The Yellow Caroline: Shades of Me

Oh my goodness.  I am so excited to be kicking off 2 full weeks of colorful eye candy. Are you ready for all of the amazing bloggers who will be sharing their outfits based on a specific color for the Shades of me series? Can you guess that my color was yellow?

You guys, my friend Celina from Petit a Petit is the co-host of this series and I can’t say enough good things about her.  She is one of the sweetest, most talented people I have ever met and I am so thankful that we have crossed paths in life.  She is one of those people that somehow creates these amazing projects, takes wonderful photos, and still remains so humble and friendly. 

Celina was the co-creator of the amazing emag Stylo that I had the pleasure of being in.  In addition to that, she is a graphic designer, web developer, and also one of the pattern designers in our new business Willow and Co.  Phew, she is busy!.

She was my partner-in-crime and fellow yellow…
go check out her beautiful outfit HERE.
So, when it was time to create a yellow outfit for myself, I decided to use my new Ladies Caroline Dress Pattern, which is the grown-up version of the Caroline Party Dress (release date set for next week!).  It is a 50’s inspired dress with a fitted bodice, princess seams,  pleated skirt or gathered skirt.  There will be 5 sleeve length options and 4 skirt length options.  It is going to be awesome.

But let’s cut to the chase.  I don’t wear dresses or skirts.  For those of you that have followed my blog from the beginning will know that I have a disability and I wear leg braces and it is pretty rare that I show them off.  You will usually see me in pants, but one of my goals this year is to not worry about such silly things.  
Things that I can’t change.  

So, there I am.   Do I love what I see?  Not really, but I am learning to like it. One of the reasons we started this series was to get women out of their comfort zone.  I want to see you, the real you.  We all have something about ourselves that we dissect and criticize, but yet, others barely notice.  My brace is probably one of those things that most people would hardly care about and I need to realize that.  I need to love who I am. 
So, there you have it.
 My legs are not perfect and don’t work properly.
However, I feel better now that I have mentioned it.  

So, now that we got my brace and insecurities out of the way, let’s talk clothing, ha!   Sewing women’s clothing scares a lot of people, doesn’t it? I think once you find patterns from a reliable women’s pattern maker, you would be surprised at what you can make yourself!
Most women’s patterns will always require some adjustment because, let’s face it, we are all so differently shaped.  However, any good pattern will walk you through it. 
It has been a long time since I have worn a dress like this and I really felt the need to see how much it twirled.  It felt so good.


Because I am fairly uncomfortable with a dress, I found a great compromise… thick stockings, lace up boots, and boot cuffs.  I felt much more relaxed and “myself”.  
I love how accessories can change the feel of an outfit.

I live down the road from the historical Daniel Boone Homestead and this place always gives me the creeps.  Today, the door was rattling as I was standing on the porch , so I decided to lock the “ghosts” inside.  

When Celina and I were setting up the sign up sheet for colors, we realized that no one would want yellow… which is why we took it.  We were both so freaked out by the thought of yellow, but I am so happy that we took on the challenge.

Many thanks to my wonderful mother for taking my instruction and listening to me saying “Do you see the little red light?  Make sure it is on the focal point!~”   She is the best and is a very fast learner.  

Stay tuned for 2 weeks of awesomeness!  Each day, there will be bloggers sharing their color creation.

If you haven’t entered the giveaway yet, please enter HERE.

And please link up your own color sewing HERE.
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Hayley Crouse is a wife, mother and multifaceted designer. Her love of sewing, crafting, cooking and interior design infuses her daily life and naturally spills over into her online presence. She pushes the envelope of her creativity and hopes that others will be inspired to do the same. She currently authors the Welcome to the Mouse House Blog, is the pattern designer behind Mouse House Creations and is a collaborative designer with Willow & Co. Patterns.
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57 Responses to The Yellow Caroline: Shades of Me

  1. christina February 3, 2014 at 11:51 am #

    wow girl!! i love it and yes, your mom is a really fast learning behind the camera:) great pictures and what a sweet post.

  2. Jane@Buzzmills February 3, 2014 at 2:26 pm #

    Oh Hayley!!! I love love your dress so much!! It’s so beautiful…and now I’m sort of wishing that the Caroline Dress was out before I needed to make my purple… 😉 It’s beautiful and you are beautiful!

  3. Chelise February 3, 2014 at 2:40 pm #

    You are just beautiful! That dress looks great on you and your Caroline pattern will be a major hit. Way to work the yellow!

