Figgy's Blog

what a week! February 15 2014, 8 Comments

What a beautiful week on the Figgy's Heavenly Tour!  
Some of it was a little blurry for me because I caught a flu that led to bronchitis then pneumonia. That was fun (insert sarcasm).  Luckily I have an incredible husband and mother that took great care of me and I was able to keep up a bit by iPhone but its times like this that I yell at my inner self "Hire An Intern!".  
What really kept my spirits up was seeing all the wonderful posts from these awesome creators!

 

Lexi Made: Celestial Pullover & Ethereal Blouse

 

Things for Boys: Seraphic Tee

 

 

Raeanna from Sewing Rabbit: Shredded Raglan

 

You & Mie:  Ethereal Dress

 

 

Behind the Hedgerow: Ethereal Dress 

 

 

Kelly of Casa Crafty: Seraphic Raglan with arm extention 

 

 

Sew Much Ado: Baby Seraphic

 

 There are some amazing crafters showing off their Figgy's Creations this week so make sure to come back and check them all out!
Friday / Caila Made  
And don't forget to sign up to win a huge prize at the end of the month!!!

 

 

HAPPY SEWING - Shelly

 


this week on the heavenly tour February 09 2014, 3 Comments

What an amazing week Figgy's tour is heading into!

Monday 

Abby from Things for Boys
Knitter, crafter, seamster and she offers a ton of amazing recipes
Alexia from Lexi Made 
Designer, photographer, seamster and you'll find some wonderful tutorials too!

 

Tuesday

 

'RaeAnna Goss of the Sewing Rabbit Team 
A blog full of talented designers, and most recently the creators behind STYLO magazine.
Cherie from You and Mie
I have followed and admired Cherie for so many years now and am so proud to have her on the tour. One of my most favorite series is on her blog Japanese Sewing Series

 

Wednesday 

 

Laura from Behind the Hedgerow

Sewing: girls, boys, women, men, toys and accessories.  The mastermind behind this blog has sewn it all! My favorite is to read her sewing conversations and thoughts as much as I admire her other talents.

 

 

Thursday

 

Kelley from Casa Crafty 

She has DIY,  a shop & 365 days of makes all lined up.  

Not to mention Kelley cracks me up!!!  Talent and funny..great combo!

 

 

Abby from Sew Much Ado

First I can't help but state that she is one of the sweetest gals you'll ever know!!  

Pattern designer, blogger, tutorial writer of so many great projects and almost mommy of 4!

 

 

I'd say thats a pretty good line up for this week!  Be sure to stop at each blog this week because I think some are hosting a giveaway!  Enter below all month to win the grand prize too!

 

Happy Sewing - Shelly


i seam stressed February 07 2014, 3 Comments

 

Today we visit Tasha at I Seam Stressed!!  I first met Tasha through her site after she created a flipped Sunki that I fell in love with.  She made the adorable jumpsuit as a costume for her daughter.  Isn't this too cute?!

 

 

Well, I'm super excited to share another flip from Tasha today!!  Hop on over to I Seam Stressed to read all about it and don't forget to enter to win a pattern and enter to win a grand prize!
 

 

Stop back on Monday morning to see what Abby from Things for Boys and Alexia from Lexi Made has in store for us!
 

Happy Sewing - Shelly

 

 

 


The girl's got attitude - Figgy's winner tutorial September 28 2012, 3 Comments

Whow, this girl knows how to pose! And another 'whow' -  it’s been a while but sometimes, good things just need their time! And this is a very special blog post: As you might know, the charming and talented Celina (mom of the cutie up there) of the blog petitapetitandfamily won our Figgy’s circle skirt design contest in July and with her cascade dress design. And with this win didn’t only come awesome prices – but also a feature tutorial for her winning design right here on our Figgy’s blog!

 

So, who is Celina? She's half British and half Moroccan, living, playing, working and raising two kids in Montreal, Quebec. She’s a childrenswear designer by trade (which certainly explains her exquisite aesthetic) who has worked in the industry before having her own kid’s label - Laila B. and her own children’s boutique – MossPink. Whow! As committed as she was to her business when she didn’t have kids, so committed she now is raising her two young children, designing, creating and blogging about her inspirations, life and projects. Hop on over to her blog and check out what she’s been up to lately. Click at the pattern sheet below to download instructions how to re-create this fashionable high-low dress.

