Sunday, September 28, 2008

a-line skirt especial

This is the first tutorial I've ever written and I'm trying to figure it all out. So, at the moment, at the bottom of the tutorial is an entire sections to print the pattern from. I'm hoping to create a link that automatically just downloads it on your computer, but until then. . .

Introducing the A-line skirt Especial sizes 3-8. It takes about 1/2 yard of main fabric and 8 inches more of a contrasting fabric if you want to add a ruffle.

Step One: Print pattern and tape pages together. There are 3 pages then end up in an "L" shape. Match up all of the lines before you tape the pages together.
Find your size and cut.

Step 2: Cut 2 pieces on fold.

Step 4: If you don't want to add a ruffle - then you're nearly done. Sew up both side seams (wrong sides together of course), hem, sew a casing and insert elastic. Easy peasy lemon squeazy.

It would be cute to add a sweet little trim with bias tape to the bottom too as an idea.

If you want to add a contrasting ruffle then here are the rest of the instructions:

Cut two pieces of fabric 4 inches wide by double the width of the bottom of the skirt.

Step 5: Sew the two pieces of the skirt ruffle together, wrong sides together. Hem. Lengthen your stitch length and sew a gather stitch at the top. If you don't now how to gather here's a good tutorial on this blog. Make sure you readjust the stitch length before you continue.
Step 6: Put right side of the skirt together and sew up ONE side.

Step 7: Gather ruffle and pin right sides together to the skirt. Match the seam of the ruffle to the seam of the skirt. Sew. Turn skirt with wrong side facing up, fold up the ruffle seam so it lays against the body of the skirt. Stitch down. This creates a top stitch on the other side that looks really nice, and helps the ruffle hang straight down.

Step 8: Sew up the other side of the skirt (wrong sides together of course).

Step 9: Measure your child's waist and cut the elastic 1/2" longer. Make the casing for the skirt a bit wider than the elastic. I used 1/2" elastic. Insert elastic into the casing, sew the ends of the elastic together, and sew up the opening.

And you're finished. Now find a cute matching shirt - or maybe do some cute applique on a shirt to match from your scraps.

Here's the pattern pieces for you to print (to print put your cursor over the "iPaper" at the top left of the screen):

Friday, September 26, 2008

Peaches come from a can.....or a jar.

I can not stop putting things in jars. There is something so fun about canning food for my family for the winter. Even thought I can go to the Grocery store whenever I want and buy things all ready in a jar.  It is a lot of work but depending on the day I think my family is worth it.   Also I went to visit my grandpa last week and he gave me some of my grandmas old jars. It means so much to me to be able to do something that she loved to do as well, and who know maybe even my girls will love to put things in my grandma's jars to.  I am not counting on it. 

Monday, September 22, 2008

Nie Nie Benefit Sale

This nice lady over at One more Moore has been taking donations for a benefit sale for the Nielson's (read about their story and updates here). Go to her blog to see a small sampling of what will be for sale starting Tuesday the 23rd at 10:00 a.m PST in her etsy shop. I donated a few hair clips. . . check it out! It looks like there's going to be a lot of neat things, plus it benefits a family who really needs it.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Bolero Jacket

When I first saw this pattern, I knew I had to have it. I love PDF patterns. This one was really easy to sew. It only took me a little over an hour. It's is totally lined, which is great for the serger-less (meaning all of the seams are covered so you don't have to worry about fraying edges. . . ). I think it needs a little hidden snap or something under the big collar on the left so the it doesn't hang down.

I thought the term "Bolero Jacket" sounded exciting. Like my little one might breakout in Spanish dancing of some sort. She does break out into dance - but I'm not sure that the jackets had any additional influence on her!

Oh! And you'll be happy to know. I showed it to Anna taking special notice to point out the pink lining and pink polka dots in hopes that she'd like it. She said, "Oh! I love it mom!" Finally!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Something for me!

I like sewing for my kids, but up until now I have never really made anything for myself. I found this pattern on  Burda style I love that you can print the patterns out on your home printer.  You just tape the pieces together and off you go. This was a fun project I am going to have to try another.  

Thursday, September 11, 2008

fun tutorials i'd like to try (or have tried)

I am convinced that almost anything you want to make you can find a free tutorial online for. Here are a few things I've found recently that I'd love to try:

Fabric flowers - these would be really cute hair clips!

Baby Sling - SO easy! Even if you're not a "sewist" I promise you can make it too!

Heather Ross Mendicino Sundress - limited time download! It would be fun to put a little cute shrug over the top.

Lazy Days Skirt
-from the Oliver +S blog. (It's under "free pattens" as a PDF download)

Disappearing 9 Patch quilt top
- totally want to try this!

Friday, September 5, 2008

fall sewing:: shirts

I'm having a hard time making shirts for the Fall that are long sleeved. It's just so hot here right now! (and will be hot for another month or so). I figure that anything I make can be worn on top of a long sleeved t-shirt, so it still counts as part of my "Fall Sewing" series.

As you can see, Anna is very serious about her role as "model". This shirt is my favorite. It is also some little elf's favorite too as I CANNOT FIND IT anywhere! I have searched high and low and it is no where to be found. I even remember where I last saw it -in my front room on a hanger. Oh well. . . as it turns out, I have 5 more yards of the apple and pear fabric so I guess I could make another one. You can find the pattern here if you're interested. They also have it in size 8-14 too. This will be cute with a long sleeved T underneath I think. And made longer into a dress.
When I was first trying this on Anna she told me, "It's kinda ugly" so I let her pick out a fabric to do the ruffle and the binding at the neck in. I also had to tell her how cool it would be to match Aunt Jenni because she has a skirt made out of the same fabric. I think she's convinced. Well. She wore it today and didn't cry, so I'll count go ahead and count that as okay. I have to admit that I'm not totally crazy about it either though. It's OK. I really like the pleats in the neck though and I think it would be a cute dress. And I wouldn't add the ruffle. Or lengthen the arms. I should just stick to the pattern. . .

This shirt is made from the same pattern as her birthday dress. There was all sorts of learning that happened here! I tried my hand at shirring. There are loads of tutorials online if you're interested. It's very very easy. You should give it a try. I shirred the front and also the arms to give it a little wavy ruffle. I also hand sewed the facing to the inside because sewing it (like in the instructions) didn't look nice on the corduroy fabric. The neck on this one is a little wide, but I think it will be cute with a long sleeved mock turtle neck underneath.

BTW - Anna does NOT like this one either. She wanted a flower instead of a whale. I told her that the blue is like the ocean and the whale is swimming in it. She doesn't care. Isn't she sweet?
Since she doesn't like anything I make for her, I let her choose the fabric. I gave her 3 different choices of combos here (otherwise we'd have apple flannel paired with rainbow whale flannel). I thought it turned out cute - and she likes it too. You can find the pattern here. The nice thing is that it goes up to size 8 and also has a short sleeved version. There are lots of options to make the same shirt but a few different ways. I shirred the arms to give them a bell-like look. I really want to buy this hat pattern designed by the same people, but I can predict that Anna will definitely refuse to wear it!

Fun stuff. Anna really is a good sport about it all. I am learning a lot, and my real goal is to learn and make mistakes on her clothes so that by the time she refuses to wear anything I make her I'll be good enough to make more of my own clothes.

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The Union of Zucchini and Chocolate

I would have never believed this was good but I had a friend bring me a loaf last year, that I scarfed it down like no other.  So this year when I had a surplus of zucchini I had to make some. In fact I think I have made six loafs (Not all for myself, I know how to share.) I found the recipe here. It is so good you have to try it!