You know you're obsessed with sewing when...

9:27 AM 5 Comments A+ a-

You stay up WAY past your bedtime watching "The Couture Dress" with Susan Khalje on Craftsy, even though you have no plans to make the dress anytime soon...


from Craftsy.com
 When Miss Dibs first posted about this new Crafty course my interest was peaked, then when I saw Frabjous Couture had a discount ($39.99 down from $79.99!) I made an impulse purchase. I'm so excited to watch the rest of this course! I had already planned on purchasing Gertie's new Sew Retro Jacket course (When is that coming out by the way? The suspense is killing me!), so it looks like Craftsy is getting my money twice this month! Budget be damned! Whatever, $40 is WAY cheaper than the $1,000 + her Couture Sewing School costs! Anybody else jumped on the Susan Khalje train yet?

Baby's First Christmas!

10:00 AM 2 Comments A+ a-

I was not quite as organized as I hoped to be this year, so my plans for all homemade Christmas gifts were scrapped and I only ended up with 3 handmade gifts. This is the third and possibly the cutest...

Since I finally have a baby in my (soon to be) family, I get to make baby things! Like the shoes and diaper covers I made earlier this year...

I knew I wanted to make my boyfriend's sweet nephew a blanket for Christmas and since my boyfriend has a proclivity for travel to Africa, I've decided that gifts from us will be jungle/savanna themed for the foreseeable future. I picked up this cute fleece from JoAnns and because I wanted this to be a smaller blanket that he can use with his car seat, I only bought a yard.

First I lined up the fabric folded in half,  trimmed the selvage's and cut down the fold.


Then I created a template for the edges by tracing a large can on a piece of copy paper.


I cut out the circle and lined it up with the edge of the fabric, then trimmed the excess fabric.




Finally, I blanket stitched the edges together with a full (non separated) strand of embroidery floss.

 
Then I rolled it up and tied it to a cute giraffe I found at Target for my sweet baby Cade's first Christmas! This was a ridiculously simple project that I put together in about an hour. In fact, I was still blanket stitching in the car on the way to Cade's house! (hence the dashboard behind the giraffe below)

I think this might be my new go-to gift for baby showers (along with some shoes and a diaper cover of course!)

Dreaming of sunny days...

2:30 PM 2 Comments A+ a-

All day I've been obsessing about my latest, non sewing DIY project...

Here's the back story: Yesterday I got an email from ShoeDazzle, otherwise known as my "shoe of the month club", advertising their Valentine's Day sale (by the way, if you're a shoe lover you should definitely be a member of this site). I'm a sucker for new shoes so I of course clicked through to look at the options. Turns out they were peddling more than shoes. Among other things, they had this picnic set available for $39.95...





I immediately wanted to purchase it. The boy and I did some picnicking last summer when our local botanical gardens offered a free classic movie series in the park and it was so much fun! The dreary winter has left me longing for picnics and I had already mentally planned menus for several in the spring and summer. I was about to click "buy" but 2 things stopped me.

1. I don't really love the color or look of this backpack, I love the cute dishes and the "idea" of the set but I think I'm more of a picnic basket kind of a girl, rather than a picnic backpack...

2. It's $40 and I could probably make my own for around the same price in a style I like...

So this is my mission before spring! The plan is to find a vintage picnic basket similar to this one:


Source: etsy.com via Forrest on Pinterest


If it's in good shape I'll leave it as is, otherwise I'll spray paint it a pretty color, line it with felt and maybe a pretty floral print fabric, create elastic loops to hold silverware and dishes and then go on the hunt for pretty things to fill it will! I think I'll also make some napkins to match the lining fabric. Then maybe I can find a great blanket to match?

This is actually a miniature picnic basket made for dolls, but you get the idea I'm going for...

Source: etsy.com via Forrest on Pinterest


Anyone else dreaming of picnics?

Sewing for Other People Part 2

4:14 PM 1 Comments A+ a-

First of all, sorry I've been such a bad blogger lately. There are a few things in my life right now that are kind of a bummer, so rather than sewing and blogging lately I've been laying on the couch and watching Downton Abbey. I'm hoping to be out of my funk soon, but in the mean time I realized I need to finish up showing you my handmade Christmas gifts!

This is the second gift I made for my sister and now I doubt she'll ever wear anything I make her again since both things I made ended up with a proportion/fitting problem! This is why I'm selfish and don't normally sew for other people. Things that I would just live with on my clothes make me feel guily on clothes for someone else! Anyway, I saw her pin this skirt a few months ago...


