Sewing for Kindergarten


 I'm not quite sure how it happened... but my BABY is in Kindergarten this year!!! She is SOOOOOO excited about it and loving it sooo much!

Her first day when she got home she says to me,  "Mom, I listened to my teacher ALLLLLLLLLLL day - and I even did the boring work!! ALLL the boring work even!"

and that was Kindergarten, day 1 folks...

"See mom, these boots don't have good enough grip for spinning"
So, we sew a fun new dress for fall kindergarten weather! She, of course, has LOADS of dresses... but not very many fall dresses. and she LOVES wearing dresses! 

Fabric is Michael Miller Peacock Pavillion
I did a button front with ruffles on both sides of the front (Cheeks was pretty insistent it needed ruffles), a faux tie, elastic in the waistline for a nice fitted ish look to suit the faux tie and a full gathered skirt. I also did a little elastic in the sleeve hems, so they can easily be pushed up and stay up for class work.

"Look I'm a T-rex!"
 I have to admit I REALLY enjoy that our kindergarten program in town is only 2 days a week (and every other week a 3rd day). So we still get some days together, and she gets used to full days of school (preschool here is only 2 half days a week) and in grade 1 begins full day every day.


I'd love to be able to tell you about the pattern.... but I made it up!
Sorry..... But I have blocks. and I feel like I don't make up patterns as much anymore as I used to and I was missing the challenge and putting a little more creativity into my sewing. 

This is a pretty straight forward sew though, so I'm sure you can figure it out too and use your favourite button front dress and add a faux tie and ruffles if you want to re -create the look.

This is her "It's TOOOOO chilly outside, please can we go inside now" face
I remember one of my first makes for her, teeny tiny little baby hats .. and now she's in Kindergarten!

You can all be proud of me though, I didn't cry on her first day of kindergarten!!! but I felt weird and off center alllll day until I picked the kids up from school lol.

How did you do on your child's first day of Kindergarten?


WEDNESDAY:  Handcrafted by RED

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The ESTEEM dress! A lot of pics and pattern details!



This post is ALLLL about the new Cali Faye ESTEEM dress

Which, BTW,  is on SALE!!! You can get 30% off your entire purchase until Sept 10, 11:59pm EST with the coupon code NEWRELEASE.  (and yep that is an affiliate link :)  I do try an semi support my sewing and blogging habit... so if this post inspires you to buy the pattern - I'd be much appreciated if you used my affiliate link to do so <3) 



ok, now, let's talk the pattern! First off - The reason I jumped to test this is a LOVE a good openness/cut out to a summer dress and I LOVE princess seams!  


The pattern comes in 00-16 size range - which covers a full bust measure of 31"-43".
The dress includes pockets!! yay!!! 



The bias bound waistline adds stability and a pretty contrast finish if you want some contrast! 


I sewed up this dress in good quality quilters cotton, Jennifer Paganelli Sunny Isles by Freespirit.


I'm pretty sure the question will be asked, "how do you wear a bra with this???" My answer- I don't. They are the devil's contrraptions anyways in my humble opinion. BUT since the dress is empire waistband and lined bodice it would not be hard to add sewn in cups to the bodice at all! Or if you like torture you can try those sticky bras... 


I sewed this dress up in about 3hours, everything is quite straight forward and put together without any surprises. I do love the unique crossover back giving princess seams construction and it really is a fun thing to sew!

To buy the dress pattern head on over to the Cali Faye Collection shop! and don't forget to use the coupon code listed at the start of the post if you are in the timefram to do so!


Kitten Birthday Party


Cheeks had her 5th birthday celebration this week!! (I do NOT know how on earth my baby is 5 already... but it happened)

Her and her friends LOOOOVE to play kittens together, so she HAD to have a kitten themed birthday party! And I did it on the cheap! So if you want to get some animal inspired birthday party ideas - here you go!


The majority of the party budget was spent on Beanie Boos. I was going to make cats... but I really didn't feel like making 7 cats was a good use of my time, and especially not when I found beanie boos at Chapters for 5.06 each (yay for getting an email with a weekend coupon code!)

7 Beanie Boos =  $35.42

TOTALLY worth the money too have a fun take home gift (I HATE doing goody bags... mostly because I end up throwing most of the dollar store stuff out when my kids get them)


Next up I found headbands on EBAY (I got them for about 1$ each) Here is a link to them, there are many sellers who have them as you can see 

7 headbands: $7


The craft was a make and decorate your own collar - I made these with a simple tag shape and ribbon using vinyl and fabric.  

Ribbon cost : $2 - everything else was scraps



The kids had a blast decorating with little self adhesive dots.  Dots cost: $2 at Walmart


For the cake I used 2 boxes of cake mix and a container of icing 

Cake mix + icing = $4

The ears and nose I made using scraps of felt and candles were ones we bought previous years. 


Total cost = $50.42

or $54.42 if you include the $ on buying the Kitty Garland banner embroidery file... but that has other uses and will be used to make banners I can sell at markets too.






Me: "Show me your I'm 5 now face!" and this is the face she gives me!


The dress she is wearing is the Buby&Me Darcy dress, which I tested and you can read all about in THIS blog post. The fabric is fabric I designed for True North Fabrics. I'm not including the dress in the party budget - since she needed some new school appropriate dresses anyways.



She really does love her new dress though!


I hope you enjoyed reading about the birthday party - I know it is a little out of my normal posting, but hopefully it helps give some ideas! 