Of course, we had a couple of questions to get to know her a little bit better:

Figgys:  How long have you been sewing?
Celina: I took my first sewing class when I was 13... that was ummm 23 years ago and I've been sewing ever since!!!! But I graduated from Fashion Design in 2001 and really learned how to sew and make patterns then.
Figgy's: What are your favorite things to sew?
Celina: Anything I can upcycle is my favorite, it's always a brand new challenge getting all the pattern pieces to fit in.
Figgy's: Would you consider yourself an experimental sewer or perfectionist? And why?
Celina: Definitely a perfectionist, I think that the difference between a good piece and an amazing piece is all in the details, I pay a lot of attention to the little things and I usually spend a lot time on the finishing details.
Figgy's: What's your favorite fabric to sew with? Maybe a designer or Fabric line?
Celina: Usually I'm attracted to the color or the pattern first, then I usual go for natural fibers, whether it's woven or knit really depends on what the project is. Although, knit is always quicker and easier, I have no real preference.
Figgy's: Do you have a favorite tool that you don't want to sew without?
Celina: The seam ripper is by far my favorite tool, I guess it goes with being a perfectionist! Funny thing is I always seem to be looking for it. However, sharp scissors and an iron are a must.
Figgy's: And because we all need inspiration at the pots too - do you have a favorite go-to recipe you'd like to share?
Celina: Oh boy! Cooking is not my thing, it's not that I'm not good at it, it's just that I don't enjoy it. The one meal my whole family enjoys is my spinach quiche. Yes my kids eat spinach!

 

Daniela & Shelly


Sarah Jane goes Out To Sea September 18 2012, 1 Comment

Does the fabric choose the design or does design choose the fabric?

 

For this garment in particular there was no doubt, the fabric choose the design.

I was thrilled to have the chance to work with Sarah Jane's new line "Out to Sea" not only because I fell in love with the prints themselves but because of the wonderful fabric hand.  The fabric arrived just in time for me to create something special for a very special girl "K".  K's family was having a lifestyle photo shoot taken by the ever so talented local artist/photographer Tracey Freeman, so I jumped at the chance to have a few photos taken of K in her new dress.

I try not to recommend quilters cotton fabric for garments because they are "quilters" cotton and the drape can be a bit "stiff" for some garments but, in this case I say "Go For It"!  The weight is light with lovely drape and the texture is so soft and perfect for little ones' delicate skin.  For this dress I used the "Deep Sea Jewel" navy anchor fabric as the main fabric, the navy and white "Ahoy There" stripe for the bodice lining/skirt panels and a red ric rac under the front pleat.  It is DARLING!  I've been getting a lot of requests to start making ready made garments again and this is perfect line to start making again!

Thank you Sarah Jane & Michael Miller for a great line of fabric!

Happy Sewing! - Shelly

*all photos taken by Tracey Freeman of Tracey Freeman Photography

ATTENTION:

  Only 2 more days left to support the Figgy's Kids Foundation.  Please consider sharing the project, donating financially or donating goods.  Thank you!


scirocco top tutorial July 09 2012, 4 Comments

Hemoglobin Hummingbird.....what can I say other than her work is spot on impressive, she is genuine and kind and I wish we lived in the same state because I'd love to bake her a pie.   She was also one of our testers for this last round of patterns and we're so happy she was!  Most recently she put together a Scirocco top photo tutorial and we are grateful she is allowing us to share this with all of you!  Without further ado....

Have your pieces ready?

Instead of using chalk (it sometimes won't come out), press to mark stitching line.

Pressed stitching line

Sewn seam.  Using a template made with card stock cut to the width of my pleat.  Rounded corners help it to slide in. The template gives a uniform-width pleat when pressing.

Match up the pressed line and stitching line at the top and bottom and the cardstock will make sure the rest is straight and even.

Make sure to get your trim deep in there, and edgestitch very close to the edge. Alternatively, you can use wondertape instead of pins to hold in place.

It's the only edgestitching so for me it was worth it to switch to silver silk thread for this bit. My line wavered a bit at the bottom but mostly within the final half inch, which is the seam allowance, so I left it.

