Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Pattern Review Soda Pop Polo

I am normally hesitant to review patterns, because, well, I'm afraid I'll leave something out, or someone else won't love what I loved ... BUT I made a new year's resolution to be better about it, so here goes!

This last week I had the joy to test for Rebecca of Candy Castle Patterns.  Joy partly because I love her patterns.  I have all of them, and they are just fun to sew, and partly because we always have the cheeriest tester groups... I had a silly streak this week and was getting good at making ppws (like a meme) to keep the levity... Here's one....
Because really, who doesn't want to look at that lovely face while taking a sewing break?  :grin:

And as always, Rebecca put out an amazing pattern.  I tested this one for both little ones, which was fun because there are so many options...
Connor got long sleeves and henley collar with a plain pocket.
Inara got short sleeves and a ruffle collar with a reverse applique star pocket.

There are also options for a hood, regular collar, heart shaped pocket, pocket with flap, lightning bolt and heart reverse appliques and a decorative inset.  Oh, and slim fit instructions as well.  And a lot of the accents can be done in knit or woven, making this a great knit project for people newer to knits, as the trickier bits can be done in fabric you are more comfortable with.

I also got to cut into some of my coveted custom knits that I've been snuggling and staring dreamily at on a shelf...

First let me say, and don't tell Rebecca, that I got the pattern and didn't open it for a full 24 hours, and then opened it just to print pieces.  Why you ask?  I was TERRIFIED of the placket.  I'd had some issues with a placket in the past and was stressing not making it perfectly for her...

In case the placket scares you, I will tell you now, don't stress it.  I like to do most testers twice, once I go through and work mostly off pictures, and then a second time I go through and work off words. 

So on my first go round for Inara's shirt.  and the placket came together like a dream!  I suggest getting a Sewline or Fons and Porter glue pen if you don't have one.  I love mine for things like bias tape. and small areas that are pin tricky, and it makes this placket even easier.  Whether you are a picture or word person, just take a deep breath, and go with it... you'll probably turn your head funny a couple times, but be completely amazed when you see it come together.  It looks professional and is easy to do. 

I do have one suggestion here, pick a mid or light weight knit if you use a knit - I used a mid-heavy weight poly/cotton rib knit and it made it a little tricky when it came time for the buttons, but even so, it worked out.  Also, when it says lightweight interfacing - it means it, don't grab the random medium weight you have laying around.... (she says possibly from experience).  The rest of this shirt is a 95/5 cotton-lycra that worked wonderfully for a shirt. 

In about 3 hours, this is my first finished Soda Pop Polo:

Slightly off season print, right?  Well it was a holiday custom from Shannon at Fabric Stache, and Inara is just in love with it because of the snowflakes.  I went with buttonholes on hers, because, well frankly, she picked out the buttons and begged, lol.

All practice attempts with my automatic buttonholer went sort of iffy, and in the end I decided it wasn't worth ruining the whole shirt on the last couple steps, so I did it old school. 

She totally loves it, which in our book, is a win.  And on to little man.  Can I tell you how much I love patterns that are unisex?

Connor is REALLY into pirates, so I knew exactly what fabric to use.  Thanks Serina from Bamboo, Hemp, and Reprints for the yummy print!  Connor's is also a 95/5 cotton-lycra, and I used the same ribbing for the collar and placket (glutton for punishment apparently).

So, second time through and no ruffle to gather (I LOVE gathering ruffles! -Said no seamstress ever), Connor's took a little over two hours total. 

Do you not love that little squishy face? lol   He's such a more compliant model than his sister... 
He's actually a bit of a camera hog, but shhhhh...

I used snaps on his shirt, and at this moment I wished I hadn't used the medium weight interfacing that the pattern doesn't say to use, and had instead listened and used lightweight, because I wanted to use my size 16 snaps, and they were too short :(  But he LOVES it... Ran around saying "yo-ho" all night with his pirate sword.

We decided he needed matching pants, so I whipped up a pair of Panelled Pants from Little Kiwi's Closet, which are a current household favorite of both kids (knit or woven?! yes please!).

I love when a pattern fits amazingly without me making all sorts of nips and tucks, and this polo shirt is one of those patterns.   Sleeves, collars, length, width, it all just looks so professional.  In fact, I just posted a couple of pics and already have an order for one!  And with all the different options, I can keep making them for my kids without looking like I'm doing the same thing over and over!

Here's the link to the pattern:  Soda Pop Polo
And if you check out her Facebook page : Candy Castle Patterns, I bet you'll find a coupon code for an awesome discount good till the 6th!

And because outtakes are funny... yes she is wearing a ruffle crown. 

And a parting thought, (and I'm amazed at how few people know who this is!)