Ruffled Kyoko

Today is picture day at Miss L’s school, which meant I felt compelled to sew something for her to wear. As luck would have it, Sarah mentioned last week that she needed an updated Kyoko sample for the shop, so I decided to knock out both tasks with one dress.

I’ve sewn several of the Kyokos and the pattern continues to be one of my favorites. I love the style and fit, as does Liesl, which certainly helps things. Of course, having sewn it so many times, I wanted to see if I could mix things up a bit. I vaguely remembered seeing a version with ruffles and decided to try one myself.

The fabrics are a new line by Alexander Henry and actually weren’t the first choice. Initially, I’d pulled the same fabrics in a colorway that’s more “me” (aquas and pinks) but decided to go with more Fall colors instead. I can’ really explain why I did it but looking at the dress tells me I was right to make the switch (although I’ll probably grab some of the other fabrics to use for another outfit).

The bodice is lined and I skipped the neckline binding, instead adding a 1/4″ seam allowance and sewing the lining and exterior together. I understitched the lining to the seam allowance so no topstitching shows on the neckline.

I again skipped the binding on the hem and sleeve edges, replacing it with ruffles. Oh, how I love those ruffles! They were worth all the math and measuring to figure them out. The ruffles are finished with a rolled hem, which I’m only meh about: I didn’t have any brown Wooly Nylon on hand so just used regular serger thread and it doesn’t have the fullness I wanted. Not really a big deal and I doubt the majority of people will even notice so I’ll just keep quiet and live with it.

The obi is probably my favorite. I was on the fence about which fabric to use and Sarah suggested I make it reversible. Brilliant! Liesl asked to wear the apples today but the reverse is the same yellow fabric used on the ruffles. Overall, I think it’s one of the tamer Kyokos I’ve made but, oh, how pretty it is!

By the way, I’m teaching a Kyoko class (which will include tips for modifying the pattern like I did) on Oct. 9.

Is It Fall Yet?

It’s nearly 100 degrees outside this week and, like any sane person, I’m sewing fall clothing. What else am I supposed to do? Honestly, the little miss has more than enough for this summer; I may as well get a jump on next season, especially if I want to sew most of her wardrobe.

This little number is a pattern by Burda. (I’m too lazy to walk downstairs to retrieve the pattern envelope, and I’m not finding it on either the Burda site or If someone is really interested, comment me and I’ll dig it up.) It only goes up to a size 92 and I was a little worried that it would be too small. Nope. it’s probably closer to a 98. Yay!

The floral woven cotton is from Joann’s. I don’t recall ever seeing it before the day I picked it up off the clearance shelf and bought the last of what was on the bolt (pretty much everything you see here). I broke my own rule in buying it, since I had no idea what I was going to sew with it.

The raspberry baby wale corduroy was another bargain, bought toward the end of the winter at a fabric warehouse near my house. They have a rotating stock and you never know what you’ll find. Most of it is home dec but occasionally I find some great basics, like this cord. And for $1.99 a yard, there was no way I could pass it up.

Both the dress and jumper have zippered backs. I still need to do a little hand sewing on both to tack down facings and what not, but since she won’t be able to wear these until maybe November, I’ve got a little time.

Fun With Park Slope

We’re at it again! Our Trendy Textiles design team is doing another launch, this one on our “home base” (Etsy). We’re up to 24 listings with more being added every day.

My contribution for this launch is probably my current favorite outfit. I love fall; it’s my favorite season. And sewing fall clothes is tons of fun for me. Of course, we are a long way from fall weather here in the South but that doesn’t keep me from thinking about it. LOL!

I’m debuting a new top style with this set, The Tara Jumper top. This one uses a lovely brown babywale cord with that gorgeous orange fabric. The gauchos have an elastic waist and mostly straight legs, with a nice, big pocket on the outside of the right leg. There’s a touch of cluny lace on both pieces (the jumper hem and pants cuffs). I think I’m going to have to draft a pair of pants like this for me, complete with lace. They’d be so fun with a pair of boots or even tights and mary janes.