Matching for Grownups, featuring Sprout Patterns

What’s the secret to dressing your man for a special occasion? Guest blogger Gina seems to have figured it out! Read below to get her scoop on matching your date in an elegant and modern way.


Working at Spoonflower has turned me into someone not unlike Miss Frizzle – I tend to want to dress to match the occasion, especially if there’s a theme involved. This gets complicated at events like weddings, where I have a date to drag along that I’m supposed to match. My tendency toward cats and space and llamas makes it kind of hard for a guy to wear a dignified bow tie and look like he belongs with me simultaneously. But I’m here to tell you, it’s totally possible to make yourself a unique dress and coordinate with your man, with only minor complaining on his part, thanks to Sprout Patterns.

Us---Close-Up.jpg

I’d been looking forward to my friend and fellow Spoonflower team member Jennifer’s wedding for months. (You can read her post about DIY bridesmaid gifts with Sprout Patterns here!) She chose a beautiful mountainous venue in Asheville, NC, so naturally – see what I did there – I wanted to make a nature-inspired dress to wear!

Back-of-Dress.jpg
Look at all of the nature, y’all!

I also decided that since this is the first and only wedding of the year that neither my boyfriend, Kenton, or I are in, it would be the perfect opportunity to make him something to wear, too. I’ve been dying to try a bow tie for awhile now, and the Jaxon Bow Tie by Natty Neckware seemed pretty achievable.

Fence.jpg

My half of the equation was simple: I’m in LOVE with the Kielo Wrap Dress from Named Clothing because I made myself one to wear on my birthday this year and got a million compliments. I decided that a shortened version would be perfect for Jennifer’s wedding, and picked out a sweet wood and leaf inspired design by Ottomanbrim. I chose Performance Pique for my base fabric, and this dress is the comfiest. Seriously, go make one immediately. And then make ten more, because it’s a really quick project.

dressAndTies.jpg
Just a little matchy-matchy 😉

So, here’s where it gets complicated. Kenton is very picky about his bow ties, so he was somewhat apprehensive about letting me choose his outfit for the day. He initially wanted me to make him a Doctor Who themed bow tie, which I vetoed immediately. When I finally settled on a design I deemed worthy, I excitedly called him to let him know. The conversation went something like this:

Me: “So, I picked out your bow tie design today! I think you’re going to like it a lot.”

Kenton: “Yeah? What is it?”

Me: “It’s cool! It’s a wood grain design!”

Kenton: “… it’s not like, camouflage is it?”

He has no faith in me whatsoever.

However, when he finally saw what I picked, he admitted the design, Beached Drift Wood Woodgrain by Joan McLemore, was pretty cool. It also went really well with the design I chose for my dress (though he was definitely glad I did not make his bow tie out of the same thing.)

Pieces.jpg

The Jaxon was a surprisingly quick project! I did skip adding the adjustable section because Kenton knew what size he needed, which made finishing the bow tie even easier.

Close-up-Bow-Tie.jpg

And, he looked pretty darn dapper, IMHO.

Kenton.jpg

Adorable matching couple outfits achieved!

Us---Close-Up.jpgJaxon + Kielo 4Ever

I also had enough extra printed fabric to make our new pup Riley a bow tie, too! He didn’t argue with me about the design at all. What a good boy.

Riley.jpgRiley doesn’t really hold still, so this is the best evidence I could capture of his affection for his new bow tie.

If you want to make your pooch a bow to match your fella too, here’s the tutorial I used! Just add a smaller piece of elastic to the bow to fit around a collar.

The moral of this story? Make yourself a Kielo dress, and make your man a Jaxon bow tie. He will love it. Or, if he loves you, he’ll at least wear it with only minor complaining. Don’t listen to him if he says otherwise.

Oh, and adopt a dog, because they will gladly wear anything you put on them.


ginaAuthor.jpg

Gina is a printer operator at Spoonflower (or as she likes to call her position, “Slayer of Ink Beasts”) and a summer intern with Sprout. When she’s not having audible conversations with machinery, she can be found sharing facts about pigeons or Wonder Woman or old buildings with anyone who will listen. Her hobbies include fabric hoarding, wrestling her sewing projects away from her poly-dactyl cat Oz, dressing her new pup Riley, and aimlessly wandering with coffee in one hand and her Polaroid in the other.

Save

The Wedding Guest’s Dress to Impress: My Perfect Myrtle

Let’s be real, y’all: wedding season can be pretty stressful when the invitations start to pile up. If you’re anything like me, you spend forever searching for the perfect dress for each special day – the dress that you’ll feel beautiful in, but not “hey look at me instead of the bride” beautiful. I have never accomplished this. Not once. But this summer, I’ve got Sprout Patterns to help me out. I decided to make a Sprout dress for each of my three summer weddings, and they decided that all of you would love to hear about it.

Introducing, “The Wedding Guest’s Dress to Impress” blog series! My first project? The perfect Myrtle Dress.

