Articles by Lesley

I’m a young quilter that doesn’t have enough time to dedicate to my hobby.

I’ve been wanting a Silhouette Cameo for a while. I went to a Crafty Weekender retreat and a friend there had one and let us play with it a bit. My mind immediately thought of all of the awesome things I could make if I had one.

Then it just kept popping up EVERYWHERE. You know how that works, right? Once you know about something, you see it everywhere. My friend had one and we talked about it. Facebook groups I belonged to mentioned it. I started seeing things made with it on Pinterest. I was bombarded!

But I held out. Then I found a bundle sale and I caved. While I waited for it to ship, I read tutorials, ordered materials, and spent a lot of time pinning and planning ideas.

I LOVE IT! I can’t wait to do even more with it. Here are some of my first projects and I am so please with how they’ve turned out.


Hashtag and Emoji Shirts


Obviously, my first projects was for the kitties. I ordered most of the vinyl from Expressions Vinyl. This is HTV – heat transfer vinyl.




This is also HTV (GLITTER!!!) even though it’s not on fabric. The tutorial I read said this would help it stay on in the dishwasher. I’m skeptical. I’ve also learned that outdoor vinyl is good for projects like this because it’s “weather resistant.”




This is regular vinyl. It’s a bad pic, but I used white glitter vinyl to write SELVAGE on the vase where I keep my selvages.




I was most excited about these. I think HTV is going to be my favorite.




You can also use it to cut fabric for applique. I was pretty excited about this. I used some awesome voile I had laying around.

I have a lot of projects in my mind and on a Pinterest board. I need to keep practicing and spend some more quality time with the software. I upgraded and I think it’s going to be totally worth it. If you’ve been on the fence about one of these, I’d say go for it!

After I made my bridesmaid dress for the wedding in Denver, I got the crazy idea that maybe I should make my clothes for the entire trip. 🙂

As always, I immediately started planning and pinning. I had a few outfits already pinned that I really liked, so I wanted to replicate those. Here’s what I came up with.

Thursday – Flying: P4P SOS Pants, P4P Women’s Raglan Hoodie, P4P LMU


Friday – Day: P4P SOS Pants, P4P Women’s Henley, P4P Grandpa Cardigan, P4P LMU


Friday – Rehearsal: M4M Megan Dress

Saturday – Getting Ready: P4P Peg Legs, P4P Summer Kimono, M4M Mama Mya, P4P LMU

Sunday – Flying: P4P Peg Legs, P4P Carefree Cardigan, P4P LMU or M4M Mama Mya

Swimming – Ohhh Lulu Sews Zooey Swimsuit

Sleeping – P4P Peg Legs, P4P Boyfriend V-Neck

I briefly debated making my own underwear using some Ohhh Lulu Sews patterns, but then I bought all new underwear and bras from Gap Body because I fell in love with their Breathe line and that idea went out the window. I still want to make some of those patterns, though.

I actually already had fabric for a few pieces and at a few pieces already made. I already had fabric for the peg legs since I constantly buy Robert Kaufman jersey in gray and black. For the hoodie, I knew I wanted to use some amazing French Terry that I ordered from Raspberry Creek Fabrics. I already have two Carefree Cardigans that I love, so I decided to use one of those. Also, I’ve made a few of the v-necks and they are perfect for sleeping in.

Most of the fabric I ordered came from Girl Charlee or For the SOS Pants, I ordered a teal ponte and then the black Super Stretch Denim from Robert Kaufman. I bought a gray and white striped jersey for the LMU. I found a great white burnout knit for the henley and a awesome gray and black leopard print sweater knit for the cardigan. The LMU actually came later when I discovered how see through the burnout was. I ended up using some leftover fabric from another project. I found an adorable black and light pink polka dot ponte for the Megan Dress and a crepe for the kimono. There was this wonderful white slub jersey knit for the Mama Mya and I ended up making an LMU from it, too. I planned to wear each LMU a couple of times or the Mama Mya twice. I found a great Nicole Miller scuba knit at Joanns for the Zooey Swimsuit and that ended my shopping.

I had very little time in February and March to work on any of these, but when I had time, I only focused on this. Then I went to Crafty Weekender and knocked out the rest. I’m in love with so many of the things I made. The only piece I’m really disappointed in are the stretch denim SOS Pants. They just don’t wear right. The ponte ones are fine, so I’m thinking it’s the fabric. I ended up scrapping that project entirely. I may or may not come back to it someday. The swimsuit was a good trial. I could make some improvements, but for a wearable muslin, I’m OK with it. I wish I would have left the bottom band off the cardigan, but it’s not a big deal either. The Mama Mya is AMAZEBALLS and I can’t wait to make a million of them. The LMUs feel AMAZING. And the Megan Dress makes me feel like the loveliest lady ever. The hoodie might be my favorite, though. The French Terry is so soft and wonderful and I love the print so much.

