Sense and Sensibilty Review

8/10/2009
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Feminine. Graceful. Old-fashioned. Charming. Elegant. Romantic. Glamorous. Timeless. That is Sense and Sensibility! And I was pleased to review their Girls’ Edwardian Apron Pattern. My first thought: I'm in love! Sense and Sensibility Patterns are historical, feminine, modest, practical clothing for mothers and daughters. They truly are "winsome clothing with an old-fashioned appeal!" "Winsome" is the old English word meaning "attractive or appealing in appearance or character." Indeed! And in case you are wondering, the Edwardian time period is from about 1901-1910. Jennie Chancey created the Girl's Edwardian Apron pattern as a companion pattern to her Ladies Edwardian Apron (see below). The girl's apron is truly "designed with today’s child in mind and features a very “grow-able” fit with adjustable criss-cross straps that tie in back. The deep pockets that are a hallmark of the ladies’ pattern are here, too!" What is included:
  • Sizes 2-14
  • Extremely forgiving and adaptable fit.
  • Easy to sew. Jennie says that this is a fantastic pattern to use as a mother-daughter project to teach sewing!
  • Yardage Chart available online.
  • Also available for instant download as an ePattern in PDF format.
Complete with illustrated instructions and packaged in a printed envelope, the pattern is $12.95, plus shipping. The ePattern is available for instant download for $7.95. An accompanying eClass is available for $19.95 alone, or $24.95 for the eClass and ePattern.
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I reviewed the eClass and ePattern bundle. Once I downloaded the bundle, I found a zip file with both the PDF presentation and the class audio in MP3 format, pattern pages and instructions. I read through the ePattern instructions and printed a test page prior to printing the pattern, as recommended. Jennie also encourages you to contact her though a Feedback Form if you have any questions. The eClass walks you through all of the steps to successfully create your apron, including the following:
  • Choosing material
  • Getting started: Tips for Success
  • Taking correct measurements
  • Creating master pattern pieces
  • Cutting out the apron
  • Contrasting binding vs. making your own binding
  • Assembling your apron, step-by-step.
You will need to purchase fabric, thread, and double fold bias tape, although instructions are given and you are encouraged to make your own bias tape. I did!
Bonus videos are included at the end of the class for more involved steps, such as binding the pockets and there is also a question and answer session to answer common questions at the end of the class. This is only my second time sewing from a pattern and first time using an ePattern. And while it is deemed a beginners pattern, it is helpful to have some knowledge of sewing terms and techniques, such as how to gather, how to baste, what a seam allowance is and what selvage means. But, still a very simple pattern compared to the first time I sewed by myself with a pattern. Here I am washing my material. While I waited for it to wash and dry, I printed and assembled the pattern.
I did not have any trouble piecing it together. The edges of the pattern do not come to the edge of the paper, so there is some over lap that needs to be folded or trimmed. I found it was easier and quicker for me to trim using a cutter (as pictured above). Then I taped the pieces together. There was a few moments of "how do I get this to line up?" but I was able to make it work. The pages are in order and you get a picture of how it should look, but they are not numbered. I didn't see this as being a problem until my 4 year old decided to be such a good helper and bring me what had printed before it was all done. Even so, I was able to assemble it like a puzzle and did so with relative ease. After assembling the pattern, I traced it on to freezer paper and cut out only the size I needed so that I could use the pattern again. Jennie recommends using interfacing and I did purchase some to use for the ladies pattern as I can save it for long term use. But, for my daughter who is growing so fast, I opted to use freezer paper. I loved that I could iron it on - no pinning, and simple to cut out! Next step was to make my own binding. I was very happy to learn how to do this! This made my apron 100% cotton throughout. I ended up making over 12 yards and had more than enough for both aprons.
My set up.
According to Jennie,
"The great thing about a downloadable class is that you can go through it over and over again until you’re confident – no time constraints or deadlines!"
I loved this and did go over it several times, pausing when needed. You can see in the above picture how I set up my sewing area so that I could watch the eClass while I worked. I listened in iTunes and kept the pause button handy as I worked through several steps. In the picture, I am lining up the pockets. I also kept the printed instructions handy. I also ironed after each step as advised and am so glad to have learned that tip!
And here is my daughter in her Girl's Edwardian Apron. I made a size 4, but sizes are generous and modest and I should have made a 2 or 3. She will wear this one for a couple years!
Isn't she adorable in it?!
I was also pleased to review the Ladies Edwardian Apron pattern. The Ladies Edwardian Apron Pattern was inspired by a beautiful circa 1910-1912 pattern in Jennie's own collection. She traced the original pieces, adding more sizes and back ties for a nicer fit.
  • Sizes include 8-18
  • Extremely forgiving and adaptable fit!
  • Princess lines makes sewing easy! This is a “beginner” pattern.
  • Online photo instructions available!
  • Yardage Chart also available online.
  • Also available for instant download as an ePattern in PDF format!
Complete with illustrated instructions and packaged in a printed envelope, the pattern is US$12.95, plus shipping. The ePattern is available for instant download for $7.95. I especially appreciated the Online sewing help and Sewing Tips and Resources. And here is my Ladies Edwardian Apron.
I love this apron! I would like a little more room in the neck and not sure if that was me or the pattern. (Update: Jennie says that it is hitting me too high and looks like I need to lengthen it along the "miss petite" lines to make the bodice and straps longer and that will fix the neckline problem). I made a few other mistakes, but overall I am very pleased with the results! I loved the look of Sense and Sensibility patterns so much that I couldn't resist making the dress to go underneath! This is the dress that is pictured underneath the apron on the website. Designed by Jennie Chancey for her mother, this is truly a simple and lovely little dress! It was so easy to sew with only 3 pieces! And is absolutely adorable. It is called the Simple Gathered Shift and is available at Practically Pretty as an ePattern for $9.95. An eClass is also availble for $19.95 or $24.95 for both the eClass and ePattern. (I purchased just the ePattern). Sizes in this pattern include sizes 2-10.
I made a size three and am happy with this size. They are so cute, I couldn't resist making more! I have fabric ready for several more. I am also planning to order the pantaloon pattern as soon as I am finished with the ones I am making!
And so you know, Jennie Chancey is also the founder of Ladies Against Feminism and co-wrote the book Passionate Housewives Desperate for God: Fresh Vision for the Hopeful Homemaker! To see other crew member's reviews of the Girl's Edwardian Apron, click here.
Disclosure: I received the apron patterns for free as a member of the 2009-2010 Old Schoolhouse Magazine Homeschool Crew. No further compensation was received. I purchased the Simple Gathered Shift and am offering this review as a courtesy. Reviews and opinions expressed are my own.