  4. Olga Becker @ Kid Approved February 3, 2014 at 2:48 pm #

    Can you get any cuter! Seriously. The dress is gorgeous! The pattern will be a mega hit, who wouldn’t want it?? Good for you for getting out of your comfort zone, so inspirational! You are beautiful.

  5. Paisley Roots February 3, 2014 at 2:52 pm #

    It’s a gorgeous dress! You are amazing! 😉

  6. fenna February 3, 2014 at 2:53 pm #

    love it, Hayley!!! It looks great!

  7. Erin Biggers February 3, 2014 at 2:56 pm #

    You look awesome and that is the perfect shade of yellow for you. I love how different the outfit looks with different shoes/accessories. You did great stepping out of your comfort zone. 🙂

  8. Mie Brindle February 3, 2014 at 2:58 pm #

    You look AMAZING Hayley and I love your little challenge to yourself…but really who cares about leg braces, right! Please show that sucker off some more 😉 The dress is absolutely amazing and that fabric is gorgeous!! And I LOVE the photos – go Mom!

  9. Erin February 3, 2014 at 2:59 pm #

    Hayley, I am so proud of you for breaking out of your comfort zone. You are so beautiful just. the way. you are.

  10. Chasingmermaids February 3, 2014 at 2:59 pm #

    absolutely beautiful! you are so creative, kind and beautiful! Awesome Mama!!!

  11. Rebecca February 3, 2014 at 3:00 pm #

    Gorgeous dress! I love the print and the styling. YOU kick ass. I know that was hard for you to do but I’m so glad you did.

  12. EHC February 3, 2014 at 3:01 pm #

    Good job putting yourself out there and sharing your story and fantastic sewing! That’s what this series feels like to me, learning to be comfortable in your own skin and loving what you sew for yourself. Thanks for the inspiration!

  13. Abigail February 3, 2014 at 3:06 pm #

    I love it! You look great in yellow. I’m afraid of yellow too! So looking forward to the women’s Caroline release…I already have fabric waiting for it!

  14. PatsycakeBaby February 3, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

    Love the beautiful dress! Honestly if I saw you walking by with that brace, I might glance at it but definitely not think anything of it. you are gorgeous and your legs look perfectly gorgeous to me!

  15. April Boyer // Modern Handmade February 3, 2014 at 3:14 pm #

    I love your dress! I think the yellow is great and the small white print is perfect. Thanks for sharing and opening up. And I’m glad you decided to make a dress because its beautiful!

  16. Lindsay Wilkes February 3, 2014 at 3:15 pm #

    You are beautiful and thank you for sharing your story. Yes, we all have our things that cause us to feel insecure, but these differences are what make us unique and special. This dress and color are gorgeous on you, Hayley and I know this pattern will be a hit. I think I want to sew one for me!!

  17. Laurie February 3, 2014 at 3:17 pm #

    LOVE, LOVE, LOVE!!! And…you look AMAZING, Hayley! I’d kill for your figure and grace! Nice work!!

  18. Justine of SewCountryChick February 3, 2014 at 3:17 pm #

    Hayley, you are beautiful both inside and out and yellow is the perfect color for you! Your mom did a FAB job. Those photos are just gorgeous! I love that print with the sweet dress.

  19. Celina February 3, 2014 at 3:19 pm #

    so happy to be doing this series with you. I am so happy to be able to call you my friend. You are gorgeous inside out and don’t you ever forget it. xxx

  20. Ty Bebe February 3, 2014 at 3:23 pm #

    The dress is perfect Hayley and so are you!

  21. Vanessa@Designs By Sessa February 3, 2014 at 3:30 pm #

    What a GORGEOUS dress!!! Love it on you! You are so cute!!! And can I say that I LOVE that you showed off your brace! I am SO proud of you! It was really hard for me to post pictures and my story about my health on my blog at one time and show my ostomy, but I am so glad I did, because it has helped SO many people (or at least the ones that comment to me) that it has! Thanks for being real, sister!

  22. Stacey Byrne February 3, 2014 at 3:47 pm #

    Oh Haley, you are beautiful. I love the dress and the fact that you put yourself out there like that is so brave. Your photos are gorgeous and I am so wishing I could wear yellow with my skin tone. It’s my all time favorite color.

