Monday, October 15, 2012

Catching up!

I'm still here, I promise!  I was sewing this summer, but we were out and about a lot during the day, and I was exhausted by the evening.  I couldn't quite get motivated to sit down and blog.  We definitely made the most of the summer before the little guy started kindergarten.  Life is so different once they start school.  No more sitting in our pjs all morning if we want to.  :)  I was also busy this summer, because I was winding down at work.  Yes, I left my job in August to be at home with the kids full-time.  It was something I'd thought about for a while, and I finally took the plunge.  With kindergarten, preschool and the kids' various activities, I've been keeping busy, but maybe I'll have a little bit more time for creative pursuits.  Maybe...

I thought the best way to catch up on the blog was to do one big post about all my projects from the summer.  Some of these pictures Most of these pictures are from my phone, but hey, if I waited until I could get my good camera out and photograph them, I'd probably never get this post published.  :)

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Something new

So, I decided it would be fun to make a dress for the baby girl for my friend’s upcoming wedding.  I figured if it didn’t work out, I still had a couple of nice dresses that would serve as back up.  Originally, I wanted to make the oliver+s bubble dress, the same dress I made for the baby girl’s first birthday.  I saw a number of bubble dresses in silk dupioni on flickr, and they were just beautiful and perfect for a wedding.  But I ended up changing my mind, because I had been thinking I wanted to try a pattern I had not made before, and then I saw this dress pattern.  I imagined it would be lovely in silk.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

But wait, there's more!

More ruffled aprons, that is.  :)

Hmm...I only have one post for the month of May.  Must rectify that with a post--or maybe two.  You thought you saw a lot of ruffled aprons in my previous post.  And you thought you were done with ruffled aprons.  But wait, there’s more!

Monday, May 7, 2012

Ruffles, ruffles, ruffles!

This is a project I worked on in February and March, but I couldn’t blog about it until now.  A friend of mine is getting married, and her bridal shower theme was 50s housewife.  When her sister, who was planning the shower, told me the theme, I immediately thought: aprons!  And I immediately thought of this Amy Butler fabric line called “Love” (how appropriate, no?), because it had a lot of rose prints (she loves roses).

We picked out a couple of fabrics, and I got to sewing!  I ironed hems while watching my TV shows and sewed while listening to my podcasts and audiobooks.
As a slight aside, I used to poo-poo audiobooks.  As a literature major, I still want the book that I can touch, with pages I can turn and dogear.  There was something sacrilegious to me about listening to a book.  But, hey, my kids love it when I read to them.  I decided I'd give it a try, because it would allow me to multi-task.  Another first for me: I’ve never read any Stephen King, but I recently heard about his new book 11/22/63.  Time travel stories always intrigue me.  (In my next life when I’m a college English professor, I plan to give a course on time travel stories, but that’s an aside to the aside.)  So, I got 11/22/63 on audiobook and listened to it while working on these aprons.  I enjoyed it so much, every night when the kids got into bed, I would quickly pull out the sewing stuff so I could get back to the story and find out what happened next.

So, these aprons got finished thanks to Stephen King!  Or maybe it’s the guy who was narrating the audiobook.

Back to the aprons.  I used this pattern from Sew Sweet Patterns, but changed it a little.  I made ties for the neck strap instead of the strap and button, and I created a border for the bib.  I made the full apron for the bride-to-be.

Monday, April 30, 2012


Baby girl was due in May, but she decided she wanted to be an April baby and came three weeks early.  As soon as she was born, she cried out to let the world know she was here, and then she started rooting around for food.  Two years later, she is proving to be just as feisty as ever.  She knows what she wants and has no problem letting us know, too.  She wants to do everything her brother does and loves to play with him in his room.  At one point, he drew a sign that said “no babies” to keep her out, but the next day he took it down, and she was back playing in his room.  I figure she must have charmed her way back in somehow.  And, oh, how she can charm you.  I mean, who could resist that face?
We didn’t have a party for her birthday, but since I made her a dress last year, I thought it’d be fun to make one for her second birthday.  She wore it for all of 30 minutes, but it was cute while she was wearing it.


Sunday, April 15, 2012

More hopeful sewing..

