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Kate & Rose Pattern Review

My favorite pattern of 2013 was the Roza pattern so when Kati of Kate & Rose asked me to review her new pattern, of course I said “YES”!

For those unfamiliar with Kate & Rose, this is an independent pattern company based in New York that specializes in Hungarian embroidery motifs. Kati, who grew up in Hungary, is the mastermind behind the company and her desire is to preserve the beautiful handwork by inspiring new generations to embroider.

Her latest project is hot iron transfers. She sent me a package to try and I must say they are wonderful. I am a big fan of iron transfers and love trying new designers. Since I am impatient and don’t want to have to pull out my light box and trace designs when I am ready to sew iron transfers work well. Kati sells 4 different designs and the one I chose was Faraway Garden.

FarawayGardenCover_original

Each package comes with a 12″ x 18″ transfer sheet and instructions. Though the instructions recommend transferring to light fabric, my rebellious side kicked in so I chose to use dark red fabric. I had no issues with the image transferring and was able to iron the design twice with no problem. If I had used a light colored fabric I would be able to transfer three or four times before the design became too light.

After transferring the design, I opted to use white thread instead of the traditional multiple colors. My main reason was so the napkins could be used for both Valentine’s and Christmas. One of the nice things about these designs are the multiple sizes. Some are intended for borders or to be used down the front of the Roza blouse while others are suitable for single motifs.

100_1799

The instructions include information on how to transfer the designs as well as how to sew each embroidery technique. The design I chose used both stem and satin stitch which were easy to master. I love how these napkins turned out and my next project is going to be a simple a-line skirt with an embroidered border!

As a thank you for reviewing her pattern, Kati graciously offered a couple of patterns for my readers to try. Please check her shop and post a comment about which of these patterns you like best and I will randomly choose a winner next weekend.

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Top 5 Hits and Misses of 2013

Top 5

Gillian of Crafting a Rainbow had a great idea about posting top five hits, misses, reflections, inspirations and goals of 2013. Since I think that is a great way to sum up my crafting activity, here goes…

Hits: I discovered a new (to me) indie pattern company, Kate and Rose, early in 2013 and went on to make three tops using the Roza pattern. This pattern brought my love of embroidery together with garment sewing and resulted in three of my top five hits for 2013!

monogram rozaRoza version 2100_1567

Also making the top 5 hit list was my Sewing Cake Cabarita top. This was the first time I had sewed anything from Steph’s company but would definitely not be the last. Her original take on sizing is refreshing and significantly reduces the amount of modifications required.

Cabarita Chevron

I also took part in Colette Patterns Laurel contest and ended up wearing this version all summer! This was my most fun challenge all year and resulted in many cool versions of this rather simple pattern.Summer Version Colette Laurel

Misses:  There weren’t many but unfortunately I have to put my Pantone Anna Dress from By Hand London in the “miss” category. I have never worn it and it is a shame. I think the biggest issue was my fabric choice. The bodice flops out a bit which makes the cleavage a bit too pronounced. I haven’t given up on giving this pattern another go since I do think the overall shape is super flattering!

Pantone Anna 3

Another FO making the “miss” list is my Monthly Stitch It’s Elementary My Dear Watson cape. There is nothing “wrong” with it but living in South Carolina doesn’t lend itself to wearing capes often. Perhaps I need to start a new trend…

Sherlock Holmes

Probably my worst fail of the year was the Maria Mexican Folk Dress. I had such high hopes for this dress. I wanted to marry my love of embroidery with sewing but it was NOT to be. Better luck next year!

Maria Mexican Folk DressTomorrow I will continue the list with reflections and inspirations from 2013!

 

A Little Embroidery and a Lot of Stashbusting

I am a hot/cold type of person, especially when it comes to my hobbies. I will often spend hours obsessing over a newly learned technique, pattern company, or fabric  to the exclusion of all else…until I get burnt out and toss it to the side for the “next new thing”. While this is great for becoming accomplished at a specific skill, this behavior leads to a lot of UFOs and an ever growing stash.
anna maria
This past week has proved to be the best of both worlds. First my recent love of embroidered clothing has resulted in two additional garments. The first is a restyled version of a basic Old Navy v-neck tee. The design is from Anna Maria Horner’s Needleworks Notebook which is a great book for anyone who loves Anna Maria’s style. She offers many different crosstitch, needlepoint, embroidery and crewel designs and I plan to incorporate a few of them into future projects. This was my first time using waste canvas and won’t be my last as it makes the stitches more even and the embroidery easier.
Roza version 2
The second embroidered garment finished this week was another Roza blouse. This Kate and Rose blouse is my new TNT pattern when I want to combine hand stitching with sewing. On this version, I used the Hungarian redwork pattern I found on NeedleNThread along with some fabric my daughter, Caitlin, had given me for my birthday back in May. The fabric is a quilting cotton so the final blouse is more structured and less flowing than the voile version but I still love it!

