Second Blogiversary Giveaway!

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Hey, guys!  Happy Wednesday!  May is one of my favorite months– the weather really starts to get nice here in the northeast, and there are so many things to celebrate!  Last week was my seventh wedding anniversary, next week is Man Friend’s 30th birthday, and we’re just a few days away from celebrating our first Peggy-versary (one year since we adopted our cheerful girl dog from Animal Haven)!  But amidst all the hubbub, I missed my second blogiversary on May 11th!  But don’t worry– I didn’t forget about you guys!

I picked out some amazing fabric for you guys on my trip to Mood over the weekend!  It’s two yards of a gorgeous silk charmeuse, with one matte and one shiny side.  My (grainy due to the crappy, dark weather) photo doesn’t really do it justice, but it’s a lovely gray with a hint of lavender in it.  Suzanne at Beau Baby made an awesome blouse with a different colorway of this print in chiffon (Mood often carries silk prints that are offered in both chiffon and charmeuse, which is fun)– check it out here!

To enter the giveaway, just leave a comment!  If you already know what you would make with it, let me know in the comments, too– I always love to snoop!  I’ll ship it anywhere.  Just enter by 11:59PM next Wednesday, May 29th, one week from today.  Hooray!

Thanks so much for reading my blog over the past two years!  It’s been so much fun getting to know you guys through your comments and blogs (and in person, whenever I get the chance!)!  Thanks to you, sewing is a fun, communal activity for me and not just solitary time spent hunching over my machine, cursing and seam ripping!

Drape Drape 3: Review + Giveaway!

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Hi, guys!  I have a giveaway for you today– exciting, right?  Laurence King Publishing sent me a copy of their brand new book, Drape Drape 3.  I reviewed and gave away a copy of Drape Drape 2 late last year, and this book is the next in the series.

If you’re unfamiliar with the Drape Drape books, they’re stylish Japanese pattern books translated into English.  The designs aren’t draped, though– there patterns are included in the book.

The instructions are fairly minimal, so these are probably better suited to advanced beginner or intermediate sewists, but the diagrams are really interesting and informative.  Also, fit is pretty forgiving in these designs, and most of them only require two or three pattern pieces– score!

As with Drape Drape 2, the patterns are geared more towards knits, but there are some styles that are suitable for wovens, too.

I love the photographs in these books!  The modern, unusual styles are eye candy for a curious sewist like me!

If you’d like to be entered in the giveaway, let me know in a comment below!  I’ll ship it worldwide.  🙂  Let’s close the giveaway a week from today, Wednesday, April 17th, at 11:59PM EST.

Which of these designs is your favorite?  Have you sewed from any of the Drape Drape books?

Drape Drape 2: Review & Giveaway!

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Hi, guys!  I’m back with another giveaway!  I was lucky enough to receive a review copy of Drape Drape 2 from Laurence King Publishing, and I can give a copy to you, too!  But first– let’s have a little book club discussion, alright?

Is it weird that this book has only white models?

I’ll start off by saying that I know NOTHING about draping and have never tried it, so I was interested to learn more about the process.  However, the book isn’t actually about draping!  The author, Hisako Sato, describes “drape drape” as the process of combining tucks, gathering, twists, and slack fabric to create a look.  There are full-size patterns included for the 14 garments pictured in the book, which is nice, although they aren’t all multi-sized.

These relaxed styles favor knits, although there are a few patterns for wovens, including the skirt with the draped flounce pictured above.  The pieces are all really unique and interesting, although they may not be for you if you don’t like to have lots of fabric drawing attention to some parts of your body (for example, in the skirt above, you can see all the gathering around the waist and high hip– might not be everyone’s favorite place to emphasize).

There’s a nice tension between simplicity and detail in these designs.  Some of the garments are surprisingly easy to execute, like the skirt on the right, which is constructed with one pattern piece and a rectangular, elasticized waistband.  Yet it’s a delicate, feminine skirt, and way cuter than you would imagine a knit, elastic-waist mini would be!

One drawback of the book is that the sizing is really limited.  An XL in this book is for measurements 35″/30″/38″!  I’ve heard this can be an issue with Japanese pattern books, but I was still pretty surprised.  However, the patterns seem really easy to grade up a bit if you wear a larger size, and there is quite a bit of ease built into most of these styles.