Source: flickr.com via Forrest on Pinterest


Coincidentally, I had purchased a really similar fabric from an estate sale a few weeks before so I decided to make it for her using the Sewaholic Crescent skirt pattern. Construction wise the skirt is pretty well made, the only issue is that I think I should have chosen the less full skirt view to replicate the original skirt. (view A instead of view B) This one is a little puffy, due to the thickness and drape of the material and needs to be worn with heels so it doesn't make the wearer look shorter...



This is the third Sewaholic pattern I've made and as always, her instructions were spot on and the skirt was really well drafted. I loved the french seaming on the pockets and the technique she uses for inserting the zipper. I will definitely be using that again!

Hope all is well with y'all!

Sewing for Other People Part 1

3:40 PM 1 Comments A+ a-

It is ridiculously late for me to be posting about the Christmas presents I made this last year, but I have been a lazy blogger and a lazy seamstress of late and the cold rainy weather is not helping much.

So here, several weeks after Christmas, is the first of the (shamefully) few gifts I made...

I am relatively selfish when it comes to my sewing and rarely make things for other people, but I got it in my head I would make my sister clothes for Christmas. I'm not sure that either project turned out to be something she would actually wear, but she humoured me and said she thought they were cute, so I'm going to believe her for now...

This dress was based on this dress from Modcloth:


>



The basic idea was strapless, dark floral fabric, elastic waist. I used Simplicity 2497 which I have used for it's original intended purpose and as a top. It's a great basic pattern and this is yet another example of an easy variation. I knew that my sis would want the dress on the shorter side (because she is on the shorter side), so I just eliminated the waist band and sewed the top and bottom together. Because the dress is supposed to be fairly blousy, I put elastic in the waistline and she's able to slip it over her head without a zippper (yay!).



I was an idiot and put the bias facing on the outside instead of the inside, but I decided it gives it a nice detail.


So here's the issue; my sister is a bit more busty than I am, so I re-drafted the pattern top piece that I already cut to my size and added 2 inches to the center and a half an inch to each side, so that it matched the "finished" measurements for her bust and kept the blousy look. Apparently however, this has made the neckline too big and it's gaping... Ugh. I think if I take it in a bit on the sides, it might tighten the bust up enough to stop the gaping but I'm not positive it will work. Any thoughts?

Sorry for the defective Christmas present sis!

Also, thanks for all the input on naming my dress form! You guys crack me up! I still haven't finalized a name yet but you certainly gave me things to think about!

Naming Opportunities

10:53 PM 9 Comments A+ a-

I was planning to post tomorrow on a few of the Christmas gifts I made this year, but I'm up late watching the premiere of Project Runway All Stars (still LOVE Anthony for comic relief, but I can't decide who I want to win. except not Kenley) and I have a dilemma I need help with.
My parents are amazing and bought me a fabulous dress form for Christmas! So my leopard print duct tape version will be taking a back seat for now in favor of my pretty new Simplicity! Please ignore the black thread on her boob, she's gotten a lot of use already...



So my dilemma is, what should I name her? Any ideas?


In related news, my old Ford Explorer finally bit the dust over Christmas. Ironically I had spent the last few months saying that 2012 was going to be the year I bought a new car, but I was thinking several months in, not the 2nd day of the year! Anyway, I got a sweet deal on basically my dream car, a white Mustang convertible. Not the most practical choice maybe but the next car I buy will be for hauling kids around, so this one can be for fun right? Only now I need a name for her too...

New Years Suprises!

6:27 PM 5 Comments A+ a-

A few months ago I won a giveaway by Angie from Quality Time and I was super excited to receive the package a few days ago! So of course I'm sharing it with you!
First off, the fabric. The piece on the left is a wool plaid, that will go perfectly with my new brown platform loafers. The other is a large piece of poly jersey that will make a fun wrap dress.


Next up, I love this vintage jewelry! The bracelet is to die for!


A few vintage notions...


A big favorite, vintage patterns! The cat loves them too...

Here are some of my favorites...

 

 
A vintage Ladies Home Journal (another favorite of the cat)...
with precious vintage ads!

 
A cool sewing book that will help me with my dream of making a quilt!
Thanks so much Angie! I'm so excited to use all this great stuff!