Saturday, September 17, 2016

Aspiring Designer's Challenge Week: Final Giveaway!

What a lovely selection of new patterns we have seen from our designer group this week!
Let's recap on what we have seen.

Firstly, we had Jodi Massey of Mother Grimm who got us thinking about the Festive Season.  It is a great time to start planning for this special time ahead.

AimerLae & Finn followed that up with the Pocket Harem Pants  How adorable are they?

Amanda Jayne then shared with us the “Little Legs” pattern.  You can join the Amanda Jane PDF patterns Facebook group to get your 90% off coupon for “Little Legs” on Etsy

And rounding out the week we had the gorgeous Crossroads Quilt brought to us from Rachel Rossi Designs.

Now it's time for the final giveaway!

One lucky winner will win all these patterns from our Swhetty Betty Sponsors!

Pattern of choice up to $12 from Muffin Head Patterns
Pattern of choice from MCM Studio Designs
Pattern of choice from Duck Butt Designs *
Pattern of choice from Call Ajaire
Pattern of choice from Snuggle My Baby Patterns *
Pattern of choice from Laela Jayne Patterns
Pattern of choice from Sew By Pattern Pieces *
X2 Patterns of choice from Littlekiwiscloset.
A copy of the “Little Legs” Pattern by Amanda Jayne Patterns
*bundles excluded

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Thursday, September 15, 2016

Aspiring Designer: Rachel Rossi Design

Crossroads | A Quilt by Rachel Rossi

  Modern T Cross Quilt

Hi there! I'm Rachel Rossi, of Rachel Rossi Design. I'm so excited to be a part of the Aspiring Designers Challenge this week, and to be introducing my newest quilt design, Crossroads. This has been one of my favorite patterns yet, and I've fallen even more in love with it since seeing all the amazing versions made by my fabulous pattern testers! Crossroads is an excellent quilt for men & women—the style and overall feel really come from your fabric choices. This is also an excellent pattern for that special fabric in your stash that deserves the spotlight! The pattern includes instructions for Baby, Throw, and Twin sizes.



 I've got lots of different variations in the images below, all the credit goes to my fabulous pattern testers! They did a wonderful job and are terribly creative when it comes to fabric, design, and quilting. Here's my original design—isn't it just lovely in it's natural habitat?

  Cross your T's Quilt

 I think the real charm of this pattern is the simplicity! Not only is it easy to make, but using only two fabrics can really create a dramatic look. If you need help choosing those two colors, make sure to read up on using a color wheel— a great color scheme can really make the pattern shine.


 I initially created this pattern for my friend who was expecting a baby. She and her husband decided to torture us all & not find out the gender! So, the original intent was for this quilt to be gender neutral, straightforward, and modern. After creating it, I realized that this baby sized quilt lends itself so well to all sorts of uses!


 It makes a great boy's or men's quilt because it is not too cluttered and the crosses create a strong geometry. But, if you switch up the fabrics, it can be hopelessly girly!


Loving the black and white modern style quilt by Erin!


 If you'd like to get your hands on this pattern, make sure to do it now! During the pattern release celebration, Crossroads is on sale at 50% off in my shop, this week only! If you'd like to take your chances at winning this beauty, make sure to enter below—the winner gets this PDF pattern for free along with 1 of my other patterns (your choice)! No worries if you already bought the pattern, I'll refund you the full amount if you win. And don't forget: as part of the Aspiring Designer Challenge the Swhetty Bettie's Blog is hosting a giveaway of all the fabulous patterns released this week, so make sure to check out what these amazing designers have for you & enter the giveaway!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

 If you like what you see, make sure to check out my website! When you subscribe for weekly updates, you'll get my Tea To Go pattern for free, just to say thanks. Don't forget to follow me on Facebook for my newest designs, blog posts, and of course all the latest sales!


 Thank you for reading, I hope you've enjoyed my newest pattern release. A big thanks to all of my pattern testers—I know how much hard work you put into each and every pattern & I'm so grateful. And finally, thank you to the Betties for having me on this week, I'm so thrilled to be here!
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Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Aspiring Designer: Amanda Jane

Amanda Jane – “Little Legs” PDF Pattern

Hi, I’m Amanda, the creator of “Little Legs” Leggings pattern for babies and kids. 

I’m a fully qualified Patternmaker living in Melbourne, Australia, having worked in the industry for over 15 years on ladies and children’s fashion. I am currently working from home as a freelance Patternmaker while starting up my PDF Pattern label, Amanda Jane.  I plan to make both kids and ladies patterns in easy to sew styles.  All my patterns will be tried and tested, including teaming up with a professional sample maker to ensure accuracy of fit, function and style. 
The ladies patterns will range from size XXS to size 5X, offering patterns that suit the pear shaped lady, and will offer multiple bust size options.  I am well aware that we all vary greatly in our body shape. My biggest issue personally has been my pear shaped body including a rather curvy behind. My ladies patterns will include cut lines for both standard size “hips” and extra curvy “hips” like my own. 