Bodice and Lining right sides together, raw edges aligned.  Approximately, in my case. I'm sure you're more precise about cutting and stitching.

Mirrored Side Panels

Flipped second piece

Right sides together pinned in place.

Oops, you should be two inches left free at the shoulders, not half an inch!

All sewn up!

Trimmed

Turn right side out.

I pressed the untrimmed seam allowances under and made sure they matched in width, about 2 inches.

Twisted

Right sides together

Match the front & back to join together. The pin marks the important spot to match up.

Pinned together the side becomes a U shape.

Stitched

Seam roll is very helpful here to press open the seams.

Completed side seams.

Pin the inner shoulder seams right sides together.

Stitch

Press open the seams.

Pull the shoulder through the inside of the bodice to the bottom.

Pin the shoulder seam together.

Stitched and pressed.  I didn't have enough working room to use my iron but a good fingerpress worked fine.

Pull farther to match seams.

Just keep going, the same way you pulled it all through just before this.

Pinned

Opposite side view.

Complete stitching line.  Just closing the gap, so to speak. You don't have tons of slack at the ends, it's ok. Just wiggle it under there. The wide walking foot was a bit in the way, switching to a regular foot would've helped but I was lazy.

Funky.  Bit like an elephant trunk, maybe it's just the grey fabric.

But pulled back out, looks good!

Pressed

Ooooo!

Inside

Side View.  As my friend Nicole says, neat and tidy, Heidi!

 

Voila!

Isn't this a sharp finish?  A great technique to use if you want a professional finish without any hand-stitching.  :)

Thank you so much Sarvi for this wonderful photo tutorial!!!

Happy Sewing!


CRAFTSY! July 03 2012, 2 Comments

KID'S ROMPER REVAMP!

I am so very excited to announce the news about my course for Craftsy "Kids Romper Revamp".  It was such a fun experience and I was able to work with some amazing and talented people.  If you haven't heard about Craftsy yet then I have to say I'm a little shocked but also excited to be the one who gets to share this terrific site with you.  My most favorite part about this site is that it offers all sewists who would love to take a class the chance to do so no matter where they live and also it's interactive.  I get to chat with you as you take the class, I love that!

 Here is a bit about my course.

During childhood, play is paramount.  So whether it’s a hot summer day or a chilly winter afternoon, kid’s need to be comfy in their clothes.  Like adults, kids should enjoy the way their clothes look, as well as how they fit and feel.

In Kid’s Romper Revamp, we’ll explore all kinds of useful sewing techniques, like how to properly measure a child, and adjust the pattern for a perfect custom fit.  We’ll choose high-quality fabrics that are seasonally appropriate and fashionably fun, and cover the ins and outs of interfacing and how to apply it to the romper.  I’ll go step-by-step through constructing the romper’s braided straps, gathering and assembling the yoke, sewing knit and woven fabrics together, and more.  Then, we’ll move on to making the shorts, adding pockets, hem ties, and attaching the top and bottom to finish it off. Finally, I’ll discuss extending the romper into pants for the colder season, creating separates and making the romper into a sundress! Create 4 patterns from just 1.

   In sewing for kids, I use comfortable fabrics as a platform to build from.  For this class, I wanted a platform that’s as comfortable for teaching as the romper is for wearing.  That’s why I chose Craftsy.  With Craftsy, you have unlimited access to your classes so you can learn at your own pace, and you have the added comfort of being able to watch the lessons in brilliant high definition, rewind, make notes, ask questions, and get answers from me and your classmates.  Plus, you can browse other people’s projects for inspiration, and upload pictures of your projects to get feedback and insight.

         

Enroll in Kids Romper Revamp, and create a comfy, yet stylish, custom girl’s romper, learn new sewing skills, and have fun doing it! 


conquering a zip fly May 15 2012, 5 Comments

Good news!  It's easier than you think, I promise!

