Happy In Heartland The Simple Life Pattern Company

Happy in Heartland


I am very excited to share my creations with you today. I am on the #TheHeartlandBlogTour, a tour showcasing Pat Bravo’s newest fabric line, “Heartland”, for Art Gallery Fabrics. I really wanted to do something special for this tour. One project I have had on my to-do list is a strip work skirt that can showcase a bunch of prints. I am working on a quilting series where I take quilting techniques and bring them to garments and this is a great beginner technique. I knew Pat’s “Quilty Scandinavian” theme would be a perfect opportunity to do this. And it just so happens I have a house full of Norwegian/ Swedish/ Finnish girlies. My little towheads.

I knew I wanted to use Jenny Doan’s “Amazing Jelly Roll Race” technique. Jenny is the founder of Missouri Star Quilt Company and her whole story is just amazing! One day I will visit her amazing row of shops! I saw this video shortly after it was posted many years ago and it is something I have always wanted to do. It is super simple and easy to create a strip work skirt (or quilt top) using her instructions from the video (scroll down to watch her super awesome (and funny) video). I will also share with you a few things that I did differently because I wanted to have finished seams through out the garment.

I have been dying to sew up another “Sophie” dress for my oldest. I knew I wanted a nice simple bodice to keep the main focus on the skirt. I chose “Crystal Pink” AGF Pure Elements solid fabric. I also added the gorgeous ruffle (included in the pattern) to add extra detail but still be subtle. I am smitten over this bodice right now. For the skirt, I used all 20 prints from “Heartland” and I love how well all the colors go together. The one thing that you just never know is how the strips will end up – color wise and direction (unless you want to do some serious math- and I don’t). I thought I started with a good order as far as color and print but when it was all said and done – most of the pinks were all in the front and all the blues/ yellows were in the back… oh well, I still love it.

Now, on to the tutorial on how you can achieve this same look. I have created a spreadsheet on how many strips you will need for certain skirt lengths depending on the width of the strip you use. This link will bring you to DropBox where you can download the PDF, or you can scroll all the way to the bottom to view it as a screen shot. The amazing jelly roll race is based on a specific pre-cut, the jelly roll, which is 2.5″ wide. Sometimes we like to dig through our stash and curate our own collection. Some companies don’t offer pre-cuts so this chart will help guide you as to how many strips you need. And the thinner the strip, the “scrappier” it will look. For mine shown, I did 3″ strips with a 1/4″ seam allowance. I think next time I will go thinner (maybe 2″ strips) and only do 22″ long, that way there is more variation.

To create the strip work, follow the directions in Jenny’s video. The only thing I changed was instead of sewing your strips together on the 45 degree angle, I serged them. I also ran everything else through my serger so all my seams would be clean and finished when completed. I didn’t mark my lines or anything – I just eyeballed it and called it good. The intentions of this is to create a scrappy look REALLY fast. I created this whole skirt in about 20 minutes. Once you have all your strips together, you will have a big piece of fabric, I then cut out my 2 skirt pieces in the size stated in the pattern.

Need more Heartland inspiration? Check out the amazing lookbook. You can see this little cutie in it! This is a new knit top/dress pattern that will be releasing very soon. Paired with the “Emilya’s” skinny pants made in AGF textured denim.

Be sure to follow me on Instagram and Pinterest @SLPco

Follow me on Facebook @SimpleLifePatterns

Follow Pat Bravo and the Heartland blog tour on Facebook and Instagram.

Don’t forget to check out the whole line up of bloggers on Pat’s blog.
Check out Jessica from Sew Millie Mae and Veronica from Vivid Felicity who blogged yesterday.

Karen from Capitolaquilter is on tour with me today.

On Monday, be sure to stop by Haley from Happiness in the making and Kim from Robot Mom Sews to check out their gorgeous creations.

Happy Sewing,

Katie Skoog