  23. Sarah @ EmmylouBeeDoo February 3, 2014 at 3:47 pm #

    Hayley – you are a beauty, inside and out! This series is so, so wonderful!

  24. Suzanne Winter February 3, 2014 at 3:50 pm #

    You are amazing and courageous and gorgeous – thank you for sharing the WHOLE you with no need to hide. And hey, it is nice to know you aren’t completely perfect… but then again none of us are, and the more we realize that maybe the less we will set ridiculous standards for ourselves and love ourselves and each other a bit more!!!! Huge hugs!!!

  25. Lauren February 3, 2014 at 4:25 pm #

    Hay Hayley!! haha. I totally just teared up in Einstein’s. Your photos are beautiful, and so are you! What an amazing thing to be able to do. Can’t wait to meet you in April. xoxo

  26. Sara February 3, 2014 at 5:30 pm #

    The dress is gorgeous! And so are you! I am not an huge fan of yellow but I am in love with this dress – I may just make one in yellow too!

  27. Ajaire February 3, 2014 at 5:46 pm #

    I love the yellow on you Hayley! Both with and without the leggings the dress is gorgeous. And that fabric choice is so great. Thank you for sharing a little “behind the scenes” but as you said we all have those things we notice about ourselves that the rest of the world hardly sees. You are so lovely in that dress that no one would be looking at your brace. 🙂

  28. Emily February 3, 2014 at 5:49 pm #

    Love your dress and pictures! So excited to see more variations of the dress! I think all of us have parts we don’t love about ourselves. Your acceptance and bravery are inspiring!

  29. Capi February 3, 2014 at 6:06 pm #

    Hayley, Thanks for bravely sharing your dress and your story. The pink flats are the perfect punch with your outfit and you look beautiful! The Daniel Boone Homestead was one of our favorite places to go when my kids were little and we lived in Lancaster County. I need to sew more for myself. Thanks for the inspiration and encouragement.

  30. Trine (groovybaby) February 3, 2014 at 6:19 pm #

    Hayley – this is beautiful!! My favorite kind of dress – and you look so cute! Perfect design for you.

  31. Laura February 3, 2014 at 7:08 pm #

    Hayley, I know exactly how you feel. I have a disability, too, only mine’s uglier than yours. LOL. Which is why you won’t find ANY pictures of me on the internet. My legs look like twenty miles of bad road, they’re three times the size they should be, and immobility due to my disability had made me gain a ton of weight. So I avoid cameras like the plague. All my sewing is for the cuties in my life because for one, they don’t make commercial patterns in my size. Even the so-called “plus size” patterns aren’t very. Basically, the biggest they go up to in RTW sizing is about a 16.

    The dress is fab and you look beautiful, brace and all.

  32. Pat February 3, 2014 at 7:30 pm #

    I just love the pictures. Every once in a while I’m catching a glimpse of your daughter in your expression — you two should do a mother-daughter ham-it-up shoot one of these days.

  33. Very Shannon February 3, 2014 at 7:36 pm #

    You already know I loved this outfit! And you so rocked yellow! Beautiful!!! You looked gorgeous girl!

  34. Marieke Rozendaal February 3, 2014 at 7:39 pm #

    That’s a gorgeous dress on a gorgeous lady! This is a very brave post Hayley, you should be proud!

  35. Jeni February 3, 2014 at 8:01 pm #

    Love this Hayley!! Beautiful post. <3

  36. Tina February 3, 2014 at 8:09 pm #

    Simply beautiful!

  37. Kristy February 3, 2014 at 8:30 pm #

    Absolutely BEAUTIFUL is every way!!!! Gorgeous dress and love that yellow print!

  38. Di February 3, 2014 at 8:54 pm #

    Sometimes we women are silly creatures, we have a million good features, we have hobbies, things we are super good at, great friends, love in our lives, and yet we focus on our bad ‘faults’ – my tummy pokes out, my legs are chicken drum sticks (muscular thighs, tiny calves), dead straight hair that just won’t curl like I would love it to, … yes, those are some of the ones I moan about. What we should be saying is… wow, I am amazing, I do things that amaze me, I inspire others to do things that amaze them. Hayley, that is certainly what you should be saying! Come on ladies, let’s rejoice being us, stick out tummies & all!
    And PS. I am so gonna sew this dress for spring, even if I have to show my chicken drumstick legs 😉

  39. Marte Lambin February 3, 2014 at 9:07 pm #

    Love everything about this post Hayley! The dress, your honesty and that smile! That’s probably the most important thing I see: a lovely women that shines!