I wanted my first pattern release to be an easy and quick sew.  It’s a very practical pattern that can be made into shorts, ¾ leggings, or full length. If your baby wears cloth diapers, there’s even a pattern specially created to fit over them with full coverage. 

This pattern includes:
* A4 Paper and Letter Paper Print Options
* Layers for easy printing
* NO CUT sheets :)
* Step by step photographs and instructions
* Tester photos

Fabric to use:
Knit fabric with both vertical and horizontal stretch.
Fabrics such as Cotton/Lycra, and other stretch knits.

These leggings can be sewn up on an ordinary sewing machine or with an overlocker (serger). 

Join the Amanda Jane PDF patterns Facebook group to get your 90% off coupon for “Little Legs”.

Little Legs can be purchased from here.

One lucky person will win a copy of this pattern.  Please see the link below to enter.

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Aspiring Designer: AimerLae & Finn

I'm so pleased to be participating in another Aspiring Designers Challenge with Swhetty Betties! This challenge is how I originally got my start a few years ago and I'm excited to take part in it again! Check back daily to see what the other designers have coming.

 My pattern for this challenge is Pocket Harem Pants. The pattern is full of options. You can choose circle bum or plain, pockets or no pockets, shorts or pants, and cloth diaper rise or regular. pocket-harem-tutorial

Like I mentioned, I got my start with this challenge and I released a pattern for Playtime Pocket Pants, a grow-with-me pattern for cloth diapered babies. While that pattern is near and dear to my heart and we LOVE using those pants still to this day, I must say my pattern drafting and tutorial writing skills have improved ever so slightly! My patterns now include layers so that you can print just the size(s) you wish to use. They also include a measurement chart, finished measurement chart, fabric yardage chart, and print guide!


I also use line drawings instead of photos for the most part now. No more worrying about unclear photos or bad lighting!

This pattern includes options that are easy enough for a beginner and others that are challenging enough to keep intermediate sewists from getting bored. I hope you will try it out and let me know what you think! Grab your copy here while it is on sale for just $4.50, through September 20. Enter to win a copy for free! If you win and you already purchased the pattern, I will refund you.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

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Monday, September 12, 2016

AD Challenge
Mother Grimm

 Mother Grimm – Rustic Reindeer and Sleigh Garland

Hi, I’m Jodi Massey of Mother Grimm. I’m really pleased to have been given the opportunity to take part in the Swhetty Bettie’s aspiring designer September 2016 challenge week. I am still working on some new patterns  (join my group for information on these) so I was allowed to rerelease one that has only been available through One Thimble Magazine.

If you are looking for the perfect challenge for Christmas sewing for personal or gifts, then look no further; my Rustic Reindeer and sleigh garland is perfect for adorning your fireplace,  Christmas tree or anywhere your imagination takes you. It is also an economical design as it only takes up a fat quarter in materials (excluding notions and stuffing).

The Reindeer and Sleigh can be made up with lovely collar and bell finishes and harness/reins that extend all the way along the garland to the sleigh; where Father Christmas has just tied it up whilst he delivers your presents.
A couple of years ago I entered a digital sewing magazine challenge (One Thimble) to design and sew an original project using one fat quarter of fabric. There were a few categories to be considered under, and my design ended up being the People’s choice winner for publication in issue 5.

I am now relaunching it for as part of the Swhetty Bettie aspiring designer challenge week.
As mentioned above this detailed rustic reindeer garland can be made with just a fat quarter of fabric. You can use most types of woven fabrics (nothing too thin), creating a different effect according to what you choose.
Here is one I am currently working on for our Christmas colour theme this year of red/green/gold.

The pattern includes the template for 3 different deer designs and a sleigh with detailed instructions on how to construct them including the rein and harness finishes. You can however just choose to have the separately on the tree as standalone decorations.

If you join my Facebook group, then I will shortly be uploading a file that will include instructions on how to add a mulled wine scented sachet (or any scent of your choosing) that will help bring the festive cheer into any room. I found that it also improved the smell of the Christmas decoration box when bringing out of storage for a year. No musty smells.

 It will also contain a cheat on how to sew these up with the small seam allowance and an idea for alternative usage of the templates.
It is 25% off this week with the code LaunchSept16 so grab it whilst you can and Merry Christmas sewing

If you have aleady purchased and you win then I will refund your purchase

a Rafflecopter giveaway
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Saturday, July 23, 2016

Pattern Parade Wrap Up

Thank you for joining us this week.  We have had so much fun sharing these Patterns on Parade with you!

Let's recap what we have seen this week.

Tuesday we had Gracious Threads with the Swim and Surf Shorts.

We also had the Classic Maillot from Designs by Call Ajaire.

