Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Classic Green and Princess Seam

This post is sponsored by eShakti

Have you heard of eShakti? Well, if you haven't, you are missing out. They are a women's clothing company, online, and they specialize in customization's. You want a certain sleeve, neckline, or length? They do that. They also will do custom sizing.

Dress: eShatki, Belt: Target, Shoes: Just Fab
I chose this green dress. Green is one of my favorite colors, so it naturally appealed to me. I also have been wanting a drop waist dress, but haven't had the time to make on myself. This dress was already drop waist, and it has the slimming princess seam bodice. Which I need right now.

When I ordered the dress, I kept the set in cap sleeve, but I now wish I had chosen a regular cap sleeve or short length sleeve. I did have the skirt shortened, though. Good choice on my part. I'm a shorty! I made one big mistake though. I chose the dress size I was at the time of ordering, instead of my natural size. Since I dropped some baby weight pretty quickly, the dress was a bit too big when it arrived. My fault, not the company's. I also failed to remember that the dress is a knit, and it would stretch if I chose a smaller size. My bad. Good thing I can alter it.

Here are some of my favorites from their Fall collection,
I love this dress! I love chiffon, and I love the print.

I've been eyeballing this bomber jacket. The floral print just rocks!
And this tiered tulle Betsy skirt! To die for!
Lest not forget about this retro inspired, classic beauty V-neck dress. I think I need a new Fall wardrobe.

All in all, I am very happy with this dress. I am very happy with this company, they were very easy to work with. And lucky for you, eShakti is offering Lil' Bit and Nan readers 10% off, when you shop with eShakti. Just enter code: lilbitandnan in the promotional box at check out. This code is valid from 9/15/2014 to 10/15/2014

Please note:
Code has to be entered in the ‘promotional code’ box.   It is not case-sensitive.  
Code can be used any number of times until the validity period. 
It can be clubbed with any other promotional offer, gift coupon or gift card in the same order unless explicitly specified otherwise in the offer conditions.
This discount code is not applicable on clearance / sale, gift cards & overstock categories.
Not applicable on previous purchases.

Monday, September 8, 2014

Coral Refashion and Baby's Debut

I bought a dress from Old Navy, recently. It was on clearance for $15. It had an asymmetrical closing top, perfect for breastfeeding. Except, the style of dress was not my favorite. It needed a makeover. 

don't mind the clutter....

As you can see, this dress was maxi length, which I have enough of, and it lacked sleeves, which I need. The dress also had a side slit(not a fan) and the asymmetrical closing was very open. I will do anything in my power to keep from layering. I cannot stand layering. 

So what I did was cut the dress where the slit starts, took the remnants to make a flange sleeve, and stitched a plastic snap to keep the top closed, but am able to snap open for feedings.

Now, you can see that this dress became more convenient for me.

These pictures are as good as they are going to get. We were in a rush this morning, the lighting outside is terrible, the background is terrible, and it's harder to find nice places to take pictures when a newborn needs you constantly.

This is Magnolia Ann. If you follow me on instagram, you would notice that I post pictures of her quite often. She is my world, and I am hers.

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

Post Pregnancy Dress

I found this fabric at The Fabric Store, in L.A., during their grand opening. I was a guest of Justine from
Sew Country Chick.

It was truly love at first sight. I held on to it, not knowing what to make with it, but knew it had to become something comfortable and wearable. And then I found out I was pregnant. I did not want to make anything Maternity out of it, so I focused on post maternity and the essentials I would need in order to get some wear out of it. I needed to be able to breastfeed in it and I needed it to be comfortable for my postpartum body shape. I self drafted the entire thing, which would explain a couple flaws that no one notices but me. I added the belt to give myself a waistline. 

With a new baby around, I'm finding less time to sew. I thought I would have more time. I remember, with my first, I had so much down time to sew and I couldn't figure out why I don't this time around. I had to weigh the differences. 