  40. Andrea Pannell February 3, 2014 at 9:08 pm #

    Love it! And I’m so glad you are allowing your brace to be shown! An inspiration to people everywhere.

  41. Teresa February 3, 2014 at 9:43 pm #

    You are beautiful! I love your openness and honesty. It’s hard to really know what someone is thinking in a blog, and I love how you laid it all out there for us…we should all be more like you! And your dress is gorgeous! You look great in yellow!

  42. thingsforboys February 3, 2014 at 9:51 pm #

    Love the dress, you look beautiful! Very inspiring that you’re showing off your brace. I look at it for a second, but then my eyes are drawn back to your gorgeous dress!

  43. Monica Swift February 4, 2014 at 1:39 am #

    I think this is so brave, and such a perfect way to begin a series for women to sew for themselves. Which, of course, is more than about the sewing. Taking your measurements, spending time, and money…and time…sewing for yourself brings a lot more to the surface than just, ‘oh hey, let’s sew me up something.’ I’m new to your story and your blog, so I don’t ‘know’ you, or at least the blog you, yet, but so far…so very, very good!!

  44. Falafel and the Bee February 4, 2014 at 4:04 am #

    You are BEAUTIFUL! With and without a brace.
    You did a fantastic job on the dress. Thank you for sharing your insecurities. I hope you will find you have nothing be insecure about. You are perfectly imperfect which makes you perfect.

  45. Penya, An apprentice housewife February 4, 2014 at 4:13 am #

    Wow! you are so beautiful and shining in this dress. The dress is simply gorgeous!
    I think you are so brave and I’m so glad that you encouraged us all to sew something for ourselves.

  46. Karrie S February 4, 2014 at 4:34 am #

    You look so beautiful!! I love the dress. I would LOVE to make a dress that is pretty as yours!

  47. Dotted Whale February 4, 2014 at 4:54 am #

    Love your dress and all your pictures!!!! And yes, is scary sew for an adult.
    And congratulations you are brave and I’m happy you’re felling better now.
    You are beautiful!!!

  48. Lori February 4, 2014 at 5:06 am #

    Love love your grown up Caroline; the cut and drape look perfect on you!

  49. Annika February 4, 2014 at 8:16 am #

    Oh, Hayley what a beautiful and brave post. It probably wasn’t easy to show what you don’t like about you, but you know what: You look extremly good in your dress. You are such a beautiful woman. I totally wanted to sew something in yellow. That mustard yellow is so beautiful! And I love the pattern. Princess seams -does that mean that there are no darts or so to consider?

  50. Jenya @ While she was sleeping February 4, 2014 at 9:49 am #

    What? You were freaked out by yellow? It looks FANTASTIC on you! The dress is simply stunning, and thank you for such a lovely post 🙂

  51. kr February 4, 2014 at 1:04 pm #

    In the photo that you said you didn’t like what you saw, do you know what I saw? Good looking legs. I think you look beautiful in the dress. When I was 5 yo, we had a house fire and I was burned. I have scars on one of my legs. For the longest time, I would try to cover it up. One day I realized it just didn’t matter any more what others thought. I was tired of their supposed thoughts controlling my life. After all, “I ams what I ams and that’s what I ams” (Popeye)

  52. Mabey She Made It February 4, 2014 at 2:52 pm #

    Simply lovely! The fabric, the dress, and you. And as a random side note, I wore leg braces during Kindergarten and first grade (which didn’t end up helping anything) but definitely made me stand out. 🙂

  53. Yeka Dharmajanti February 4, 2014 at 3:17 pm #

    I like yellow colour too! Love the dress, fabric and your timeless style. You are very talented and beautiful lady!

  54. sweeter than cupcakes February 4, 2014 at 9:00 pm #

    Love it! Way to stomp on those fears! It really is all amazing.

  55. sophie February 5, 2014 at 1:43 pm #

    love this dress on you!! I think you look fabulous!! love the yello! so bright and it lgoes so well with your hair!

  56. OnceUpona Sew February 5, 2014 at 3:10 pm #

    Love the dress, both ways you’ve styled it. This is a really great post, and an amazing start to sewing for you series. Thanks for sharing!

  57. Suz February 7, 2014 at 10:48 am #

    I’m so proud of you Hayley!! Well done!! What a success you are and you look so fab in your dress!! x

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