I let Raileigh wear skirts year round. However, as spring approaches, I am really starting to think about adding new skirts to her wardrobe. Most of her ones from last year have gotten too short anyways. I decided that this year, I wanted to make a lot of her spring wardrobe. Since skirts are one of my favorite things that she wears, I decided to start with them. I found an amazing pattern for skirts at Trotter Sweet Peas.
Melinda is the wonderful lady that started Trotter Sweet Peas. She is from my wonderful state of Georgia, so that makes her shop even better! I have enjoyed talking with Melinda as I worked through her pattern and prepared for this review. Let’s take a few moments to get to know this wonderful lady a bit better. I am pleased to introduce Melinda of Trotter Sweet Peas!
Name and Location: Melinda Trotter, Glennville, GA
What inspired you to open your etsy shop? I love all kinds of crafts and I really love to sew. About 7 years ago I discovered boutique clothing and fell in love with the fabrics and designs of children’s boutique clothing. I really don’t like using patterns so I began creating my own designs. I designed and constructed children’s clothing for several years. I then decided to start creating tutorials from my designs to give others the chance to create their own clothing.
Where did you get your etsy shop name from? I have always liked using the endearment, “sweet pea,” when talking to my children. So since we are the Trotters, “Trotter Sweet Peas,” seemed like a great name for my etsy shop.
Apart from creating things, what do you like to do? I like spending time with friends and family. My husband and I have four little girls and we enjoy spending time doing fun things with them.
Is there any craft you don’t know how to do but wish you did? I would love to learn how to quilt. I love looking at the beautiful quilts I see others create! I would also love to learn more about photography!
What is your greatest accomplishment in life this far? I’m not sure that I am really accomplished in anything yet. . . I see everything as an ongoing process. I have a wonderful husband and four wonderful little girls. I did complete college to get my Bachelor’s degree in Nursing and did work in that field for several years but I am now very grateful to be staying at home with my children. I am also grateful to customers though etsy and ebay that allow me to try to accomplish an at home business.
Where would you most like to travel to? I would love to explore all of the United States.
If you could meet any person, past or present, who would you choose? I think I would choose to meet some of my ancestors. I think it would be really awesome to explore more about who they really were and what life was like for them.
Where do you see yourself in 10 years? In ten years I hope that I am more accomplished in many things. . . better child of God, better wife, better mother. . . better business etc.
Anyone or anything else you’d like to tell us about? I just really appreciate this opportunity to tell you a little about myself and show you what I really love to do. I really love creating and hope that you will too!
I was absolutely thrilled when Melinda agreed to let me review one of her patterns. The pattern I was drawn to and most interested in was the boutique stripwork skirt. I loved all the variations that were available by using this pattern. By using different color combinations and designs when creating the fabric strips, the skirt can take on a completely unique look. I also appreciate that the pattern comes in size 18 months- size 7/8. That means I can get a lot of use from one single pattern.
The pattern is in eBook format. Melinda quickly sent it over to my email address. The first thing I did, just as I do with any pattern, was to completely read through it. This just gives you an idea of what to expect, and makes you more prepared to start sewing. This pattern is written in a clear step by step process. Each step has at least one picture for those that follow visual direction better.
After reading through the pattern, I started looking at the pattern sizing. You can measure your child for an exact fit or you can use the measurements that Melinda provides. The sizing looked very close to Raileigh’s measurements, so I just went with the information that Melinda provided. The skirt is actually made up of 21 rectangles in 3 sizes- 1 for the top waist band, 18 rectangle strips for the body of the skirt, and 2 for the bottom hem band.
You have to create the rectangle pattern pieces that will be used for your skirt. If you have a rotary cutter, you can just cut your fabric to the desired lengths. I have one, but I actually don’t prefer to use it. So, I use a yardstick, sharpie marker, and freezer paper to create my pattern pieces. If you choose to do it this way, take your time to make your lines as straight as possible. You don’t want to have a lopsided skirt! Also, after creating the pattern pieces, make sure to label what size and piece they are. As your daughter grows and you create the skirt in a larger size, you don’t want the pieces to get mixed up!
After cutting out all of my fabric pieces, it was time to start sewing. I was never unclear as to what I should be doing because Melinda provides very well written directions. I do have to say that after I had sewn all 18 of the fabric strips together that make up the body of the skirt, I wondered just how all of that fabric would gather up to make a small enough skirt for Raileigh! It was wonderful to see it come together in the end. The fabric makes the skirt very flowy- a perfect twirl skirt!
I am completely pleased with the skirt I made using the stripwork skirt tutorial from Trotter Sweet Peas. Though it did take some time to create this high quality boutique style garment, it was not a difficult process. Melinda makes clear, concise, and easy to follow directions. This makes it possible for anyone to have boutique clothing for their child without having to pay the high prices that it often sells for. It also allows you to customize the fabrics to ones that you and your little princess love.
In addition to the stripwork skirt pattern, Melinda has several other boutique style patterns available in her shop. There are lots of fun things you can create for your child including several styles of pants and skirts, as well as a halter top and dress. Melinda offers a special price when you purchase 3 or more patterns at the same time. For those of you who don’t sew, she can also create a custom made skirt for your little one at a very affordable price.
I am very excited to tell you that Melinda has agreed to do a giveaway here at Wee Share! One lucky reader will get to choose a pattern of their choice from Trotter Sweet Peas! Very exciting. Thank you, Melinda!
PLEASE NOTE: SOME EXTRA ENTRY OPTIONS HAVE CHANGED. PLEASE CAREFULLY READ THE OPTIONS BEFORE LEAVING YOUR COMMENT. ANY ENTRY THAT IS NOT LISTED HERE WILL BE DELETED!
Mandatory Entry (MUST be done before any extra entries will qualify)- Go to the Trotter Sweet Peas Etsy Shop. Tell me which of Melinda’s patterns you would choose if you are the winner (feel free to also mark the pattern as a favorite on etsy!).
Extra Entries (Must leave a separate comment for each entry):
– 1 extra entry- Heart the Trotter Sweet Peas Etsy Shop
– 1 extra entry- PUBLICLY follow the Trotter Sweet Peas blog
– 2 extra entries- Add the Trotter Sweet Peas button to your blog
– 1 extra entry- Sign up for the Trotter Sweet Peas mailing list (on right hand side of blog)
– 1 extra entry- PUBLICLY follow Wee Share using Google Friend
– 1 extra entry- subscribe to Wee Share via email (must be activated to count)
– 1 extra entry- follow WeeShare on twitter (include your twitter ID)
– 1 extra entry- tweet about this giveaway (may be done daily) You can use this tweet: Create boutique style clothing for your child! Win your choice of pattern from Trotter Sweet Peas @WeeShare! http://tinyurl.com/ygnuuev
– 2 extra entries- Blog about this giveaway and provide a link back to the giveaway (please include web address of blog in your comment)
– 2 extra entries- add my button to your blog. Let me know where I can find it!
– 10 extra entries- Make a purchase from Trotter Sweet Peas. Make sure to let Melinda know that you found he at Wee Share. Let me know what you bought!
Giveaway will end at 11:59 EST on February 20, 2010. Open WORLDWIDE- everyone can enter! Winner will be chosen using a random number generator. Winner will be contacted via email and will have 48 hours to respond before I choose a new winner.