Christmas Prezzies!

The last few weeks have been a crazy sewing frenzy around here — my side of the family decided to do a handmade Christmas and I had so many projects going I had no time to blog. We’re feeling alot better too, so that’s helped alot.

So now that the Twelve Days of Christmas are here (we’re on Day 3 for those of you keeping track), I’m going to show off a few of the presents I made. These were for mom:

Pattern: Heather Ross UPDATED (11/10): This pattern is no longer available from the original link I provided here; it can now be found in Heather’s fabulous book, Weekend Sewing

Fabric: Heather Ross Mendocino (outer), purple fleece inner
Modifications: The first time I made this pattern I found that the heel was too short (they slipped off the back of my feet), so I added 1″ to the inside edge of the slipper top. I also used the “trick” from last time of sewing both inner and outer soles on and then turning the slipper inside out at the end instead of hand-stitching the outer sole on.

Also I made the pattern longer. It runs small not to mention Dutch women have the largest feet in the known universe.

Merry Christmas Mom!


Posted in holidays

More clothes for Elliot

I’m afraid we got the ick over here. AGAIN. This time it seems to be really hanging on, so not alot of sewing to report I’m afraid. Most of the projects lately have been of the “oh the baby needs clothes!?” variety.

Above are a couple of onesies I stenciled so he’d have something to wear with the pants I made (here and here). I love designing stencils for onesies. It’s a good family activity with the holidays coming up and all, although it helps if your family has some rudimentary artistic ability. I’ve also heard of people doing these as a baby shower game alternative, which I bet would be great fun.

Another necessary project as the weather got colder was making a hat and mitten set for Elliot. He calls the mittens “mitts.” As you can see I may have slightly mis-positioned the neck strap — it tends to slide up over his mouth. Oops.

The hat is lined with the same off-white knit I put inside the green hoody, which adds some nice poofiness to the pompom. No pattern for this hat, although if you want to make something similar I would refer you to the Voor Nop patterns on the left sidebar — she’s got a nice hat pattern in there somewhere that’s super easy. For the mittens, I traced E’s hand and made a mitten shape slightly larger (make sure to make the thumb nice and fat if you try this) and then added an inch to the bottom for elastic casing. Not the best mittens out there, but they work.

Other random stuff:

– Thanks so much to all of you who volunteered serger info on the last (real) post!!! I think I have one picked out.
-The Itty Bitty Baby Dress Pattern is not up yet. Stay tuned.

I’m baaaaaaaaaaack!

Sorry about the lull here lately…I’ve been sewing, but some of it is secret projects that I can’t talk about blah blah. I suppose I could say I’ve been busy chasing one danger-loving toddler around and trying (unsuccessfully) to prevent injuries. But sometimes you just have to take a break, you know?

I’ve been sewing for the boy over the last few weeks — a hat and mitten set, a pajama set, and this kelly green waffle-knit hoodie.

[pout is no doubt the result of yet another injury | please ignore all drool marks]

The fabric is from my friend Steph (who moved to NC…so sad for me) who gave me a bunch of fabric her mom wasn’t using any more before she left (yay!). When I saw those leafy pants at Sweet Peas I decided I could make the top to match (for those out there feeling lazy there is a matching top available that is even more adorable than mine). I like how it turned out although the top is a bit large but the pants are the perfect size right now so they might not fit at exactly the same time but I’m already over it. The shoes are See Kai Run by the way.

:: Other deets ::
Pattern: Ottobre Pattern #7, Summer 3/2006
Modifications: I made a duplicate version in cream knit for lining and cut a 1.5″ strip to use as bias tape. I also cut out the front on the fold so it wouldn’t open all the way down like the version in Ottobre. I did not add a seam allowance to the tracing since I always sew knits with an overlock stitch along the edge so there’s barely any extra fabric.

I do not have a serger, so sewing knits requires a bit of trickery for me. I always use a stretch needle which helps but I always have trouble with the edges stretching out as I sew. I think I might put a serger on my Christmas list…anyone have any serger suggestions?

How can you not love that adorable blond head?

My dress!

Here’s a quick peak at the dress I made to wear to the wedding (pictures of the little blighter in his bowtie will be forthcoming):

I bought the yellow raw silk at Haberman’s of Royal Oak…I think it was in the Home Dec area and perhaps others would look at this and think “drapes!” I looked at it and thought “dress!” I actually made another version of the dress for seester Krick’s wedding a couple years ago, but it was too low-cut to be bending over and chasing a toddler in. And also I might just weigh an eensy weensy bit more than I did then…ahem. So it needed modification.

