customizing the class picnic blouse: spaghetti straps top

Today we are happy to welcome back Cindy. On her previous visits she has shown us a way to customize the 2+2 Blouse and about a year ago her family hosted Flat S. Now she’s going to share a newly created project she made using the Class Picnic Blouse. Take it away Cindy.


Customized Oliver + S Class Picnic Blouse


Recently, I sewed a pair of hot pink ruffle shorts using the Class Picnic pattern. BK didn’t have any sleeveless tops to wear with the shorts so I decided to customize the Class Picnic Blouse and make a top with spaghetti straps like the Swingset Tunic.


Customized Oliver + S Class Picnic Blouse


The first step you’ll need to do before cutting into your fabric is redraw the armhole so it isn’t too wide and low.

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my favorite oliver + s pattern: ashley and emily from frances suzanne

Ashley and Emily from Frances Suzanne are back visiting today. They are two sisters who sew for their youngest sister’s three daughters. Last time they were here they talked about customizing the Croquet Dress. Today it’s all about one of their favorite patterns.

Hello, Oliver + S avid fans, supporters, and sewists alike! When we were asked to share our favorite Oliver + S pattern, brainstorming commenced, and a list was made. But, how in the world could we pick just one? So, we visited our Oliver + S gallery to see what “jumped out” to us as a favorite.

We tend to overanalyze in situations like this, and discovered some interesting things about our love of Oliver + S patterns! We were introduced to Oliver + S patterns three years ago while visiting our Jedi Master, and completely fell in love with them! It wasn’t until several months later that we sewed our first one, a Class Picnic Blouse. Currently, we own 32 patterns (excluding Little Things to Sew), and have sewn 29 of them in some shape, form, or fashion in the past two years. Now, to get those others from our pattern stash sewn.

In the end, our indecisive selves decided on…drum roll please…the Puppet Show Dress, Tunic, and Shorts.


Oliver + S Puppet Show Dress

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introducing the named patterns fall-winter 2014 collection

Laura and Saara of Named Patterns have been very busy of late, and we’re happy to be able to share the results of their work with you.

Their new collection for Fall-Winter 2014, Ritual, is now out, and we’re excited to have ten new styles from the line available as digital patterns.


Magena fringe jumper


The collection was inspired by the Native American peoples: their culture, clothing, and myths. The simple structures and shapes, earthy materials, and interesting cuts combined with generous embellishment triggered Laura’s and Saara’s interest in researching Native American clothing which in turn led to the creation of this collection.

The team has produced an amazing inspirational look-book for the line that’s available by clicking through the see the full post.

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tidal lace (and a giveaway!)

Today we welcome Kim Andersson who is going to tell us a bit about her first fabric collection Tidal Lace. Be sure to follow the Tidal Lace Blog Hop that they are doing in September starting at Windham Fabrics. Please note that the fabrics will not be out in the shops until January 2015. Kim is even hosting a generous give-away of her fabrics! Read on for details. Here’s Kim.

I’m very excited to introduce you to my first fabric collection for Windham Fabrics, TIDAL LACE! I also can’t wait to show you the gorgeous clothes that we made for the look book using Oliver + S patterns.


Tidal Lace fabric collection by Kim Andersson
Credit: Tidal Lace Fat Quarters.


With thoughts of Summer’s past and present the inspiration for the TIDAL LACE collection comes from two very different experiences in my life.

The first experience comes from my Grandmother’s ballet shop, where as a child I would play with the many lengths of trim and lace for hours and hours, immersed in their pattern and detail.

The second inspiration, to use tide pools in my collection, came from a family trip that we took to a lovely coastal town. Waking up early for the low tide and still quite sleepy, we were greeted by the wonder of the tide pools. We spent a wonderful morning with friends and family looking from pool to pool to see what we could spy–0ne person pointing out what another might have otherwise missed.

TIDAL LACE, is my imagining of lace and the tide pools woven together, full of fascinating details and bursting with color and life.


Oliver + S Roller Skate Dress and Pinwheel Slipdress
Credits: Girl on left wears Roller Skate Dress, Girl on right wears Pinwheel Slip Dress. Sewn by Danielle Collins. Photo by Danielle Collins.

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five tips for bras: the foundation for a good fit

Hello, friends! I’m writing to you from Barcelona, where we’re spending the month of August. We really look forward to exploring new places, seeing all the sites, trying new foods, and having new experiences. We haven’t been back to Barcelona since S was a baby, and it’s really interesting to see the city from a different perspective now that she’s a little older. Last time we were here it was difficult to take her to the beach because she tried to eat the sand (she was nine months old); now she just loves the beach. If you’d like to follow along with our adventures we’re posting lots of photos to Instagram (on both my personal account and on the Oliver + S account), so please come with us!




In between adventures, I’m finishing up all the fall patterns we’ll be releasing soon. And we’re conducting two photo shoots this month, so it’s still busy, busy!

But in the meantime, let’s talk about bras, shall we?

I know. We all love to shop for underpinnings. I loathed and dreaded it until two years ago when I forced myself to walk into my local lingerie boutique and was fitted for a bra by a real expert. It was a life-changing experience! I’m not talking about Victoria’s Secret here–I mean a really good fitting where after your measurements are taken a specialist works with you to find the right bras for your shape, lifestyle, and preferences. I learned so much about how a bra should fit, how to adjust the straps, where the band should sit, and even how to put it on when I get dressed.

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