Thursday, January 31, 2013

Love is in the Air {Project Run and Play}

Can you believe week 4 of Project Run and Play is here already?

It's been a busy week here at my house.  We had my son's 9th birthday, a school concert and lots of other school involvement on my part.  I coordinate the snacks for afterschool clubs and this was our first week of the second quarter, I'm also a parent volunteer for Musical Theater club (props and costuming) and I'm coordinating the class art project for the auction. Really, I enjoy what I'm doing but you can see why the sewing has come in bits and pieces this week.

However, I got it done and I love the result!

My model was tired because it was right before bedtime. She was not overly cooperative and the bunny was part of the deal or Evangeline would allow no pictures would be taken.

I used:
Oliver+S 2+2 Blouse Pattern
Oliver+S Sunday Brunch Skirt
Red Twill for the Skirt
Pink Knit for the Shirt
Red and White checked cotton for the neck, button placket and pocket lining
Wool Felt for the Hearts

I modified the shirt pattern by eliminating the buttons in the back, adding a button placket to the front, lowering the gathering point and adding some hand embroidered wool felt hearts.

I made the skirt in a nice stiff twill that will wear well.  The kick pleat in the back is my favorite part.

The button placket was a fun addition I used a heart button and three tiny buttons as a closure. The knit fabric is super soft and has long sleeves for chilly weather.

The skirt has 7 hearts all the way around.  The smaller hearts are differing shades of pink and the backing hearts are grey and dark grey.

I called an end to the photoshoot at this point. 

Buenas Noches, Evangeline. Que suenos con los angelitos.

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Oliver+S Feature

Hi all!  I'm so excited to have my Fairy Tale Dress be featured as Oliver + S's photo of the day on Facebook.  Check it out.  Yipee!  Oliver+S Facebook Feature

Sunday, January 27, 2013

Girl at Sewing Machine

On this grey Sunday morning, I was browsing the internet while drinking my coffee and I ran across an image  I'd love to share! It's called Girl at Sewing Machine by Edward Hopper.

Isn't it lovely?  I really think I'll have to order a copy for my sewing area.  

Happy Sunday!

Wednesday, January 23, 2013

In between the sickness and sleeplessness

If it feels like I've been a bit absent, it's because Ev and I were sick this weekend.  Then as soon as I started feeling better, she decided that she is an early riser.  Let me tell you, this girl needs her morning sleep!  She stopped napping before she was 2 years old (eww, I know), luckily she has always climbed into bed with me after her brother and dad get up and go to work/school.  Not any more, friends.  She has decided she is a morning person even if she is a cranky, crying mess ALL DAY LONG. As a result, I'm trying to go to bed earlier, not a success so far.

While wading through all of that life stuff, I  accomplished a few small projects which I wanted to share with you all. 

Firstly, I embroidered some cloth napkins for Ev because she hates to be messy when she's eating.  She thinks they are so lovely that she keeps smoothing them and saying she doesn't want to use them because they'll get messy. Ha!  The pattern is an Iron-on Transfer from Yesterday's Charm called "Happy Fruit" and the green fabric was from my stash.

Embroidered Napkins

I also decided that my pin cushion was ugly.  It started out as one of those tomatoes you find everywhere.  I removed the top bit of fabric and cut off the strings and sharpening strawberry.  By machine, I sewed a tube of fabric and by hand I sewed round and round on top an bottom to close the ends.  Then I covered the top and bottom with a small circle of fabric and hand stitched it in place, leaving the edges raw.  The fabric was a Japanese Import Kokka home-dec cotton with a linen feel that I've used in a few projects. 

Today I hopped back on the sewing machine, so I will have something new to show you soon!

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Oliver + S Fairy Tale Dress

Well, you may know that I've been working on 2 Oliver + S Fairy Tale Dresses.  I finished one, so I really just wanted to share the pictures that I have so far.  I can't sit on them any longer!

She was really having fun!

The specifics: I used Shantung Sateen in Tiff Blue and Champagne with a cotton lining. The bodice is shortened 2" and skirt lengthened 2". This is a size 4, view A with View B Sash.

The most darling petal sleeves (and a lot of cuteness)

I actually spent most of the time photographing her running away

Going, going....


Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Party Dress Remix {TUTORIAL}

I had so much fun re-mixing the Cottage Home's Party Dress for Project Run and Play and I wanted to write a tutorial because I'm really happy with the way it turned out! To make my  tutorial happen you will need Lindsay's pattern and tutorial here. If you didn't get a chance to read my previous post about this dress here.

She's cute and she knows it!

The back is my favorite!

Without further ado....Party Skirt with Suspenders

Cut out all of the skirt pieces, including the skirt band and sash pieces. Collect 2 smallish buttons, flat is best. You will also need your child's waist measurement. Measure around the fullest part of the tummy, generally around the belly button. Write it down for later. For the suspenders, you need to measure your child from the front waist, over the shoulder and across the back to the back waist (imagine suspenders when you are doing this) and add 3".  Cut 2 pieces of fabric that length X 6 in.

Assemble the skirt according to Lindsay's instructions up to the step where you top-stitch the skirt band and press the stitches.

Skip the bodice section and do the step where you gather the skirt.

This is where we change it up!  Assemble the sash by sewing the two shorter pieces to each end of the longer sash piece, right sides together.  At this point you can finish the two long edges of the sash with a serger (this isn't required, but gives a nice finished edge later). Fold the sash in half length-wise, wrong sides together and making sure to match seams*, press. If you'd like diagonal edges to your sash fold in in half short-ways and cut the edges at an angle.  Mark the center of your sash. Unfold.

Match Seams

Mark Center

Cut on Diagonal

*If you are working with slippery fabric, like I am, pinning is the only way to make it match up successfully.  Before you press the seam, pin the long edge together starting from each seam working out to the edge and in to the middle.  This will give you a nice clean pressed edge and matching diagonals on the ends of your sash.

Lots of pins!

The tie will be the closure for the back so you can cinch or loosen for comfort. Take your child's waist measurement and add about 2" for wearing ease. Divide this number in 2. Fold your sash in half, right sides together, matching seams (if using slippery fabrics, pin as above). Using the mark you made at the center of the sash, measure out 1/2 of the waist measurement from each side of the center and mark that as well.

Mark from center 

Mark from center on the other side

Sew around the edge of the sash beginning at the the short diagonal end and ending at your mark. Pivot at the corner and backstitch at each end. Repeat on the other end of the sash.  This will leave an opening for you to put your skirt into.

Start at the pointed corner

 Fold the edges of the opening 5/8" to the inside and press. Trim the short end seams to 1/4", clip corners, remove pins and turn your sash right side out. Press.

Trim corners and clip short seam

Pull up the gathers on the skirt to fit the opening in the sash. Insert the skirt into the sash hiding all the basting stitches (about 5/8") and pin in place. Set aside.

Next, we'll tackle the suspenders.

Fold your suspender fabric in half long-ways, right sides together and sew the long edges, leaving each short end open.  Turn the tubes right side out. Press.

 On one end of each suspender fold the fabric inside the short edge 1/2" and topstitch in place.

Fold the ends

Mark where you want your suspenders to be on the skirt. Make sure the two suspenders are an equal distance apart from the centers. The suspenders will be farther apart on the front and closer together in the back. Insert the suspender end with raw edges  into the front waist band 1/2" on the INSIDE of the skirt. Pin in place.

More pins!
Topstitch 1/8" from the edge making sure to catch all the layers (sash, suspender, skirt, sash) backstitching at each end.

Fold your suspender up at the front waist band and press. Hand tack the suspender to only the inside of the sash, so it doesn't show through to the front.

Fold them up

Hopefully, your stitches will be just a little neater!

To attach your suspenders in the back, sew a button to the sash just below the top INSIDE edge, on each side where you marked.  For strength sew through both layers of the sash in matching thread.

Inside waistband

Outside waistband
To make the suspenders adjustable, make 3 button holes on each of your suspenders 1", 1-1/2" and 2" from the short end.


You're done! Here are some more pictures.

Your little girl will have a ball in her new party skirt!


Friday, January 11, 2013

Project Run and Play, Wk 1, Party Dress Remix

Project Run and Play is on! If you aren't familiar with the contest/sew-along read my post here or visit the website by clicking here. For week 1 the challenge is to remix the Party Dress from Cottage Home.  Lindsay has written a fantastic tutorial and provided a bodice pattern for free here.

