Wednesday, February 24, 2010

O + S Birthday Party Dress

This fabric reminds me of the 60's.
As a matter of fact, I made a micro mini dress with huge bell sleeves back in the mid 60's from fabric that was very similar. I even had some white go-go boots to match. Groovey!

Well, I thought I was on a good roll with this pattern whipping it up in no time. Turns out, I forgot to put piping around the from tab. Better slow down.

So I put a big yo-yo on the front with a pink button and pony bead in the middle. Perhaps that will detract from forgetting the piping.

Looking at this dress in a photo, perhaps the fabric is too large and too busy for this little 18-24 month size dress.

I'm getting paranoid after reading these rules about fabric selection Oliver + S website.

Pink Smocked dress

This dress was in my UFO box. It's been there for a number of years. And during that time I have forgotten what size it is and what pattern I used. Maybe I just saw it in Creative Needle, or Sew Beautiful or AS&E. Whatever.
The centre looks like it's slightly askew, but it's really the photographer (me) that took the photo askew.

Here it is a little closer.
It seems like it might be a size 3 or 4. It could be even larger than that. Bishop style is always deceiving.

Close up of the little french knot flowers on the front.

Perhaps one day a little girl who wears a size 3 or 4 will come to visit and her mom can try it on her to figure out the true size. When that happens, I'm going to note the size to this post. If I figure out what pattern was used, I'll come back to this post and note that information as well.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Baby's Breath

Here's the latest issue of A Needle Pulling Thread. It's hot off the press. It's a wonderful magazine that features all kinds of needlework. It's Canadian. It's available worldwide.

My friend Judith Marquis is a designer of smocked clothing patterns for adults and children. Her baby nightie, called Baby's Breath is featured in the latest issue on page 52.
And guess who the baby is that's modeling it?
Yup. My grandbaby. Supermodel!!

Here's what the pattern looks like. Judith gave me a copy and I made it up in no time. It's easy and she took the time to explain every step in detail. So no matter how new anyone is to smocking or sewing, they would be able to make this pattern frustration free!

Here is a closeup detail of the smocking.

If anyone wants to give me the World's Worst Photography Award, please note that I have acceptance speech already written.

This post has nothing to do with busting my stash at the present, although I did use up some lovely soft flannel when I made this nightie last year. So, I guess it could be considered as a pre-entry.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Muskoka Tea Cozy

The first thing I do in the morning after letting the dog out and putting seed in the feeder for the birds and squirrels, is make myself a cup of tea.
Often, it's so chilly inside our cottage that by the time I've finished my first cuppa, the remaining tea in the pot has gone cold.

For ages, I've been meaning to make a cozy and since there is no time like the present, plus I'm on a quest to use up my stash, today I made what I call a Muskoka Tea Cozy.

The tea pot I use holds about 2 cups of tea. It's smaller than a traditional Brown Betty, but larger than the small Brown Betty's that holds 1 cup.

I dug out a 1/2 meter of this woodsy looking fabric. Found some green bias binding and turned it into cording. For insulation I used some quilt batting and found some beige broadcloth for the lining.

I made the original shape on a piece of brown paper that I have an enormous roll of. Then traced that shape on a product that I think is called 'pattern trace'. It has little red dots on it.

Since I had some the woodsy fabric, bias binding, cord, lining and batting left over, I decided to make a larger one for my larger tea pot.

This pot holds a lot more and I only use it when I have guests.

It fits the same way as the other ta cozy. I think I will spend some time and perfect this pattern.

But the good news is I used up all of the fabric, some quilt batting, some broadcloth, all the cording and the bias binding. Oh, and some black thread.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Another Bubble Dress

I fell off the wagon.
I saw this really cute print called 'shaping up' by designer Michele Scott at a quilt store and couldn't help myself. One lone meter of new fabric can't hurt, I thought.

It worked up quickly, taking under 2 hours from start to finish. It's 12-18 month size.
The piping is bright pink, but I just can't seem to take a good enough photo to capture the true colours. (Click on the image to see the colour better.)

The fabric will look good with these pretty pink shoes I just bought.

Halfway through, my sewing machine switched languages. Quelle surprise!

Okay, no more buying fabric. Use stash only....use stash only .... use stash only...use stash only.... use stash only.....use stash only.....

Friday, February 12, 2010

Easter dress #2

The pattern is 'Maggie" from Childern's Corner. I made Size 1.
The instructions for smocking were very detailed as were all the steps except for the part when the collar gets attached. I found that step #10, vague.

I am not too thrilled with the gathers at the back neck. I had trouble getting the collar to sit properly.

The back is smocked, and the neck edged is gathered. I wonder if it will be too bulky for the wearer?
I used a pretty yellow pique with a duck print. I bought 2 yards for $27.00 several years ago at a SAGA convention.

The pique smocked beautifully. The pattern was quick to smock. I used up all of this trim on the dress. But I have 1/4 meter of the pique leftover.

