Friday, April 20, 2012

A Gypsy Skirt

This little skirt for Elizabeth is actually from a month or so ago, but I forgot to take pictures of it then, so when I put it on her today, I snapped a few pictures.  The fabric is a linen blend I picked up at Hancock's at the end of last year.  The pattern, as such, is the Gypsy Skirt from The Handmade Dress.  It's actually what she calls a sewing recipe.  It's a collection of proportions and formulas to give you a garment of a certain shape.  In this case, it's a seven gored skirt just right for a little girl who never met a meal she didn't like :-)  And yes, every shot is an action shot with this girl - sorry!

On her, it's a really cute style and I like the extra fullness in the back to compensate for her diaper-clad bootie. 

On her, it's a really cute style and I like the extra fullness in the back to compensate for her diaper-clad bootie.  I also drafted it for myself, but after seeing hers, I think I'll make a few changes for mine.  I'm going to take out the extra gore in the back (and adjust the other measurements accordingly) and maybe take a bit of the fullness out of the waist.  I like the easy elastic waistband, but I don't want it so bunchy on me.  Is it something I could've come up with myself, yes, but Sam's recipe gave me a great starting point and confidence in the outcome.  Plus, she's a super-sweet mama of 4 with a really cute blog with great ideas - that's worth the $6 right there!

After I finish the chair cushions (more on that mess later!) and my little skirt, I think I'm going to do  matching cousin dresses for Sarah and Elizabeth from her Miss Madeline pattern, so look for more extreme cuteness coming soon!

Parting shot - here's my super reader who was very miffed I wasn't taking pictures of him!

Thursday, April 19, 2012

Home Dec Sewing - At Least It's Easy

I have to say I can't get very excited about home dec sewing.  I try, but mostly it just turns into me fighting with very large pieces of fabric and nothing ending up quite square.  Which is why I was less than overjoyed when our patio chair cushions started to fall apart.  After scouring every conceivable store for replacements under $15 each, I decided to bite the bullet and make new ones.  By waiting for a sale at Hancock's I was able to get all the fabric for 6 cushions for about $40.

Last night in between putting a sleepy girl with a runny nose to sleep again, and again, and AGAIN, I finally cut out all the pieces. 

They will be simple box cushions with no welting because welting would take just that much longer and this is Arizona after all. The sun will bake and fry these babies in a year or two anyway. And yes, I'm way too lazy to take them off and put them away after each use. Are you kidding me?! 

Hopefully I will get these done or mostly done this weekend so I can get on to the skirt I want to make myself.  I cut out and decided on alterations to the pattern the other night, but then decided I needed to hold it out there as a carrot or the cushions will never get done.

My photo assistant was helpful, as always.  I think she wanted to make sure you had a sense of scale!

Sunday, April 15, 2012

VERY Low Budget Bedroom Update

Sometimes I find myself getting really tired of my things and rooms and brainstorming crazy makeover strategies a la Trading Spaces.  Usually this is a sign that I need to spend some time in the offending room tossing out the trash, replacing the wayward Legos, and cleaning the dustbunnies.  Case in point, my $0 bedroom makeover from Friday.  It was my birthday, so I spent it cleaning my room, and now it is once again a little bit of calm in my chaos.  I wiped the walls, put away the clutter, cleaned the baseboards, and vacuumed the dust bunnies out of every corner (seriously I filled my vacuum canister twice, it was so bad).  Of course, I have no before pictures, because that's just the sort of lame blogger I am, but here is an after picture of my nice cleaned off, shined up, prettied up nightstand.

The Holy Family statue was left out after Christmas, but I decided what better reason to keep the nightstand clean than to keep Baby Jesus from getting crowded out by knitting.  Not to mention, having Mary watch over Jesus and I can only help, right?

The roses are from my little backyard rosebush, which I still haven't managed to kill.  Yay for me!

Thursday, April 12, 2012

{pretty, happy, funny, real} - Easter is Here!

Hooray, we've made it through Lent and now we get to enjoy the Easter season, which actually lasts almost 6 weeks until Pentecost!  Here are a few fun pictures from our Easter festivities.


Pretty blessed is more like it.  We have three (generally!) sweet, beautiful, healthy kids.  No matter how difficult some days seem, life is really good!


Mama got to make an Easter dress this year (more on that here) and I'm really happy with how it turned out.  Now if only the Energizer Bunny Elizabeth would've stood still for a whole 3 seconds, I could've gotten a clear picture.


Elizabeth found out about the wonder that is Easter candy this year.  She approves wholeheartedly.

Patrick gets constant "coaching" from his big brother, Christopher.  I'm sure my sisters will tell me that I drove them crazy doing the same thing, but I struggle to find a nice way to tell him, "Just let Patrick color his own darn eggs!"  And yes, I took their shirts off because you know that egg dye will never come out of anything, and we're short on clothing that fits right now as it is!

Joined up at Like Mother, Like Daughter - some great Easter fun had by all!

Easter Sewing

I wanted to put up a pretty quick post on Elizabeth's Easter dress.  I'm really happy with how it came out - its probably one of my favorite things I've made her so far.  Excuse the wrinkly pictures - I didn't sew the buttons on until 11:00 Saturday evening, so I didn't get any pictures before she wore it.  She also ran back and forth like the Energizer bunny, so I didn't get a clear picture of it on her.

The pattern was The Tuck Dress by Collars Etc. I made the size 1 dress. The fabric was satin batiste from Chadwick Heirlooms. The original dress was Bridget from the February 2007 issue of Creative Needle (sniff, I miss them). Bridget was made from Ulster linen, but that was really spendy and not at all in my budget, so the satin batiste seemed to be a good comprimise - a little nicer than regular batiste for a dress without much extra embellishment, but not $50 a yard. The lace was also from Chadwick Heirlooms, I believe from the Heavy Lace section. It is an insertion and edging stitched together to form a band with the feel of tatting, but not quite as heavy.

Close up of the collar with lace

Also put a band of lace down the sleeve

Check it out, I even matched the tucks at the shoulders :-)

From the back

The slip was from Simplicity 2900.  It ended up being a bit long, so I cut off some length before attaching a 2" long ruffle. My mom had made Elizabeth a slip for a dress for her first Easter (back when she was still a baby :-( ) and it had a little ruffle on the bottom. I really liked the way the ruffle helped the a-line dress have a bit more body, especially made in such a soft fabric, so I added one this time. The neck and arms were finished with a shell stitch.

So there it is - an Easter dress fit for a princess!