1. Brick.jpg

The first of my weddings was for my friends Katie and Greg. My boyfriend, Kenton, is one of Greg’s best friends and groomsmen. Their friendship was formed over a shared love of craft beer, the tv show “How I Met Your Mother”, and being generally decent human beings. Katie also has these things in common with Greg, so he decided to marry her.

Katie and Greg have one other important thing in common: they’re both Catholic. That’s actually how they were introduced to one another, and was the excuse Katie gave Greg to get his phone number – a fact we still tease her about to this day. Anyway, their ceremony was held at a lovely Catholic church in Greensboro, NC, with a reception at a nearby renovated mill. The wedding started at 2pm, which meant lots of time outside in the hot afternoon sun. For those of you who don’t know, North Carolina summer weather is akin to taking a very hot, very uncomfortable bath that starts in late May and continues well into September.

2.BackofDress.jpg

Recap: I needed a dress that  would be fine to wear for the better part of the day (since Kenton is a groomsman, it meant arriving early and staying late), be conservative enough for me to be comfortable wearing it in a Catholic church, and be cool enough to keep me from melting in the middle of a hot June evening. My solution? The Myrtle Dress.

I decided Poly Crepe de Chine would be the perfect fabric for my Myrtle. It’s soft and sheer, great for comfort and combatting the weather, and drapes beautifully on the neckline of the dress. It also prints well – I love how bright colors always look on it.

3. Neckline.jpg

When it came to choosing a design, I had a tough time. Katie picked navy and magenta for her wedding colors, so that’s what Kenton wore. I like to coordinate with him when we go fancy places just so we don’t look crazy in photos, but I also didn’t want to be that girl and match the bridesmaids too well.

4. Oz.jpg
My assistant, Oz, has to test everything I make for comfort and color coordination with his fur

It was tough, but I managed to find something that didn’t feature tacos, space, or cats – three of my go-to standards for Spoonflower fabric. Mjmstudio, one of the designers featured on Spoonflower’s fabric sample swatches, has lots of gorgeous watercolor patterns to choose from. It was a tough call, but I settled on Verve purple – I love the bright colors, and they went well with Kenton’s suit.

5. Selfie.jpg
We match! For once! Time for a selfie.

The Myrtle is a very popular choice among the ladies of Spoonflower, and after making mine, I totally understand why: it’s easy to put together, especially when you use this guide for installing the waistband from Colette Patterns, and it’s way too comfy for how fancy it looks. (Y’all. It even has pockets. That’s the dream.)

6.Assembly.jpg

If you love this dress as much as I do, it’s available as a project on Sprout. I called it Just Another Manic Myrtle.

7.Pockets.jpg
“Thanks, it has pockets!” is what every woman will say when you compliment her dress that has pockets.

The comfort of this dress was much appreciated at the reception when the music started. Kenton loves to dance, especially in public. As a classic introvert, this was pretty hard for me at first. But, I’ve gotten used to it, and he’s even taught me a few things. However, Kenton wasn’t my only dance partner that evening –

8.-Sloan.jpg

Greg’s niece also loves to dance, and I had the pleasure of bouncing across the dancefloor with her several times. I told her that I liked her dress, and she told me she liked my eyeball. I’ll take it.

9.Umbrella.jpg

One of my favorite things all day was responding to compliments on my dress with, “Thanks! I made it.” For me, there’s nothing better than the look of surprise, fascination, and a hint of jealousy you receive when someone learns that you created the garment they’re admiring.  And, it’s way more fun spending the afternoon hanging out with your cat, your sewing machine, and Leslie Knope than traversing the mall (and oh gosh, the parking lot) looking for something you probably won’t like very much anyway (and, it probably won’t have pockets, either.)

Like pretty much every other wedding I’ve attended, I cried during the couple’s vows, reluctantly danced in public, and ate way too much delicious food. But, unlike any other wedding I’ve attended, I am actually looking forward to seeing myself in the reception photos in a few months – for the first time ever, I had the perfect thing to wear.

Cheers!
Gina


gina.jpgGina is a printer operator at Spoonflower (or as she likes to call her position, “Slayer of Ink Beasts”) and a summer intern with Sprout. When she’s not having audible conversations with machinery, she can be found sharing facts about pigeons or Wonder Woman or old buildings with anyone who will listen. Her hobbies include fabric hoarding, wrestling her sewing projects away from her polydactyl cat Oz, and aimlessly wandering with coffee in one hand and her polaroid in the other.

Mother’s Day Outfit Inspiration

No matter how you’re celebrating Mother’s Day this Sunday, we have some outfit inspiration for you! Each outfit centers around a different pattern from Sprout, showing you that home sewing is definitely the way to go.

SproutWeekend2.jpg

Love pink? So do we! Laurel Blouse from Colette Patterns.


Brunch2.jpg

Sweet options to stay cozy this chilly Spring. Anna Dress from By Hand London.


Brunch3.jpg

Bling it out in style. Archer Button Up from Grainline Studio.


Happy Mother’s Day to ALL the moms out there!