On Wednesday MCM Studio Designs shared The Clarissa Dress with us.

Shannon Mac Designs also featured the Window to My Soul Quilt pattern. 

The Zippy Keepers pattern from FABulous Home Sewn was one of the featured patterns on Thursday.

The other featured pattern from Thursday was the Cuddly Carrier from Bishy Barnababes.

Snuggle My Baby patterns rounded out the week on Friday with Genevieve's Summer Scoop Tank.

The rafflcopter concluded Friday evening and the winner is.... Judith Martinez!  Enjoy your patterns Judith!

Thanks to everyone who has followed along with us this week.

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Friday, July 22, 2016

DT Sewversity Is Now Open!

Beginner Sewing Lessons

The idea to teach sewing came to me when I caught myself labeling a pattern “intermediate” when I knew it should be an “advanced beginner” pattern. I taught sewing long before I started designing patterns. Beginners learned to sew button holes, sew darts, insert zippers and finish seams. We worked with commercial patterns from “The Big Four”; Simplicity, McCall’s, Butterick, and Vogue. Naturally, the next question is “What is an advanced beginner?”.  Most beginners know that they are beginners. An "advanced beginner" has mastered basic seams, seam finishes, closures and has made a few garments using the techniques above.
Next, people might be called "intermediates" and later "advanced". What constitutes “intermediate” and “advanced” skills seems to vary among people. Some think that being able to insert a zipper and sew a dart is "intermediate". If you look at the major commercial pattern companies, you will get an idea of how they determine the skill level required for different patterns.

Centered zippers, darts, buttonholes and narrow hems are beginner skills. Below is an example of a pattern from Vogue’s “Very Easy” category. The techniques include buttonholes and a narrow hem.

  Very Easy patterns are intended for beginners or people who do not have a lot of time to spend constructing a garment. There may not be any hand sewing or much fitting required. Easy patterns are also intended for beginners but require the ability to do some fitting. There will be more techniques involved in “Easy” patterns than in “Very Easy” patterns. “Average” or intermediate patterns offer more of a challenge in fitting, and construction techniques. By the time a person is considered “Advanced”, he or she is able to draft patterns, use professional tailoring and construction techniques, and sew with a wide variety of fabrics.

Here is another “Very Easy” Vogue pattern. This one includes darts and a zipper.


Very Easy pattern from Butterick. The description is “Lined dress with fitted bodice and gathered skirt has shaped, high-low hemline (lining fabric will show), in-seam pockets and back zipper. A: Sleeveless. B: Contrast bodice and short sleeves. C: Long sleeves. Includes separate pattern pieces for A/B, C and D cup sizes.”

Some who consider themselves beginners might be surprised to find that they are intermediates and vice versa. Others will say, “I only sew PDF patterns and PDF patterns should be easier than commercial patterns”.  Still others will say, “I prefer my paper patterns. I don’t like all the photos and videos in PDF patterns”. Sometimes, it’s just a matter of preference.To truly be "intermediate" and "advanced" it makes sense to be able to sew any pattern designed for that skill level. I understand some sewists prefer to sew only a particular brand of pattern because that it was they are comfortable with. Again, everyone is entitled to have his or her preference.
My classes are designed so that a sewist can use any pattern, PDF or paper. There’s a misconception that patterns should “teach” sewing. I am not sure that a single pattern could teach all of the basic sewing skills. Some designers go to great lengths to make their patterns as easy to sew as possible. Every nuance of sewing a seam is explained in great detail. Others will tell you up front that you need to be able to sew a zipper on your own or be familiar with customizing a pattern to fit.

 This is the reason I decided to bring my “live” sewing experience to online classes. My self-paced  classes are for those who want to advance and learn new skills. Students learn and perfect new techniques without investing time and money in garment sewing.  I realize that not everyone is a perfectionist who wants his or her projects to look professionally sewn. Not everyone sews to sell or cares much about sewing buttons instead of just using a snap. There is room for everyone. When you buy a pattern, you are absolutely free to make any changes you like. I see no reason why you should invest in lessons if you are happy doing what you are doing.

Not everyone wants or needs sewing lessons. On the other hand, if you feel your sewing could be better but do not know how to improve, sewing lessons may be for you. If you are a beginner or have not used your sewing machine in years, you may benefit from sewing lessons.
My lessons include a great deal of information including how to sew zippers, buttonholes, darts, French seams, and blind hems . I also teach basic hand stitches. I have included 14 patterns specifically designed to reinforce the techniques taught in the class. Additionally, the patterns and practice exercises  require the least amount of fabric as possible. Not everyone has yards of fabric at their disposal. At the end of the class, you not only have a strong foundation in basic sewing, you also have several finished items you can keep, give as a gift or sell. The class package is $125.00 and includes $70.00 worth of  patterns. If you would like to see a listing of the major topic areas, please visit me at .
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