We’ve had rain and stormy weather here lately, so I’m continuing my hopeful sewing series by sharing this little butterfly dress.  I made it a couple of weeks ago, so the baby girl could wear it to the butterfly exhibit.  (I actually got this butterfly fabric last year in hopes of making a dress for last year’s butterfly exhibit.  Hey, I’m only a year behind!)

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Hopeful sewing...

As in hopeful that the weather will get warmer soon.  If you sew it, summer will come, right? 

We were recently teased with really warm weather, in the 80s, and when I pulled the kids’ summer hats out, I realized they’d gotten a tad too small.  So, I set out to remedy that.  I was determined to make the kids new summer hats.  Sure, I could have run out to Target and gotten them some hats for $10 each.  But it’s the principle.  I wanted to make them.

I wanted to try the bucket hat pattern from the Little Things to Sew book.  I had an idea in my mind of what fabrics I wanted to use, so we (my two little helpers and I) headed out to Joann Fabrics for a little fabric shopping.  I found two linen blend fabrics that fit the bill of what I wanted for one side of the hat.  Since the hat is supposed to be reversible, I browsed the store for something that I thought would work for the other side.  I normally spend a lot of time deciding on fabric.  Once I’ve picked something out, I start to second guess myself, so then I spend a lot of time in the fabric store, wandering the aisles and putting things side by side to see if they would work together.  But having my two little helpers helped to speed the process along, because they don’t always tolerate extensive browsing.  I did second guess the fabric choices, but by then, the fabric had already been cut and paid for and we were out of the store.  And because my two little helpers were so helpful and patient, they each got a $1 toy from the bins near the checkout line.  Of course, the $1 items were immediately wrecked and torn apart before we got home, but oh well.  That’s why they are only $1, I guess.

Even though the fabric purchase was slightly rushed, I really like the way the fabrics turned out on the hats.

This is the two sides of the boy hat.  I did a neutral linen-type fabric for one side, and for the other I tried to find something boyish but a little more interesting.  I wasn't sure how the stripes would sew up, but it turned out really nicely, I think.  I like the brown side a lot, and the little guy likes the blue side.

And the two sides of the girl hat.  I picked out the embroidered fabric totally on a whim, and I really like the way it looks as a hat.

Friday, February 17, 2012

A little birthday present!

One of our playgroup friends just turned one, and I made this little dress for her.  She’s a real girly-girl, so I can totally see her in this.

Monday, February 6, 2012

2011 Reflections, 2012 Goals

Doesn't everyone who goes to the Rodin Museum have a photo like this?
While sewing recently, I got reflective about how much I’ve learned in sewing this past year, and what I’d like to accomplish this year.  I got my sewing machine a little over a year ago, because I have a decent job, but I don’t find it very inspiring, and I felt I really needed something creative in my life to help balance out the everyday responsibilities.  Sewing has definitely done that for me.  I find sewing very relaxing, almost meditative, probably because I usually sew at night (or occasionally during nap time) when the house is really quiet.  It’s just me and the machine.  Without the noise of every day life, thoughts and reflections just naturally percolate to the surface.  It’s a good time to sort out your thoughts and quiet all the anxieties that seek out your attention during the day.  I find a lot of satisfaction in being able to create things, too.  I think art and creativity are requirements in life, even though they often get set aside for more practical things.

Saturday, February 4, 2012

Upcycled Valentine’s Day Outfit

I saw a tutorial for making the ruffled heart on this Valentine’s Day dress recently and decided to check my stash of old t-shirts to see if I could make this.  Turns out I had a grey maternity cardigan and a grey t-shirt I could use for the dress.  And then I decided to make leggings to go with it from a pair of black maternity leggings.  I’m loving that this outfit is totally upcycled.  I like being able to reuse old clothes, and I get a kick out of knowing that baby girl is wearing my old maternity clothes.

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

One little word

I’m back!  Happy Holidays and Happy New Year to everyone.  Life (mostly work) got a little overwhelming, so craftiness had to take a back seat.  It’s sad when the things you enjoy in life take a back seat to the things you have to do.  :(  Which actually brings me to the topic of this post.  It’s new year’s resolution time.  Get fit.  Spend more time with the hubs.  Budget better.  Lose weight.  Read more.  Etc. 

But I’ve also been seeing something a little different in the blogosphere.  One little word.  Pick one word that you will focus on for the year.