And if those two weren’t enough, I also finally finished my pink gingham Sorbetto which has been languishing in the UFO pile for months. Nothing much to say about this one except I learned how to do an FBA during construction and added two buttons from the clearance aisle at Hobby Lobby for embellishments. Sorbetto is definitely a great stashbusting project!
Gingham Sorbetto
My final item for the past week was a super quick skirt for Caitlin made from a houndstooth fabric that has been in my stash since I first started sewing in 2011! I initially made the mistake of buying a bunch of quilting cotton that really wasn’t the best for apparel sewing but it looks cute on her and helped reduce my stash.

My sewing mojo is in full swing so I am going to take advantage of it. What’s going on in your sewing room these days?

Kate and Rose Roza Blouse Pattern Review

I am definitely on an embroidery kick lately and my wardrobe has grown by two garments this past week. The first is the Roza blouse from Kata of Kate and Rose.  I originally found her through the Colette patterns flickr group when she posted an embroidered Sorbetto. After checking out Kata’s blog and trying her free embroidery pattern (originally discussed here) this indie pattern designer is quickly becoming one of my favorites.

front roza

The Roza pattern is sold through Kata’s etsy store and is available in both paper and pdf versions. I bought the pdf version because I wanted to wear this blouse to my son’s graduation party last Saturday with my Hummingbird skirt and I didn’t have time to wait for the pattern to be mailed. The pattern is a basic raglan sleeve with several options to allow for customization.

  • View A is a long sleeve, gathered front top
  • View B is a short sleeve flat front top with a high-low hem
  • View C is a short sleeve flat front dress

I actually mixed and matched the views to make my blouse. First I had to grade up the pattern in the bust and hips since the XL was still a bit smaller than my measurements.  I chose the flat front short sleeve version but decided on a straight hem.  Luckily the sleeves were large enough so no modifications were necessary to the raglan portion. The sleeves actually have a band and are supposed to be gathered but I prefer the look of plain sleeves so I simply used a small hem instead. I also blind hem stitched the bottom hem by hand.

The fabric is from Joel Dewberry’s Notting Hill collection and is a cotton voile Pristine Poppy in Citron. Not only is the perfect weight for our hot and humid South Carolina summers, it was also part of my stashbusting sewalong pledge! For the embroidery, I knew I wanted a swirly monogram so after searching MANY monograms, I chose a free font called Monogram KK. I then used a tutorial from Project Wedding to intertwine my initials. I printed the monogram, traced it onto a piece of white linen using my light box then stitched it by hand using three strands of DMC embroidery floss. I love the result!

monogram roza

Since I was short on time, I did not make a muslin (who am I kidding, I never make a muslin!) but next time I will probably not grade up the sides as much as I did on this version. The blouse hangs a bit in the front as you can see in the photo below but not enough to make me want to go back and modify anything this time around. Overall I am very pleased with this pattern and already have another one planned using the Hungarian braided chain stitch and this embroidery pattern for the front panel. If you haven’t ever incorporated embroidery into your garment sewing, you should definitely give it a try!

side roza

Mid Summer Sewing

While June was filled with a frenzy of Hummingbird and Bombshell sewalongs, July is following a much more relaxed approach. I have cut my pieces for the Colette’s Hawthorn dress but not gotten around to stitching them together yet. Instead I am spending a lot of time reading my favorite sewing blogs and plotting some stashbusting garments. While reading about Tilly’s holiday wardrobe, I fell in love with her “Life’s Too Short” skirt and knew I had to make one for myself. I typically prefer straight skirts as I feel they are more flattering to my pear shaped figure but the red line weave fabric of Tilly’s skirt sold me. Fortunately Tilly was kind enough to mention the fabric specifics in her original post so I was able to find the exact fabric from Jimmy Beans Wool.

Tilly Twin 2

The result is a super comfy gathered skirt that fits wonderfully with my summer wardrobe. I mostly followed Gertie’s gathered skirt tutorial and used exactly two yards of fabric. The seams were serged and I blind hemmed the bottom by hand.

Nicely Finished SeamsI also embellished a plain white t-shirt using a free embroidery pattern from Kata of Kate and Rose. Kata provides a wonderful tutorial for using t-shirt stabilizer which worked beautifully. Since I was working on a white fabric, I simply traced the pattern onto the stabilizer then stitched it directly onto the shirt. I am happy with how the embroidery took a basic t-shirt and “fancied” it up. In fact one of the girls at work said I reminded her of Snow White in my new ensemble!

Embroidery Close Up

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