Baby D's Mini Summer Capsule: Boys in Summer Blog Tour

I love the concept of a capsule wardrobe: a small amount of well though-out pieces that mix and match effortlessly.  

I mean, I love it for other people.  Not for me.  Me, I love making clothes too much for that craziness.  I'd love to do it someday, but today is not that day.  But I gotta tell you, every time I'm putting away laundry for my boys, wow, do I wish they had capsule wardrobes!  

When RP Custom Fabrics sent me three fat halves of coordinating fabrics, I knew that I could make a super cute matching outfit for each of my three boys . . . or I could make Baby D one adorable mini capsule.  So, I went with the latter.  And when Sewing Blue Blog Tours (hosted by Made for Little Gents) asked me to join their Boys in Summer Blog Tour, everything came together perfectly! 

Without further ado:

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Alright! So with 1.5 yards of fabric, I was able to come up with these eight patterns, matched with one pair of ready-to-wear moccs.  I did three each of tops, bottoms, and an "extra" (which ended up being the moccs, a pair of booties, and a hat).  

And yes, the bandana bib counted as a "top".  He is a baby, and it is summer, after all!

 I reorganized the fabrics and patterns many times, until I came up with the perfect wardrobe sudoku (probably the funnest part of capsule wardrobes-- I love looking at the wardrobe sudokus!).  Obviously, this is just a mini wardrobe, so nine items was perfect, but if you're doing a full, legit capsule, you'll probably want a few more items. 

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Putting the pieces together sideways, up and down, diagonally and corners, you come up with nine outfits.  

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Pretty cool, huh? I love the idea of bringing this whole capsule for a night away this summer- and  being able to change a shirt or bottom if something gets spit up on, and still having him match! Perfect for a night away at the lake! 

And, since I'm the world's okayest mom, with the best baby ever, I had little D model each of the nine outfits.  He's a trooper, that one. 

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I love these fabrics-- the stripes, space theme, and aliens/monsters are so stinkin' cute.  The colors are perfectly gender neutral. 

And I have to say, I'm a converter to the lap tee. . . so much so that I made two! I used to try to make "normal" shirts for my babies, but with those big, gigantic heads, lap tees really do make sense (thank you to Patterns for Pirates for converting me with their Free Wee Lap Tee). 

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Watch it now, here's where I loose my sweet model:

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Poor kid.  That was the last outfit, and I snapped one picture before I swooped him up and apologized.

Let's see a happier face again. 

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Much better, haha!

Bonus- most of the patterns I used were free! Here's everything  I used: 

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D is getting to the age where he loves chomping on anything- this Dribble Bib kept going straight to his mouth. 

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Done with the baby overload? Good! Head over to all the other awesome stops on this blog tour-- all focused on the boys in our lives in the sweet, sunny, summertime! 


Boys in Summer Blog Tour: Part of the Sewing Blue Blog Tour series hosted by Made for Little Gents

Looking for more summer boy inspiration? Follow along on the Boys in Summer Blog Tour hosted by Made by Little Gents by clicking through the links below.

Fri. May 4 Made for Little Gents (Intro to Boys in Summer Blog Tour) Mon. May 7 Elli & Nels in Stitches Tues. May 8 Our Play Palace | Made by Laura! | Beri Bee Designs Wed. May 9 Made for Little Gents | Momma Newey's Makes Thurs. May 10 Phat Quarters | Dreams & Stitches Fri. May 11 Stylin' Stacy | Tenille's Thread Mon. May 14 Paisley Roots | Fabulous Home Sewn Tues. May 15 Seams Like Style | Kathy's Kwilts and More Wed. May 16 Sewing with D | Auschick Sews | Seams Sew Lo Thurs. May 17 My Sewing Roots | Sewing à la Carte | Middle River Studio Fri. May 18 Lunatiek | Needles to Say | Manning The Machine


Thanks so much for checking out D's mini capsule! I have to admit, this is making me think how fun it would be to make my own mini capsule-- especially for a vacation!  We'll see ;) 

xo- Molly 

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Just That Nifty

Back in February, I was approached on Facebook to sew for an up and coming new fabric group.  I was all, "Yeah, I just had a baby, I'm swamped, so thanks, but no thanks."  But then. But then.  The smart girls who DID say yes, started showing off their pictures and I was so stinkin' jealous. The fabric was absolutely gorgeous.  And so, I swallowed my pride and went back to the fabric host.  I told her that I was amazed at what she'd been doing, and I'd love to sew for her, whenever she'd have me.  

