Saturday, March 28, 2015

Weekly Wound Up


Now that Spring is officially here, we can finally start removing all the layers and break out the bright colors!  I love the fresh looks of spring, and having Easter a little early this year seems to be helping that along. We enjoy seeing all of your Easter outfits popping up in our patterns group -- it's hard to believe we only have one week left to go! We have some fun new spring/summer releases and sales for you this week, so let's take a look. 

New Releases


Ramona's Retro Jumper is the perfect new retro pattern for Spring!  It features a ruffle front, flutter straps that can be tied multiple ways, a fitted waist, and of course the amazing split bell bottoms!  They even have an optional panel on the bell bottoms where you can use fabric or lace, creating an all-around stunning look for your little girl!  



This week we released four new baby patterns!  If you love bubble skirts and knot tops, Baby Darcie's Apron Bubble Knot Top is perfect for you! Then Baby Merideth's Center Ruffle Peasant Dress and Top is a sweet and simple top and dress that features an adorable ruffle down the center. Baby Viola's Ruffled Top and Sundress is so perfect for summer on its own, or paired with a cardigan for the cooler months!  And finally, Baby Faith's is a sun dress that features a comfy shirred bodice that will grow with your baby. 




 Donna's Knit Dolman Top is now available in girl sizes! Your sweetie will want to practically live in this top because it is so comfy! Just like the women and tween version, you can make Donna's even more trendy with its optional color-blocked front or back V! Donna's is sure to be a staple in your house, so be sure to pick it up today while it's still 30% off!!

On the Blog



This week on the blog we demonstrated how you can gather or faux shirr using 1/4" elastic sewn directly to the fabric! This method has a lot of uses and we'll show you how with our step-by-step photos AND a video!



New today on the blog, we have a free pattern to sew a child's hospital gown! Whether it's for your own child or to donate to a local children's hospital, you will be very happy with the features of this gown and the easy-to-follow instructions! You can download it now or pin for later! It's a great way to make their hospital stay a little more fun. 

Announcements


You have just a few days left to purchase March's Monthly Mixup! This Monthly Mixup is all about pretty Spring designs that aren't very difficult to sew. Jenna's, Felicity's, Julia's, Lola's, Magnolia's, and Lindsey's normally go for $44, but if you buy this mixup they are just $18! That's a savings of 60%! Your little girl will love having this variety of outfits! 

Weekend Sale



 Mindy's Sweetheart Maxi and Sundress pattern is on sale for 50% off all weekend long! Your daughter will love twirling around like a princess in this unique maxi dress. Mindy's features a sweetheart neckline, ruffled tiers, and straps that loop through buttonholes in back. You can tie the straps in different ways to get the look you really want, and you can even make it in sundress length. Be sure to grab Mindy's pattern this weekend while it's half off! 


Also on sale this weekend, we have Erika's Ethereal Quilt Top pattern!  Erika's unique ruched ruffle stripwork design makes this quilt top simply stunning. You can make it either with all one fabric or you can mix it up with lots of fun prints for the perfect bedroom.  Erika's includes instructions for six sizes: crib, throw, twin, full, queen, and king!  Even if you've never made a quilt before, you will be fine. You just need to know how to sew a straight line and gather. Here's your chance to try out a gorgeous new quilt pattern for 50% off!  That's only $4 total and you will be making a one-of-a-kind blanket in no time. 


This wraps up our Weekly Wound Up! We hope you have a fun weekend full of sunshine and sewing.

Let's Create! ~ Kristen 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Free Pattern: Child's Hospital Gown

We have an extra special free pattern to share with you today! It is a feel-good sew that is so needed!   This idea came to me months ago when we were having our virtual fair contest to donate items to a children's hospital.When all of the entries came in the mail, I had an extra large box full of donation items from one of our testers, Jeannie Olson. Inside the box she had included several hospital gowns, g-tube pads, and handmade blankets to donate for children at the hospital. I was so touched! I later learned that Jeannie uses her own pattern for the hospital gowns, and now she has graciously agreed to share this pattern on our blog for everyone who can benefit from it!  



In a moment I will share the link to download Jeannie's pattern for free. It has all the instructions and pattern pieces included in a PDF pattern. But before that, I want to share with you one of Jeannie's main motivations for the love behind her work. 



This is Jeannie's little boy Paxten and you might recognize him from our website!  He's a handsome little guy modeling his polo that Jeannie made for him. What you don't know from the picture though, is that Paxten has some health struggles and spends quite a bit of time in the hospital.


  He is so brave! For each of Paxten's long visits at the hospital, his mom tries to make him a new gown for every day he will be there, to make it special.  Here are the latest:



Isn't she amazing?!  Of course Jeannie feels like it's the least she can do for her little boy.


As hard as it is, I love this picture so much.  Boys need to play. <3


Over the years Jeannie has had a lot of experience with what does and doesn't work with hospital gowns, and that's why her pattern is so fabulous!  She recommends using plastic snaps on the shoulders, both for kids' comfort and so they can wear the gown into radiology (most of the time). The coverage of her gown style is fantastic in back too, with safe ties in the perfect places.  



