Happy Birthday, Pattern Review!

Pattern Review is celebrating its tenth anniversary! Congratulations to Deepika and to all the PR members who make PR such a great site — with more than ninety THOUSAND pattern reviews, PR is the first place I look when I'm deciding whether or not to make a commercial pattern. If you're not a member (basic membership is free!), you . 

There are a bunch of PR Day meetups going on all over the world this coming Saturday, November 19th (I wish I could go to !) … check out the list . 

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Jumpin'

I'm *almost* done with my obsession (almost — stay tuned). I've started now to noodle around a bit with the idea of jumpers, for winter (or for what passes for winter, in California). I checked out MOMSPatterns for some inspiration:

and 

And, of course, I think I may go back to last year's obsession, our friend , or even this similar BurdaStyle pattern:

Although I'm afraid that perhaps what's really pulling me towards this pattern is the pocket topstitching, which I would almost certainly be too lazy to do. (And her truly exceptional liquid-eyeliner skills — at 40, is it too late for me to master that? I suppose it doesn't really go well with glasses …) And that armhole is a bit deep for me … even with a t-shirt under it, it can look weird.

There's also McCalls 5927, which has a gazillion great reviews on — check out this  gorgeous dress & photo from :

Is anyone else thinking jumpers? Or going beyond the "thinking" stage to the "making" stage? If so, what patterns are you using? 

[ is running some great sales over the next two weeks … especially good if you use AMEX, because a week from Saturday is "Small Business Saturday" — if you use a registered AMEX card at a small business on Saturday the 26th, you can get $25 back. Details are . Before then, use the code 'gobble' to save 15% all month …] 

Happy Jen-niversary!

What are you wearing to the party? (Which party? The party to celebrate Jen's fifth anniversary with — that party!) I'm wearing this. And eating pigs in blankets. In my head.

It's a virtual party, happening this weekend, and in celebration and as a THANK YOU, she'd like to run YOU a 20% off weekend sale on all patterns on her site! Use the coupon code 'happyfiver' when you check out from right now until midnight EST Monday, September 12, 2011, and the discount will be applied. Please remember that Jen ships for free in the USA & Canada with the purchase of 5 or more patterns, and offers discounted shipping internationally  

(Discounts may be used on any patterns, regularly priced or sale priced!)

(Definitely check out the 40s and 50s patterns, there are tons of new ones …)

Happy Anniversary to Holly!

Holly at is celebrating her third anniversary this week, and everything's on sale. (I love this dress, which looks Libertyish and practically demands to be taken to a summer picnic.)

There's so much gorgeous on Holly's site right now that it's going to be hard to choose. I recommend you get there early before the canapés (and ) are gone. 

[Sorry to be such an absentee blogger these last few weeks … I promise to catch up this week! Highlights will include some NEW SEWING; a trip to LONDON; and links a-plenty. Also possibly a new rant.]

Today's Pattern Story (and Sales): McCalls 9658

Red: You may think I'm just casting a coy glance, but I'm really about to thwop my sister in the back of the head. It's okay, we've been doing this since we were kids.

Green: It's true. (Which explains my glassy, semi-dazed stare.)

Blue: Are those two idiots roughhousing again? I can't watch. I'll just stand over here and pretend I don't know them.

Today's pattern (and sale) is from Jen at — for Memorial Day Weekend, save 20% off all orders; use code 'thankyouvets' until midnight EST, May 31, 2012.  Jen's listing of 50s & 60s patterns plus 80s New/Old Stock items (if you didn't live through it the first time …) 

Plus: bonus sale!

The  is having a Memorial Day Sale, too. Through June 1, get 15% off your whole purchase (minimum $10) with coupon code memorialday2011. Including those cool needlepoint buttons above. (I kind of want to put teeny LEDs in them, don't you?) 

Oh, and hey, I'm in the UK. It's been kind of a hectic trip (hence the lack of notice & blogging), but if anyone wants to get together tomorrow [Saturday] evening, hit me up on Twitter — I'm .

Today's Pattern Story (and Sale): Simplicity 5995

"I don't care if you are taking my picture, I'm going to keep pouting until my hair is as big as those girls in the illustration! Also, don't you think I'm a little too backlit for a shirt this sheer?"

"And I do so look like Brooke Shields!"

[today's pattern courtesy of Kathleen at . She's running a Mother's Day Sale, now through May 8th. Use the code "Dressaday" and buy three – get the fourth pattern free. They''ll take the extra pattern off at checkout. If you buy this pattern, don't be surprised if your mother tells you to smile, because you have "such a pretty face when you smile."]

 

You. Need. This.

Do you have a black eyelet dress?

Like, say, this one, from Holly at ?

I don't set myself up to be a "dictator of taste", and I don't think I've ever done one of those "Ten Items Every Woman Must Own" lists, but if I did, a black eyelet dress would be on the list. ("Trench coat" would not be on the list. Has there ever been a fashmag printed that didn't tell you to run out and buy a trench coat? "Trench coat" is like the "free square" in Bingo.)

This is why you need a black eyelet dress: they're perfect. (Okay, okay, I'll elaborate.) Black eyelet has a natural tension between sweet and sultry, between looking (and staying) cool and looking hot. It's easy to dress up or down, and easier still to accessorize. (Black pique is *almost* as good, it's just slightly more casual.)

I've seen black eyelet like this (elegant, restrained) and black eyelet wild (in some 1980s fashion spread — I wish I'd kept it — a black eyelet A-line dress with eyepopping neon bra & briefs under it, possibly a swimsuit, but hey, it was the 1980s, everything was neon). 

I've got one black eyelet dress that I've worn nearly to rags, so I'm definitely planning a black broderie anglaise dress for this summer, lined in black batiste (or unlined, if I choose to go the neon underthings route … UNLIKELY). 

This one is 38/28/40, and trust me, you will wear it until it gets rusty and falls off you.