Lucky me, she had some extras with my name on them! 

What I love about Just That Nifty is that they're using real artwork, painted on paper or canvas to create their prints.  The goal is to bring high-fashion, runway looks to the everyday sewist.  Plus, they're working collaboratively with two college students to create these stunning designs.  I'm so impressed with what they're doing, and this is definitely a brand I want to stand with . . . so I'm glad she took me back, haha! 

So, since this fabric is so gorgeous, I have to say, the pressure was on to create some pieces to live up to it.  

First up, the George + Ginger RuLo

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I finished these projects a couple weeks ago when we were still getting snow in Wisconsin. Today, I'm sitting in a romper, enjoying 70 degrees, sunshine, and watching the ice melt on the lake, so don't worry, I don't have snowflakes flying anymore!

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This is the tunic length RuLo.  I just used the top tier of the sleeves from the three tier option, to create this 3/4 length sleeve.  

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Both cuts I recieved were bamboo Lycra.  It is SO soft and so flowy.  The drape is GREAT and it's mega comfy.  You really can't say enough good things about bamboo Lycra. 

The applique is from Fab Clique, and I think it's a great touch! Just use basting spray to stick that baby one, and then sew around it.  

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This fabric is called Sparks! She also redesigned the artwork into a 2.0 version (that I'm pretty sure I have to buy as well).  The other fabric I got to sew up is called Koi Pond. . .

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Pretty, right?! I love, love, love the colors in this fabric! I requested Sparks, but Keanna said she wanted to send me Koi Pond because she thought the coloring would be good for me . . . I never consider stuff like that, but I think she was right!

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The pattern I used was the Elise peplum and dress from Halla. It's a cross over bodice, which was super easy to hack into this tie front instead (you can see what the original pattern looks like here). I had soooo many tie-front dresses on my Pinterest, and I wanted to try one for myself. I like that it shows a little skin, but you're not baring everything.

It was suuuuper easy to finagle the cross bodice dress into the tie.  I'm not a pattern designer, but I'll do my best to give you some guidance, haha.  I used the cutlines for the tabbed version (the curved lines at the bottom of the bodice as opposed to the straight across line), because it gives you a little extra fabric, which I wanted to have to make it easier to tie. 

I lined the front and back bodice pieces.  This gave me the finished edges around the whole neckline.  Taking that into account, I folded the front piece like this when I cut the front bodice pieces (because that extra tab on the top normally becomes you back neckline, but I didn't need that.

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Then I folded it on the neckline fold guide at the shoulder to blend that edge in to neckline. In general, I wanted that extra inch of fabric, I just didn't want it at the shoulder. 

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I used the cross over pattern markings to determine how far over to go with the tie, and where to start attaching the front bodice to the waistband.

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Fast and dirty instructions: 

  1. Attach front bodice pieces to the back bodice piece at the shoulders.  Repeat with lining pieces.
  2. Right sides together, pin the neckline of the bodice to the neckline of the lining.  Sew. 
  3. Turn right sides out and press.  
  4.  Use the burrito roll method to finish the arms
  5. Sew the side seams: flip the sides so that front and back lining and front and back bodice are both right sides together. Sew.  Repeat for the other side. 

Now your bodice is complete! Attach the waistband.  Sandwich the bodice between the two waistband layers (raw edges of waistband and raw edges of the bodice aligned.  For most of the time, you'll be sewing through all four layers, except for front and center, where you'll just be sewing through the two layers of the waistband.

After sewing, flip your waistband pieces down.  All the raw edges of your bodice should be encased in that waistband seam. 

On hindsight, I also would have used tank lines on another pattern to adjust the armscyes, but I didn't think of that until it was too late.  You can do that though.

And despite that, I love the finished outcome!

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Make sure you pop over to Just That Nifty and check all the awesome, totally original prints! The preorder is closing soon (besides bamboo Lycra, there's a cotton lycra, swim, and a french terry!) so make sure you hurry over.  I cannot say enough good things about this fabric; I'm all about Keanna's mission and am so happy to be supporting her along the way!

Patterns: G+G Rulo, Halla Elise
Fabric: Just That Nifty

Happy Friday! 

xoxo Molly

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Prepare Yourself Mentally for Sewing

My girls at Vintage Lace have a new fabric preorder up this week, and they sent me two awesome prints to try out. I decided to use them on two brand new patterns, which makes me extra excited to share my makes with you!  

First up are these donuts!

. . . doughnuts?  . . . or donuts?  If you're like me, and these are the questions that keep you up at night, read this, ha!

