Thursday, January 19

Bella Sunshine Designs - Alice Dress

I've been testing a few more patterns lately and this was the latest test.  

Alice is a vintage inspired dress featuring a peter pan collar with or without a bound edge, inverted pleats, cap sleeve, optional belt and the dress is fully lined.   There is an invisible zip to close the back.

My daughter is tall and slender and following the measurement chart I ended up with an 8 width and an 11 length.

I for the first time used the layers function - for me I mostly sew to sell, so I rarely use this function as I print and trace out the size I need.  As I was testing I used the layer function to print the size 8 and the size 11 and then I blended the sizes to ensure the correct fit - there are instructions in the pattern on how to blend the sizes, but there is also a video here.  It worked really well and I didn't have to tweak the pattern at all to fit my DD

The bodice has two options for the collar, one plain and one with a bound edge.  It is cute, for me personally I would probably go with a narrower binding in the next version, or even pipe it as that's the look I prefer.  You can find instructions on the binding here .

The skirt has inverted pleats, which sit really nicely and make it a bit more suitable for older girls, plus it has the added bonus of pockets!!  Are you reading this sis?  My sister adores pockets, wants them in everything, but I dislike them, so I generally leave them off.  

The skirt is fully lined, the skirt lining is an aline rather than a pleated version, this does not add bulk to the waist seam.  If you were short on time or fabric, you could easily ditch the skirt lining. 

I found it lovely to test for Melissa, she was open to suggestions and took them on board, she listened to all her testers and found that great balance between her vision and the finished product.   I don't think you are ever going to find a test that is 100% perfect in all the ways you want as everyone wants  something different but I was pretty happy with this one and the only thing I'd change is the collar, so I think that's pretty great. 

Sunday, January 8

Tadah Pseudo Romper and a RAOK

So I have some leftover Bumblebee Collection from Tilda Australia  and I thought since it was a very small piece the Tadah Pseudo Romper was the perfect thing to make.  You can find it in One Thimble Issue 9 or buy direct from Tadah .

The Bumblebee Collection is available in lots of good stores both IRL and online just do a quick search on the net. 

I've made up the size 00 - I have no one to measure it against, but its super cute and I forgot how tiny this size is.  I used 3 strands of DMC thread and popped some wee bullion knots, roses and lazy daisies on to just add a wee bit of love.

The pattern went together well, instructions are clear and concise as all of Lauren's patterns are.  She also has a big Facebook group if you get stuck to help you out.   There aren't instructions in the One Thimble for hand smocking this little romper, but I've been smocking a wee while now, so I just adjusted to suit. 

Next time I'll add more fullness to the front, but I was working with leftovers and for me, I'd like a bit more fullness to my smocking.  It is super cute  but its a bit less full than I would like.

I tweaked up the straps, adding in some pieced bits and I also added self-made piping to the top of the yoke. 

If I make these for sale I'd like to make the straps adjustable, so they fit a wide range of body lengths and I possibly would add snap closure at the crotch for ease of nappy changes.  I will mostly likely do a hack for this, so keep your eyes peeled. 

Anyways I thought that since its the start of a new year that I would RAOK this away to a lucky blog reader.  Just leave a comment as to why your little cherub would like this, or if you've had a rough 2016 and this would help cheer you up, comment on that, or if you know someone that needs a cheer up mention that too - just something to brighten someone's day and let them know you are thinking of them.

If you'd like to order your own Smocked clothing - you can contact me via my Facebook page or my website

Open to Australian residents over the age of 18.  Entry to this competition is free and the winner is decided wholly by chance.  Please use Rafflecopter to enter.  

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Thursday, January 5

Spagetti Bread

I follow a page called Fridge Food - encouraging you to use leftovers.

This popped up in my feed today.

And as we had leftover Spaghetti Bolognese I thought … why not?

So I made my go to pizza dough.

600g bread flour (though I didn't have quite enough bread flour, so tipped in some 00 to make it up to that)
2 teaspoons of dried yeast
1 teaspoon of salt - you can use more or less
3 tablespoons of oil - I use rice bran
and enough water to make a soft dough.

I pop mine into the bread machine on pizza cycle, but its easy enough to knead until smooth and elastic and then pop in a bowl, cover with cling film and let it rise about 45 minutes. 

I then divided this in half, rolled it out - the width to match my baking trays and length the same. 

Popped on the leftover spaghetti - I just used my hands to form a nice mound.  Topped it with some grated mozzarella and then followed the directions for braiding.   Topped with some parsley from the garden and some grated parmesan.

Baked at 225 for about 35 minutes and oh gosh - super yum - kids loved it - want it again and it was great with a salad.  Probably a little messy to eat if you're spaghetti is very wet but oh so delicious.