Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Mail Day!

Don't you just love those days when you get some great mail?!  What's even better?  When it's delivered right during nap time so you can actually open, play with, and enjoy your mail candy in peace!!

Well, that was me today!  Yippee!!  And it's sunny today to boot!

And it even came from an exciting place - Hong Kong....

What is it?!

Can you guess yet?

Yep!  Labels! 

I'm so excited to have these delicious looking little babies to play with!  I've been busy sewing them into whatever is around and finished...  a couple dresses, a top and Conor's new superhero pants.

And while I know any old person can hop on the Internet and order some up, it makes me feel so legit and professional.  I can't wait to get to some of the exciting projects I have in the pipeline, because, hey - I get to use my new labels! 


Thursday, October 24, 2013

Baby Gifts, Oh My!

So, my number one customer, Mom, had kept me on quite a roll with baby gifts lately.  Between her's, a new nephew, and a pregnant co-worker of my husband, that's about all I have managed to do in between the projects for myself.


So, I have been loving fun little applique onesies for baby boys lately!  A while back I bought a ton of white onesies with a completely different project in mind.  That never quite got off the ground, so I love being able to use up these and some cute scraps I have laying around. 
I start by creating a basic shape - an elephant here - and cutting it out.  I then iron some stabilizer behind it and sew around the outline of the image. 

It takes a little time and attention, but over all it's super easy and they turn out pretty cute.  I just leave the edges of the image raw as it looks cool when it unravels a bit in the wash. 

Paired with the Basic Baby Pant from Made-by-Rae with a cuff around the bottom, they are simply darling!
I have also had some cute little girl gifts on my cutting table lately. 
Here we have the reversible wrap top from Craftiness is not Optional.  I wish I could find the original link as it had a free pattern, but I can't for the life of me.  So if you want it, you'll have to hunt her website. 
This one was a special for my mom since she LOVES all things reversible!  It was quick and easy and, I think, cute. The material is quilting material from JoAnn's and the leggings are self-drafted (yes, I just said that) from a plain knit also from JoAnn's.  I'm looking forward to making one for the little missy as soon as I am allowed to sew for my own family again. :)
And how about this Punk Rock Baby outfit?!  This is the awesome Maggie Mae Pattern from Shwin & Shwin.  I have made a ton (probably 5), but this could be my favorite so far.  It was for a co-worker of my husband who is into punk and super-cool and for whom an ordinary baby gift just wouldn't do.  I feel so lucky that I can now envision sometime like this and make it happen! 

If any of you are looking for some custom baby clothes, feel free to check out my Etsy page.  Some of the things here are listed, but there is also a listing for a custom order.  I like nothing more than having a special request or theme to work with, so feel free to challenge me!


Tuesday, October 15, 2013

I'm Back!

Wow!  I certainly didn't intend to not post for 3 whole months.  However, summer, while warm and wonderful and fun, kicked my butt when it came to doing anything for myself. Hello, gross underestimation of how much time and energy it takes to manage 3 kids with no planned activities....

Anyway, since school has started I have gotten back to it, but not quite so quickly to writing.  There always seems to be something else that needs to get done or some emergency breaking out that is a better use of my time.  But, now I'm back to it, I remember how much fun this is!  Inertia, I tell you.

So, what have I been doing? After 90 days of all kids all the time, I started sewing a bit for me :)

A totally different experience than kid sewing, but how fun to recreate and add some fun things to my wardrobe at the same time. 

I started off with this super easy Saturday Gathered Skirt from a book called "Sew What You Love" by Tanya Whelan.

It was seriously just two rectangles of material sewn together, a little bit bigger rectangles gathered onto the bottom and shirring around the waist.  I figured it would be easy to practice on and kind of hard to screw up... 

 I also made it with some super-cheap clearance material from JoAnn's, so I wouldn't be wasting much if it turned out horrible...

In the end, it was an easy, fun and cheap addition to my wardrobe.  Totally worth it.  

My next endeavor were a couple of Seafarer Tops from Sew Much Ado.  These looked super easy and not terribly complicated - again, perfect project.  And they were easy...  If only I could measure properly...
What you see here is actually the second iteration... 

The first version was scandalously tight...  Turns out that when they say that pattern sizes run smaller than store sizes, they are right.  So, despite what the measurements told me I made my store size and had to go back to the drawing board...

Thankfully, my lovely sister-in-law is smaller than I, but has the same good taste... 

And here's the final version that I have had time to make...  This is an extra large and may be on the big side...  I figured out that for the banded version I'm better as an extra large, but the non-banded should be large.  And that's the beauty of sewing for myself.  I can tailor it to the fit I want. Yay!

(Thank you to 6 year old Conor for the photography here!)

Finally - I figured I would dust off the Washi Dress pattern I got waaayyy back last December.  Now this pattern is a lot more technical than the others I have tried, and lets just say, I had some "issues."

The material was some really great cotton from Moda. Sorry, I forget the pattern, but I got it at my favorite store here in Seattle, Drygoods Design.  Love, love, love this cute little store (packed with great stuff) in Ballard! 

Problems...  Right...  First of all, the dress makes me look pregnant. Something that no woman ever wants, unless she is actually pregnant.  Which I'm not.

Second, the back is somewhat tight through the shoulders.

I'm not sure you can really tell in the above picture, but trust me, it is tight...

After reading and thinking and tinkering, I no believe that most all of the problems spring from the fact that I really needed a full bust adjustment.  While the medium fit size wise, my boobs just didn't have anywhere to go, creating gapping and other strange fit issues that I attempted to remedy in the entirely wrong way, by taking in the waist and pulling up the shoulders.

It doesn't look terrible, but the waist hits wrong, there's still some gapping and it is generally unflattering...  Oh well, live and learn. 

I may try again on this one, or you may see this lovely fabric reincarnated as some other lovely top.  I will, however, attempt a full bust adjustment on my next Washi.

That's it for ME sewing for now.  I have also been a baby gift and home decorating fiend, which should be along soon.  It feels GREAT to get rolling again!