My first was such a good sleeper, she was formula fed, and we lived at my Dad's, so less home responsibility. This time around, the new baby fights how tired she is, is pretty much attached to my chest, and I also have an older child to take care of, and a home to maintain. I am so busy and so tired. I have so many half done projects, just waiting for me to finish them. But, they can wait until bed time. I want to enjoy my baby and little girl, for they are both already growing too fast. This time goes by so quickly, I need to cherish it while I have it.

But, what do you think of this print? Isn't just gorgeous?!? I want more of it. 
I made the neckline split, it's hard to tell because of the print. But, I can open it to feed. Very convenient. 

I made it maxi length, but I am considering making it midi length, for a more retro feel. We shall see.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Sewing Blog Hop - Muumuu Re-fashion

Andrea, from Andrea's Notebook, is hosting a sewing blog hop. This months hop is refashion. I chose my muumuu. read on.

While I was at my biggest in my pregnancy, I decided to hunt down a muumuu, to be comfortable. I found one while in a local thrift shop. And, let me tell you, during the hot month of June, 8 months pregnant, it was very comfortable to wear. 

Well, I'm not pregnant anymore(I'll post about baby later). But I love this muumuu. Obviously I was planning on refashioning it. I was able to make two garments out of it. I only have one of them to share today. 

So what I did is just cut it at the knee, and made a knee length dress out of it. Easy peasy. The other garment I made with the rest of the length are culottes, but I need to fix the waist. 

This dress is still comfy, especially since the months are still hot.

I like how it still flares at the bottom. I kept the integrity of the shape. I'm glad I did.

The tulip sleeves are super cute too.

Refashion blog hop
  1. Vintage pillowcase upcycle by Sew Country Chick
  2. Large tee to adorable dress by Peek-a-boo Pattern Shop
  3. Rit Dye upcycle by While Camden Sleeps
  4. 15 minute tank upcycle by Raegun Ramblings
  5. Men's shirt refashion by Made with Moxie
  6. Women's tank & tee to girl's tunic & leggings refashion by Andrea's Notebook
  7. 15 minute tee into bike shorts by Sew Like My Mom
  8. Fringe cardigan upcycle by Rebel and Malice
  9. Mu-muu refashion by Lil' Bit & Nan by Bethany

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Desert Rose Dress by Caila Murphy for Caila Made

Recently, I was selected to test a pattern for Caila Murphy, of Caila Made. Caila and I met a year ago at Fabric Weekend 2013. She is just great, and so talented. I loved getting to know her. She created a dress/tunic pattern for girls, called the Desert Rose. It is so cute! When Caila asked for pattern testers, I jumped on it right away. I am so glad she picked me to test and review. 

I made two versions of the dress. One version is a solid bodice front with a ruffle and button decoration. The other version is the two piece bodice front, without a ruffle, and a functioning button. 

My first version was a practice version for fit purposes, since my daughter is thin and long. I am always having to readjust patterns to fit her. So, I didn't follow the instructions completely - more like a mock up.

For the second version, I followed the instructions, and it turned out great! I love this dress, I love the fabric I used, and I love the little girl that I made this dress for.

I totally recommend this adorable pattern. There are so many options to do with this pattern to make it versatile. I found the instructions to be easy to follow and was able to whip up my second version real quick.
You can find the release here
and you can purchase the pattern here 

I plan on making my little one a tunic next, and I plan on making my new little one a baby desert rose dress.

Congratulations Caila, on your first pattern release!

Monday, July 7, 2014

Ariel Inspired Tankini

Every year Lil' Miss wants a Little Mermaid swimsuit, and she has always had one. This year, she grew out of her latest one, and shopping for the "right" Ariel swimsuit just wasn't on the agenda with how slow I've been moving lately. I remembered I had a vintage tankini pattern in a size 3, and some fish scale Halloween fabric. All we needed was some purple swim fabric. Found that quickly at Joann's, in the 50% off remnants. They had just enough! But, was I getting in over my head, making a swimsuit? I've never made one before. But, I knew I needed to learn. Better to teach myself on something for Lil' Miss, rather than myself or a client. Kids don't care about the mess up's. I got off to a rough start, thinking I could sew these fabrics using a ball point needle. Nope. I was screwing up all over the place. It was a terrible mess.

