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Showing posts from April, 2012

Pillow Talk

The annual silent auction fundraiser for the school my children attend is coming up. This year my contribution is a couple of pillows.

The first one has patchwork on one side and a floral pattern on the other:

The other has roses and background stitching on one side and plaid on the other:

I prepped these fronts and backs and then decided that I really wanted them to have invisible zipper closures, but I had not done that for a pillow before.

To practice the technique, I made these pillows for our living room couch.

Putting in the invisible zip is pretty simple, especially if you've done it in a garment. Since I was in pillow-making mode, I also made three pillows for my bedroom to coordinate with this quilt.

The first - tucks sewn down in alternating directions:

The second - textural interest created by partially sewing tucks in a grid (seen in a Threads article):

The kids like to poke fingers in the grid intersections and manipulate the fabric. The Preacher finds the pattern curi…

Ottobre 1-2010-21 - Orange Plaid Shirt

Another winner from Ottobre! Not much to say about it - I'll mostly let the pictures do the talking.

I like the unique pockets, but I was using a plaid fabric and thought it might be a bit much so I left them off. My original plan was to substitute a single traditional pocket, but I completely forgot about it until I saw these pictures.

I messed up something with the front bands when I was tracing or cutting out the pattern. I'm still not sure what I did or didn't do. The markings and instructions were confusing to me. I ended up sewing on bands to make it work.

The little sleeve tabs are a nice detail.

On this inset you can see that the "solid" orange is actually a yellow/orange crossweave. There was just a small piece in my stash from many years ago and was a great match for the plaid.

And, of course, the "silly shot" (featuring tattoos)...

Ottobre 1-2011-29 Khaki Pants

I really like a lot of Ottobre's patterns for boys. They have creative and interesting details. But sometimes those details look overwhelming to me - multiple zippered pockets, many small parts to trace and piece, extra seams to topstitch, etc. I like those sorts of things, but I'm not always convinced that the extra effort is worth it for a garment that is quickly outgrown.

A couple of weeks ago I squashed my doubts and made a pair of pants for my son from Ottobre 1-2011-29. The No Kung Fu (?!) pants are described as "outerwear pants," but I'm not entirely sure what that means. The directions don't call for insulation, lining, or waterproofing. The suggested fabric is "outerwear fabric" - not so sure about that, either.

So why did I choose this pattern over some others? The knee patches, my friends. My boy blows out the knees on his pants with astonishing speed. I'm hoping these knee patches slow down the wearing out just a bit. Since I was look…

New Look 6018 - Dress in Red and Stripes

When I started thinking about spring dresses for my girls, I wanted to buy new fabric. I had seen some inspiring pictures online and in catalogs and I wanted to copy some of those ideas. But, I'm trying to sew from stash as much as possible and truthfully, sometimes limiting the choices makes the process more creative and satisfying.

So, for my firstborn, here's what I came up with:

Maybe you recognize the stripes from the T-shirt photo? This used up the last of it (and I'm glad to see it gone!). The red twill was given to me by someone else who was destashing. Same with the navy used for the piping and the red (metal!) invisible zipper. Very economical!

I did purchase the pattern - New Look 6018. The measurements given on the pattern envelope and tissue are dependable, but I'm not as pleased with the fit/shape as I was with my other daughter's dress. Of course, it's a very different style, so comparing them maybe isn't so fair.

Have I ever mentioned that I …

New Look 6089 - Orange Border Print Dress

It's somewhat rare, but once in awhile I produce something that I'm all around thrilled with. I don't feel the need to nit-pick imperfections or let myself get annoyed with what I wouldacouldashoulda done differently and I just really enjoy the finished product. That's how I feel about this dress and jacket:

I used New Look 6089 to make these for my younger daughter. This is a great pattern. It isn't anything dramatic or unique, but the measurements and drafting are trustworthy and produce a flattering dress for a young girl.

I purchased this fabric a few months ago with my older daughter and a certain jumper pattern in mind, but it didn't work out with the double border print. To make it work here, I straightened the side seams of the skirt and just made each of the pleats deeper.

The bodice is lined with the same fabric and it turned out to be just the right amount of yardage. I love that. No waste or pondering what to do with those scraps.

The jacket pattern …

T-shirts for the Boy

The gift of very warm weather that we had back in March was just what I needed to get started on warm weather wardrobes for my kids. Now we're back to seasonal temps (not so warm) so the need for shorts and short sleeves isn't so urgent. But, I much prefer being ahead of the game and having options suitable for the weather.

As I do most years, I churned out some basic T-shirts for my son. This time I used an Ottobre pattern  for a long-sleeved T (1/2010 #24), but cut the pattern off for short sleeves.

I like the stripes of various blues the best. Perhaps because I haven't made a shirt from it before, unlike theotherthree.

Joy recently posted about sewing basics vs. fun items. I feel much like she does. I like my kids' daily clothes to be things that I've made. Honestly, I find it freeing. I don't like supporting the sweatshop industry or the slavery required to sustain it. I don't like seeing my kids' bodies used as advertising space for Disney or Nickel…