripes matching! Nailed it if I do say so myself.
I paired these shorts with the Daffodil Top, a lovely paneled top that has plenty of room for creativity. I did modify it a little at the neckline to add trim and a tie closure (hint…I’ll be sharing this one with you soon!).
Now that you’ve seen how lovely we can make the inside of our garments, go ahead and try it yourself. You can find the Potato Chip Skirt and Potato Chip Shorts and Pants patterns in Tie Dye Diva’s pattern shop, and we bet you can’t make just one either! We’d love to see what you make, so don’t forget to share in the Tie Dye Diva Facebook Group or tag us @tiedyediva on Instagram.
We are blogging about some gorgeous knits today over at Cali & Co.! Come learn about the 5 amazing and different knits we chose and how Gina sewed them into two very different outfits with our fabulous New York Minute Dress and Sterling Leggings patterns! Also, read to the bottom of this post to save $5 on your CaliFabrics order too!
And a little look at #2 – New York Minute dress with “ribbed” hems, inset pockets, and short sleeves options in a fascinating “Liverpool” fabric along with Sterling Leggings were made using Black Grunge Double Brushed Poly Spandex (“DBP”). There has been so much talk about these fabrics lately!
I enjoy mashing patterns together, dreaming up the possibilities of what can be made. Getting the most out of a pattern, personalizing it, and making it our own is why we sew, right? Today we have a very simple but exciting mash up for you!
This pattern has no less than 19 different combinations. Really, 19 ways? Yes!
*Dress with long sleeves and knit single fabric skirt.
*Dress with long sleeves and woven single fabric skirt.
*Dress with long sleeves and knit paneled skirt.
*Dress with long sleeves and woven paneled skirt.
*Dress with ruched long sleeves and knit single fabric skirt.
*Dress with ruched long sleeves and knit paneled skirt.
*Dress with ruched long sleeves and woven single fabric skirt
*Dress with ruched long sleeves and woven paneled skirt.
*Dress with short sleeves and knit single fabric skirt.
*Dress with short sleeves and woven single fabric skirt.
*Dress with short sleeves and knit paneled skirt.
*Dress with short sleeves and woven paneled skirt.
*Top with long sleeves.
*Top with ruched long sleeves.
*Top with short sleeves.
*Skirt with knit single fabric skirt.
*Skirt with woven single fabric skirt.
*Skirt with knit paneled skirt.
*Skirt with woven paneled skirt.
There are also no closures to worry about, as it just pulls over the head. Don’t want to include the collar, there’s a tutorial for that!
This pattern includes flutter sleeves, an optional bodice ruffle, fabric flower, and of course the two lengths. It really is a sweet yet comfy top. Have you ever stopped and thought how nice it would be to add sleeves for colder weather though? Well today we’re going to show you how easy it is to add short or long sleeves to the Opal using the Garnet sleeve pattern!
Adding Sleeves in 2 Easy Steps!
Step 1: Find your pattern size for the Opal and use the same size for the Garnet sleeve, length of your choice.
Step 2: Notice the sleeve notch markings where you gather your fabric on the Garnet sleeve? Now move that notch over to the left and gather from your new notch. I moved mine over 1″ (shown by the pink arrow) for size 3 and it fit perfectly!
That’s it! Just more gathers to make the Garnet sleeve fit the Opal!
Here is the tunic length with short sleeves made by Rachel:
Here is the tunic length with long sleeves:
Here is the dress length with long sleeves:
The Opal bodice is perfect for lace overlays and ruffles. This version was made for a birthday party. The pattern could have been dressed up even more if I had added a lace overlay to the skirt portion, but I wanted her to be able to wear the dress casually as well. I just love the silhouette of this dress!
The Perfect Party Dress is made with Float in Green, Flower Crown in Pink, and finished off with a sash in the Breeze print. Don’t you love it when you have the perfect color KAM snaps on hand?
I made the Ruffled Baby Bubble Romper with Float in Blue as the main fabric with Buttercup in Blue straps, and tied it together with big sister’s dress with Breeze ruffles. The wavy print makes the ruffles look extra ruffly!
I know this hot air balloon fabric and the coordinates are going to be super popular, so give a search around the internet (here’s a current search of Etsy listings for Flutter & Float) or your local quilt shop for Flutter & Float soon so you don’t miss out!
How about we show you how to make them, and give you a free downloadable pocket pattern too.
Kitty Pocket Tutorial
First, download the free pocket pattern piece:
TDDkittypocket.pdf (222 downloads)
. Then print at 100% or to your personal preference – the finished pocket printed at 100% is 4.5″ wide and 4″ long.
As directed on the pocket pattern piece, cut two kitty shapes per pocket.
Embellish the kitty face as desired. I’ve included a few sample faces you can trace. Below shows the faces done with heat-transfer vinyl, sewing-machine stitches (tight zigzag for lines and the built-in eyelet stitch for eyes), and, my favorite, hand embroidery. You can use tiny buttons for eyes and nose if they safe for the age of the wearer.
