Tuesday, August 31, 2010

MOM Gear

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I’ve been wanting to open an Etsy shop for a while, and then a few weeks ago started actually making plans to do so. My shop is called “MOM Gear.” MOM stands for Made-on-Monday after this blog. I had to wait until today to buy materials to make items to list (yay for payday!), and listed my first two items this evening. While I plan to mostly do diaper bags, I wanted something quick and simple to make this evening, so I embellished two little onesies. I had a lot of fun making them and look forward to continuing to make projects to list in my shop. Check it out here!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Diaper Bag for Kristine

My friend Kristine is having a baby *hopefully* very soon. I told her to look on Etsy for bags she liked, send me the links, and I’d make a diaper bag like one (or all) of them for her. She liked the look of pleats, and requested an adjustable strap. I had so much fun picking out the fabric. While her baby is most likely a girl, Kristine isn’t a pink and frilly kind of lady, so I thought this fabric combo would be perfect for her. I used a home decor fabric for the outside (the blue fabric) for some sturdiness, and the floral is just a quilter’s cotton. I used interfacing to add some sturdiness, and thought this was my best fabric combo yet for the right balance for ease of sewing yet strength for use.
Joann’s doesn’t carry strap adjusters in stores, so I used two D-rings put together to make the strap adjuster and like the look of it much better than the plastic option that Joann online carries. I also liked adding a touch of pink for the button hook. If you look closely at the top right picture, you’ll see that I had fun with the embroidery option on my machine.
I’d say this was my most successful pattern-free bag yet (although I do have notes for how to make it better next time). I’m happy with it, and Kristine was too!

Link Up Parties!

Saturday, August 28, 2010

I'm Wishing...

Oh how I would love to have a Silhouette... I can't even begin to imagine all the things I would do with one. Quite a few blogs have been giving them away. I have one more opportunity to win one. You should hop over here and check out the "Under the Table and Dreaming" give away. But don't enter to win it, because that would lessen my chances of winning :)

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Ruffled Set for Khloe

My friend who watches Jace 2 mornings a week for me has a beautiful daughter named Khloe. Khloe turns one tomorrow (how fun that this is the only time in Jace and Khloe’s lives that Jace will be half her age). This little girl is super cute and has a lot of spunk. Up until a month or so ago, her hair stuck up in crazy places and swooped amazingly in others. It made me think she looked like a diva. So after exploring Etsy and other websites, I fell in love with little rompers like this, and these, and these. And since our bank account hasn’t magically grown in the last few days, I challenged myself with making a fun gift for Khloe for free (like what I did for Hannah’s gift last week). Out came two more shirts that no longer fit right (I bought them for a mission trip to Nicaragua 5 years ago and haven’t worn them since). The fabric is so soft! I also had some fun mesh/tulle (is that the right spelling for it???) left from when I made a net to cover Jace’s bassinet (which failed at keeping our cats out since they just laid down on top of it). And after a lot of giggles, I finished my favorite project yet! (Nolan said I need to start categorizing these favorites since I say that about each thing I make these days… but this one most definitely is my favorite and it was most definitely the most fun to make.)
I discovered while making my dress that while I enjoy sewing with a pattern, I love just making things up as I go. Projects with patterns have helped me know better what to do when I am just creating, but they definitely do restrict the randomness (which also means they turn out better the first time too… funny how that works).
I started with these rompers and LOVED them…2010-08-25 016
Khloe is wearing size 18 months, so I took one of Jace’s onesies in that size (the same one I used for Hannah’s shirt) and just used it as a pattern for roughly the size of the rompers. When doing the elastic in the legs and waist, I just did it so they would fit a little tighter than the onesie. The romper was just too much fun to make. And I loved them so much, I knew Khloe would need a little something fun to go on top.
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A cute little ruffle dress/shirt/tunic top that would show off the rompers. And so it wouldn’t just be a lot of yellow, I added a flower (a wound one sewed on top of a ruffle one, don’t you love my technical terms?) and put a tulle “leaf” behind it. And what you don’t know is that this flower is covering a little mistake where two little spots got sewn together that weren’t supposed to, and I noticed when it was too late and didn’t want to use my seam ripper.
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Here’s the back. I wanted to make sure that the back of the bloomers could be seen, so I slightly arched the back hem.
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When choosing the button, I thought it would be fun to add a little color and used a red button. I like the way it looks.
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All in all, I’m super happy with how it turned out. There are plenty of imperfections, but that’s the beauty of ruffles! I can’t wait to give it to Khloe in the morning. Yay for another simple, fun project using only materials and supplies that were already in my house!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

And a headband to match

I thought the shirt I made for my friend’s daughter needed a headband to go with it. I used left over fabric from the striped, white, and pink shirts from making Hannah’s shirt, made three more flowers, a white band, a little bit of stitching and, ta-da, a headband! 2010-08-20 016

Friday, August 20, 2010

Ladies Shirt turned Little Girl Ruffle-Bum Shirt

I took this ladies shirt that no longer fits me…2010-08-19 004
And turned it into this cute little shirt for a just-turned-one-year-old girl 2010-08-19 025 2010-08-19 014
And of course, I had to have my son (who is too small for the shirt) model it for me to make sure it was proportionately correct. He’s just too cute!2010-08-19 018 2010-08-19 021
My favorite parts are the ruffle bum and the flower corsage. 2010-08-19 015 2010-08-19 026
The shirt was SUPER simple to make…. check out the tutorial here.