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I LOVE how bright and fun this print is. As soon as I saw it, I knew it had to become some workout gear.  I don't know why, but I love food workout gear.  What's up with that? Like "work out harder so you can eat a donut"? Or "I'm feeling guilty for eating donuts, so now I have to work out" . . .?  

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The top is the new Xpress Tank from Greenstyle. Check out that back! 

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This is the curved back option, but there are two other options as well. This is an EASY sew, people.  The whole thing is one piece, cut on the fold.  You attach the shoulders, and then just hem the whole thing. It should take basically 20 minutes to make.  I say "should" because I ran out of thread with six inches left, had to seam-rip the whole thing, and then re-hem.  

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I would not recommend wearing this shirt to yoga.  It was falling off of me with all the poses, but the tie back option probably would have been fine. I imagine this one would be great for running . . . not that I would know, ha! 

But, it doesn't have to be just for workouts! I picked out a sweet white and pink floral to make another in, for cute and casual summer wear.  I get mega crabby when it's hot, so I think this shirt will be great!

Overall pros to the pattern: FAST, EASY, and just one yard of fabric! 

On to the next project! Have you seen this Singer manual advice float around on-line before? 

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I get such a kick out of it.  Vintage Lace did too, because they made this sweet print that includes tidbits of the "advice"! 

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Yes, ma'am! Hair in order, powder and lipstick on!

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This fabric goes along perfectly with the vintage flair of the new Elise peplum and dress from Halla! Puff sleeves, crossover bodice, and these adorable neck straps that make it a fun take on an otherwise simple "V" neckline. 

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I magic-ed this out of one yard.  So, I had to go with the simple peplum, which I found a little too fitted, despite going by my measurements.  Next time, I'll for sure do a gathered peplum . . . or, even better, the full gathered skirt.  I have some cherry fabric and some polka dot fabric and one of them has to become a full dress in this pattern. I'm just crazy about the vintage look it has!

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So, per Singer's advice, remember to prepare yourself mentally for sewing, we wouldn't want to be lackadaisical about it, or anything.   Now, I better go attend to my "urgent housekeeping chores"! 

Molly

Sewing in German

Guten tag! 

. . . and, sadly, that's basically the extent of my knowledge of the German language.  But I've been seeing a ton of super fun international sewing patterns posted lately (specifically, a lot of German patterns), and I couldn't resist joining in on the craze.  When I looked at the strike-offs I sewed up for the month of February, I realized that they were all from international designers (three German, and one Australian)! 

I know some people are intimidated by sewing a pattern from a different language, but if you have basic knowledge when it comes to sewing apparel, most of the steps will be pretty self-explanatory.  And if it's a good tutorial, there should be decent pictures of the steps included in the instructions.  If all else fails, I've been loving being a part of the facebook group International Knit Sew-A-Longs; it's a great resource for help sewing international patterns.  I had a ton of fun sewing these up-- it was more of an adventure than my normal sewing!  

I'll show off what I've been making and give you some tips along the way! 

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This is the Lady Tasja from MiaLuna.  I used fabric from Aurora Designs-- they have a fandom round going on right now (I got the Harry Potter print, but they also have Game of Thrones, Dr Who, Star Wars, and Super Natrual), and they also have a boat load of different colors of quilted knit available for retail (quilted knit is PERFECT for these sweatshirts!). 

I don't know why the German patterns seem especially popular, but those German designers seem to really know how to make an awesome hoodie (and in the middle of a cold, northern Wisconsin winter, all I want to wear is hoodies). I LOVE this one.  

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I've been surprised by the sizing on some of these patterns.  First of all, how this pattern is called Lady Tasja? That's just for sizes 32-46. There's also "Big Lady Tasja", for sizes 46-58.  Sometimes the larger sizes are called "Curvy" (like my next pattern I used, the two patterns are called "Freya Ladies" and "Freya Ladies Curvy").   So make sure you have the right pattern for your size when purchasing.  I don't really like how they split the sizes up like that . . . it would be hard if you were a size that's right on the border between the two-- which do you choose?

For reference, I usually wear a size 8 in ready to wear, and I've been sewing up the size 40 in these German patterns.  I feel like the sizing guidance is lacking in some popular patterns I've used-- one only gave you the full bust measurement to choose size (no waist or hips), and another one didn't give a size chart at all, it had you compare a shirt you liked to the printed pattern to choose your size! 