I decided to go to a sewing group I am a part of, and asked their opinion. I was told to get a stretch needle or a microtex needle. I rushed to Joann's, they were completely out of stretch needles, but they did happen to have a microtex one. Which they should - considering some of the crazy Halloween fabrics they carry. 
What a difference that needle made. I could not believe how smooth the rest of the sewing went. 

The vintage pattern, dating 1976, was super easy to follow. But, the top happened to be too big and the bottoms too small. I altered the bottoms, and just tied the top around twice. Fits just fine now. Lil' Miss loves her new suit, and wants to wear it all the time. A direct quote: "I always wanted an Ariel swimsuit like this. It's my favorite! Thanks mom, for making it for me." Ahh, sweet and polite. 

Literally has been wearing it every time we go swimming. She doesn't want to model it for me, so this is the best picture I got. 

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Desert Lime Maternity Dress

I had this dress all finished and ready to wear to meet up with the local CA sewists in L.A., one in particular being Erin, author and seamstress for Miss Crayola Creepy. If you don't know her, you should. I love her! Genuine, classy, generous, down to Earth, and gorgeous are just a few words to describe how amazing she is.

I wanted to have a dress to wear to this gathering, and I needed it to fit, be loose, light weight, and comfy for my ever growing baby belly. I remembered I had some lime rayon I ordered from Fabric.com last Summer. and I had left over Southwestern print rayon from the Vera Aveline dress I made recently. I decided to pair the two, and also Frankenstein a couple patterns together to make it work for me. I had a maternity pattern that Sabra, of Sew a Straight Line, had sent me. I used the dress part, but instead of gathering it, I did a pleat detail in the center front and back. And I also had a pattern by Simplicity 1620, I only used the shoulder yoke of that so I wouldn't have to use a zipper or feel restricted. I am so pleased with this dress, and I look forward to even wearing it postpartum.

I am now 35 weeks. I am tired. I have had a false labor trip to the hospital already, and I hope it doesn't happen again, until it's for real. I still have things I want to sew, but we will see if anything gets finished. I also have a dress I finished, weeks ago, that I haven't even done pictures in yet. Sheesh. I'm behind. Oh well. 

Friday, May 9, 2014

Body Issues

Comparison is the thief of joy. — Theodore Roosevelt

I know. This is not a lifestyle blog. Nor do I want it to be. But, today, I am going to discuss with you about body issues. Since this is an apparel sewing blog, that has to do with bodies 100%.

First of all, I am only 5' 1". I have heard from people that I look tall in my pictures. These comments made me happy, because I am obviously far from tall. My photographer is doing a great job at fooling you all. I have never been tall, and I will never be tall. I don't have any perspective on how it is to be tall. But, do I have moments where I wish I could have the long lean legs to pull off some fantastic pants, skirts, or dresses? Of course I do. We all wish something of that nature.

Second, I barely have a bust. Barely. It's quite sad and frustrating at times. Especially when it comes to bra or swimsuit shopping. Or even normal shopping. Not being able to fill out a top can feel very depressing. Even making my own clothing, and having to adjust the bust over and over again, and still struggle with the outcome of my creation.

All in all, my figure is a prepubescent frame. It's not awesome, and it's all I know. But this is who I am, and I cannot change my bone structure or how my bust grew. I suppose I could buy a new bust, but it's not a priority of mine.

The point of this post is that every woman struggles with her body type, no matter what she looks like. It's nature I suppose. We do it to ourselves. We allow society to do it to us. We allow others to do it to us. I allowed so many people to do it to me. Make me feel like my body was never good enough to them. I was teased relentlessly in school for being soooo skinny, flat chested, and short. I went home everyday and forced myself to eat whatever I could to try and gain weight. I was called bony, anorexic, bulimic, skinny B word, among other terrible names. I would literally cry myself to sleep.

