Stitched Together Sews Birds & the Bees

Posted by on Jun 29, 2015 in Birds & The Bees, Blog | One Comment

stitched together shorts2

Rachel of Stitched Together whipped up a sweet pair of City Gym Shorts for her daughter, Iris using Love Bug from Birds & the Bees. A little Cotton Couture in Charcoal for the bias trim finishes them off perfectly.

DC6825_Stone - Love Bug

The ladybugs are the hidden surprise in this fabric.

stitched together shorts

Hop on over here for a closer look. I so love these, I think I’m going to go sew a pair for Em this afternoon. Thanks for the cute inspiration, Rachel!

Welcome to the Mouse House Plays With Birds & the Bees

Posted by on Jun 25, 2015 in Birds & The Bees, Blog | 2 Comments

Yet another fun dress made with Birds & the Bees Fabrics today.

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Hayley of Welcome to the Mouse House has gone modern, colour blocking with the Ishi Dress from Straight-Grain. And her daughter, Ainsley seems to love it!

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Head on over to her blog for loads of great puddle-jumping pictures.

mouse house - ishi

Thanks for this fun contribution, Hayley. I really love it!

Patty Sloniger pieces Birds & the Bees

Posted by on Jun 23, 2015 in Birds & The Bees, Blog | 2 Comments

My friend and fellow Michael Miller fabric designer, Patty Sloniger has created the sweetest Geranium dress for her daughter using Birds & The Bees fabric, don’t you agree?

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Lovely, precisely pieced chevron work on the bodice brings another dimension to this dress, making it totally original and she just happened to use my very favourite print of the collection, All the Wee Beasts, for the skirt.

patty sloniger - birds & the bees dress

Have a closer look at the details and more pictures of gorgeous Emma on Patty’s blog.

Thanks for your creative contribution, Patty. You’ve inspired me to go play with fabric this morning.

Elegance & Elephants does Birds & the Bees

Posted by on Jun 19, 2015 in Birds & The Bees, Blog | No Comments

Heidi of Elegance & Elephants is a favourite indie children’s clothing designer of mine. She makes the sweetest clothes and her adorable kids model them for her blog.

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Today she is sharing her latest creations, made with a few other designers’ patterns and BIRDS & THE BEES fabric.

Swing by her blog for lots of gorgeous pictures of these 2 cuties modelling their new duds.

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Thanks so much Heidi. Beautiful work!

A Birds & The Bees Fabric Giveaway

Posted by on Jun 17, 2015 in Birds & The Bees, Blog | 4 Comments

To help kick off the release of Birds & The Bees to stores, today I am guest blogging over at Michael Miller Fabrics.

I walk you through my thought process in the designing of Birds & The Bees,

DC6824_Magenta

I share some sewing project inspiration

birds & the bees dress

including two new free quilt patterns,

flight formation quilt detail2 - tamara kate

and announce a fabric giveaway amounting to about 15 yards of fabric in total! Yep, FIFTEEN!!!

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So come take a look and try your luck. Two somebodies have to win… wouldn’t it be great if you were one!

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Birds & The Bees

Posted by on Jun 11, 2015 in Birds & The Bees, Blog | 6 Comments

birds & the bees - tamara kate

Just in time for warm weather & warm weather apparel comes BIRDS & THE BEES, my latest fabric collection with Michael Miller Fabrics!

birds and the bees bolts
Photo: Michael Miller Fabrics

Birds & The Bees is a little exploration into my love for winged creatures (they tend to make an appearance in the grand majority of my design work).

Where many see pesky bugs, I see pure magic. From large ostentatious birds perpetually seeking the spotlight, to the tiniest, delicately patterned bugs fluttering around a flower garden, I am constantly amazed by them all. The heights to which they can soar, their occasional, seemingly unplanned, comical flight paths, the patterning on their plumage… They are the thing of dreams.

There is a coral, teal & charcoal colour story, called Ladybug

ladybug group

And a berry, lilac and indigo story called Bluejay

bluejay group

Bolts and bolts of pretty colour, fanciful creatures and fun patterns, all on a lovely quilting-weight cotton.

birds and the bees bolts3
Photo: Michael Miller Fabrics

Here is a closer look at a few patterns:

DC6829_Navy - Baby The Stars Shine Bright
Baby The Stars Shine Bright

DC6826_Berry - Toutes Les Plumes
Toutes Les Plumes

DC6827_Magenta - Eye Candy
Eye Candy

DC6831 Loop-Di-Loop_Lavender
Loop-di-Loop

DC6828_Leaf - Honey Honey
Honey Honey

DC6825_Navy - Love Bug
Love Bug

I hope you will find some magic of your own in creating a little something special with these fabrics for some young person in your life, or for someone young at heart… Perhaps even for yourself (I know you are a young-at-heart group. I just know it)!

birds and the bees bolts2
Photo: Michael Miller Fabrics

Some talented sewers and I will have a slew of projects to share as inspiration over the coming weeks, so stay tuned here and I will point you in the right direction.
Here’s a little tease to get the juices flowing:

feathered flock sunsuit
Feather Flock Infant Sunsuit based on this tutorial

{ Happy Sewing } Cotton Couture Fiesta Skirt

Posted by on Jun 4, 2015 in { Happy Sewing }, Blog | No Comments

tamara kate - cotton couture fiesta skirt

I was recently asked to create a project based on these beautiful colours of Cotton Couture solids by Michael Miller Fabrics.