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I used both a kragen (collar) and a kapuze (hood), for this hoodie.  I've used google translate a lot while sewing these, but I've heard that Linguee can be even better.  For just a list of general sewing terms, here's a good cheat sheet from Stash for Good

English is a Germanic language, so I think you'll find that you catch on to some basic words easily.  For example, "hinten" means "back".  Think of the English word "hind" also meaning back. If you say the word out loud, that can help too; like the words "unten" (bottom), or "unterer" (lower). Say them! They sound an awful lot like "under". 

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Next up is the Freya Ladies from FinnLey!  Excuse the extreme amazing-ness of this fabric.  The prints and panels are from Vintage Lace and I cannot wait to wear this this summer.  I'm totally going to win the 4th of July party!

Any way, the pattern . . . haha!

One of my favorite things about this pattern is that it actually included layers in Adobe! Unfortunately, most of the international patterns don't have layers at this point.  

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Makerist is a good place to find these patterns all in one place.  Click here, and I'll help you get straight to the sewing patterns. You can pay on PayPal just like normal and have all your patterns in one place.  

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When sewing these patterns up, you'll want to search to find if there is a seam allowance included. A lot of times, there is not.  The word for seam allowance is  "nahtzugabe" and it's sometimes abbreviated "NZ". 

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SIDE NOTE: This is my outdoor cat Coco . . . my husband, Mike, said I could only have a cat if it was an outdoor cat. So, Coco sleeps in the garage in some comfy, cozy bedding, and spends all day inside snuggled up on my bed, ha!  She wouldn't stop meowing at me during these pictures, so I knew she wanted to be included. 

Grant also got a hoodie this month-- Stranger Things style, from Sugar Ink Fabric.  Mike and I have a hard time finding a show that we both enjoy enough to actually watch together, but Stranger Things fit the bill for us! If you haven't seen it, there's a character that really like Ego Waffles . . . thus this waffle print, haha. 

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This is the Henry(ette) from Lolletroll.  I love the color blocking on the sleeve.  This pattern DOES include seam allowance, except along the curved color blocked parts, where you have to add it yourself-- tricksters.  

Something that I haven't talked about yet is printing! Most of these patterns are actually designed for A4 paper.  Personally, I just went ahead and bought A4 paper on Amazon (it fluctuates a lot in pricing, but I paid about $10 for a ream).  But, I know other people just use US legal size paper and trim it down to A4 size.  US Letter is the "normal" size of paper that we use here in the US, and I know other people who just print these patterns on letter size and make it work (sometimes it make a difference, sometimes not).  Really, I like having the A4 around because then I know I'm not going to have any issues.  

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So, I made one more strike off this month, and it is technically an international pattern . . . but since it's Australian and in English, I don't think you'll have any problems! This is the Miss Ruby Tuesday, from 1 Puddle Lane, in some more 4th of July inspired prints from Vintage Lace (price of the pattern is AUD, so it's cheaper than it looks!).   This pattern has SO many options and add-ons and the fit is spot on. I LOVE it,

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If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to reach out! I'm no expert, but I'm happy to help!  Once you jump in it's really not hard to follow along, I promise :)   -Molly

Here are links one more time: 

www.makerist.de --a great place to start looking for patterns

Fabric:
Aurora Designs-- Harry Potter and other fandoms, plus quilted knit solids
Vintage Lace-- 4th of July prints
Sugar Ink-- Stranger Things and Black Panther this round

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Sewing with Sugar Ink:: Leggings Mod and Zip Accent Hoodie

I'm super excited to have joined the team sewing for Sugar Ink Fabrics!  The current round is all kinds of fun and bright (including Peeps, Rainbow Brite, and Japanese-inspired prints with clashing coords). I got to sew up their cotton Lycra base, and it's just perfect! 

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This is the Sweet Sakura print.  The colors of the flowers pop beautifully!  I paired it with this quilted gray knit from JoAnn.  

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Is anyone surprised I made a New Horizons TAMI Revolution Hoodie? I'm not.  My husband's not.  He's having a hoodie intervention with me as we speak.  

I did the normal outer hood that comes with the pattern, and paired it with a cowl instead of the crossover hood.  I love doing a cowl instead of a hood! And I'm a total gold girl, so I've stocked up on these zips for the TAMI Revolutions.

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Notice those grommets? I finally got an actual press instead of using a hammer, and let me tell you, it is ah-mazing.  Seriously, just bite the bullet and buy one!  The white stabalizer around the grommet is actually Kraft-Tex! I just started trying it out (it's similar to an international product I've seen on all the German hoodies, haha).  It's called "fabric paper" . . . it's supposed to look like leather accents, but it's actually a fabric/paper product.  I got the variety pack, and it seriously seems like cardstock, haha! But it washes well, and has more texture after you wash it.  It's weird, but I recommend it! 