For some strange reason, people feel like they have to make body comments to others. Well, my body is not my identity. And your body is not your identity. People, to this day, still comment on my figure. I'm not always sure how to feel about it or how to take it, because all I can think about is the mean comments the kids at school would say to me. Do these adults think the same thing? That I must be an anorexic skinny B word? That's not who I am. Yes, my body may be the size of an 11 year old, but the grass is not greener on this side of the fence. Trust me. Who in the heck would want their body compared to a child's? Not me. As women, we all want to look and feel like a woman. I have always felt that I look like a little boy. Not how I want to feel about myself.

Ladies, don't beat yourself up over your body. Ever. Don't allow others to make you feel less than perfect. Breaking News: None of us have perfect bodies. None of us. And that is okay. Do yourselves a favor, and never compare yourself to another.

I can go on and on about the things I don't like about myself, and compare myself to others. But that doesn't sound like any fun. So, I refrain from doing so.

I know what types of clothes flatter my figure, and what doesn't. I'll stick to that. I'll stick to what makes me feel good about myself. We all should try harder to feel good about ourselves.

As for now, my priorities are my health and my family. Our health is way more important than what our body looks like. Skinny does not equal healthy. The inside matters more than the outside. Embrace your womanhood and love who you are.

Monday, May 5, 2014

Vera Aveline by Maddie Flanigan

Happy Cinco de Mayo! And happy eight year wedding anniversary to my loving husband, who takes all my pictures. Today I am sharing with you the Vera Aveline by Maddie Flanigan. Maddie is an amazing designer and seamstress. Her blog is called Madalynne. If you haven't checked her out yet, do so now! We all can learn so much from her expertise. I first connected with Maddie just a couple years ago. I ADORE her. I wish I could know her in person. I wish I could make her the little sister I never had. Yes, Maddie, I would steal you away if I could.
Vera Aveline blog post 01 Make Your Own Vera Aveline

Anyways, recently she posted a tutorial on her latest design, called Vera Aveline. A Summery, strappy, box maxi dress. I tested the tutorial, and I love her design. I only had to make changes for my measurements, and it worked out perfectly. It's a great dress to wear as the months get warmer, but could also be paired with a cute cardi or jacket. For me being in my third trimester, I was very comfy in this dress. The design is just what my uncomfortable body needed. Point is, you can be stylish AND comfy.

These days, I am HOT(in temps, of course). This was a quick, easy dress to make and just put right on. I belted it under the bust to define the baby bump more. 

I'm also feeling very massive as of late, so anything with room to spare is a must wear.

I chose a fun tribal like trim to go with my Navajo print fabric. It brought a pop of color and I feel complimented it nicely. 

I love this dress, and I plan on wearing it often. Even the Lil' Miss wants one in her size. Totally doable. Head on over to Madalynne now and make the Vera Aveline! Summer is almost here.

A huge thanks to Maddie, for thinking of me to test her tutorial. XOXO!

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Sew For Victory: Maternity Pinafore

I FINALLY finished my Sew For Victory sew along, hosted by Rochelle of Lucky Lucille. Sad thing is, it is such an easy pattern, I didn't even need the instructions. You think I would have finished it sooner, but no. I took my sweet pregnant self time. 

This is the 1940's Simplicity Pattern I used. I couldn't decide between the fabrics, but I ended up with the lightweight floral. The gingham was just too heavy for this heat wave we are having. 

This pinafore is comfortable, but no matter what I put on, I am uncomfortable. However, I know it will come in handy as it gets hotter, and post pregnancy.

I love how the ruffles go from the front to back.

And this vintage fabric is just gorgeous! Not to mention, so soft. 

 And pockets!!! My favorite!!!

We did the photos in front of our front door, because it was way too sunny everywhere else. Lil' Miss took this last photo. For a 4 year old, I think she did a great job!