I'd love to hear some comments below! What do you love about the kitten part theme?

Bring on FIVE! 

Happy Crafting!

Making Skinny Jeans for back to school with Little Lizard King Patterns



I signed up to test the newest Little Lizard King pattern the Cambridge Skinnies pattern

I signed up for the test for 2 main reasons
  1.  My oldest kid needs pants!
  2. Buying pamts is hard because her waist and legs are a bit smaller in size than her height is tall.



The pattern features a great guide on mashing sizes, even thigh measurements to help you get the skinny fit you want!


I skipped the front pockets - because my kid never uses them anyways and more often then not they are just inside out pains to deal with lol. BUT, I did do the back pockets!!! I Added some fun free motion to decorate the pockets.

The fly is Faux - so it looks great but is an easy sew!  The front is flat and the back has elastic.

I made these pants with a slight stretch to it denim (like maybe 10%) I also did a tester version in regular cotton woven - which for my kid worked great - but she takes after her momma and is a rectangle... 


How are your back to school sewing plans going?
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Dance Party with Trade Winds by Michael Miller Fabrics and a GIVEAWAY!!!



Hey all! I'm Jeanine from Canada! The Crafting Fiend blog! I'm super excited that I get to show you all my sews using Trade Winds by Michael Miller Fabrics on the Sewing Portfolio's Blog today.

(Read to the end for the giveaway!)


For the patterns I chose the Sis Boom Kelsey top/dress for my oldest as it is one of her favourite patterns and I know she will wear it often, for the youngest I chose the Pumpkin & Bunny Zinnia because it is an easy no closures or elastic slip on dress which is perfect for her un-coordinated self to get dressed in now that she is in the 'I am a BIG girl' stage of life. Both patterns work great for layering with a tee and tights as well for when fall arrives and school begins.



Pineapple Express is one of my favourites in this line - but both my girls loooved the Marissa and Trade Winds the best, so I just managed to sneak a little Pineapple Express into the oldest's dress, but keep your eyes open - I think I'll use the rest of the Pineapple Express to make myself something! The fab thing about the kelsey is all the ways to combine fabric when making it!



As always Michael Miller fabric is great to work with. Lovely the texture and drape for sewing up clothing. You know it will hold up but that is will also hang nicely as a garment.
The fab thing about the kelsey is all the ways to combine fabric when making it. I love the cross front and the criss cross straps in the back!


I got this fabric before it is even released through being a Sewing Portfolio's ambassador - you can sign up for free at sewingportfolios.com for an account and join the facebook group and maybe you can be an ambassador and have fun sewing fresh new fabrics too!
Another great thing about being on sewing portfolio's is how EASY it makes signing up for tester calls and for other designers and fabric companies to find you! I love being able to just link to my portfolio on a test call and I LOVE when I get contacted by a business who found me through sewing portfolios!
Here is my portfolio, if you are a business member you can see an example of what one looks like https://www.sewingportfolios.com/me/jeaninethomlinson, and did I mention it is totally FREE! Yep, convenience for free - a rare thing these days!


The pockets on the Zinnia are perfect for using up fabric with pictures, like the Trade Winds flowers and huts as you can see on Cheek's dress.


Both these dresses sewed up in just a couple hours. To try and sew smarter I like to sew assembly line style. Even though they are different patterns it was pretty easy to still sew assembly line since they are the same basics: bodice, bias straps and skirt.
My girls decided to throw a dance party in their new dresses and they have both declared these will be their first day of school dresses! A total sewing WIN!




What makes you want to dance party?


Want to WIN the fabric??!! Leave a comment and click yes on the Rafflecopter!
a Rafflecopter giveaway. Giveaway hosted by sewingportfolios.com

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Darcy Dress Pattern Tester Review


I voluntered to test this one by Bubby &Me.  The Darcy Dress  Comes in sizes 1 (18months) up to size 10 and has both the shirt option and dress option included! 

The pattern directions were clear and easy to follow and the designer listened and incorperated tester feedback excellently! I have perfect confidence recommending this pattern to you... Although I do wish she had an affiliate program lol.



This top is the PERFECT back to school sew! it is so fast and easy - literally 15 mins to cut and sew! Only 2 pieces and a neckband, the dress has only 4 pieces and a neckband. 

The dress version is PERFECT for using kid sized panels on as well! If you are like me - finding patterns to use panels on where you don't have to colour block can be tricky and a bit frustrating to find. So I really love this!


The twirl factor is great since it is a half circle skirt, and of course circle skirts mean NO GATHERING!!! which means a quick attachment! Of course, all the time saved gathering is spent in hemming a circle skirt... (Anyone want to sponsor or buy me a coverstitch yet??! lol. no? ok.. I'll keep saving my pennies.)


I love how nicely simple the top is, works fab for Free motion applique on the front (yes I'll be doing some of that soon!) and for showing off your custom knits - and it uses very little fabric so you can get a lot of use out of that custom knit!


I just love the diagonal hemline as well. It is such a great look for older kids and littles!


The top version is a perfect fit - not loose but not skin tight.  I think it is safe to say you'll be seeing a bit more of this pattern in my blog posts... 

All fabrics shown are from True North Fabrics


The Darcy Dress is on sale for the next 48 hours ! (NOT an affiliate link btw.. I just REALLY love the pattern)


Leave me a comment below! What's your favourite pattern for using those custom knit panels on?
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