Thursday, February 20, 2014

The Birthday Dress: Violette Field Threads Maggie

Sometimes I apply for pattern testing calls not really thinking that I will be able to make the cut.  Especially when its a pattern maker like Violette Field Threads, who are extremely popular with a huge following.  So when I got the email right around Christmas, I was pleasantly surprised and even happier when I opened the file and found the dress that I was to make. 

This is the Maggie Dress.  It has a high-low hem, split sleeves, a contrast belt, and unique shoulder detailing.  It can be made in woven or knit; I chose to make it in this super-soft floral jersey from Girl Charlee. 

I love the flowy-ness of this dress and I think it works beautifully in knit.  As with all VFT patterns, the instructions are clear and concise, and they break it down for you so that even beginners can follow along easily.

And oh yeah, they have the women's version of the Maggie Dress too. 

Monday, February 17, 2014

Fairy Party and My first In-the-Hoop Project

Every year in February, I tell myself that I should keep things simple for S's birthday, but then every year I get carried away and end up driving myself crazy making party favors and decorations.  Well, this year is no exception.  Once again, I went way overboard, staying up till all hours of the night and subsisting on 4 hours of sleep for a week before the party.  But you know, it was worth it; the creating made me happy, and the party made my girl happy, and that's all that counts, right?

This year, we went with a fairy theme.  And since baking is beyond my skill set, we ordered all the food from Megan of Sweet 'n Sassy Custom Cakes, who came and set up the dessert table for the party, even brought the table, linens, plates, and decorations for the dessert table.  Check out the fairy house cake and the mushroom cupcakes. 

It's not a party without handmade party favors, right?  I made these dolls from a pattern by Dolls and Daydreams.  The most thrilling part of this is that the dolls were made "in the hoop," which means that all the seams and stitches were made using my embroidery machine.  These dolls came together so fast and easily.  I was thrilled with the result!

 I ordered the doll wings from Halo Heaven and attached them to the back with a safety pin.  The pattern also had little ballerina slippers for the dolls; I ran out of time so they are barefoot fairies.

 You can't really see it in the pictures but I also embroidered each child's name on the front of the doll.  All except for B's; hers was the first one I made and I hadn't quite figured out how to add the name as yet.

Here's a ridiculously cute close-up of the doll.  I love them so much.  I'm already planning my next dozen.

 I quickly pulled together the centerpieces and decorations for the party using what I had around the house and a few of the party favors that I had bought from Halo Heaven, which included the wings, fairy headbands, and butterfly hairclips, which I used as napkin decorations.
The kids made fairy houses using wooden birdhouses decorated with moss, feathers, broken seashells, silk flowers, and whatever else I could find at Joann's that seemed earthy and natural.

And then it was time to eat their fairy treats.  They drank sparkly juice from champagne glasses that I had left over from a new year's get together. 
And one last look at our six year old.