I don't think I'll make this pattern again because of the back neck.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Popover Sundress

This was an incredibly easy pattern to construct and follow. I whipped it up in no time. It's Size 2. The free download pattern is available from here.

Using gingham from my stash, I thought the front might be a good palette to apply an applique.

I drew a flower shape onto Steam and Seam, fused it to yellow gingham, then cut and fused it to the pink background.
Because the gingham is so sheer, I decided not to satin stitch around the edges thinking it might pucker the fabric.

I found some flower shaped buttons to stitch in the middle of the flowers.

Overall, it's kind of 70's looking. The flowers are a cliche of that era and gingham does have that retro effect, I think.

But hey, I used up most of the remaining green gingham, a lot of the pink, but there's still a meter of the yellow left to use.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Petite Poche, Jane

This has been sitting in my UFO box for eons. Today I got it finished. And it was so easy and quick to whip up, I don't know why it took me so long.

Next time I make it, I will make the placket piece wider. Maybe 1 1/2 inches wide.

I found the bodice construction a little confusing, so I ignored their directions and simply constructed the front, back and lining the way I usually do, using the AS&E method.
Other than that, I am happy with the results.

It is a Size 1.

It has a sweet bow on the back. I haven't finished the buttonholes because I was losing daylight to take a photo of the dress.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Chocolate Easter Bunnies

The smocking pattern on this dress came from the February issue of Creative Needle 2008. I didn't enjoy smocking it.
The dress is 12 months size and came from a basic yoke dress pattern in an issue of AS&E.

Directions to make a well formed Peter Pan collar came from here.

Attach the collar at the seam line and not the center front outer edge. That way, when the collar pieces are sandwiched between the outside fabric and the lining for stitching, when it's flipped over, the edges will match perfectly. It did!

To make the piping, I used polyester knitting yarn for the filler. I ran out of cotton cording.

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Size accurate testing.

I wish I had kept a sewing journal when I made outfits for my kids. Now that I'm digging out old patterns, it would be handy to have some documentation on what fits and what doesn't.

Now that I have a sewing blog, I can keep the journal I should have kept.

Here's the size accurate testing of the outfits I've made over that past few months...........

Out of print....Style 2439 18 months

Fits Caitlin perfectly, with a little room to spare. She's 9 Kg (20 lbs.) 9 months old and presently wear 12-18 months size in store bought clothing.
Oliver + S Birthday Party Dress 12 months size.

Fits Caitlin like a glove. She won't be able to wear it much longer.

Children's Corner "Carol" 12 month size.

Fit's perfectly with a little room to spare.
Mystery dress with mystery foot in photo. Parker's Apron from Creative Needle Nov/Dec 2004,
12-18 month size.
Fits Caitlin perfectly.

Vogue 7628 size small.

Too short from crotch to bib front. Too wide in the sides. Poor fitting, although small was the right size to make it up. The pattern design was ..... clown-like. Say hello to the garbage can!

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Vintage Simplicty 4625

Just love the price on this pattern. 35¢. Is anything 35¢ these days?

The pattern was indeed easy, but the instructions assume the seamstress has sewing experience. Perhaps experience gained in Home-Ec class which isn't a standard class nowadays as it was in my highschool years.

What this dress needs is a crinoline. Gosh, I haven't thought of a crinoline in decades. Maybe I'll make one just for this dress. The one I had was lined in a soft satiny fabric, then a layer of tulle to make it stand out and then an overskirt in a Bemberg type lining. It was always fun to twirl in a flowing dress when wearing a crinoline.

The back has a huge sash. The wind is blowing the dress and it truly looks like it's twirling.

Fabric is 30's repro. Click on image to get a better view of the fabric. Ric rac is new, not vintage.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Vogue 7628

This pattern has been hanging around in my pattern stash bucket for some time. Since there is no time like the present, I decided to make up the overalls.

The pattern was easy to understand and it went together really quickly. I think it took me 2 hours and that includes lots of interruptions.

I bought a meter of this fleece the other day for $5.00. Buttons were in my stash. It's size small.

I stuffed it with tissue so it would hang better on the hanger. Before I make the dress in this pattern, I want to try it on grandbaby to see if it's size accurate.

Sleep sac

I have departed from my quest to use up existing fabric. Daughter needed a sleep sac for grandbaby in polar fleece. So I bought a meter of fleece $5.00, a long zipper $2.80 and then the gas to drive 1/2 hour to the nearest town that has a fabric store.

I already had McCalls 4236 and have made sleep sac in a smaller size. It's a drop dead easy pattern, just a front and a back. I cheated and used zipper tape to hold the zipper in place while I basted and stitched it in place. Actually, the instructions call for tape, so I guess it's not really cheating at all.
There are no facings for this pattern, just roll the edge and stitch down.

I made view B in size medium using pale lime green polar fleece.

I also dug out my embroidery machine and stitched the little toadstool on the front. The colour of the rayon thread didn't come out well in this photo. The base is brown, outline in orange and inside dots in bright yellow on a pale lime green backgound.

The whole project took about 2 1/2 hours to make.