Tutorial: Ladies Shirt turned Little Girl Ruffle-Bum Shirt

A friend of mine’s daughter is having her first birthday party on Saturday. We didn’t think about this when planning our August budget, and somehow I’ve been over spending a bit this month anyways, so I needed to find a free way to make her a special gift. I played with a few ideas, but really only have girl prints in home-decor fabric… meaning a bag would really be the only option. I was looking at cute clothing online, and remembered the box that has been sitting in my room for 5 months now, full of clothes I’m certain I will never fit in. It’s just sitting there, waiting for me to take it to a consignment store and Goodwill (just like the two bags that have been sitting by my front door since December, full of clothes that now need to be rewashed because they’re once again covered in pet hair).
I went digging through the box and came up with several cute pieces that are made of fun, girly fabrics.
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For Hannah’s gift, I used what was my absolute favorite long sleeved shirt, that sadly shrunk a bit over time, making it on the verge of too small before a baby, and most definitely too small post baby.
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It’s a nice, stretchy knit and I thought it would be fun to make another shirt from it. I grabbed a onesie of Jace’s that’s size 12-18 month (Hannah’s size) and used it as a pattern. I lined it up along the hem of the shirt, that way I wouldn’t have to re-hem Hanna’s shirt. Using my rotary cutter, I just cut along the outside of the onesie. Super easy. I used the same idea with the sleeves, and lined up the sleeve of another one of Jace’s shirts with the hem of the sleeve. The sleeve in the original shirt had gotten tight on my arms, so I figured using the lower portion would make for a nice, somewhat loose fitting sleeve for Hannah. Once again, yay for not having to hem!
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I cut little snips around the neckline, then folded and pinned it in, and used a zig-zag stitch so it would still be able to stretch well when Hannah’s mom puts it over her head.
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Then I sewed a 5/8 inch seam along the top and sides, leaving the arm holes open. When I went to pin the sleeves in, I realized I hadn’t measured to make sure the sleeve size matched the hole size. Thankfully, the sleeve was bigger, so I pinned some pleats in and ended up with cute capped sleeves. I couldn’t have been happier!
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When sewing the neckline I accidentally did it with the wrong side out, so I had a hem that wouldn’t have been super noticeable as being inside out, but wasn’t ok on a birthday gift.
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So what better way to cover up a mistake on the back than by adding ruffles? Out came two more shirts that are made of a stretchy knit—one pink the other white—and I cut long strips from the backs to make ruffles.
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I seriously LOVE a ruffle-bum on a little girl! I made the ruffles by stitching a long, loose stitch and then pulling on the thread and ruffling until it was the right length for the width of the shirt, then pinned and sewed it on. Don’t forget to reset the stitch setting on your machine!
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The front then needed a little embellishment, so I cut a few more strips from the shirts I made the ruffles from, did the same stitching and ruffling technique, and then just started rolling and stitching as I went. I made the three flowers different sizes by using three different widths of ruffles. I then sewed the flowers how I wanted them onto a piece of pink felt, and then sewed that onto the shirt like a corsage.
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Ta-da! The finished product! I’m super, super happy with how it turned out!
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I needed to make sure it was proportionally correct, so Jace just had to model it for me this morning (even though he’s only 6 months old and too small for the shirt). (Nolan said it’s ok if I do this now, but once he’s a year old I can’t keep using him to model girl stuff.) I can’t even begin to tell you just how much I LOVE the ruffles! My favorite part of the whole shirt is the part used to cover up a mistake.
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Now I think I may need to make a headband to go with it…

Friday, August 13, 2010

So, I made a dress...

We had a wedding to go to tonight, and earlier in the week I thought it would be fun to make a dress or a skirt to wear to it. Finding clothes that fit right has always been somewhat difficult for me, and since having Jace none of the my dress clothes from before fit right. So why not just sew something? It didn't matter that I haven't followed a pattern for sewing clothes since I was in eighth grade. And zippers-shmippers, I can do that, right? Well, thanks to Simplicity's "New Look" line, I found a cute dress that was simple to make! I chose black eyelit for the fabric (that is, after wandering Joann's for an hour and a half being indecisive, yay for Jace being a patient child!), and I LOVE the way it turned out. Granted, I had to cut three inches of fabric out of the back because, for some reason, the sizing fit perfectly in front but was monsterous in size in the back, which means I need to do some adjusting on the straps later, but I love my new dress. It was super fun to wear to the wedding and really fun to be able to think (and occasionally say), "I made it."

Oh, and as a side note, I love that I have a dress that I can wear my pearl necklace with! My dad brought it back from China when he had a business trip there, and I've only had a few opportunities to wear it. I also was able to wear the pearl bracelet my parents gave me for my wedding. Yay for wearing real jewelry!