Caroline Party Dress Review

So I guess you're wondering if I just ate a cheese stick with lunch meat, then half a sleeve of crackers smeared with garden vegetable cream cheese....followed by a bowl of popcorn.  What?!  Stop looking at me like that!  I just felt the need to confess....

I'd blame it on the baby, but I know it's me.  I really love food and it's kind of a problem.

Anyway, this look would've been perfect for the Project Run & Play Spring Break Challenge as a beach vaca always sounds dreamy.  But my mind went blank that week because at the time, my dream vacation was a trip alone to the grocery store. #ileadaglamorouslife  So I ended up sewing this for Kids Clothes Week and as part of pattern parcel.  But I never got around to posting it.  Because ya know.  Life.

So all that was a completely unnecesary and round-a-bout way to say that this post is simply my official review of the Caroline Party Dress.  I did receive a free version of this dress for Pattern Parcel, but what do ya know, I'd already purchased it a few weeks before.  :) But can you blame me?  It's adorable and I'm always a sucker for a peter pan collar.

I'm sure every seamstress dreams of designing their own fabric, but it's a secret wish of mine. And one of the things I'd design would be big cabana stripes.  Because they are so fun!

But alas, no such luck in finding any big stripes in the colors that I wanted.  So I used acrylic paint mixed with a fabric medium to paint these stripes.  Lila's are 3'' stripes and Madelyn's are 2''.

I wish I could say the stripes turned out super soft.  But they didn't.  But I was ok with that.  I was going for a beachy look, so I felt like it was ok that it didn't turn out perfectly.  Because what does in life?

Actually just kidding, the invisible zipper instructions on this pattern are just about perfect.  I've always been super scared of invisible zippers, but it actually makes sense to me now and it's doable!

I sewed Madelyn a size 18m and it fits perfectly.  I did an underskirt since the fabric was thin, but opted not to do the tulle at the bottom.

Lila's was a 3T bodice 4T length, since she is fairly petite and she tends to grow up not around.  I changed up Lila's dress a little by pleating it instead of gathering the fabric with an underskirt, but no tulle.

The only thing I regret is that I forgot to add pockets.  Lila would've loved pockets.  But that gives me a good excuse to make another one.  :)

Overall, this is a great pattern.

It's a cute dress that you can change up and it taught me some new sewing techniques.  Now I can cross invisible zippers off my sewing bucket list.  Huzzah!

Fabric Specs:
White Fabric: Walmart for 1.97 {I went with the super cheap stuff.  It was a little flimsy, but it matched the look I wanted...and it was cheap}
Stripes and collar: Painted on with a mix of acrylic paint and fabric medium
Zippers:  White Invisible Zippers from Joann 


Project Run & Play: My own little Easter eggs

Since Easter is coming up and my girls need new dresses and since it's Kids Clothes Week, and since Project Run & Play's challenge this week is to design your own fabric, I decided to try my hand at dyeing.  {No.  Not the kind of dying without an e...hopefully that won't come too soon. :)}  It's something I've never done before.  {I know.  I'm so five years late on this one.}  So one night, while Superman watched River Monsters {he's an adorable geek about that show} I got my dye on.

I used a combo of RIT aqua and kelly green....I'd say more aqua than green.  It's funny, I put three different types of fabric in and got three different results.  But I'm really tickled about it.  And since I had so much dye leftover, I added a little more green and stuck in this fabric and I liked the color even more.  I think I've found a new friend in this dyeing gig.  :)

So anyway, back to the fabric.  I had a few people mention on instagram that the fabric looked like it could be fabric for an Elsa costume {ya know, from Frozen} but I'm so unhip, I haven't even seen that show yet.  I know, right?  Don't worry, we're coming out from under the rock where we live and we're watching it this weekend.  :)  Anyway, I almost considered saving the fabric for Halloween, but meh.  I planned to make tulle Easter dresses and that's what I was gonna do.

I started with the Caroline Party Dress bodice {oh and that dress is also part of the Perfect Pattern Parcel sale ends ends next week!}.  It's a great pattern and it taught me how to properly install an invisible zipper.  What?!

For the dress skirt, I veered from the pattern path and did my own thing.  I measured the length and width of my daughters and added to the them both considerably--like times 5.  I wanted a really full, puffy tulle skirt.  I used 6 yards of tulle total.  Four layers of tulle per skirt.  I hemmed the underskirt, but left the tulle as is {since it doesn't fray}.  This part was...well, you know tulle.  It's a fickle creature.