10 comments:

Susana said...

MICHELLE, you did a FABULOUS job!! You should be so proud to post this accomplishment. You are so talented and I admire all that you are able to learn, do and make while teaching and spending quality time with your family too.

These aprons and adorable dress are wonderful! Are you going to sew more:-)?!

Kathy said...

How adorable. Your daughter's sweet little form and beautiful curls add to the "I gotta have it" part of this post. Thank you Michelle-fun to watch you enjoy!

Orange Juice said...

OH MY GOSH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! The dress and apron are TOO CUTE!!!!!!!!

Kela said...

Beautiful! Beautiful! You did a wonderful job.

Momma Snail said...

Oh, oh, oh! You have taken my breath away! I love, love, love your fabric choices! I am so going to get that dress pattern now! Wow! Great job!

Anonymous said...

Sign Me UP! Great Job Chel! And you both look awesome and modest....just what a woman should look like....Andi

Anna said...

Great job! What a beautiful pattern. Thanks for the review!

Tara said...

Yesss! I finally got to see the apron...well, aprons. BEAUTIFUL!!! You did a fine job (not sure I would have been patient enough through all that), and as always, what a lovely little girl! And a beautiful "big girl," too. ;-) Where are those pictures taken? I love how you took all those pictures around the flowers.

Anonymous said...

Michelle,
Came across tis old post and had to comment. What a wonderful job you did on both aprons. The Edwardian apron is one of my favorite aprons. The other being the prairie apron http://www.polyvore.com/cgi/img-thing?.out=jpg&size=l&tid=6630518 (pinafore style) which has a full bodice rather than shoulder straps. I make the Edwardian apron with crossed straps like the girls pattern for myself. Great job, both lovely feminine aprons.
Blessings,
Grace.

Anonymous said...

Just found this post. I love this apron/pattern, it is one of my favorite aprons. I do however wear mine with crossover straps as in the girls pattern. I feel the apron is more secure and less likely the straps will fall off the shoulders. Great job with the dress and both aprons.
Blessings ,
Grace.

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