Thursday, August 29, 2013

Mother-daughter sewing....

My sister-in-law had a birthday this summer, and after totally striking out on ideas for her, I finally just flat-out asked what she wanted. :)  She sent me a few links of clothing patterns she was interested in, and from those, I went with the Frog Legs and Ponytails patterns Amelia Shirt for her and Caroline Dress for my niece.  She wanted to do some mother-daughter dressing, so with these, I chose to make them identical.  (In the future, I may switch the main fabric/trim to make them close but different.)  I consulted with my brother while in the fabric store, texting him pictures of different combinations, and we went with the purple and yellow sundrenched dragonflies (JAF).  

This is the Amelia Shirt for my sister-in-law, and IIRC, I went with a size M.  This was a total guess, as I didn't know her measurements.  Fortunately, she let me know that it was a pretty good guess. :)  

And the Caroline Dress for my niece.  She was about 18 months at the time, so I went with the 12-24 month size.  As you can see, the main difference in appearance between the two patterns is the length of the contrast band.

These are both basically pillowcase dresses/shirts, and there are plenty of versions out there, as well as free patterns/tutorials online.  However, I appreciated having the full range of sizes available to me, so that I didn't have to do much guessing or reinvent the wheel.  If I had been making this for myself or someone who lived in my house, I would probably not have purchased the patterns.  But for working long-distance, it was much better to go with patterns.  And that said, I thought that the patterns were well-drafted and thoroughly written, without being too detailed.  I like the professional pictures, as well.  And I appreciated that the designer gave cutting measurements instead of actual patterns for the squares and rectangles, since I prefer to use my rulers and rotary cutter.  For those who prefer actual patterns and scissors, this may not be a good pattern for you.

I'm just thrilled that my sister-in-law loved the results, and I have more fabrics to make another set.  This time, since we're starting to head into fall, I may go up a size for my niece's dress, so that hopefully she can still wear it next year.

Monday, August 26, 2013

More dinosaur appliques!

An online friend had seen my previous dinosaur applique projects, and she commissioned me to make some dino onesies and matching burp cloths for a new mom in our sewing group.  She provided the cloth diapers and the fabrics, and I did the work.  I love her fabric choices!  These are the burp cloths with dino prints onesies with batiks that go with them.

And then a closer view of the dinosaurs.  I love how they look with these batiks!  I didn't really fussy cut them - not easy to do when you're working from the back of the fabric.  But some of these are adorable with how they turned out!

And then, since I've been having so much fun with these dinos, I volunteered to make two sets to send off as door prizes in a clinic celebration in honor of World Breastfeeding Day.  These fabrics are all scraps from my stash.  I think they made great dinosaurs!

Appliqued onesies are quickly going to become my baby gift of choice....

Friday, August 23, 2013

Sewing for post-op care

My dad was having prostate surgery in mid-July, and my mom suggested that elastic waist pants would be a good thing for him to wear during the recovery period.  So I used my trusty men's PJ pants pattern (B6887, which is sadly OOP) to make a test pair.  These pants are a straight size L, as my brother wears a M in both his boxers (S9958) and PJ pants (B6887), and my dad wears a L in his boxers (S9958).  I knew they'd be long on him - he's shorter than my brother - but I didn't know how much length to take out, and whether to take it out of crotch, legs, or both.  I made a functional fly with the instructions from S9958, in case it would be helpful with the post-op catheter, and I added a single cargo pocket, much like my scrub pants.  Then I sent it off with a list of fit/preference questions. :)

While waiting for answers to the questions so that I could make a bunch more, I got the suggestion that shorts might actually be better.  So I made several pairs of shorts.  These are all different patterns, as I didn't know which might work better.  The lime green (the color didn't show up quite right in the picture) shorts are from B6887, and they have no pockets.  The green striped shorts are S8088, a discontinued scrubs pattern that I had in my stash.  They are size L also, and they come with inseam pockets.  The black pair is S5539, which I used to have in my stash but apparently lost/binned/something.  I had to repurchase it on etsy, much to my chagrin. That is also size L, with the mid-length (there are 3 length options), and with inseam pockets.  I made all three with functional flys, closed with 2 small snaps, and added drawstrings.  Then I sent these off with the same fit/preference questions.

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Party gift bags

So my monkeys have summer birthdays, and we have pool parties for said birthdays.  After all, why pay for a fancy party venue, when there's a pool in the backyard, right?  Anyway, as I blogged about last year, I prefer to have "green" party bags.  So this year I thought that drawstring bags would be good, and I wanted to make them a little more "themed" to the pool, especially since the goodies inside were all pool-related.  So I found a swimming clip art image and enlarged it to a good size for the bags.  I used heat-n-bond lite to fuse the appliques in place, then straight-stitched just inside the edges with matching thread.  The green bags were for Thing 1's party (his favorite color is green), and the orange ones for Thing 2's party.  The green and black fabrics were thrifted sheets - the green is actually more of a lime color - and the orange was broadcloth that I purchased on sale at JAF.  The green bags are lined with black, but the orange bags are lined with the orange.  The bags ended up measuring about 11 inches wide by 13.5 inches tall - a good size for fun pool toys, as well as whatever treasures they will hold later.

I hope that the kids enjoy using them to hold their stuff as much as I enjoyed making them!

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Another Angry Bird knockoff

Back in February, I blogged about making this view of M6481, I mentioned that I gave one to a friend's son as a birthday gift, and his brother became super jealous.  Well, said brother has now had his own birthday, and I thought it would be nice to make him his own Angry Bird knockoff.  This time, I used a fuzzy red fleece instead of green, and I've shown all three birds that can be made from the 1/4 yard of fabric required. :)  Once again, I used a press cloth and fused the eyes (from felt) in place without detrimentally affecting the fleece, but this time I did stitch them in place, as well.  Not only is it more secure, but I have to say that I like the look better.

Now my boys want the two leftover birds!  Oops!  I'll have to hide them in the gift closet....