As usual there is no pattern for this, although I will say that the skirt is just a big gathered rectangle and the waist band was a 4″ strip I cut to my chest measurement + 2″. The top though…hrmmm…I have to admit I didn’t really take notes as I went along so I’m not sure I could actually reproduce the bodice again if I had to. I know it started out as a rectangle that I gathered along the bottom and then hand-sewed over the top of the lining, which was loosely based on a McCall’s dress pattern…*too lazy to shuffle through pattern box right now*.

The “flowers” are yo’s! For directions, see Heather Bailey’s nifty tutorial. To make the middles furry, I zigzigged the edges and left the circles unfolded before basting.

Just for kicks, here’s version one of the dress:

Pretty different, I’d say.

Organic Dress Outfit for Elliot

I was all ready to post with pictures of my Halloween decorations, but then I got too excited about the outfit I’m almost finished with for Elliot to wear this weekend. Mr Rae’s brother is getting married this weekend, so I wanted my little boy to look spiffed up.

I find it very frustrating how hard it is to find decent dress clothes for little boys. Janie and Jack has the cutest little suits (wool gabardine…dry clean only…thankyou-very-much-but-are-you-insane?) if you’re willing to spend $200. I’m not.

I had the khaki fabric (organic cotton, JoAnn’s) already with plans to make some sort of khaki pant for Elliot — it’s lightweight and a little stretchy. When I discovered that my Ottobre (5/2006) had a vest and a pair of knickerbockers, I thought I’d give it a whirl. The shirt was a BabysRUs purchase, but I can’t find it online so you’ll have to go to the store if you want it.

Here’s a closeup of the vest, so you can see my meticulous brown top-stitching (that took FOREVER) and my awesome labels from MommyMadeIt (thanks to Andrea for the reference; I love them!)

Modifications to the pattern included sewing the fly shut (come on, what 18 month old needs an operational fly?) and lengthening the pant leg so they weren’t cropped. I can’t wait to get pictures at the wedding on Saturday.

And congratulations to Rob and Allie!

Green Fall Top!

Here’s something I whipped up one afternoon recently:

The fabric was a seven-yard score from a thrift shop in Bloomington whilst visiting seester Elli.

There is no pattern, but now let’s talk about how to make this shirt yourself, because it’s just so easy. The pattern consists of two pieces, both rectangles. The first one is a rectangle that you cut as tall as the line from the bottom of your neck to your bust + 1 inch and as wide as your shoulder width plus about 8-10 inches, depending on how long you want your “sleeves” to be (spread your arms and hold a yardstick up to see where they will hit). I cut 3″ rectangles off each side, sewed the trim on the bottom of the front (up a 1/2 inch to leave room for the seam), and then sewed the sleeves back on again so that the trim wouldn’t go across the sleeves. Then you cut the hole for your head. The hole can be as narrow or as wide as you want, but it needs to be about 2-3 inches lower in the front than in the back to be comfortable.

The bottom rectangle piece is usually my hip measurement + 6-10 inches, again depending on how loose I want it to be. Here I wanted lots of pleats, so I made it pretty roomy.

Pleat and pin the bottom rectangles to the top rectangles, leaving 3″ of the top hanging over on each side (this will become your sleeve). I did four pleats in front and five pleats in back. Then sew side seams and hem sleeves and bottom. I made bias tape for the neck which is so much easier than trying to fold under the neckline. Here’s a great cushion tutorial which includes directions on how to make bias tape.

: : A Few Shop Announcements : :

Just wanted to let you know that I’ve been having a “Let’s Get This Etsy Started” sale this week: wristlets have been marked down and so is shipping; go take a look!

“Put it all on the Line Clothespin Holder”

Also I’ve put a couple of clothespin holder in there too — I know some of you were a wee bit angry when you didn’t win the giveaway (blame the baby, he drew the name) so now you can have your very own. I realize that these are a bit out of season, but maybe it would be a good Christmas prezzie along with a pack of colorful clothespins? Plus I know you folks in Australia are just getting into the best of summertime; maybe I’ll have a chance to try out International Shipping!

This just in: Cloth Napkins

Thought I’d keep you up to date on the latest arrival in my shop, cloth napkin sets:

: : All packed and ready to go : :

: : Spiff up the dining table! : :

: : Set of 4/$19 : :

: : Available in oranges, golds and other earth tones : :

Check it out!