Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Back to School with Bee Quilted Beauties: CKC Day 2

Today, we're continuing on our BTS Series with the adorable Create Kids Couture outfit.  We last talked about the Clarissa's Belted Pants, today let's talk about Sabrina's Ruffled Top.

This was a really easy and quick top to put together, but the details really give it the "wow" factor.  

The shirring at the waist really gives this top a polished, "big girl" look, which is great for kids who are going off to school and might be starting to get a little reluctant about wearing clothes that Mom has made them.

The back has a knot where the straps feed through the bodice.  This top will be adorable with a t-shirt (short or long sleeve, depending on the weather) underneath to keep it within dress code standards.  When my kids were in school, my daughter had many tops with straps like this and she had a collection of solid color t-shirts to wear under them on school days.  On the weekends, we just left the t-shirt out. 

This pattern also has the measurements to make it into a dress, which might be a better option for some girls.  My girl is a "frilly tomboy", so tops and pants work a little better with her for everyday wear.

Up next, we will be finishing up the CKC outfit with Adele's Ruffled Jacket.  

~Princess Bee~

Sunday, July 27, 2014

Back to School with Bee Quilted Beauties, CKC Day 1

It's that time of year again, time to start planning for Back to School!!!  I'm putting together some of my favorite PDF patterns for BTS sewing to share with you.

We're starting off with a three piece outfit from Create Kids Couture, which I made out of the Woodwinked line from Dear Stella, available now in our shop: Bee Quilted Beauties

Clarissa's Belted Pants are great for BTS sewing, they're easy to sew and the ruched hemline is great for older girls who are outgrowing the ruffled pants, like my daughter is doing to me.  She's 7 going on 17, I swear!!!

These pants have an elastic waistband for easy wear and also easy fitting.  The amount of elastic you use can easily be shortened or lengthened for size.

They do have a wider leg width on them, which my daughter really likes.

Overall, these pants took me maybe 2 hours from start to finish and they can easily become a wardrobe staple for your little girl.  Make them up in a solid and they can be mixed and matched with lots of different tops, or make a few different tops from the same fabric line to increase the versatility of them.

On mine, I picked up a really cute burlap flower from my friends at 2 Shabby Chics and attached a safety pin to the back of it.  I pinned it to the side of her left pant leg for a cute little touch.

Later this week, I'll be giving my reviews of the top and jacket that were made to match!

Monday, July 14, 2014

Molly & Me Monday: Time for Bed!

This week, Molly & Layna got some cute new jammies!!!  My little girl is growing like a weed and has almost outgrown all of her current pajamas, so it was time to make some new ones!  I mixed pieces from a couple different patterns I already own to put these together.  The fabric is some Art Gallery that we picked up at Quilt Market last fall.  I still had a few one-yard pieces and it made such a pretty pajama set!  Plus, the Art Gallery fabrics are so soft, they really are perfect for lounging around in.

For the top, I used the Ellie Inspired Dreamy Girl pattern.  I love this one because I have both the girls and the doll sizes.  I didn't add the strip for elastic on the top because I added a touch of embroidery.

The shorts are from Made For Mermaids.  I've used the Lucy pattern before and it's a really quick and easy pattern.  For Molly's shorts, I used a doll shorts pattern I already had and I cut the hemline of them to match the pattern piece from Lucy's shorts.

As I was finishing up this morning, I saw that Urban Threads had a new freebie today that was perfect for these jammies!!!  This design is free through July 27, 2014.

Watch the blog in the next few weeks for some great Molly & Me Back to School Fashions!

~Princess Bee~

Saturday, July 12, 2014

Business Owning Beauties: Sew Stinkin' Cute

I love small businesses!!!  And selling fabric, we get to meet a lot of small business owners, generally ones who sell clothing.  Today, we chatted with April Smith of Sew Stinkin' Cute.  Here's what she had to say about her life as a WAHM.

Let's start with a little introduction to who you are, your family, your boutique name, etc.
My name is April Smith and I'm the owner of Sew Stinkin' Cute. I have an amazing husband Tim and two precious boys Stephen 17 and Elijah 3.

What was the inspiration for you to start your boutique?
Elijah was born with a Lymphatic Malformation and to date has had 14 surgeries. When he was very small a friend sent me a message with Psalm 139. I printed that and it hung above Elijah's bed for a year and a half and every night when i laid him down I would recite that scripture over him. He is the inspiration behind me starting Sew Stinkin' Cute.

What has been the biggest challenge you've faced since starting a business?
Trying to balance being a wife, mom and business owner. Trying to find the key to make it all work harmoniously.

What is your favorite thing about being a business owner?
My favorite thing about being a business owner is being able to be home with my boys. I also love the friendships that have blossomed from getting to know my customers and other ladies in the boutique business.

Do you have a favorite item that you are currently selling? 
This spring the Butterfly dress by Tie Dye Diva in the fabulous Kumari Garden fabric was my hottest seller!

What is in store for the future of your boutique?  Where would you like to see yourself in 5 years?  10 years?
I absolutely love what i do and would love to see the boutique grow but not too big. LOL! I love the smallness of it and the warmth and friendships we have being a small business!

