Boo In Stitches Print Giveaway!

Thanks for stopping by! This Giveaway is now closed. The winner will be contacted soon.

All Prints
I have a fun giveaway today! My friend Shannon from Little Luvins has teamed up with her sister Colleen to create a line of punny prints with sewing themes in their new shop, Boo in Stitches! You can read more about their story here. They were kind enough to send me one of each of the prints (I couldn’t choose just one!!), and we had some fun setting them up in various fitting arrangements around the studio.

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pity the spool

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I actually laughed out loud when I saw this one, because it’s So. True. The seam ripper is never around when you need it. Looks just right above this sewing table, wouldn’t you say?

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For a chance to win one of these five prints, leave a comment telling us which one is your favorite!

To be entered in the drawing, leave ONE comment on this post by 10pm EST on Tuesday, February 3, 2015. One winner will be randomly selected and contacted via email to provide a mailing address for the print (unframed). International entries are welcome! Void where prohibited by law.

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Mochi Geranium Dress for Stylo

Mochi geranium dress

This is the third in a series of posts detailing the outfits I made using Cotton and Steel fabrics for Stylo Magazine last fall (see the previous posts here and here). This outfit features a Geranium Dress made with a cotton from Rashida Coleman-Hale’s new Mochi line, the Moon Pants made with Bespoke double gauze (previously seen in this post), and a gold pom-pom headband. Both Mochi and Bespoke are Cotton and Steel lines currently available in fabric shops.

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For me to even consider doing such a large project within the first year of having a baby, I knew I would need to do a significant amount of planning. So I’d like to talk about what it takes to get a project like this off the ground. If I didn’t know anything about the project I might have guessed that the photoshoot itself probably took the most work, but I personally think the shoot is the easiest and most fun part. It’s the planning that can really kill ya, in my opinion.

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Perhaps it will surprise you to know that this project began last summer (or maybe not?). Here’s a brief timeline for the project:

June: Discuss with Stylo possible contribution to Fall issue
July: Correspond with Cotton and Steel to ask about possible collaboration
August: Cotton and Steel sends Fall 2014 samples, select and photograph samples, plan fabric/garment combinations
September: Fabric arrives, commence actual SEWING (six garments, three headbands), photo shoot, Edit photos, deliver photos to Stylo
November 3: Stylo Issue 3 release

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I decided to do the spread because I knew it would be a great way to promote my children’s sewing patterns in a highly visual way, while at the same time producing a cohesive set of clothing samples that could then be used later to promote the patterns in other ways. I love the way that a magazine, digital or print, can really produce a stunning visual presentation, and Jess and Celina do it really well with Stylo. The next question was: which fabrics? Initially I thought I might use Lotus Pond, but as the magazine was set to release in late fall, the summery cotton prints would have been amazing but a bit out of season. My next thought was Cotton and Steel, because they’ve made an attempt to create cohesive collections that are printed not just on quilting fabrics, but on other garment-friendly fabrics as well, making it easy to create outfits for children that coordinate (a pair of canvas pants worn with a cotton gauze shirt, for instance). That is something I’m pretty sure is unique to Cotton and Steel, by the way; no other company that I know of does that, though most fabric companies do offer unique lines on their various substrates.

Mochi Geranium Dress

I initially asked Melody Miller, the founding designer of Cotton and Steel, about using their Spring 2014 fabrics, but at that point they already had samples for their Fall fabrics so she suggested that I might like to try those instead, which were to include one of my very favorite fabrics, DOUBLE GAUZE (EEK!). It was definitely hard to keep the whole thing on the hush-hush until the fabrics debuted at Fall Quilt Market. Another bonus: because the deadline for the magazine was nearly a month before Quilt Market, the samples could also be used for the Cotton and Steel booth.

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One more thing: I did very little of the sewing for this project. Karen and my assistant Tashina did most of it. I did some of the cutting (that double gauze can be tricky!) and I did some of the sewing and all of the hand-stitching for the Charlie Tunic (see this post), but mostly I just hovered at the studio with a baby on my hip.

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Anyway, the dress is Clementine’s favorite of all of the things we made for this project; she even wore it for school picture day (and it would have shown up in the photo if she had taken off the sweater she wore over it *facepalm*). I also want to highlight a couple of the other accessories because she really enjoyed those as well: the gold tattoos were designed by Rifle Paper company for Tattly, and the sparkly TOMS I found at Bivouac in downtown Ann Arbor by my studio. Both were instant hits with my girl who is pretty fond of sparkly things.

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Bespoke Double Gauze Blouse

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Here’s a blouse I made last fall out of the new Bespoke double gauze for Cotton and Steel which is in shops right now. I originally intended to make another Geranium Dress out of this double gauze for the Stylo photoshoot, but after first making the striped Moon Pants I decided I absolutely had to make something for myself with the remainder. It was definitely a spur of the moment decision based on the fact that I love this stripe so much. That bronze color is yum and the print is brilliant. And honestly I already had so many garments for the Stylo shoot that I figured it wouldn’t matter if I made myself a little something.

