Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Kid's Clothes Week: Upcycled Suzanne Dress

I bought this pattern, Suzanne by Citronille, a couple years ago on Etsy. I can't believe I didn't make it sooner! It is pretty basic and quick, even though the pattern is in French. The pattern illustrations and a little translation help from Google are really all you need to make it work!


This is a size 4, made during Kid's Clothes Week from an upcycled strapless Gap maxi dress that I got for $0.99 on the day after Christmas a few years ago. It's pretty much the softest fabric I've ever felt. It's some sort of lightweight gauze. The dress came lined with the ivory that is now lining everything but the sleeves in Miss H's dress.


I added a heavier-than-normal iron on interfacing to the bodice front and back to prevent gapping. Originally I hadn't planned to line the skirt, but as I got closer to sewing it on, and after consulting with Miss H, we decided it would be fun to have some extra swishiness for twirling. I also thought it would be fun to have it stick out the bottom a little and will allow the length to last longer on my rapidly growing girl!


She and I are both in love with this dress! She says she doesn't want to take it off.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Sewing Stream: An Ice Cream Dress for a Birthday

One of Miss H's little friends had a birthday last week, so she and I decided that a fun dress would make a nice gift. We went through my fabric stash and picked this blue flower fabric and some contrasting red Moda solid. After looking through all my favorite patterns that I already had traced in a size 2T, I chose the Oliver + S Ice Cream Dress.


The dress went together so quickly! I don't know if it was because of my familiarity with this pattern or if my sewing skill have improved in the last couple years, but it was much easier than I remember! The only modifications I made were to not use the red contrasting band at the bottom of the dress (not enough red fabric left), and to change the button to a snap.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Sewing Stream: Lucky Baby Quilt

It's been a long time since I've worked on a quilt project, but a few weeks ago I had a bug to use up some of my quilt stuff. Here's the first completed project!


This quilt is a baby gift for a friend. I used a Thimble Blossoms pattern called Lucky. I think the Thimble Blossoms patterns are all so beautiful. Rather than making the full size, I made just 4 of the 16" blocks for this baby version. I used a few of the fabrics from a Kate and Birdie Storybook layer cake and some Moda solids. The back is pieced with some fabric remnants that match color-wise that had no other destination.


This is the first time I've had a quilt come together at the points easily. I'm not sure if the difference it the OLFA green cutting mat (rather than my pebbly blue Wal-Mart variety) I used or the 1/4" foot on my sewing machine. I hadn't used either before and am so happy with the result! I don't have a quilting function on my machine, so I just used a wavy stitch an either side of all the perpendicular seams. This binding is a new method for me as well, suggested by my mom. The binding is 2 3/8" wide, and sewn onto the back of the quilt, folded around to the front, and edge stitched on. It's quick and easy and looks good!

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Sewing Stream: Another Dress for Me

Actually, this was the first dress I made for myself. When I made it about a year ago, I didn't like it. I can't remember why! I pulled it out of my closet this fall after sundress season was over, and I loved it!


I made this dress with the Go-To Dress pattern from Tanya Whelan's Sew What You Love book. I saw the dress on a mannequin at Bolt in Portland. The gal working in the shop had made the dress and offered to let me try it on to see if I liked the fit. This gave me a little confidence that I may actually be able to sew something that wouldn't seem like a hospital gown.

I bought a remnant of some knit organic bamboo blend fabric, and borrowed the book from the library. The dress is just 4 rectangles, so it is quick and easy! It probably would have been even faster if my serger was working. I used a jersey needle and a slight zig zag stitch on my sewing machine. There are several different options for length, number or gathering rows in the middle, etc. Both the front and back of the dress have the same v-neck.

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Sewing Stream: Snowflake Dress for Christmas

Knowing that we would be in California this year for Christmas, this was the first time I was on the hunt for a Christmas dress without an accompanying jacket pattern or long sleeves. I found this beautiful heavy red and gray flannel at JoAnn in the fall and bought enough at half price for whatever pattern I would eventually choose. I knew I wanted to include some embroidery or cross stitch on the bodice portion of the dress, and the newer Oliver + S Hide and Seek Dress pattern has a lot of available space for these options. 


I pinterested (look, a new word!) around for what looked like a basic and quick cross stitch pattern that would lend itself to a Christmas dress without limiting the dress to the month of December. I found one that looks like patch work snowflakes and got started. 


I cut everything out (size 4), and took the red bodice yoke portion (a red Moda fabric designed to go with all the Bonnie & Camille fabrics) with me on our Thanksgiving-time travels through Washington and Chicago. It's a good thing I got an early start on the cross stitch because it took a lot longer than I anticipated! I used 3 strands of embroidery floss, and will probably try 2 next time. The front bodice is completely faced with a mid weight fusible interfacing so that it wouldn't stretch while I had it in the embroidery hoop. 


When we got home mid-December, I didn't jump right into dress sewing, but did other December activities like shopping and baking and decorating our home. I picked the dress back up a few days before Christmas, wanting Miss H to be able to wear it to church on Christmas Eve. Well, I finished the snaps about 15 minutes before we headed out the door! I love the result and Miss H tries to wear it almost daily!