Use a 1/4″ seam allowance to sew two pockets right sides together. Leave about an inch unstitched on one side for turning. You may find it helpful to mark the stitching line so you can sew precisely around the ears and top of the head.
Before turning, clip into the inner corners where the ears join the head and across the points of the ears. Also, clip around the curve or trim with pinking shears. Do not trim or clip the area left open for turning.
Now turn your kitty through the opening. Use a small tool (knitting needles, chopsticks, small screwdriver) to push out the curves and ears. Press well turning under the 1/4″ seam allowance at the turning point.
Topstitch around the entire kitty a scant1/4″ from the edge. Again, it may be helpful to mark your stitching line. Then, edgestitch (1/8″ from the edge or less) across the top of the head from the outer point of one ear to the outer point of the other. Remember, start 1/8″ in from the edge and end 1/8″ in from the edge.
Pin pocket(s) in place on your garment and edgestitch around the bottom of the head to secure the pocket to the garment, connecting your stitches to the ones you sewed on the top portion.
Finally, sew a bartack or tight zigzag across the tops of the ears to reinforce the pocket.
Solids or ‘blenders’ work best for the kitty face; you want to avoid fabrics with a bold or busy print. We’ve shown this tutorial to you in fabrics from the Tutti Fruitti and Panda-Rama collections by Maude Asbury for Blend Fabrics with the exception of the hand-embroidered sample shown on a solid linen.
The moment I saw the pink colorway of the Panda-rama collection by Maude Asbury for Blend Fabrics, I knew the Garnet Dress, Skirt and Top pattern for Girls would be perfect to showcase these playful prints. The pattern is available in sizes 12 months – 10 years and includes the dress pattern with knit bodice and woven or knit skirt, long or short sleeves, and a sweet woven collar, as well as views for making a knit top and a circle skirt that can be sewn using woven or knit fabric. The skirt on the dress or separate skirt can be made with either a single fabric print or with fabric panels and features a knit waistband. Of course I was going to use those panels to feature Panda-Rama’s adorable pandas, lanterns, and geometric prints!
The top is made with cotton/lycra knit fabric, and I used the Pink Pin Tip tutorial in the Garnet pattern for the ruched long sleeves. I love ruching as it adds a bit of fanciness to an otherwise simple top. I also appliqued that sweet little panda face because, well, pandas!
Making a fabric bead necklace (and bracelet) is such a fun way to showcase the tonal geometric prints. The wooden beads also add a fun bit of color and break up the pattern.
You can also make a fabric bead necklace without visible beads, like we did here with the hanging lanterns print. Instead of using more beads for contrast, we simply used knots. The ring is sewn on using a zipper foot.
To make these fabric bead necklaces and bracelets, you will need fabric and larger sized beads. We used three different sizes. If you would like to make the fabric bead necklace with the gold ring, you would also need one of those. I was able to find the beads and the ring in the macrame section of my local craft shop. The wooden beads are also non-toxic, and although we left them natural, you can always paint them to match the fabric too if that’s your thing.
My girl took the reins on this project and made most of them herself, so if you can you should definitely make these with your kiddos too! We used a few simple techniques to make these fabric bead necklaces and bracelets. We kept it simple because they’re kids’ jewelry, but you can definitely add clasps and closures to make them more “grown up”.
Now let’s make some fabric bead necklaces and bracelets!
First, you will need to cut strips of fabric to fit the largest bead you will be putting inside of your fabric bead necklace. Here is your cutting guide:
16mm beads – cut your fabric 2 3/8″ wide by about 16″ long (length for bracelet)
20mm beads – cut your fabric 2 7/8″ wide by 45″ long (length for necklace)
25mm beads – cut your fabric 3 1/2″ wide by 45″ long
Lay your fabric strip right side up, then fold it in half lengthwise with right sides together, and sew along the long edge using a 1/4″ seam allowance, stopping about 1″ from the end.
Turn your tube right side out using a safety pin or bodkin.
Taking the end opposite of the one with the 1″ opening, tie a knot leaving a tail. For the bracelet leave only a few inches for the tail, but for the necklace, leave several inches depending on the design you’re working on.
Begin with your first bead, pushing it all the way inside to the knot you just tied. If the bead won’t fit in your tube easily, you’ll need to cut a wider strip.
If you want contrasting beads on the outside, pinch your fabric at the end to push inside the bead, twisting and using needle nose pliers if necessary to pull it through.
Alternate this way until you get your desired length.
When you finish with your final bead, tie another knot at the end closely to your last bead.
Here we tied both ends and simply cut the tails off. You could also fold the ends in and hand or machine sew them closed.
These are so fun and easy to make, and they complete this Garnet skirt and top ensemble. Look at how that paneled circle-skirt twirl just shows off these prints! The pattern recommends 5 different prints for the skirt panels, but I was able to use just 4 (1 extra panel each of the panda and lantern prints), and it still looks great.
It looks great little too! Aren’t these the sweetest little panda faces on this Ruffled Baby Sunsuit/Romper? Check out those charming little birdies in the background with their rosy cheeks.
Panda-rama is arriving in fabric shops now (I see it in Fat Quarter Shop now) and is available in two colorways, including this blue you see above.