Soleil: prototype #1

blueprintfrontyou could say that i’ve been sewing quite a lot of tops of late (most of them can be seen on the instagram feed, and yes, uploading more detailed photos on the blog is very much a to do).  and while all of them are well designed, a joy to sew and lovely . . . none of them were exactly my style, which my husband has worked out to be “flowy top and jeans.”

somewhere in the middle of all this top making, i got around to scribbling out a pattern for a summer top in line with my tastes.  i’m calling it “soleil” and here’s the first prototype (made out of liberty tana lawn bamboo garden b ):

bodicea gathered bodice for volume and “flowiness”

Buttons-on-Backbutton closure in the back

Pockettwo pockets in the front!

and now to test drive it tonight . . . as it is a friday night after all!


wip: julie hoover’s daphne!

row-2row 2

i’ve been a terrible knitter of late — mostly due to having developed a bad case of bursitis (ouch!) a few months back.  after laying off the needles for almost a good nine months, my wrists have finally healed. . . which means i can finally take-on julie hoover’s daphne.  here we go!

row-55row 55

i decided to knit dafne using lustrous linen in capri with two strands held together.  it’s steamy hot in nyc and i’m looking forward to the crispness of linen to keep me cool.  using US 9 needles, it’s been a fair fast knit so far.  after knitting for a bit last night, i’m on row 55 of the back piece (about 11-12 inches eyeballing it).

should-shaping-frontalmost done with armholes (julie’s armhole shaping is beautifully written/constructed!)

shouldersand we have shoulders! now onto the back piece . . .

updates will post on this blog and on instagram #myjhdaphne

flamingo boy

Flamingo-boyevery so often the Kid makes it known what fabrics he thinks we should be stocking . . . and he happens to be a huge fan of flamingos!  so when he came across this lovely hokkoh heavy weight gauze featuring a flamingo print, he demanded that we carry it!

Flamingo-boy2oddly enough, flamingo themed apparel for preschool sized boys is near impossible to find.  i’ve searched with very little success.  it seems that preschool girls have the monopoly on the motif.

Flamingo-boy3when meredith very generously offered to work her magic and transform that flamingo fabric into a sketchbook shirt, we were thrilled!  this is, as the Kid says, “my very most favorite shirt in the world!” i’m pretty certain he’d wear it every day if he could with a smile from ear to ear.

Flamingo-boy4THANK YOU MEREDITH FOR SHARING YOUR TALENT WITH US!!!  we are so grateful!!

l’indispensable in sevenberry

sevenberry1after a short hiatus, we’re back to bloggin’!  [if you must know what happened . . . first, we discovered instagram, then it became time to get our books over to our accountants, and then . . .  well you get the turn of events . . . onto more interesting endeavours!]

sevenberry2sometime back in december, we came across delphine et morissette’s charming patterns.  delphine has a simple but whimsical style — filled with these delightful little details that make stitching her patterns so much fun!

sevenberry3this particular pattern, l’indispensable,  is only available in french. the format isn’t as fancy as some of the more established pattern companies out there, i.e. there’s no cutting layout or fabric requirements chart (you’ll have to figure that out once you’ve cut your pieces out — but it’s not hard).  that said, if you’ve put together a few blouses before, you’ll be able to piece together the pattern even if you don’t read french.

and there are other snazzy perks too!  delphine’s patterns feature an asymmetrical european sloped sleeve, where  sleeve cap is unevenly divided with the back measurement longer than the front — resulting in a better fit and slimmer look.  mary of cloning couture has a great discussion of this on her blog.

this was my quick and dirt trial version of l’indispensable. (yes, i went a bit wonky on the hem) i made it in a size 38 — and found that it was quite an easy fit.  i used 1.75 yards of sevenberry lawn and 1.5 yards of a silver star bias binding tape.

love it! and can’t wait to make another version in liberty!

nani iro, charlie tunic + twins!

duoi had been extolling the virtues of double gauze to my friend A for a while now.  she doesn’t sew, but she’s my partner in crime in digging out cute clothes for kids and hunting down the latest and greatest exquisite pastry shop to open in nyc.  she’s also the proud mother of two adorable fraternal twins!

tuniconce after i put together the charlie tunic for the kid, i decided to make two more versions for A’s twins out of nani iro’s 2015 mountain view double gauze in two different colors.  suzumi (mostly blue) for the boy and  happy free (pinks, reds and light green) for the girl.

tunic-facingi did make some modifications on the tunic in this version. i wanted to incorporate fabric from the sister’s garment as a reminder of their twin togetherness.  to maintain a cleaner look (the fabric has got a lot going on already!), i tucked the bib facing on the interior of the garment.

dress-detailsfor the girl, i incorporated her brother’s blue fabric as a sleeve facing.  i did let the facing show on the exterior because i thought it made the dress look more rainbow-hued.

both the tunic and the dress are a 3T. i hope the twins like their first foray into double gauze attire!