This style is super cute and it even allows them to play a bit! 



Here is Paxten just a couple days ago, on his latest visit. He let Mom interrupt his Legos just long enough to get a picture for us. What a great kid!  


Are you ready to make some hospital gowns too?  I'm sure children at local hospitals would love to have donations from you in fun fabrics, and of course we never know when our own children or friends might benefit from this labor of love. The pattern pieces Jeannie provided for us come in five sizes:  12/18m, 3T, 4/5, 7/8, and 10/12.  We have tested each of these sizes to make sure they sew up easily and that the fit of each will be great. 

Note: If you need a size that is larger or smaller than this, you may be able to print the pattern pieces at a larger or smaller percentage. (We don't recommend that with most patterns, but for this style the fit does not need to be precise.) Keep in mind for small babies, though, that you would want to use snaps in place of the side ties. (This pattern was not designed for babies under 12m. Please use caution.) Here are a few photos from our testers: 






Now that we're all ready and excited, you can download the free pattern here:


 CKC Child's Hospital Gown


(Note: Because of the many pattern pieces, it may take a bit longer to download than our other free patterns.) 


I'm also excited to show you that coming soon is this adorable hospital outfit for your child's favorite doll or stuffed animal!  Jeannie provided this pattern for us as well and it will be available on the blog at a later date. It even comes with little scrubs and hospital booties! Keep an eye out for that pattern. 



Thank you again to Jeannie for her amazing example and willingness to share her pattern with all of us. We wish Paxten the best on his courageous journey! 

Let's Create! ~ Kristen 


Thursday, March 26, 2015

Using Elastic to Faux Shirr or Gather

Joy's Twirly Lace Dress is one of my favorites!  A specific detail I love about Joy's is the shirring on the sleeves. Many of our other CKC patterns use shirring as well, and it is definitely a good skill to learn.  Sometimes, however, we have people ask if there is any other way to gather the sleeve without shirring or making a casing.    



The answer is yes!  Occasionally I like to sew 1/4" elastic directly to the underside of a sleeve to gather it (no casing necessary), and it works great! Today I will show you how to use this method, both with a photo tutorial and with a video! This way of attaching elastic has several other uses too, of course, and by learning how to use it on the sleeves you'll be ready to branch out! Let's get started.



First you will want to follow the first few steps of your peasant top or dress pattern, by cutting out the pieces and sewing them at the arm curves until you get to the point that is shown in the photo above. Do NOT sew the sleeves/sides of the peasant together yet.


Lay one of the sleeves out flat, as shown above, and mark a line straight across the WRONG side of the sleeve where you want the gathering to be. (I measured down from the arm curve the amount indicated in the Joy's pattern for a 3/4 length sleeve.) Repeat this marking line on the second sleeve. 


Cut  your 1/4" wide elastic to the length that you want your sleeve to be gathered to when you're done. You could either measure the arm of the person you are making the dress for; or, I usually use the elastic length that the pattern tells me to use for the short sleeve casing. Cut two pieces of elastic so you have one for each sleeve. 

Notice in the photo above that the white elastic is much shorter than the yellow sewing line. In the next few steps we will be stretching the elastic to the length of the yellow line as we sew. Then when it is attached, the sleeve will be gathered to the size of the elastic! 



Before you sew, line up one end of the elastic with the edge of the sleeve where you drew the line. Sew a couple stitches and then backstitch to secure the edges together. 



Then as you begin sewing, stretch the elastic as you sew down the center of it, lining it up with the line you marked earlier. You may use a zigzag stitch or a straight stitch, depending on how you want it to look on the outside of your sleeve. I prefer straight stitch. Notice that I'm also using my left hand behind the foot, to help pull the fabric through the machine.  If you pull too hard on the elastic without helping in back, the feed dogs won't be able to feed the fabric and elastic through.  This isn't difficult at all but it does take two hands.  


Occasionally you will want to check and make sure you are stretching your elastic enough to have it reach all the way to the edge of your sleeve, as shown above.  You need the elastic to reach from one edge of the sleeve to the other, as evenly as possible when you are done sewing. Again, it is not difficult to do it, but it does take some switching around of your hands as you go. 


As you get to the end of the elastic, hold it in place at the edge with one finger and backstitch a couple times to secure it. 


When you are done, your elastic and sleeve will look like this!  Pretty neat, huh! Then you get to repeat with the second sleeve, which I'm always happy to do because it is so cool to see the end result. 


With your elastic sewn in place, you can continue on with the construction of the bodice/dress. 



Very pretty!  I made this patriotic Joy's for my niece to use for her Civil War project at school, and she's very happy with how it turned out.  Before using this method for gathering/shirring, you will want to make sure that the person you are sewing the dress for does not have a sensitivity to elastic because it will be touching their skin directly. My daughter has never had a problem with it, and it's a fairly common sewing technique. I bet you can think of other ways to use it now, right?  I certainly don't use it just for sleeves!  