If you read my post a couple days ago, you know that I am making my daughter and niece the Fairy Tale dress from Oliver + S.  The idea behind the Cottage Home dress is similar, so I was excited to do a re-mix.

For my re-mix, I've eliminated the bodice and the skirt is inserted into the sash instead. Cross-back suspenders hold up the skirt and add a special touch. I'll pair the skirt with a special blouse or a t-shirt to complete the look.

I used Michael Miller Summer Gardens a leftover Shantung Sateen.  The Summer Gardens fabric is a beautifully weighted cotton, and gives this skirt great drape.  If you've never sewed with Shantung sateen before, I recommend it.  It has the nubby look of Dupioni silk but its economical so I won't be crying if Evangeline spills grape juice all over it. The fabric is also pretty easy to work with and forgiving if you have to rip out mistakes.

Since I finished this after midnight, it's being modeled by my other daughter "Dolly".  I really am in love with the back and can't wait to try it on my sleeping daughter.  A tutorial is also forthcoming.

Update: Modeled Pictures! Check out the tutorial here.

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Homemade Ranch Dressing Recipe

Over at Nap Time Crafters Amy runs a weekly feature call Tasty Tuesdays where she shares recipes that are (mostly) a hit with her little picky eater.  I can really relate   Evangeline loves to pick at her food, she likes it separate, and her list of foods she won't touch is longer than my list of sewing projects I want to accomplish.

I haven't always been planning meals around her likes and dislikes (which usually involves setting aside a "plain" portion of what the rest of us are eating).  Ari has always been a healthy eater and enjoys trying new foods.  My main concern was making sure he was getting a healthy meal.  Now I have to plan meals that are healthy and kid pleasing and pack big nutrition in a small bite.  Like Amy, I'm not a complete success at this. Sometimes dinner isn't as healthy as I would like or some or all of it just isn't appreciated by the kiddos. I've decided that's OK because nobody is perfect all the time!

Now I know that this is a sewing, crafting and quilting blog but I just have to share my recipe for Homemade Ranch Dressing.  Yes, it's homemade (no powder packets) and yes, it tastes like the real thing. No preservatives or funny chemicals.  I promise!  You won't believe the veggies I have gotten her to put in her mouth with ranch dressing.  (Note: I didn't say she chewed and swallowed them, but its a start!)

This is adapted from a E-Meals recipe which you can find here. Enjoy!

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Party Dresses Galore {What I'm working on this week}

With the kiddos home from school for two weeks I'm finding it a little hard to squeeze in sewing time.  I was really ramped up for Christmas sewing and it helped that they didn't start vacation until right before the big day.  So now I'm jumping head first into some party-dresses!

I started sewing dresses for my niece and daughter too late for wearing Christmas day.  As usual, I bit off  more than I could chew, sewing-wise, and so the dresses will be called "party dresses" (I also considered "after-Christmas dresses").  We sat down and ran through all the birthdays in my big extended family and there is at least 1 birthday every month except November.  I think the dresses will get some wear!

With the Oliver + S Fairy Tale Dress Sewing Pattern I'm making view A (with sleeves and Peter Pan collar) and also the sash from view B.  The fabric is Shantung Sateen in pink, blue and champagne.  It's a 100% polyester with a shiny satin side and a nubby shantung side that looks like silk dupioni.  It's still dry clean only but is $7 a yard instead of 20+$ a yard. The lining is 100% cotton batiste in white.

The other thing I'm really excited about is Project Run and Play.

From the website:

Project Run and Play is the blogger's version of Project Runway, but for kids! Each week, the designers compete to create the best outfit (with a tutorial) based on a theme. A panel of "celebrity" judges awards them a score of 1 to 5 in each category, and then a reader's poll is opened. Readers are allowed to vote once each week for the design they like the most, and at the end of the week, the score is tallyed. The winner is announced (and their tutorial is posted), and the person with the lowest votes is "sent home."

We followers can sew along and compete for a small prize. They listed the themes on December 21st and wouldn't you know it, week one is a party dress remix!  It's pretty similar to what I'm already doing so I have some ideas swirling around my head on how to really mix it up.

Week One:  The Pattern Remix Challenge
 Week Two:  Stripes and Polka Dots 
Week Three:  Boys Week
 Week Four:  Love is in the Air 
Week Five:  The Men's Dress Shirt Challenge 
Week Six:  Your Signature Look

Happy Sewing.