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The decision to use the selvages for the button placket was not only aesthetic, it was also practical. I didn’t have much fabric left (I had to do a little patching of one of the back bodice pieces to make everything fit, actually) so cutting the backs right along the edge made sense. It’s a little tricky getting a selvage to lay nicely due to the thicker weave along the edge but I think we managed it.

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The pattern is something I’ve been working on for the last half year probably. Will it ever be released? Only time will tell. Le Sigh.

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Just checking in

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I spent last week mostly in bed due to a nasty stomach bug that completely wiped me out for days. I am *just* starting to feel normal again. There’s nothing so humbling as having an ambitious set of New Year’s goals and then getting knocked down before you can even start. Maybe it’s best just to keep it simple again this year; set the ol’ Expectations Bar low and just see what happens.

Hugo got his first haircut last week. I think it’s really cute. Can’t wait to show you!

My friend Anna of Noodlehead has joined the Cloud9 designer roster! Can’t wait to see what awesomeness she has in store for us. Congratulations, Anna!!

I really want to make some pants this year. Seems like everyone is making these Ginger Jeans. Not sure I want to deal with all the grommets and hardware involved in making jeans, but it sure would be cool! Also: none of my pants fit. BAH.

I’ve been doing a little fabric shopping with the shops that sponsor this blog: I bought a pile of knits at Organic Cottons Plus (the online shop that used to be Near Sea Naturals) a few weeks ago and they are really really nice. Also grabbed some Charlie Harper knit and GeoPop Canvas from Fabricworm as well.

Seems like there’s a ton of fantastic new fabrics in shops lately, including the new Cotton and Steel fabrics! And they’ve got rayon on the horizon.

I started listening to the Elise Gets Crafty podcast. Love it. The episode on focus (Episode 023) was exactly what I needed to hear right now.

I’ve been enjoying DIY/Design Queen Emily Henderson’s blog. She is perky and weird and hilarious.

I like this website from Monterey Bay Aquarium, Seafood Watch, for looking up which kinds of fish are sustainably farmed/caught. They have a free phone app too to make it easy to look them up while you’re shopping too.

And, exciting newsflash: the Geranium Dress Sewing Pattern is finally IN PRINT in the smaller size range and began shipping to shops last week. Check with your favorite local or online modern fabric shop to see if they have it yet! You can see a nice photo of the paper copy over in the Fabric Studio‘s (a Nashville shop) Instagram feed.

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What I made in 2014: Hugo!

I’m just cracking myself up over here with this one. I MADE A BABY THIS YEAR! This week my blog feed (Bloglovin is my favorite way to read blogs now, I love the daily email digest) is loaded with sewing blogs posting their “what I made in 2014″ roundups. So I started to look for projects that I’d sewn this past year to maybe do a similar post, something like my 2013 or 2012 end-of-year roundups (which, by the way, are both quite impressive and started to make me feel a little bad about this year), and then started to realize hmmmm…why was I less productive, what DID I do this year? OH YES THAT’S RIGHT I MADE A BABY. And then I realized it’s been forever since I posted any Hugo pics. So without further ado, my big “project” of 2014…HUGO!

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Truly though, I can’t believe that the last time I posted a monthly Hugo pic he was three months old! He is now 9.5 months old. UM WHERE DID THAT HALF YEAR GO?!? I would also like to know how other fecund bloggers have managed to post month-by-month photos of their babies, seriously, because it is ridiculously hard. I’m starting to suspect they just take ONE photo, put it through a magic Photoshop-baby-aging-filter, and then set it to autopost each month. So let’s start where I left off and see what he looked like at 4 months:

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OK. So definitely not the BEST baby-propping skills here. And then Clementine stepped into the photos so that was the end of that…

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Here’s what he looked like at 5 months:

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and at 6 months:

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Here he is at 7 months:

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And at 8 months:

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and now, my baby boy is NINE. months. old. WOW!

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I want to say more about this guy, how easy and happy he is, how he is at the bottom of the percentiles for weight so we keep having to go back to the Dr for weight checks ARRRG, how he just got over a month of chest colds and croup that made me sick with worry, how his brother and sister just think he’s the bees knees and how much he lights up when they are around…but if I try to be comprehensive I’m never going to get this post finished, and then it will be ten months, so I’m just going to post this thang so you can enjoy the pics. Let me leave you with another favorite, Hugo in his Halloween costume:

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GAAAAH! I know I am hopelessly biased but I just think he is SO. stinking. CUTE!! Sorry that’s probably really annoying. The baby lobster costume just cracks me up.

Please do not pin or repost pictures of Hugo — the one exception is that I don’t mind if you pin the mosaic (1st image). Thanks!

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