I ended up deviating from my original plan quite a bit, so here’s what I actually wore.

Thursday – Flying: P4P SOS Pants, P4P Women’s Raglan Hoodie, P4P LMU, Boyfriend Jeans from The Limited


Me Made May - May 26th


Friday – Day: P4P SOS Pants, P4P Women’s Henley, P4P Grandpa Cardigan, P4P LMU M4M Mama Mya, Skinny Jeans from Ann Taylor, Cami from Ann Taylor, Plaid Shirt from The Gap


Me Made May - May 27th


Friday – Rehearsal: M4M Megan Dress Same as above. It was casual.

Saturday – Getting Ready: P4P Peg Legs, P4P Summer Kimono, M4M Mama Mya, P4P LMU Cami from Gap


Me Made May - May 28th


Sunday – Flying: P4P Peg Legs, P4P Carefree Cardigan, P4P LMU or M4M Mama Mya, Skinny Jeans from Ann Taylor, Cami from Ann Taylor (I got home and changed into a P4P Sweet Tee Dress.)


Me Made May - May 29th


Swimming – Ohhh Lulu Sews Zooey Swimsuit

Sleeping – P4P Peg Legs, P4P Boyfriend V-Neck Crafty Weekender Screenprinted Target V-Neck T-Shirt, True Bias Hudson Pant

Here are some of the other items I made for the trip, but actually didn’t wear on the trip.


Me Made May - May 9th


Me Made May - May 15th


Me Made May - May 20th


Me Made May - May 18th


Me Made May - May 5th


So there you go. I had a lot of fun planning this and sewing it and I think it’s something I’m going to try to do more often. We don’t take a lot of trips, so maybe I’ll have to do it for a certain week of the year or things like that.

I had three amazing friends in college and the last one is got married Memorial Day weekend in Denver. Well, technically, I’m the last one, but I don’t count because I don’t want to get married. Anyway, Ali told the bridesmaids to get a gray dress. Any grey dress. Long. Short. Dark Gray. Light Gray. Grey. Whatever you prefer.

I thought about it and I kept coming back to the idea of making my own dress. I’ve been fairly successful with garment sewing and I needed a challenge. I started planning and pinning on Pinterest and I soon had an idea of exactly what the dress would look like and what fabrics I would use. I wanted lace and tulle and something super feminine and pretty. This was my inspiration: minus the bow and plus sleeves: Dress

The pattern was easy. I would start with the Colette Macaron, which I already owned, but had never made. Then I would just add a simple tulle circle skirt. I did some heavy Googling to find people who had made the Macaron with a lace overlay. All Dressed Up and Nowhere to Go had made the perfect version and it had a keyhole back! I wanted a keyhole back! I found out how to create a loop from thread for the button on the back. I Googled Couture finishing techniques. I Googled putting in an invisible zipper even though I’ve done it before, but I wanted/needed more confidence. I Googled the best ways to work with tulle and make a circle skirt. I basically did a TON of research.

Once I had done all of that, I needed to find fabric since my local shop doesn’t carry the special occasion fabric. I thought about ordering from Mood or somewhere online, but I would have to buy swatches first. I didn’t want to wait that long. So I gave up and went to Joanns. They actually had quite a few options. I found a good lace, a good lining, and some decent tulle there. Overall, I was pleased with what I came out with.

Next, I had to mess with the pattern a little. Colette patterns are drafted for people who do not have my shape. I was hoping that with a decent bra, I wouldn’t need to do a small bust adjustment. I knew that I would need to lengthen the waist though, so I added two inches. Then I had to mess with the pattern pieces a bit since I was using a lace overlay with a side seam plus the keyhole back. Overall, it wasn’t too hard and I think I only had to re-cut a couple of small pieces. I cut VERY carefully because of the pattern of the lace, the edges, and just not wanting to mess up in general. I drafted the circle skirt, which was super easy. I had already decided that I would bind as many seams around the lace as I could so it would look nice, so I also cut some bias binding strips.

Then I got started. I dedicated an entire weekend to the dress and I spent the majority of it in my sewing room. I think a took a break to teach a class. 🙂

I started with the bodice because I figured the circle skirt would be the easiest part. I was right for the most part. I took my time. I sewed slow. I thought. I stopped. I looked. It took forever. I sewed down all of the binding by hand. I pinned like crazy. I was careful.

It turned out beautifully. I was sooooooo proud of it. I tried it and on it fit. Ideally, I would have made a muslin especially for a project like this, but the fabric wasn’t expensive and I could always go out and buy a dress, so I chose not to. The fit was snug, but if I took a small seam allowance, it would be OK. I’d size up next time and do the small bust adjustment. I could have added another two or even more inches to the waist. If I hadn’t added the two that I did, it would have been an empire. I was pretty disappointed in that, but unless I wanted to start completely over, I had to leave it, so I did.