cotton couture solids

My daughter pranced by as I was contemplating my options and declared her love for the colours. That was all I needed to have a direction. I found an online tutorial for a pretty summery skirt, got the nine-year old approval and set to sewing.

tamara kate - cotton couture fiesta skirt2

And this pretty and colourful creation, reminiscent of a Mexican fiesta, is what we ended up with. I made a few alterations to the tutorial, namely having 6 tiers instead of 5 and adding the waistband slightly differently to give a little extra overall skirt length. All the gathering, while mildly time-consuming, is totally worth it. It creates a young, girly, light-hearted skirt that Em is thrilled with.

tamara kate - cotton couture fiesta skirt detail

You can see all the glorious colours of Cotton Couture on the Michael Miller website, and check out the Mist group while there for the colours I worked with.

cotton couture color card

Michael Miller has recently created these sweet little sets of Cotton Couture swatch cards, all held together by a chunky ring so they’re easy to toss into a bag when fabric shopping, or have on-hand when designing your project. Compact & convenient, just the way I like it. The fabric colours (there are 150 now, and counting…) are sorted into colour sections, such as the Mist grouping I was inspired by.

I know I’ve said it here before, but it bears repeating… These solids are so divine to work with. I’ve made quilts, accessories and clothing with them and love their soft hand, gorgeous drape and the luminous quality to their colours. They have become a staple in my main sewing supply cupboard, a rainbow of colours on constant rotation.

Reversible Kid’s Apron Tutorial

Posted by on Jun 1, 2015 in Blog, Festive Forest, Holidays, Tutorials | No Comments

festive forest aprons - tamara kate

This is one of those great little gift ideas for a child who loves helping in the kitchen as my two do. A simple apron that’s got a few somethings extra. Firstly, it’s reversible so you can play around with a few of your favourite co-ordinating fabrics. Second, it can have a bit of extra pizzaz along the bottom edge with some added trim, ribbon, pompom fringe, you name it! And third, it’s done up by a third contrasting fabric tie around the waist & neck and a fun button at the top edge. What more could you want? Oh… That it’s easy & quick? Yes, it’s that too!

festive forest apron - tamara kate

As these were Christmas gifts for my kids last year, I made them in FESTIVE FOREST fabrics. For Em’s I chose Winter Woods in Garland, Budding in Santa for the reverse side and Gem in Holly for the straps. For Max’s I used Sweater Weather in Ribbon, Gem in Evergreen on the reverse side and Freckled in Santa for the straps.

festive forest fox apron - tamara kate

Getting these two to agree to model for photos is becoming increasingly difficult, hence this post is decidedly later than I had planned. There was bribing involved (a trip to our favourite art supply store, so it wasn’t hard for me to agree) in accomplishing this shoot and much silliness (which I love) in the resulting shots. These are but a few (and yes, my son definitely needs a haircut):

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THE TUTORIAL

What I Used:

– 2 co-ordinating pieces of fabric 17″ x 22″ each. These can be fat quarters, but if using directional fabric, keep in mind the pattern needs to run along the 22″ length.
– 1 piece of fabric 30″ x 9″ for the neck band & waist ties.
– co-ordinating thread.
– optional 18″ co-ordinating ribbon, fringe, trim, etc. You could even use a few pieces of ribbon, each 18″ long, as indicated below.
– A button, roughly 3/4″ diameter.

What I Did:

A little note about sizing: My kids are 7 and 9 years old and this is great for them. If making it for a much smaller child, you may want to shrink the measurements by a couple of inches, but don’t make it too much shorter as they grow so quickly.

reversible apron cutting & sewing

– Fold both large pieces of fabric in half so they are 8½” x 22″. Measure 13″ up from the bottom on the non-folded edge. Put a mark. Measure 4″ in from non-folded edge along the top. Put a mark. Join these 2 marks with a straight line and cut. Unfold your fabric.

– Cut 30″ x 9″ strip of fabric as follows:
– 2 pieces 30″ x 2½”
– 1 piece 21″ x 2½”

– Fold each of these fabrics in half, right sides together, to form long narrow band. Press. Stitch with ¼” seam along the long unfolded edge & one short edge on all three pieces. Turn right side out. Press.

– If adding ribbon, pin ribbon about 2″ from the bottom edge of whichever fabric you choose (you could add to both if desired), straight across fabric. Topstitch in place along top & bottom edges of ribbon. If adding multiple pieces to one side, stagger them from ½” to 1″ apart, as desired, going up the front.

– If adding pompom fringe, you will insert it in this next step:

– Place 1 main piece of fabric on flat surface, right side facing up. Lay 2 longer sewn bands ½” below the bottom edge of the cut angle with raw short edge of bands protruding from main fabric side edges by ½”. Lay shorter sewn band ½” in from the top right edge of the cut angle with raw short edge of band protruding from main fabric top edge by ½”. If using pompom fringe at bottom edge, lay it so that pompoms are toward the top of the apron with edge of fringe’s solid band placed 3/8″ from bottom of apron. Carefully place other piece of fabric right side down on top of this and pin all the way around, pinning heavily along pompom edge. If not using fringe, simply place fabric on top & pin all the way around.

– Sew with a ½” seam all the way around, leaving about a 5″ gap along one side. Turn right side out. Press. Topstitch all around main apron, 1/8″ from edge.

– Make a button hole ½” from top edge, ½” from angled edge on left side. Sew button to neck band (doesn’t matter which side) about 16″ from apron top edge. This strap can be twisted a half-turn for fastening, depending on which side of the apron the wearer chooses to have showing at any given time.

All done!

festive forest aprons4 - tamara kate