For the Sakura coordinate I received, I decided to try out some new leggings.  I'm a new fan of the Ninja pants from 5 out of 4 Patterns (all my leggings will now by Ninja Pants!).  There are four different rises (including maternity!), and the ankle length is perfect on me (there's a long length for you tall ones out there).  I don't have to make any modifications to make these fit (which cannot be said of other leggings patterns that I use).  

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I did however, have to do a mod anyway, haha.  I just had to do some little pop of fun, to meet how awesome this print is, so I added this keyhole cut out at the ankles! 

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I was totally winging it, but my cutout piece ended up being 3" by 3.75".  (Minion bandaid is proof that I really was winging it!). 

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On hindsight, you could have made the ankle just a little wider to account for the fact that you're going to be loosing some width with the keyhole.  I didn't, and it worked out fine.  But if you have wide ankles, let that be your warning!

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Press the raw edge to the wrong side, and hem around the keyhole (I used my coverstitch). 

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Sew the pattern up as directed. 

I made a small band about 2 inches by 90% of the ankle opening.  

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Sew that on, stretching the band evenly as you attach it. 

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Then use a stretch stitch and sew the seam allowance towards the band (to keep it from folding up and being visible through the keyhole). 

And voila! Perfect for looking extra cute at yoga! 

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Make sure you check out all the fun prints at Sugar Ink Fabric

I'm hoping to get a few more posts up this upcoming week, but it all depends on baby!  I've been doing a TON of nesting (read: sewing) but my due date is in a week and a half, and my other two were 4-5 days early!  Hoping you'll see some sweet baby outfits on here soon (and some comfy post-partum outfits for me too!).  <3 

 

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Feeling Lucky with Vintage Lace Prints

The girls at Vintage Lace are keeping with their tradition of offering St Patrick's Day prints AND keeping things playful with the mustache theme (see the Valentine's Day mustaches that I sewed up here). And I'm over here sewing another slew of coordinating shirts for my (soon-to-be) three boys!  I better get used it ;) 

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The little one got a plain-jane raglan from the Mega Max pattern from Max & Meena (which doesn't do the pattern justice, consider the 100s of options the pattern supplies!).  My oldee two boys practically live in Mega Max Raglans.  This is the first one I sewed up for the little man.  And I loved that plaid so much, that I had to make this little paci clip as well! 

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This is the Isaiah Plaid, but Vintage Lace also has two other coordinating plaids for the shamrock prints! 

Roman got an Elliedactyl Ried for his shirt.  I love the assymetry.  

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Is he extra stinkin' adorable, or what? 

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I had to do some serious strategic-planning to get all the pieces for all three boys' shirts from these cuts of cotton Lycra, so I ended up using the tall cuffs on Roman's arms.  It's not an option I would usually use, but I really like how it turned out!  This is another pattern that has a TON of options.  There's an additional scoop option for the main body, some cool sleeve color blocking options, and a color-blocked hood.  This one that I made is actually almost as simple as you can get it, haha! 

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Sweetest little Irishman.  

I took the boys to the train museum to take these pictures-- they loved the excuse to go see the trains, and I know we all loved not standing out in the cold, haha.  

Serious conversation going on here: 

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Grant's shirt is the Edi, from a German designer, Lolletroll.  I got it on Makerist.  As I don't speak German, I couldn't tell you a whole lot about the designer or the pattern. Just that I'm managing to sew a little more German designers lately, thanks to Google translate, haha. 

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I do find this hood to be on the smaller side, if you have a kid that actually wants to wear the hood up (this kid definitely likes to wear his hood up).  

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My two boys had fun twirling their pretend mustaches in their shirts, ha! But, if mustaches aren't your thing, Vintage Lace has a non-mustachioed version of these shamrocks too ;) 

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I did let the boys play a little bit . . . after their work was done ;)  Grant is starting to take this model-for-mom thing pretty seriously.  It's making it more fun to sew for him! 

Whether you have a wee bit of Irish in you or not, head over to Vintage Lace to check out all their spring prints! They have a little bit over everything-- Easter, St Patrick's Day, florals (see mine here!), and even a few sports thrown into the mix.  I can't wait to have all THREE of my boys sport these, come St Paddy's Day! 

Erin go bragh! 

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