Sunday, July 22, 2012

Burgeoning Bush

When we moved into our house a year ago (I know, a year already!?) we were excited about the huge lavender bush next to the front door. It was scraggly and just finishing blooming, but it smelled delightfully fresh. Tom gave it a severe pruning in the fall, and we waited to see what would happen this year.

I have enjoyed the beautiful purple buds and now flowers for several weeks. While sewing with the front window open in the evening, I've been able to smell the fresh sweet scent wafting inside. Yesterday afternoon I decided to cut the blooms and see how many bouquets I could get out of it to hang and dry. I ended up with 9, and there are still blooms for at least that many more!

Here's what I did!

Step 1: Cut as many stems as you'd like.

Step 2: Make and tie a loop near the end of some gardening twine.

Step 3: Leaving the loop toward the stem ends and the short end of the twine towards the flowers, wrap the long end of twine (I used about a yard) around the stems.

Step 4: When you have about 5-6 inches left on the wrapping end, tie a tight knot with the initial twine end.

Step 5: Hang and enjoy!

They will smell great long after they've dried. Use for bathroom decor, hostess gifts, or whatever you like.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Sewing Stream: Little Shorts

I started looking for cute shorts patterns in April, knowing we would probably need them in May when we visited Chicago. I ended up purchasing the digital version of the Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts. I printed them at the library down the hill, and was unable to adjust the size ratio on the printer. It looks like the pattern printed a teeny tiny bit smaller than it should have. While Halcyone was wearing 12-18 month clothes in other Oliver + S patterns, I decided to make these bigger (18-24) to allow more room for cloth diapers.

Pair 1: I made these exactly by the pattern.

Pair 2: I made the pattern about 1/2" wider in the waist, tapering back down to the legs. This worked better for our cloth diapers. I forgot to top-stitch the pocket binding down, so I used buttons to secure it for washing purposes (so it won't flip out and dry that way).

Pair 3: These were supped to look like capris, but ended up looking more like Bermuda shorts. I lengthened the leg length by a couple inches, and again made the waist wider as in pair 2.

Overall, I love these! I'm still hoping to make a pair from some chambray I've got washed up in my fabric stash.

Sewing Stream: Sundresses

A few months ago I promised to post some of the things I've been working on for Halcyone. So here's the first post! I had a hard time figuring out how to break these up, but here are the sundresses. Most of the things I've made come from Oliver + S patterns.

This is the Oliver + S Badminton Dress pattern. I love love love the scalloped hem. Don't you? I made size 18-24 months for my 20 month old daughter. It's a little big, but it works! We have loved layering it over a t-shirt and jeans and wearing it just by itself. The scallops look difficult, but if you follow the pattern they're pretty easy! The top casing and ruffles were a little more persnickity to line up.

The second dress is a version of the ever popular pillowcase dress. I've never really liked the pillowcase dresses because, well, they look like flimsy pillowcases. My mom found this awesome tutorial using fat quarters with multiple fabrics and well-finished seams. I have a stack of Amy Butler fat quarters that I just love. I love them so much I'm afraid to use them. But I liked this pattern enough that I cut them up. I really like the way it turned out. This pattern runs a bit big. I had to make a 12-18 month pattern smaller to fit my daughter. It looks like summer to me!