Made by Rae’s Charlie Tunic + Dress pattern can be found here.

ihme chamber, charlie tunic + the kid

frontmade by rae‘s ever versatile charlie tunic sew in IHME Chamber double gauze and worn by the kid.  to put it mildly, i’ve been obsessed with this particular IHME Chamber’s print since i first laid eyes on it a few months back. 

backif you look really really closely, you can spot all these mischievous mystical woodland creatures that seem to resonate so well with the mischievous personality of the kid (don’t let those plump rosy cheeks and tiny hands fool ya. . . he’s MISCHIEF embodied).

sidei made a 4T, which gives the kid a bit of space to grow into it.  maybe . . . just maybe . . . the shirt will last him till the end of spring.  the bib facing  in double gauze can be a bit tricky with its 1/4″ seam allowance.  this nifty little gadget, however, got things under control.

standinglooks great with a pair of dark cords, no?

gallery tunic in ffion


j.crew’s liberty shirts.  a few years back, you could say that it was a sort of uniform of mine.  the trouble is that while i had a closet full of said shirts, i could never quite find one that fit me properly.  it was either too big in some parts or too tight in others. i probably should have purchased 3 shirts in the same pattern and frankenstein-ed them together.  enter liesl+co’s gallery tunic . . . a wonderful and easily customizable pattern for realising all my liberty shirt dreams!

ffion-2easy to wear (with plenty of ease) and no buttons!

backi made no changes to the pattern as written in this version. that darling blue floral print you see in the photos is liberty’s tana lawn classic ffion print. (i wondered myself about the meaning of ffion.  turns out that it’s a popular welsh female name, meaning foxglove).  hemi’ve already got fabric set aside for the next version.  it’s this cheerful liberty nina taylor print — so appropriate for all seasons!  i think i’ll try out the mandarin collar option included with the pattern, and also lengthen the sleeves an inch or so (they landed at my elbow joint . . . but then, i think i have longer than average arms).

liveand here it is on me! excuse the awkward pose. . . still haven’t gotten around to getting a tripod or selfie stick.

[and yes! i’m most definitely on a bit of a liesl+co roll (their patterns really are extremely well-written and a pleasure to sew)! ]

cinema dress in peony pavilion

IMG_5868i’ve been happily stitching our way through liberty’s AW15 collection.  this is liesl+co’s cinema dress . . . made for a dear friend of mine who is a huge fan of all things chinoiserie!  this particular print is called peony pavilion, designed by fashion designer anna sui for liberty! (and oh yes . . . i should have pressed those seams before taking the photos!)

IMG_5867 mid-length and flowy featuring delicate buttons up the back and ever so handy pockets in the front too!

pocketi made the size six in the pattern which happens to be the size of my friend and the dress form.  of course, i couldn’t resist but to try it on myself too!  it does fit me, but i would make a modification to the waist portion of the dress for myself.  i have a rather large rib cage and i found that it fell sort of too high on my torso.  cinema-side-by-sidethe cinema dress is a wonderfully written pattern that i found super easy to follow and filled with useful tips and tricks.  the only addendum i would make is that if you’re using a directional print, like peony pavilion, one of the cutting patterns will not work (i believe it’s cutting layout “c” but will confirm when i relocate my pattern).

rhinebeck . . . all about the animals

alpacait’s been four years since our last trip to Rhinebeck!  we finally made it there after our 2 hour drive from nyc became a 4 hour drive (we hit some bad traffic — total standstill! and then the kid got car sick . . . )  we finally made it though and what a glorious event it was!

panoramablue skies!  filled with people, delicious, food, fiber a plenty . . . and of course… this pretty amazing tree!

tree Rhinebeck is absolutely a kid friendly place!  the Kid had a total blast walking around the hay maze, playing with all the gadgets they had set up in the kids area,  seeing his first kangaroo and feeding a rather lopey looking goat!

goat-feedingbringing the Kid to Rhinebeck also meant spending virtually no time in the super crowded yarn and fiber filled aisles . . . which was all right because we got to spend quite a lot of time checking out the lovely animals.

Soaya rather rare soay sheep from cairn o’mohr farm in ashford connecticut!  so cute and docile!

Helderthis supremely loveable herdwick sheep from helder-herdwyck farm. i wanted to climb into the pen and squeeeeeeeeze him!

teeswaterthis curly coated fellow . . .  a teeswater being exhibited by the american teeswater sheep association.  their curly locks spin up into a lustrous and strong yarn.  

Gotlandsome adorable little gotlands in a light and dark grey, whose coats spin up into an equally lovely yarn.  these fellows hail from Riverbend in NJ.

Vicunaand rarest of all! a vicuna from Victory Farm in Missouri.

IMG_4667before we said our goodbyes to rhinebeck . . . we caught a glimpse of this quirky little fella bidding us adieu!

michelle, ma belle

michelle-ma-bellewe just got in a fabulous selection of tana lawn classics updated for the 2016 season! some re-colourization of perennial favorites like thorpe a, poppy & daisy a, poppy & daisy b and margaret annie e . . .
recolouredand then some new introductions . . . meet michelle (which we ♥♥♥!), sarah, ffion, rachel, gracey and josue.


finally . . . queue for the zoo is back by popular and has become sort of a quasi classic!

zoo(please note that not all of these new arrivals will show up in our “what’s new section”, so be sure the click on the links in this email to see them all.)