 I've inserted a lot of zippers in my time but for the last 6 years they have mostly been the closed seam, invisible centered or exposed zipper applications.  Daniela's Banyan pant design called for just a slight overlapped zipper, which is the more modern look.  I love photos & illustrations because I'm a "visual" type of gal and lucky for me when we were writing instructions for this pattern Daniela sent over photos (yay) to help make sure we were clearly guiding our sewists. Now that the patterns have been released I thought what better way to make sure everyone has enough visual aids then to share these great photos with you!  So, here you go:

Once you have interfaced the fly flap, sewn the center seam beginning 1/2" below the fly flap and baste stitched from the bottom of the flap to the waist hem. Press the fly flap open and change the presser foot to the zipper foot on the machine.

STEP 1

If you have sewn most of the Figgy's patterns by now then you know that my most favorite notion is Wondertape.  You really can't beat it (if you think you can then please leave us a comment we love new knowledge) especially when installing a zipper.  I place the Wondertape along the right side of the zipper tape close to the edge (not the teeth).  This double sided tape will hold the zipper in place while you sew and you don't have to worry with pins.  With the zipper unzipped, align the right side of the zipper top edge with the waist hem and the zipper teeth with the basted seam line.  Stitch the tape in place.  Be sure that only the fly flap is resting on the sewing plate and not the pants and fly.  Remember to backstitch!

STEP 2

Close the zipper.  Turn the pants upside down, align the opposite zipper tape to the opposite fly flap.  Again, make sure only the fly flap is resting on the sewing plate and not the pants. Stitch the zipper in place.

STEP 3

Change back to the regular machine presser foot and turn the pants so the right side is facing up.  With most pants you can simply feel the curve of the fly flap from the right side with your finger.  Using a chalk or fabric pen mark this curve from the waist to the center seam.  Change the stitch length to 2.5 - 3.0 for a nice looking topstitch.    If your machine has a nice topstitch try using a contrasting thread.  After top stitching along the marking remove the baste stitches and unzip the zipper.

STEP 4

A fly extension will keep the zipper from rubbing your little one's skin and it gives a nice professional touch.  With the right sides facing, fold the extension in half lengthwise and press flat.  Stitch a crescent shape along the bottom raw edge.  Trim the seam and turn right side out.  Using a point turner  smooth the seam and press flat once again.  Finish the long raw edges by using a serger, zig zag stitch or pinking shears.

STEP 5

Align the finished edge of the extension with the fly flap edge behind the zipper.  Edgestitch through all of the layers from the right side of the pants.

All done! Not so bad was it?

Here is a look at the finished zipper after the waistband is sewn in place.  Nice!

 

 Thank you Daniela for providing these photos and we all hope you're having an amazing time visiting family in Germany (lucky girl)!

 


elsie marley kcwc April 29 2012, 4 Comments

Have you been following along Elsie Marley's KCWC this week?  I know we did!   If you aren't familiar with KCWC, it is a week of committing to one hour a day of sewing just for your kiddos.  I believe today was the last day but I think Meg will do this again in the Fall.  It's really quite fun.  The best part about KCWC for Daniela and myself was seeing all the little Figgy's garments pop up.  Here are a few of our favorites:

 

Via Flickr:  Tribecca, Elsie, dkbnyny, Living with Punks, June Craft, ElsieJune Craft, Hazelnut Girl

 I was able to participate a little this week and created a little Zephyr sun dress. For who else but Ofeliam of course.  She was quite camera shy yesterday but she really loved it.  My mom made her some purple linen bloomers (she calls them her spanx) to match.  Super Cute!  Fabric is a cotton lawn: London Calling by Vanessa Sorbet distributed by Robert Kaufman.

It was the perfect weight for a Spring sun dress.

Although KWCW is over for now we hope you will keep sewing a little bit everyday to create gorgeous garments for your little ones, and very soon with the new patterns too!  Happy sewing!

 


spring & summer 2012 April 15 2012, 22 Comments

It is with great pleasure that we introduce you to our Figgy's Spring and Summer line.

 Sizes: 18mo - 8/9yr

Banyan

  A Royal Navy term for a short period of rest and relaxation.

You have asked for boys and knit patterns and we delivered! This pattern
package is chock full of handsome and stylish staples that will easily take
you through any season and will work equally well for boys and girls!
What more could you ask for?

The pants are a modern design with a pleated flat front and our signature adjustable
back. You choose between a long leg length or a severely cute pair of
shorts. The pant is tapered through the legs and ends with a fold up that
just takes this style up a couple of notches! Pair it with this easy to make
tee or choose between a girls slim fit handkerchief hem or tunic length tee.
We promise to help elevate your sewing ability while we guide you step
by step through a professional fly zip installation and plenty of sewing
tips for wovens and knits!

