The Magnificent Vivie! Piecing tutorial and Blaverry Pattern Review!

Disclaimer: this post contains affiliate links.  And while I did get the pattern for free, all the opinions are completely my own.

 Man, oh man was this month busy!  Birthday outfits, photo-shoots galore, picking up extra shifts at work, taxes, appointments, Easter clothes, and everything in between... phew!  I'm getting exhausted just thinking back on it!

But enough about all that for now!  Let's get down to some serious business:  The Vivie Dress PDF Pattern by {affiliate linkBlaverry.  The Vivie was actually the first Blaverry pattern I ever bought!  I was searching frantically for a first day of school dress to make for Azriella the day before school was set to start!  I found the Vivie, fell in love with the Blaverry patterns on a whole and it is one of my favorite, everyday dresses for Azriella at this age.  It just fits her so well!  I never blogged it because I was busy making her birthday dress then the cavalcade of Halloween sewing so I never got a chance to give it a proper photoshoot!

Then when Christie announced it was going to be our next pattern focus as part of her Blaverry Blasters team, I knew I would cease the moment and also make a mini one for Akira.  For hers I wanted to do something different.  I had a bunch of neon scraps and a length of polka dot fabric so I decided I would do some color blocking.  After that I knew that, in order to bring the whole look together, I wanted to do a pieced button placket (x2).  

It's something I have done many many times and yeah, I may be addicted but I don't even care, I just love the look of it.  I decided that I would take this time to actually divulge how I do it.  I learned via several techniques I picked up around the interwebs which I mashed up into my own version (and tips!) on how to do it.

Kat's Piecing Tips + Tutorial


Materials

  • Large scraps 
  • duplicate version of pattern on paper 
  • sewing machine and stuff

Tutorial

It's really all about staying focused and visualizing how a piece is going to fit, keeping in mind your next piece.

 You'll be using a 1/4" seam allowance throughout and be using a stitch length of about 2mm.  You'll want this shorter stitch length to perforate the paper more, making it easier to remove later.

  1.  The first step is to trace the pattern piece you want to piece on to paper.  I use freezer paper because it's what I use for all my pattern drafting purposes but any plain paper (no christmas or dyed papers), legal pad, or tracing paper will do.  Tip no. 1:  plan to sew your scrap pieces an extra 1/4" over your pattern piece at least.  This is imperative so that your pattern piece doesn't end up short.  We can always scale back later but it's much more difficult to add in.  
  2. This isn't really a step but more of a separate suggestion: when I use "scraps" I find it as useful as possible to keep them in as big a piece as possible.  I even sometimes leave them in long skinny yardage and sew what I need then cut away the rest.  Don't worry about keeping grain, you wouldn't want to do this in areas that need smooth, seamless structure and you will most likely be interfacing or lining your pattern piece on grain so that will help keep things neat.
  3. Directly on top of your paper you will begin sewing your pieces.  You can start anywhere you please but know that if you start in the center it will take more planning of piecing and making sure everything thing fits feasibly versus if you start in a corner.  I'm not saying it's not an option but I've learned through trial and error that I've run into more road bumps when I started in the center of a piece (unless I had actual instructions from someone else's pattern).  In the example above, I started in the top left corner with the red triangle and right sides together, I took a green strip and sewed them together with a 1/4" seam allowance.  You can see through each color so as to see how you can sew on top to make your design.  Tip no. 2:  don't worry about overlapping more than a 1/4", just don't sew anything together that is less than that.  If you look at the picture, you will see lots of bits (in the seam allowances) that are irregular in shape.  That is bound to happen.  When it does, just trim down to a 1/4" seam allowance.  Tip no. 3:  press every single seam as you go.  It will be impossible to do it later.  For each new piece, just align it over your last piece making sure it overlaps your pattern piece from edge to edge, sew a 1/4" seam, press, repeat.  When you are done, there should be no bit of your paper pattern visible.
  4. This is something I've found to keep things in place/ keep shape:  I like to stitch around the perimeter of the pattern piece as close to the edge as is practical (keep it 1/4">).  Optionally, if you have any long angular bits, you can trim them to seam allowance.
  5. Now here's one of the fun parts:  start tearing the perforated edge of the paper away from the fabric and remove (just like you would from a notebook).  Let's give everything another press for good measure.  
  6. Final step!  Take your original pattern piece and place it on top of your pieced one.  Trim it to match just like you would with regular fabric.  Trim excess.  Sew as per pattern instructions!

 It really makes a pattern look abstract and you can take it into a million different directions (which is why I'm obsessed with it!)

The Vivie pattern is so so cute but not cutesy which I love.  It looks sophisticated and whimsical and just flat out awesome on anyone for any age!

The Vivie features a button/snap placket, pointed collar with collar stand, and inseam pockets.  And just like all the Blaverry patterns, the size range is a ridiculous 2T-16year which I always get all heart eyes over.

Where we live, there is no shortage of cool graphic artwork.  However, my little munchkin is at that wily 2 year old age where all they want to do is run towards the closest danger.  Booooo....

Good thing she's pretty cute!

I can't get over how old Azriella looks in this shoot.  Do you remember how grumpy she was last time I tried to take pics?  Well she nailed it today.  I can't believe I made such a gorgeous creature sometimes!

It was really early and the brisk breeze was exhilarating, and everyone was full of energy!

 So guys, if you are looking for a perfect dress pattern for all occasions; one that you can dress up or dress down for what you want, then the Vivie is a must have.  Go over to Blaverry and grab a copy of the pattern!

I still have lots to blog (yet most of it is photographed!  Yay!) and one more item to sew (the next Blaverry pattern promotion!) and then I'll be all caught up!  HIGH FIVES!

hugs + stitches + many many smooches,

Kat

This shoot was not without any derp shots.  Here's a few of the best:

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