Sunday, August 23, 2015

Continuing On - Critiquing Patterns I Have Used, Izzy & Ivy

In the coming weeks, I thought I would review some of the many patterns that I have made or worked with over the many years that I have been sewing and share my honest opinion of how they worked out for me.  Some patterns, though cute, completely baffled me while others proved to be a joy to work with.  I have been one who can actually visualize an outfit, quilt, pillow, purse, etc. completely finished in my mind before I even start.  It has always surprised me as to how many people cannot do that.  For me, once I purchase a pattern, I can quickly find the exact fabric that I am looking for to get the look I already have pictured in my mind.  Working in a quilt shop was perfect for me and helping women who struggle in that area was a wonderful challenge that I relished.  I would spend as long as it took with every customer until she could visualize her quilt in her mind using the fabric that we picked out together.  I loved doing that!!  Back to my blog....

As far as children's garments are concerned, I have used, Kari Mecca, Izzy & Ivy, Children's Corner,  Favorite Things, Olive Ann Designs, The Old Fashioned Baby, Fiona Bell, Rob Merrett, Petite Poche, Janet Pray, Victoria Jones, etc., etc..  I can't even count all of the designers that I have used in the past.  That being said, I must confess that I rarely use the traditional pattern makers, McCalls, Butterick, Vogue,  Burda, etc., because I enjoy using someone different.  I don't dislike the traditional, I just love designs that are fun and unique.  The problem  that I have found in using many of the newer designer's patterns however is that many simply do not know how to write directions properly and many seamstresses out there get frustrated....including me.  In fact, if I were not a good seamstress on my own, I would have thrown the cute  designer pattern, fabric, and everything I purchased to go with it in the trash.  BUT...I can eventually figure out what the designer is striving to explain and move on, but for many out there, especially those newer sewers, it's nearly impossible.  Hence my reason for writing the next few post.

Yesterday I started with Martha Pullen, today I will talk about Izzy & Ivy.  I love their designs, I love how they include their label in the pattern, and I love the pictures on the front of their patterns.  It's all about marketing ladies.  HOWEVER, their instructions are very poor.  When I travel, I visit quilt shops and nice fabric shops to see what is new and popular.  In one very nice fabric shop in Lawrence, KS  I saw a little girl's mannequin with one of the Izzy & Ivy dresses that I had made in the past year. The store owner was nearby and we had a great discussion in regards to this particular pattern.  She shared that it was one of her most popular little girl patterns that she sells in her shop.  BUT because of the difficulty of the directions, she said that she felt as though she needed to give a class to those who purchased the pattern so that they could actually  complete the dress.  How sad.  I have made three Izzy & Ivy patterns, including the one that was on display.  My granddaughters absolutely loved the dresses that I made...but beware.  Unless they've changed, I give these patterns a C overall...and if you're new to sewing, wait awhile before trying these.

Here are the three patterns that I made:

This one is Macy Giggles.

The next two are Kayla Bubble.  (A side note here- as you can see, I did not bubble any of the dresses but simply hemmed them.  ALSO, you need to know how to wrap elastic thread in your bobbin as the entire back is elasticized....but so cute!)

This last one, the one that was on display in Kansas, is Beverly Belle.  This is not one for the weak of heart.  ;-)

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