 

Scirocco

The constellation of winds blowing hot air from Sahara into Europe.

As a child, growing up in Germany, Scirocco meant hot summer days and
nights. The scent of sunscreen, swimming pools, ice cream and barbecues.
It meant swimming in cool waters and hanging out with friends
along the waters edge. An incredible sense of self, freedom and a terribly
freckled nose.
Celebrate your summer by sewing your girl(s) this beautiful airy summer
dress - with a fun and funky twist which surely will make your little one
feel extra special. We are sure she will always remember the summer
when she got this favorite dress! Opt for light weight fabrics and try it
in sophisticated solids with pretty lace accents along the front or play it
up with beautiful prints. The results will make you wish for hot summer
days!

Zephyr

Mild winds blowing from the Pacific.

A pattern combo that surely fits the famous California lifestyle. Just think about your family strolling down the beach promenade in Venice Beach, your little girl skipping ahead, wearing this adorable romper or breezy sundress. Picking up a sea shell or twenty along the way. The sundress is a quick and simple sew, perfect for a beginning seamstress.

The romper however is a little more advanced as it is a little more time consuming especially using the recommended knit body/woven yoke combo. Yet with many trips and tricks sprinkled throughout the instructions, we are sure to help elevate your sewing experience.

 (Please drag your mouse to the number 360p to enlarge to 720p HP, thank you)

 

I hope you enjoyed the little peak at our Spring & Summer line and please come back tomorrow as we begin our PRE-SALE event.  Our pre-sale event includes 10% off any purchased pattern.  We are scheduled to ship all patterns by May 10, 2012!!

Daniela & Shelly

 


just in time for valentine's day February 10 2012, 7 Comments

Today we have a special guest, a dear friend and very talented sewist Jen Carlton Bailly!  Jen had stitched up some cuteness during the sew along and we are so pleased she's is sharing with all of us!  I won't keep you waiting.....

From Jen:

It’s not a secret that I love sewing patterns from Figgy’s.  They are simple, clean, modern and easy.  The Ayashe was no exception. When I read this, “You love your little one and one way you express your love is by hand tailoring a beautiful wardrobe especially for her”, from the front of the Ayashe Pattern I was so inspired to make something beautiful for my daughter. Amelia has so many prints in her closet, so I thought using simple red linen that I had stashed away for something special would be perfect.

While sewing I was reminded of a little shop in Seattle that used to sell clothes from Europe. All of the hand stitching was so beautiful.  Then it came to me, I’ll add a little hand stitching to the front of this to give it a little pop, and it would be perfect for Valentines Day! Below are instructions for how you can do this to your blouse too!

Supplies:

Embroidery floss- I used three strands of white DMC

Hand sewing needle

Water Soluble pen

Ruler

Step One:

Using a ruler and a water-soluble marking pen, make a straight line up the front of your blouse and in between the stitch lines. Carry the line gently to form the heart. I just free handed.

Step Two:

Thread your needle, and tie a knot.  Starting about ½ inch from the start of your line, insert your needle in between the layers of the front and the back of the blouse. Pull your floss all the way through and gently tug on it to pop the knot in-between the layers of fabric.

Step Three:

Using a small running stitch (Pass the needle in and out of the fabric, making the surface stitches of equal length) follow the line that you marked. My stitching was about a ¼ inch.

Continue into the heart. At your last stitch tie a knot and pull it through the fabric the same way you began. 

Step Four:

Repeat on other side.  Spritz marks with water.

Give to a little one you love.

Thank you so much Jen, and thank you A for being so cute!

I hope you are all inspired to add special touches to your Ayashe blouse as I am.

  Remember to add your photos to our flickr group or facebook page!


ayashe sew along; day two February 09 2012, 4 Comments

Welcome back to Day 2!

It is nice and bright this morning in Portland and perfect for sew along photos.

We left off yesterday with all of the pattern pieces cut, the upper collar interfaced and we gathered the front shoulders and back panel.  I think we're ready, let's sew!

For a larger view please click on the photo.