I really liked seeing the diagrams and flat patterns transformed into garments (Amy put her own spin on the pattern shown above– check it out!).  Sometimes it’s hard for me to visualize how a garment is constructed, so it’s really fun to see how the designer achieved some of these fascinating styles.  I’ve earmarked a few patterns to make down the road, but even if I never get around to making them, I still feel like I’ve learned something from this book.  I could see myself referring to it from time to time when drafting my own patterns.

What do you think?  Are these styles for you?  Have you used any kind of Japanese pattern books before?

Alright, let’s get back to the giveaway!  If you’d like to be entered in the giveaway, let me know in the comments below!  I’ll send it anywhere in the world.  🙂  Let’s keep the giveaway open until Tuesday the 20th at 11:59PM EST, then I’ll draw a winner!  Good luck!

Native Clutter Giveaway Winner!

Hi, guys!  Thanks for patiently waiting for me to post the winner of my birthday giveaway (and thank you, from the bottom of my heart, for your lovely birthday wishes!)!  It’s…

Katy of Denim Skirts and Other Stuff!  Have you seen her blog?  She makes lovely garments and her posts are deeply informative– she single-handedly saved me when I was stuck in the bridesmaid dress nightmare and couldn’t figure out how to do a full lining!  Thanks, Katy!  I’m sure you’re nosy like me and want to know what her favorite piece was– it’s the geometric bib necklace:

Loooooooove this!

Didn’t win?  Well, you can always mosey on over to Native Clutter and plunk down some cash money for jewels.  Just sayin’.  😉

Alright, hopefully I’ll be back soon!  I’m finishing up another lunatic week, but I’m hoping to get some sewing in this weekend (and catch up with your blogs– 300+ unread posts!!  EEK!!).

Happy Birthday to Me (and You)!

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Guuuuuuyyyys!  Look!  My internets are back today, just in time for my [deep breath] 30th birthday!  It’s been a craaaaaaazy week at work (I got home today at 8:00am!  Eek!), but I’m determined to celebrate even if I’m a little sleepy today!

I had grand plans to unveil a brand-new party dress today, but with the crazy week that I’ve had, I just couldn’t get it done.  There was a late night earlier in the week when I was frantically working on it even though I knew I’d never finish before the weekend, and I caught myself thinking up compromises and shortcuts to make it work and realized that I wouldn’t be happy with any dress I slapped together shoddily.  So, we’re pumping the brakes on that operation and I’ll be back eventually with a dress that I’m proud of (hopefully).

Brass Tribal Necklace

In the meantime, I thought it would be fun to do a little birthday giveaway!  I couldn’t decide what to give you guys, but this morning I received my necklace from Stephanie‘s Etsy shop, Native Clutter, and loved it so much that I thought I’d offer you a piece from her new collection!  Hop on over to Native Clutter and pick out your favorite piece, then leave a comment below for a chance to win.  I’d love to know what your favorites are!  I’ll accept entries until Tuesday, November 13th at 11:59pm, then I’ll pick a winner at random!

Grey Smooth Quartz Briolette Earrings

* I’m not sponsored by Stephanie or anything like that.  🙂  I’ve just been a fan of her blog for a long time and I’m so excited to support her new venture!

** That said, if I was a celebrity, I’d line up ridiculous endorsement deals with shameless abandon!  I’d shill for exercise machines (hopefully while wearing some kind of goofy warm-up suit), my own brand of hot sauce, President’s Day sales at local mattress stores, you name it!  7-Eleven, are you listening?  I’ll be your international Slurpee spokesperson!

Ginger Freebie: Victory Patterns!

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Remember how I promised a giveaway that would be open to everyone?  Well, here it is!  I’m a big fan of indie pattern  companies, and Victory Patterns has some of the cutest designs around (not to mention an owner that is INCREDIBLY nice!)!  I so enjoyed the Chloe dress pattern that I want to offer you guys the chance to make your own (or any other of Kristiann’s adorable patterns)!

Somebody make this one!! It’s ADORBS!!

To enter, just leave a comment below telling me which pattern is your favorite by 11:59PM EST on Wednesday, August 8th, and I’ll draw a winner!  Anyone can enter, no matter where you live, and you don’t need to follow my blog or have a blog of your own.  Yay!  Good luck, everybody!

I think I’m gonna make this one in the fall. Cute, huh?!