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May 06, 2015

Jillian Top/Mykonos Tankini Pattern Mashup

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Today, we are continuing our sewing of the Women's Bundle Up patterns (sale goes through May 8th). In full disclosure, we were given a complimentary the Real Deal Jeans pattern (review here) & Mykonos Tankini pattern for our review. But that didn't stop us from putting our money where our mouth is. We purchased the bundle so we could feature just a few more of these great patterns. We get no compensation from you purchasing the bundle. We honestly believe you would be hard pressed to find a better selection of patterns & with awesome size ranges! Especially at $4.50/pattern folks. Alright, alright enough with the pitch on to the mash up.
Eeekkk! I am so excited to share this self care sew with you. I've been badly in need of a swim suit ever since I entered motherhood and jumped at the chance to customize the perfect look for myself. The the main inspiration and foundation came from the Mykonos Tankini. I loved the design of the triangle tank option, but ended up going with the peplum version because I knew that accentuating my waistline would look best with my pear shaped body. I also opted for the boy shorts because then I don't even have to wonder if I need to add a layer of shorts over the suit when I go out in public. I guess I just always feel self conscious of my bare legs in moments like that.
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I attempted to make the tankini exclusively using the Mykonos pattern, but it just didn't work for my shape as well as I would've liked. In the last month I have stopped nursing and now there's just not a lot of shape on top to work with. To be honest though, when I first saw the patterns for the Bundle Up I felt a crazy desire to have the tankini and then borrow the neat crisscross design of the Jillian Top. The finished look will be 100% functional for young kids, climbing and pulling on my suit.  I know that uni-boobs are taboo in the fashion world, but I've always seen myself as an athlete with 8+ years of doing sports year round so I actually prefer that athletic look.
As far as construction modifications goes, the biggest things were that I extended the waistline of the boy shorts about 5 inches so that if I was swimming when the peplum floated up that I wouldn't have to deal with my squishy, stretch-mark covered tummy being exposed to the world. I love my body and the joys in my life that came from it, but it's personal and I just want to keep it that way. Because I'm about 1" above average height I added 1" to the bottom of the peplum. I cut the Jillian Tank at the middle of the lengthen/shorten line so that could have it hit me at my natural waistline. I also used swim bra cups so that I didn't have to worry about nipping on cold days because most of my swimming is outside in fresh mountain water.
I was a little nervous to put myself out there with a swimsuit and I had came up with a plan to work out everyday, twice a day, for the next 2 weeks so that I was more toned. Ha, that didn't happen. I only ended up getting through 70% of 1 Jillian Micheal's workout routine. As I looked at the pictures, I found myself surprised by how I look in this swimsuit.

I feel like I look courageous, confident, and strong. Although I have 30+ lbs of extra baby weight around the midsection, it doesn't mean that I'm not beautiful and I can't take on the world. Lately I've had some eye opening experiences about my health that didn't keep me motivated more than a few days to be super healthy and end the end left me searching for the oreos. When I see these pictures, I realize that I am still strong and although I'm a mother of 3 young kids, I haven't lost my identity and it's not too deep to be able to find it further. Love yourself for what you are because that's pretty dang amazing!
 
With Love,
Al
PS. Don't forget to check out the other bloggers on the tour they are making some great stuff!

May 05, 2015

Real Deal Jeans by Winter Wear Designs

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Today we are part of the Women's Bundle Up Tour. The Real Deal Jeans by Winter Wear Designs are the first pattern we have to show you and we have a couple more looks coming to you tomorrow. We have stated our love of all things Bundle Up in the past and these 11 patterns are perfect for women of all shapes and sizes (most of them go to at least XXL). The variety of patterns and styles has you set for every occasion.
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9 months after having my sweet little Sally, I find myself dreaming of the day I can have my body back just for me. A good place to start seems to just be ditching the shapeless basketball shorts and t-shirt and dawning something that shows the curve. Now I feel like I am well on my way thanks to the Women's Bundle Up that is currently going on.
These are the first pair of jeans that I've ever made and although it took quite a bit of time, it was awesome to get that fit just perfectly as I was constructing them. The size was pretty on and the instructions were clear and easy to make the pants turn out looking better than if they were bought at the store. I love that the instructions tell you when to top stitch so they can be so much better than homemade jeans.
To treasure my handi-work I left my autograph on one of my back pockets. Cursive makes for some great clothing art.
And yes, if you were wondering, they are functional, I can easily bend over and pick up my sweet little one.
Now I'm ready for a date or chasing my 3 kids at the park. I truly love this pattern and it has multiple cut lengths (Full Length, Capris, Board Shorts, Shorts with 5 inch inseam, & Shorts with 3 inch inseam). I ended chose the capri for this pair of pants.
If you are looking for more inspiration, there are some really talented bloggers of all shapes and sizes on the blog tour. The variety of styles of this bundle is sure to blow you away so go check them out.
With Love,
Al

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