Front Seam

Before sewing the center front seam it is best to measure the 1 1/4" seam allowance rather than hope for the best.  This will ensure a nice straight line.

Sew the center front seam from the bottom hem up.  Once you reach the slit marking do a back stitch and then adjust the stitch lenth to the longest length.

Press the seam open and fold the raw edge 1/4" under on both sides of the seam. The Ezy-Hem helper is a great way to measure this long seam so it will be nice and even.  Press flat once more.

Top stitch along both folded edges.  Top stitch again centered between the seam alowance and the stitch line.  Now you may notice I am not perfectly centered between the two.  Why?  Honestly?  I was being lazy.  I decided that if I aligned the presser foot with the center line it would give me a nice straight line all the way down.  You should measure between the two lines, chalk and topstitch.

Shoulder Panels

Align the markings, distribute the gathers evenly and pin.  Sew the seam.

Remove the gathers.  I like to press the seam up on the wrong side and then press again on the right side for a nice clean pressed look.

Repeat with the front shoulder panels.

The shoulder panels are now sewn, pressed and ready for the facing.  Using a seam gauge fold the seam allowances 1/2" towards the wrong side and press.  As you may already know I have an obsession with "Wondertape".  Karen and I used to buy it by the box.   I use it for so many things.  In this case, I'm using it to hold the shoulder panel facing in place on the wrong side when I top stitch on the right side.

If you don't know what "Wondertape" is (for some reason whenever I say the word I want to shout it out like Oprah when she would shout out the name of her guest.) then I'll quickly tell you.  It is wash away double sided tape.  Place the tape on top of the seam allowance, then place the shoulder panel facing on top of the seam allowance.  Other options are to baste the panel in place or use pins.  On the right side of the garment top stitch in the seam (stitch in the ditch) or next to the seam.  I aligned my 1/8" marker on the presser foot along the seam and top stitched.  Remove any baste stitches if used.

Repeat on the back.

Collar Time

Begin by stay-stitching the neck opening.

We have two collar options: Mandarin Collar or Tie String.  I'm going to take you through both.

MANDARIN COLLAR

Press the bottom raw edge of the outer collar (upper) 3/8" towards the wrong side.  Align the raw edges of the inner and outer collar and stitch along the short and long edges.  Trim the seam allowance to 1/4" and clip along the curve. This will help reduce bulk and give you a nice smooth finish.

Align the collar raw edges with the neck opening and markings.  Pin and stitch.  Trim the seam allowance to 1/4".  Turn the collar towards the wrong side of the garment and smooth the edges.  I used a dull pencil to do this but you can use a turning tool or a knitting needle, just don't use anything pointy and sharp.

Once again, I found another use for my "wondertape" (no they don't pay us to advertise, but they should).  Included in each pattern you purchase is a lovely woven label.  These labels will give the garment that professional touch and they can also serve as hooks to hang the garment (like the Nituna Jacket).  I placed the tape along the seam and then placed the label on top.  Sandwich the Figgy's label between the blouse and the collar and be sure the seam allowance is tucked inside.

Pin and top stitch. Done, unless your hosting a sew along and you need to show the alternative collar option.  A little seam ripping and then we'll be ready.

TIE STRING COLLAR

Yesterday I shared a wonderful "how to" link for making bias tape and if you read it you'll notice in my photo I cheated a little today.  For good reason though!  I love selvedge on Japanese fabric.  Some of them are really unique and I really wanted to use this for the tie string, so I did.  Press the bias tape in 1/2.  Fold both sides in toward the center crease and press.  I also folded and pressed mine once more to ensure a nice clean crease.

Turn the garment wrong side out, open the bias tape and align the right side of the bias tape raw edge and the wrong side of the blouse. Leave an equal amount of tie string hanging off each end of the neck slit.  Pin and stitch.  Use the same method as the mandarin collar mentioned above to attach the label.

Fold the tape in half wrong sides together, press and top stitch from one end to the other.  Tie each tie string end in a small decorative knot.

The last thing I did was sew a little bar tack at the bottom of the neck slit.  I did this for extra security. A backstitch should suffice but I wanted just a little more security for the times when Ofelia wants to pull her blouse on herself toddler style.

Look, it's almost a shirt!

It's beginning to rain now which is perfect timing because day two is complete.  Well Done!

