Oliver + S Popover Dress Sewn

A handmade dress deserves a photoshoot with the real camera, don’t you think? This little one is almost 18 months old, hard to believe sometimes.

Oliver + S Popover Dress Buttons

I made coordinating dresses for my girls this spring, and it is funny how much my girls both love “matching.”  This is the Oliver + S Bubble Dress pattern, which I have had for years but never made. I love the cute hemline on this dress!

Oliver + S patterns are well written and pretty easy to follow, although it helps when you give yourself more than a night to make the dress if you are an inexperienced garment sewist, like me. I ended up having to improvise a little.  It seems this is the lesson I will never learn: don’t sew new patterns for the first time when you are tired/at night.

Oliver + S Popover Dress

The fabric is from Heather Ross’s Far Far Away reprint (with Windham Fabrics). I’m not sure if it is still available or not. I think the dress would be beautiful in one of the prints from Sommer by Sarah Jane, which is currently available.

The pattern I have only goes up to 2T, so I need to hurry and make another one before she gets any bigger.

I plan to share the coordinating dress I made for my kindergartner next week.

Handmade Dresses

Do you have any favorite kids clothing patterns? I might attempt another one soon.

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Back in the heydays of fabric swapping on Flickr (c. 2008?), Flea Market Fancy (Denyse Schmidt’s first fabric line) was all. the. rage. I remember swapping itty bitty pieces with friends, just to get itty bitty pieces of other fabrics in return. I even bought a horribly made purse on easy (Green Bouquet on the outside, Gray Seeds on the inside) just to cut it up. I had some of every print because I bought a jellyroll (before prices for FMF skyrocketed), and started making a quilt for my bed. It makes me laugh now, but it was important to me then.

Portland Squares Quilt

Embarrassingly, I first blogged about this “quilt for my bed”  [which I’ve named Portland Square] in 2011. Ha! I am happy to say that I finally finished that queen size quilt for my bed and dropped it off with Nicole to be long armed yesterday. That quilt is a hot mess, and since I pressed the seams open, I had to repair quite a few.  While I was at it, I finished this FMF quilt (4” finished squares), gave it to Nicole, and plan to put it at the foot of my bed for a napping quilt. Because every day I dream about a nap. I can’t wait to get the quilts back and put them on my bed! Better late than never.


I will have a fun announcement on the blog on Monday, so make sure to check back!

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Pixelated Heart Quilt

Happy Friday friends! A few months ago, I posted a photo of this quilt, and everyone wisely chimed in that I should add borders. So I did.

I pin baste most of my quilts (these are my favorite pins, small and sharp). After pin basting, I usually spread the quilt out and double check that there aren’t any puckers or gathers. As I was doing this, this funny little girl walked over, sat down, and then proceeded to say, “Ouch, head. Ouch, head. Ouch, head.” I laughed so hard!

I know many people prefer spray basting, but pins work best for me. I usually pin every 5 inches or so, and try to decide how I am going to quilt the quilt *before* I pin.  I baste most of my quilts on an old ping pong table left by the previous owners, and tape the backing to the table first (I use a *lot* of painters tape).

I have been sewing quite a bit lately, and don’t always make it to posting here. If you are interested in following along on Instagram, I’m @swimbikequilt.

Happy sewing!

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classic half square triangle quilt

Classic Half Square Triangle Quilt

Last week, I shared my Mendocino Mermaid Improv Quilt, a long standing work in progress that I finally finished. I loved the finished product, and decided to keep the momentum rolling. I dug out a set of forty 6″ trimmed (!) half square triangles from the quilt archives, and set to work.

These triangles were leftover from my Star Bright Quilt (a free pattern!) and my Stars in the Sky Quilt, each made in the summer of 2013 and gifted to two new nephews.


Star Bright Quilt

In the original quilts, I ditched the navy blocks last minute, and only used my favorite combinations.  I changed the Stars in the Sky layout at the last minute, and I ended up with a collection of half square triangles that didn’t really sing. I stuck them in a box, and there they sat.

Classic half square triangle blocks

Closeup of the prints in the quilt

A few weeks ago, I decided to add in a few bright yellow prints, a few navy prints, a few low volume prints, a pop of teal, and some solid white, and I love the finished product.  I made about forty more blocks. I broke from my tradition of star quilts and used this classic, simple, triangle layout.

Guess what. I love it! And I also love that there is a cohesion between the three quilts, without them being matchy-matchy.

So, if you have an old WIP and don’t love the color combination, or find it boring, make a few more blocks in colors that zing, and finish that quilt!

Star Quilt 2

Stars in the Sky Quilt

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