Here are a few more of the "Sew Stinkin' Cute" items that April has made.  What a talented seamstress!  We wish her many years of success in business!

Would you like to be featured as a Business Owning Beauty?  Visit our facebook group, Bee Quilted Beauties for details!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Fairy Mini-Backpack

Adding wings to a child's backpack is a fun way to add a little whimsy to their day!  What little girl wouldn't love to play pretend on their way home from school?  It's easy to make this little addition while making a new backpack for your child this year!

I used a free toddler backpack tutorial for this one, but this project can be done with just about any backpack pattern.

The tutorial I used can be found by clicking here.  For the most part, you will be following her instructions.  I just made a few little changes here and there.

The first thing I changed was adding a hanging loop between the straps on the back.  I cut a piece of fabric 3" x 8" for this piece.  To make the loop, fold and iron along the long edge (making it 1.5" x 8").  Open this up and fold both sides in towards the crease down the middle.  Iron again and then fold along your original crease and press one more time.  Stitch down both sides 1/8" from the edges.  When you get to the step where you're placing the straps on, pin the loop on first in the middle, then position the straps to the side of the loop.

The other change I made was adding the wings!  You can buy the design that I used at Urban Threads.  This change was a little more complicated than adding a loop to the top.  I stitched out my wings on stiff felt (I bought mine at Hobby Lobby).  I'm spoiled and have an embroidery machine that will cut my wings out for me, but it's really not that hard to cut them out by hand.  Make sure that you also cut a piece for the back, that way the back side of the stitches are covered.  Glue those two pieces together with the hot glue gun.  After sewing the side strip to the front of the backpack, you'll need to attach the wings.  Make sure they're centered and even.  I added a bit of hot glue to hold them in place while I was sewing them on.  

Be careful when sewing them so you don't catch the other parts of the bag!  I sewed a quick little V shape, following the lines of the embroidery.

You can see my stitches in this picture here.  Now, continue on with the tutorial, just making sure that when you attach the back piece of the backpack to the side strip that you make sure you tuck your wings into the bag and they don't get caught in your sewing.  

One other change I made to her tutorial was that I did serge all of my seams.  She says that it's not necessary because we're using iron-on interfacing, but I like a nice finished seam.  Besides, a serged seam just adds a little more stability to your seams.  When dealing with children, more stability is ALWAYS a good thing!  

Now all you need to do is find a child to attach the backpack to and let them fly!!!  

**If you have a boy who won't be so crazy about fairy wings, you can follow these same steps with dragon wings instead of fairy wings!  How cool would a dragon backpack be???**

Tuesday, July 8, 2014

Quilters Cotton: Not Just for Quilts!

We all use it on most of our sewing projects, we all love the many options that it offers, for many it's the first thing we have ever sewn with.  I'm talking about Quilting Cotton.  It's so easy to work with and what many of the wonderful PDF patterns are written for.  But just how versatile is this wonderful fabric that we all love?  Here are a few projects that we at BQB have made from various quilting cottons that we carry.

Those are all cute and such, but where's the versatility in those outfits?  Well, Mom did make a matching bag out of cotton for this one:

And she also made me a really cool boho style bag last year, which was mistaken at a high end fabric store for a designer bag (I can't remember the name of the designer).

But what about things that other people have made from quilting cotton?  I've seen countless tutorials for book covers made from cotton and will be making some binder covers with my kids before our school year starts.  We're using the PDF tutorial from Gingercake for them.  I'll be sure to share them when we're done!

There are tons of backpack patterns available that use quilting cotton, too.  And with a little bit of imagination, those backpacks can be made into some really neat creations!  I'm working on something this week that will hopefully turn out to be a pretty awesome backpack creation!

But what if I told you that quilting cottons could be used in elaborate costumes?  Not just Halloween costumes (though it's great for that too), but for really over the top gowns and such.  Have you seen the movie Mirror Mirror about Snow White?  Really good movie, I highly recommend it!  Look at these costumes from one of the scenes in the movie.  Would you believe that they're made from quilting cotton???

I attended a "Costuming on a Budget" panel in 2012 at DragonCon in Atlanta, GA.  One of the speakers of the panel talked about how amazing quilters cotton is for costumes and she talked about how the costume designers for Mirror Mirror used quilters cottons on the costumes for the wedding scene.  They helped create those over the top looks without all the work of adding the details on a blank fabric.  The dress pictured above was fussy-cut so that the large flowers were on the shoulders and also in just the right place on the bodice and skirt of the dress. 

The wonderful woman who was speaking at that panel was wearing a beautiful corset with a steampunk mermaid on the front of it.  Luckily, I was able to find a picture of her in the costume on her blog, since I didn't get a picture at DragonCon.  You can check out her blog, Confessions of a Craft Addict, where she talks about all sorts of crafty goodness!  Here is the picture from her blog of her beautiful costume: 

And guess what.  Her corset is made out of quilters cotton.  Pretty cool!  I'm actually working on a corset right now out of some quilters cotton that I bought a couple years ago.  I can't wait to see it come together!  

There are so many ways that quilters cotton can be used in our sewing!  I really do think that it's one of the most versatile fabrics out there.  Now what are you waiting for?  Get to creating!!!

~Princess Bee