I didn’t even take much of a break and I went right to working on the skirt. Six layers of tulle does not tame easily, but I managed it. And I put in the invisible zipper, which was not fun AT ALL. It looks easy, but there are little things about it that definitely do not make it easy. I was successful, though, and I think it would be easier without tulle. There bottom side seam lines up when the zipper is zipped, but the top one is off by a bit. I’m not sure what happened there, but it’s going to be hidden by a belt, so I let it go. I actually think I ripped it out once and decided if I didn’t work out the second time, I wasn’t going to bother with it. I left the tulle unhemmed and used a rolled hem on my serger for the skirt lining.

I ordered a wide black belt, hot pink shoes (the bridesmaids had different colored shoes), jewelry, and a black clutch. The outfit was totally finished and accessorized.

Are you ready to see it?










Me Made May - May 28th

“It’s human rights for everybody, there is no difference.” Thanks for the line, Macklemore.

If you want to help, here’s the info you need.





Blue Apron

If you follow me on Instagram (@llatham0306 – I actually update Instagram on a regular basis. You can blame it for the demise of this blog.), you may have seen me posting delicious pictures of food. Which I made! After Christmas, Andrew and I decided to try Blue Apron. I’ve gotten a lot of questions about our experience and I recently wrote a President’s Letter in our building newsletter about it. Without further ado…

The most frequently asked question I remember my mom asking my dad, sister, and I was, “What do you want for supper?” If we did not respond or responded indifferently, we always received a big sigh. I did not understand the burden we put on my mom until I had to start planning meals with another person. My mom was also responsible for grocery shopping; a dread which I also did not comprehend until adulthood, especially living downtown and feeling like we should trek either North or South each week to a grocery chain even though we had a perfectly great one, albeit a bit more expensive, a block away. Unlike my family, who could not just order takeout or go to a restaurant due to living in a town the size of a few KC street blocks, we started taking advantage of the awesome restaurant choices around us. After a while, though, we were in the same rut and the question changed to, “Where do you want to go eat?” Downtown living, we found, does not entirely solve the dinner problem.

If you walk out of our building on a Saturday morning, you would notice the Blue Apron boxes that are piled on top of the security desk. One of those is for us and as cliché as it might sound, it has totally changed our lives. We both enjoy to cook and it is an activity that we enjoy doing together, but had stopped entirely because of the hassle of prepping to do the actual cooking. Removing the two things we hate about preparing to cook, planning a menu and shopping for that menu, is exactly what services like Blue Apron do.

So far, we have been very satisfied with Blue Apron (they are not paying me to say this), but I have heard great things about similar meal kit services including Hello Fresh, Plated, and Home Chef. There have also been specialty services pop up for specific types of cooking such as Peach Dish for a Southern flavor, The Organic Dish, Purple Carrot for vegans, and Green Blender for superfood smoothies.

Every Saturday, we get fresh, quality, farm-sourced, proportioned ingredients in entirely recyclable packaging for three balanced and unique meals for just under $60. We have had over 75 meals and some of our absolute favorites have been Chicken & Garlic Chive Meatballs with Quick Apple & Brussels Sprout Kimchi; Apple & Blue Cheese Panzanella Salad with Smashed Purple Potatoes’; Cod & Potato Brandade with Watermelon Radish Salad & Garlic Toasts (picture below); Sweet Potato & Collard Green Hash with Sunny Side-Up Eggs, Molasses Butter & Biscuits; Acorn Squash, Brussel Sprouts & Farro Salad with Crispy Pepitas & Cranberry Agrodolce (picture below); Kimchi & Barley Miso Ramen with Soft-Boiled Eggs & Asian Pear (pictures below); and Hoisin & Shiitake Burgers with Miso Mayonnaise & Roasted Sweet potato Wedges (picture below). In all, there have only been a few meals where I would probably pass if I had the option to make it again, but there has not been a single meal that I did not eat.

Not only have we enjoyed cooking together again and eating the delicious meals, but we are cooking with ingredients we probably would have never used, some which we have never heard of before. Farro, for example, has been a key ingredient in a few of the meals. It is extremely easy to prepare and is a great alternative to rice. Also, I discovered that I do not like the taste of kale or Swiss chard, but collard greens are fine. Andrew and I made an effort to try the vegetarian option to see if that lifestyle could work for us and we have loved discovering the different ingredients that can be used in vegetarian meals. We were not picky eaters before, but our experiences have definitely been expanded over the last few months.

If you struggle with the same thing my mom and Andrew and I have, then I would recommend giving one of these meal kit services a try. There are usually options for delivery days and number of servings per meal, multiple meals to choose from weekly, and vegetarian options. You can usually skip a week if needed, too. Many offer a discounted or free trial; I have freebies to give away and would be happy to share.


Cod & Potato Brandade

Cod & Potato Brandade


Acorn Squash

Acorn Squash, Brussel Sprouts & Farro Salad


Miso Ramen

Kimchi & Barley Miso Ramen



Hoisin & Shiitake Burgers

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