But it all came together and I was happy and my girls were extra happy.  I'm not usually one to go all matchy matchy, but shucks.  Just this once, maybe?  ;)

Originally, I thought that it would be fun to extend the tulle to be a lot longer than the underskirt on Madelyn's dress, but while I took pictures, I felt like it just looked...funny and too long.

So I've since given her tulle a good trim.

The girls were happy to frolic and prance in their new dresses.

While Ezra sat on a stump and waited.

Until Madelyn said, "Enough is enough, Mom."

And that's that.  Have a happy day!

And in case you're curious here are the fabric specs:
Dye: RIT mixture of Aqua and Kelly Green
Lace: Thrifted from an old lace vest.
Lining: Joann
Tulle: The cheapest kind found at Joann.  :)
And Ezra was dressed entirely by Target.  Bullseye.  

kid's clothes week


Perfect Pattern Parcel #2 {Figgy's Celestial Tee}

Well.  Is this post's title a mouth full of p's or what?!  But don't worry.  I'm gonna break this thing down real quick.  Ok.  Raise your virtual hand if you've heard of this rockin' thing called Perfect Pattern Parcel?  Here's the jist: You buy a collection of patterns and the money goes to support indie pattern designers and children's education.  Oh, and the sale lasts two weeks.  That's the basic idea.

I hate to sound sales-pitchy, but it is a great cause {I mean come on, children's education} and you get some really fab patterns.  So if you're in the market to sew some really high quality PDF patterns and help kids while you're at it, click on over.  I'll have more info at the end of the post, so let's just continue.

For the sake of full disclosure and all that, I will say that I received these patterns in exchange for sewing at least one of them up and blogging about it.  Don't hate me.  I really wouldn't support something that wasn't a good deal.  And truth be told, I had actually previously purchased some of the patterns before I got them for free.  Go figure!  :)

I sewed Figgy's Celestial Tee and I've gotta tell ya, it's a fun sew.  No, it's a heavenly sew.  hehe.

But seriously.  A good pattern helps me remember why I like to sew, you know?  I felt like it was easy to understand, measurements were true to size, and it's such a fun style.  I love a good knit pattern!

The fabric was originally white, but I dyed it a semi minty-ish...or whatever color it is, using RIT dye.

I figured since we were going all "celestial," why not add some stars?  :)

I was inspired by this look and I just used freezer paper and exacto-knifed some star stencils.  All straight lines, so it's super easy to cut.  Then I ironed them on randomly and painted using tulip fabric paint {in navy}.

And don't ask me what was going on in this girls mind while we took pictures.  We were on our way to visit Superman's parents, so Lila was excited and I'm telling you she was on one and a half.

She told us that she was an African princess and that African princess make these kinds of poses.

Me:  Lila could you put your hands down, doll?

Lila:  Mom, African princesses keep their hands like this.

Right.  I guess I've got to study up on African Princesses.  But despite her uncooperativeness during pictures, I've gotta give her credit for personality.  I love this girl.

And I'll be honest.  I love this shirt too.  :)  Like I want one in my size.  But chances are I wouldn't look half as cute.  Darn.  The curse of old age and a pregnant belly.

Anyway... back to the Pattern Parcel.  This shirt pattern is only a glimpse at what you can get for a steal of a deal.  Here's a list of the patterns offered:

Click here for the more info!

Pretty cool, right?  I've got four Caroline Party Dresses {ya, that's right, four.  Don't judge me--I go overboard sometimes} in the works and I'm itchin' to try the rest of the patterns.

And what better week than Kids Clothes Week to sew some adorable new things for your little girl?  Just sayin.'  :)

kid's clothes week

To see other Pattern Parcel looks check out these blogs:
P comme PlimplimCailaMade,While she was sleepingYoSaMistitched togetherSew Like My MomMarina Bebelexi.madesewVeryCall AjaireI Married SupermanGirl like the seaStitchedCompagnie MBuzzmillsfloating worldfake it while you make itSewing Mama RaeAnnaOur Chez NousNeurosesGaloreBehind the HedgerowNeedle and TedKadiddlehopper2 little hooligansMax-California.comSiestas & SewingSo Cal Sewing Momlauren dahlgang à NatFrancesSuzanneRadiant Home StudioModern HandmadeA Jennuine LifeIt’s Always Autumnlea & larsI Seam StressedSo, Zo… What do you know?Andrea’s NotebookSteph SkardalNutta!SewponyMade With Moxieimagine gnatsInder Loves Folk ArtPienkel
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