If you'd like to see all of this tutorial in action, you can take a look at the video below where I sewed elastic to the second sleeve.  The video is also on our CKC YouTube channel, so you can come back and watch it at any time. 



https://youtu.be/5rGavDgG5Ag


 Now it's your turn to go try it out with your favorite patterns! 

Let's Create! ~ Kristen 


Saturday, March 21, 2015

Weekly Wound Up



It's a big weekend here at CKC! Have you been counting down the days to our site-wide sale?  Well in case you missed the news on our special CKC Calendar, we're having a big celebration for Charlotte's birthday! Plus, we kicked it off yesterday with a couple full size FREE patterns! Be sure to check out all the details in our Weekly Wound Up today. But first things first; let's take a look at our new releases! 

New Releases



We have a SUPER new dog pattern available- Toby's Hooded T-shirt! This casual pullover top is made of all knit is the perfect outfit for year round use. It even comes with a stylish yet functional pocket on the back that allows you to store a couple treats during long walks! Your furry friend is sure to appreciate the hood during chilly, windy days, and the cuteness of this doggie hoodie is sure to make heads turn!



It's time to celebrate the much-anticipated release of the all-new Pandora's Pleated Collar Dress for women! Featuring a darted bodice for a flattering fit and a cute bubble hemline, this amazing dress is perfect for all occasions! With a convenient side seam pocket option, this one was designed for comfort, function AND fashion! Bring on spring and summer with Pandora and make something fabulous for yourself!



We also have an awesome new dance wear set for you. Introducing Fantasia's Fringe Dance set! Just picture your sweetie dancing her heart out with the movement of the fringe following her every move! Fantasia's pattern is great for swimming suits also. Be sure to grab your copy for 30% off today!


On the Blog



Did you know that you can upcycle a cute character tee into trendy shorts, pants, or capris? It's easy! Nikki showed us how to do it on the blog this week and you can come learn too! 




Here's one of the big birthday surprises we mentioned earlier. We have two adorable new patterns at CKC: Kambria's Flutter Stripwork Dress and Kaya's Classic Cloche. Aren't they perfect together? And they are both completely FREE! Come on over and check them out on the blog, where you can download both patterns immediately for no cost. These are going to be your new favorite summer patterns!

Weekend Sale


And last, but definitely not least: What better way to celebrate a birthday than by going shopping?!  And when everything you want is 30% off, that's as good as it gets!  Charlotte (and her friend Natalie) have been the inspiration behind Create Kids Couture from the very beginning, so we knew you would want to get in on the celebration too.  Here's your chance to load up your carts and use the code "Charlotte" at checkout to get 30% off your entire order!  

Please note that the code is valid only our website and that tiered pricing will not be in effect during the sale. 

Our Birthday Bash sale will be going on all weekend long, so take your time and be sure to look through all our categories for patterns you will be wanting through spring and summer! 



Well, that's all for this Weekly Wound Up!  We want to wish you a happy Spring and a wonderful weekend ahead. 

Let's Create! ~ Kristen 

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Free Patterns: Kambria's Dress and Kaya's Cloche

This weekend we are celebrating a special little girl's birthday. Charlotte is turning 6! We are having a HUGE site-wide sale to celebrate, and you are all invited! How does 30% off everything sound? The sale begins at midnight on Friday night (3/20/15) and lasts all weekend long! So get your shopping carts ready and have some fun shopping! When the time comes, you will use the code "Charlotte" to get 30% off all patterns in your cart!  (Code is valid on our website only, and tiered pricing will not be in effect.) Happy Shopping! 

Charlotte, wearing Celeste's Party Dress

Not only that, but as a special gift to you, we have two completely new, entirely free patterns for you to enjoy!  Kambria's Flutter Stripwork Dress and Kaya's Crochet Cloche! You can download them here here on the blog today. Let's take a look: 



The dress is gorgeous on its own, and look at the adorable crochet cloche that completes the outfit!  As the designers at CKC, we have all worked on this project together and we've been SO excited to share it with you!   Let's take a closer look!




Kambria's Flutter Stripwork Dress has many of our favorite features, all put together into one pattern: Flutter sleeves, shirring for a perfect fit, a fun stripwork skirt, and of course -- ruffles! The pattern includes step-by-step photos and detailed instructions (just like all our patterns!), and measurements for sizes 6-12m up to 8.  Are you as excited as we are?!   








And then of course there's also Kaya's Classic Cloche!  You will absolutely love making this cloche and all its pretty details!  It's such a cute hat for all occasions, and if you don't yet know how to crochet, this is a great time to learn! We even have a blog post on crocheting for beginners, with a video that walks you through the basics! Kaya's Cloche is definitely for everyone and we bet you can't make just one! 





  
We can't wait to see what you make with these two gorgeous new patterns! Please share photos of your creations in our patterns group. Also, you can pin this blog post by hovering and clicking on any photo -- and be sure to share with your friends!

As one last reminder, don't forget our big "Charlotte" sale this weekend! We don't have these big site-wide sales very often, so be sure to stock up on all your favorites while you can.  

Let's Create! ~ Kristen