Monday, November 21, 2011

Stash Busting

No new fabric until after Christmas. That's my goal. I love accomplishing a goal. To make it happen I'm cutting out several things at once and then sewing them up. Some of this first batch were things that were necessary for my daughter's wardrobe (this and that) and then others are fabrics that I bought for a certain purpose but aren't very exciting to sew, so they have been pushed waaaaay down on the list.

First, is this fleece pullover for my older daughter. I bought this fleece as a remnant when the Fabricland in town closed. Each season I like to make sure each of the kids has at least one of these extra layer type garments. My older daughter has been lacking one for awhile now. Ottobre to the rescue.

Ottobre 1/2010 #38
I'm counting on those wrinkles coming out in the wash!

This is the "New Generation sweatshirt" (#38) from the 1/2010 issue. I wasn't hopeful about finding a matching zipper and didn't want to buy one, so I went with one that I had and made it look purposeful by adding coordinating piping and collar facing. The whole thing is giving me a bit of an 80's vibe - the color combo or the style or both? I'm okay with it and my daughter likes it.

Ottobre 1/2010 #38

I was confused by the pattern pieces related to the pocket. I was unsure if I was just not understanding or if there was a drafting error. I don't have a picture and it's hard to explain without it, but I did some redrafting of the front side panel piece to make it work for me.

Ottobre 1/2010 #38

The other change I made was to lengthen the sleeves and finish them with elastic rather than a cuff. I do prefer a cuff to elastic on these type of garments, but didn't have a suitable fabric.

The second was going to be a similar top for myself - an extra layer for when the house feels chilly. I like the vest I made from Kwik Sew 3453, but I think it's a little small now and I wanted to have long sleeves. I tried just adding a sleeve from a different pattern without really checking if they were compatible (I'm sure you know where this is going).

Kwik Sew 3453

My first mistake was cutting the vest pieces too big. I mistakenly thought I had made a medium before, but it was actually a small. This time I used size large, which was much too large. Then the sleeves didn't fit at all. Not even close. Blegh. But, I had done a great job with the zipper and it seemed like a shame to just toss the whole thing, so I did finish the armholes and put it on the donate pile.

And, finally, a basic long sleeved top from the leftovers of this dress. I thought I'd just cut it out and sew it up rather than filing it away in the fabric closet. This isn't an exciting new garment, but it's great for days spent at home cleaning or baking or relaxed weekend days. It's warm but not bulky, covered up but not sloppy.

Vogue 8536

The pattern is Vogue 8536 and I've made it before, but this time I followed Elle's suggestion and simplified the front. I like it a lot better this way.

Vogue 8536

Now both of my machines are in the shop getting a good cleaning and tune up and I'm starting on the next round of cutting out. All from stash!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Another Twirly Skirt

The first twirly skirt I made was so fun that I immediately cut out another. I had small amounts of all the fabrics left over from this project and combined them in a different way for my younger daughter.

Sweet smile

This cotton poplin print is really nice to work with. I added piping to the horizontal seams but even with that addition, this was a really quick make.

Twirly Skirt

The top is made from an Ottobre pattern (4/2011 #15). I think the style is really cute, but I didn't do a great job with the binding. And there's a lot of binding on this top - sleeves, keyhole at neck, and neckline. Clear elastic is stitched to the edges before the binding goes on. I tried using a double needle to finish the binding on the sleeves, but it doesn't look great. For the keyhole and neckline I just stitched in the ditch like I usually do and that looks better except that I didn't get the clear elastic on very evenly. It should be gathered evenly all around, but there are more gathers in the back. This project really made me want a serger with a binder attachment. Usually I'm really content with my older, very basic serger. But, these Ottobre patterns always have a lot of binding and I'm going to have to get better at the finish to be happy with them.

Knit Top

I added an inch of length to the sleeves before I cut them out, but was pretty disappointed to see that they are just long enough for my daughter's arms. The bodice was long enough without adding extra length.

Flower applique

The flower applique matches the piping in the skirt. To get the shape I traced one of the red flowers in the skirt fabric and the flower center is cut out of one of the turquoise flowers. The ribbon is stitched down with the same decorative stitch I used on my older daughter's dress ruffle.

Goofy girl

The leggings are made from Burda 9615 and keep everything appropriately covered up while twirling...


and dancing...


and other three-year-old life enjoying activities!

Twirly Skirt

My younger daughter continues to prefer skirts and dresses to pants. She gets my older daughter's hand-me-downs, but they aren't always the right size or season. I'm finding that I need to fill in a few holes in her wardrobe for fall and winter.

I started by replacing a black skirt that was too short and too tight. Since it was a skirt, my daughter didn't want to give it up. I pledged to replace it with a skirt and decided to copy a simple RTW one that she really liked.

Ruffled Skirt

It's a very basic three-tiered ruffled skirt. The top tier is hidden by her top here. I used the leftovers from this skirt. This fabric doesn't press all that well, so I topstitched the tier seams to keep them flat.

Ruffled Skirt

The outfit is really all about the shoes (red mary janes!) which are sadly getting pretty tight. One or two more wears and then they'll be put away.

It took me a few minutes to figure out the dimensions of the tiers from the RTW skirt, but once I had them figured and recorded I knew that I'd be making more of these. Construction is simple and quick and makes a cute skirt. And that makes for a happy little girl.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Oliver + S Jump Rope Dress

This is a repeat make for me. You can see the first one here. I started wanting to make this dress when I made this basic skirt for my daughter. Oliver + S patterns are a joy to sew and result in classy looking clothes for little people (and now they're available to download at BurdaStyle).

Oliver + S Jump Rope Dress

The pattern envelope says this dress has a "slightly dropped waist." I didn't really get that result the first time around, but this time it does look like that. I intentionally made the dress a little big because I want it to be wearable all the way until spring.

Oliver + S Jump Rope Dress

The instructions for the placket and collar are fantastic. They walk you through each step and it looks great at the end. The buttons are from stash.

Oliver + S Jump Rope Dress

The pockets are my favorite part of the dress, I think. It's nice to have some detail on the skirt part.

This fabric was going to be for me. That was my thought when I purchased it in NYC last spring. But, my daughter really liked it and I thought it would work for this pattern. I also made her a pair of leggings from a purplish mauve knit that I had in stash (no picture). The leggings are more school-friendly than tights are.

Oliver + S Jump Rope Dress

I've made some clothes for my younger daughter that I need to post yet. My son has noticed that I'm sewing a lot of girl clothes and not anything for him. He doesn't really need clothes, but he didn't think that was a great reason for me to not be sewing for him. I should probably include him in the fun. Add that to the "to sew" list...