See you tomorrow to finish our Ayashe blouse!

Happy Sewing!

ps.  Did you happen to catch Daniela's comment yesterday?  She's got something gorgeous to show us very soon and you will see she gave us a small piece of her design wisdom.


ayashe sew along; day one February 07 2012, 4 Comments

Welcome to the first day of the sew along!  If you are just now joining us please feel free to jump in at any time!  Who knows, maybe you'll learn something new by just reading along?  Today we are just going to cut and prepare our work for tomorrow's sewing, but first if you don't mind, I'd like to start by answering one frequently asked question.

Why is the pattern printed on both sides?

1. We print our patterns on both sides using recycled newsprint to save paper waste. Less paper also means lighter shipping which means less shipping cost for you!  You can trace the pattern using tracing paper, freezer paper or any paper that is translucent.

2. Tracing the pattern allows you to use the pattern over and over again as your daughters or granddaughters grow, and they do grow fast. If you were to cut the pattern you would only get one size out of the pattern and that's not good for anyone.

3.  Personal preference.  Tissue paper patterns tend to rip easily and the print fades with time.

I hope this answers your question, but if you have more, please feel free to email us.

Let's get started!

For a larger view please click on the photos.

The very first thing you should do before anything else (if possible) is measure your child.  Every designer and label has their own unique sizing, which means your daughter may measure to be a Figgy's size 3, but for another pattern she may be a 2.  You'll find the sizing chart on the back of the pattern cover.

When preparing this sew along I noticed a tiny typo in the sizing chart.  The Chest measurement for size 2/3 should read 21 - 21.5.  We apologize for any confusion.

For this blouse you'll want to take a chest and waist measurement.  If you have decided to make the long sleeve version, I would also measure from the shoulder to the wrist.  What happens if your daughter is between sizes?  I always recommend going bigger before going smaller, because tomorrow they'll probably awake .5" taller, and of course their bellies grow after every meal.

Fabric.

  Gosh, I love it!  For this blouse I chose to use a Japanese Lawn cloth by Yuwa because it's one of my favorite fabrics to work with. It will drape well and the fabric hand is perfect for my niece's sensitive skin.

Tracing the pattern.

 A little lesson I learned from Sarai & Caitlin at Colette patterns is using colored pencils to trace.   They really are perfect for the job.  I use one color to trace the outer main pattern piece and another color for my markings.

 So here we have traced all the pieces we need for our Ayashe of choice.  As you can see I've decided to make the Ayashe with the Mandarin Collar and short sleeves.  I am still undecided as to whether or not I'd like the drawstring or elastic at the hem.  If you have already chosen to use the bias tape draw string you will need to cut bias tape from the fabric 1.5" x 35".   If you have chosen the bias tape tie string collar option you will need to also cut bias tape from the fabric that is 1.5" x 30".  Sarai also has one of the best bias tape tutorials I've seen so if you need a little help with the process please visit HERE.

 You can use weights or pins to keep the pattern from shifting.  Normally,  I would use weights and my rotary cutter, but the blade broke and I had to use pins and scissors. The reason why I suggest the rotary cutter is with this lightweight of a fabric the pattern pieces can slip easily and the scissors may leave chomp like markings.

Before I begin cutting I like to snip out the triangles on the paper.  It is important the you never snip in towards the seam allowance when cutting out the fabric pattern pieces.  You don't want to accidently snip in too far.

Prepare the details.

Interface one of the collar pieces, this will become the Upper collar.  Remember, the "bumpy" side of the interfacing faces the wrong side of the fabric.  I use the fabric pattern piece I cut and not the paper piece, because I feel it gives a more accurate cut.

All cut and interfaced.  I'm ready to go!

 Notice I put my pattern pieces in a zip lock bag?

This is a great way to store your patterns.  Just remember to label the bag then file it away.

Last step, gathers.

Sew two rows of *gathering stitches between the notches on both the back and the front pieces.

and again on the front

 

To create *gathering stitches you simply increase the stitch length to the longest length.

*To gather simply pull both bobbin threads and slide the fabric towards the opposite direction.

That's it for today!

See you tomorrow when we will stitch up the front and attach the shoulder panels and collar!  Happy Sewing!