A Whale of a Good (Sewing) Time

Blog1.jpg

“To boldly go where no one has gone before”

Familiar words to fans of a certain iconic television show, and also my motto when venturing forth into my newest sewing project, the Moneta Dress from Sprout! I am somewhat new to the world of sewing, and by sewing, I mean sewing properly. Much to the chagrin of the professional costume designers who taught me to sew, I rarely measure, never use a pattern, and generally just plunge into a project while vaguely hoping for the best. It is safe to say that my creations often end up being garments strictly to wear inside the house with the blinds closed.

whales2.jpg

When I first saw Colette Patterns Moneta Dress on the Sprout website, I knew this challenge was one worth undertaking. I immediately loved the fit-and-flare silhouette, the pockets, and the customizable aspect of the sleeves and collar. I chose our new Cotton-Spandex Jersey, but struggled to find a print I truly adored until I stumbled onto Galaxy Whales, by Wildnotions.

Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 2.26.21 PM.png

Rich jewel tones are my favorites, and as a child I wanted to be (and this is completely true) an astronaut AND a whale surgeon. Eventually settling on the sleeveless option with the adorable crossover collar, I was ready to begin!

Much to my delight, the colors on the screen translated beautifully to fabric. No tracing patterns, no grain lines to wrangle, and I was pleased as punch to have it cut out and ready to go in less than 15 minutes. I chose a lightweight navy jersey for the bodice lining, and sewed the lining and bodice together using a standard zig-zag stitch to account for the stretch allowed by the Cotton Spandex Jersey.

Blog2.jpg

In the span of a couple hours, the dress was cut out and assembled, with only the collar left to attach. When I attached the bodice to the skirt, I ruched the skirt rather than inserting elastic to cinch the waist. Colette Patterns offers a free collar variation add-on to the Moneta Dress so that you can customize the dress even further! Scrolling through the designs, I chose the tie collar. Luckily for me, I was able to fashion my new collar then and there, as I had ample extra fabric from the Sprout design.

Screen Shot 2016-03-15 at 2.29.48 PM.png
Although the downloadable instructions from Colette specify that the collar should be lined with interfacing, I had to do without this time, but I think the results were definitely satisfactory!

Colar.jpg
New collar vs old collar!

Blog3.jpg

As it was the first dress I had ever made completely on my own, I was definitely a little nervous to see how the finished project looked. With great trepidation, I squirmed into the finished dress. I was pleased to see that it was really quite lovely! This was a great starter project for someone like me who was a touch uncertain about undertaking a semi-complex garment, and I’m thrilled with how well it turned out! Thanks to Sprout, the ease of the entire process, and its delightful end product, was reassuring for this novice seamstress. My dress is completely custom, fits like a glove, and was simple to make. Emboldened with my success, I’ve already ordered another Sprout pattern!

blog5.jpg


Claire.jpgClaire is one of Spoonflower’s warehouse operations specialists. Though she is a sociologist by schooling, her love of artistic creativity and environmental sustainability led her to Spoonflower, where she is surrounded by like-minded people. An exercise aficionado, she likes experimenting with Spoonflower’s stretchy fabrics, especially the sport lycra. When she’s not at the gym, you can find her playing video games, planning her next big trip, or trying to find her new favorite restaurant.

 

Moneta Madness is Here

MonetaM.jpg

Moneta what? MONETA MADNESS! This year we’re hosting a special event for the entire month of March. Together with Colette Patterns we are offering  20% off any and all Moneta Dressess. Just use the discount code MONETAMADNESS as many times as you like.

To take part in the tournament, just share an image on Instagram with the hashtag #MonetaMadness. You may take a photo of either your printed Sprout Patterns project, or the sewn dress, but the Sprout tag must be visible in the photo. On March 31st we will choose 4 finalists who will each win a $100 Gift Certificate to Sprout!  Not too shabby!

Need some inspiration? Check out the amazing Moneta projects already created on Sprout, or design your own!

Moneta_Verysarie.jpg

See Kate Sew Patterns at SPROUT!

Today’s blog excerpt is from See Kate Sew:  a twenty something fashion lover and mother of two. When not chasing her kids you can find her at her sewing table or daydreaming up new designs.  Her focus shifts back and forth between sewing for herself and sewing children’s clothing. She loves big bows, ruffles, clean lines and unexpected details.

ss.jpg

Recess Raglan sleeve detail

I’ve shared about Sprout a few times here and on Instagram and in newsletters, and today I’m sharing a few things I’ve made with Sprout Fabric!

Sprout is owned by Spoonflower and prints pattern pieces and fabric at the same time. So instead of cutting out paper and then fabric, you just cut and go! Plus you can use your own custom fabric, or choose from the database of designs.

There are 9 See Kate Sew patterns available at Sprout right now with 2 more on the way!

Use code “SKSLOVE” for 20% off all SKS patterns at Sprout! This code is good for one week only and ends at 8pm EST on February 12.

Read the rest of this post on See Kate Sew.