Thursday, May 25, 2017

The Handmade Kids Wardrobe grows again with the Tui Pinafore



I was very fortunate to be able to test Sophie's newest pattern from Below the Kowhai.
What she didn't realise is that I had been looking at Pinafore ideas to make for my girl, only a week before she put the test call out! What perfect timing!!



This Pink corduroy had been sitting in my stash for a number of years, part of it was already made into a skirt for me that I never finished, along with some extra fabric, which unfortunately combined with the skirt, suffered from patches of fade damage from the sun streaming in where some of my fabric was folded in a bookcase 
 note to self not to do that again!
 

But with the bodice, straps and pockets didn't take up too much fabric, so I was able to cut around a lot of the the faded areas, which made me happy to be able to destash a bit more, and at the same time, finally use up this beautiful colour for my girl.....who naturally was thrilled because it was pink!

I had a lot of fun with the process of embroidering the pocket cuff and I reckon that detail finishes it off nicely, especially since I opted for a straight colour. 



I can see this being a favourite as its a great dress to run around in and climb trees, just the kind of thing a little country girl needs!



The top is another wardrobe staple I've added, which actually were a pair of leggings I made and quickly realised were too small because this jersey knit didn't have enough stretch!
Gah! You win some you lose some!
 But not to be defeated, I cut them apart and used them to make the sleeves, luckily I had enough already for the bodice front and back

 

The pattern is from a old Ottobre Magazine I have, and I opted for the contrast fabric around the shoulder and neckline.
 I've been having fun with making her T-Shirts a little different!


And while we were taking photos, we realised one of our Mountain Paw Paws has a bounty of fruit!

  

Which was quite exciting for this little fruit eater!
 


 

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

A Fail to a Fix


A few months ago I completed this rainbow tunic from the book Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids,  
(this is the same pattern as the middle dress on the book cover.)

 

 It looked cute, the fabric was fun and it worked well as a top  with leggings




but the only problem was the sleeves,
 in the book they sit like butterfly sleeves, but I'm guessing that is likely because the fabric is much lighter and had more drape, so this is where my fabric type and pattern match was a fail, it annoyed me and those sleeves certainly annoyed her! So in the end, this little tunic didn't get much love. 


So I fixed it, and I did it promptly, which even surprised my normal procrastinating self!
 I know my patterns, and if I hadn't, it would have otherwise lingered in the back of her drawers or in fail pile, forgotten, like many of my work in progresses or sewing fails.



Cutting off the old sleeves and turning them under with a top stitch did the trick nicely.

And since then, it's now in regular rotation, along with a pair of loose leggings I made her from a pair of my old Pjays



I must say it's weird looking at her wearing those leggings because its looks like I just shrunk my old pair down to her size! haha



Sunday, April 30, 2017

The Teepee Winter dress

 

 My little girls newest addition to her winter wardrobe courtesy of a free pattern from The Mix it Make it Blog
here is The Millie Dress.



I love so much about this dress, the frills around the arms, the comfy knit and the Teepees!!
But suprisingly for me I love the mustard colour



It's not a colour I'm usually drawn to, but for my girl she suits it so well.
 

The free pattern is only available to size 6, so I extended the bodice shoulder height and width to accomodate her size and make sure it would fit over her head without a fight! 
I also extended the length of the skirt to 50cm......but now I'm looking at the photo's,
 I realised I forgotten to lengthen the sleeves after I made the modifications to the width! Oops.


Now I'm just debating whether to make the long sleeve T shirt version.....it would be pretty cute wouldn't it? And sure to be a hit with girl too.




Friday, April 14, 2017

Bellbird Take Two


Keen to make another of the Bellbird dresses and keen also to use more of my opshop fabric stash 
( this is one my mum purchased for me on one of our outings, all for a bargain price of $1 )

I cut out what I would like to call a Autumn/Spring version, as this fabric is very light, and I would say likely a Cotton Lawn.




 Due to this, the bodice and the skirt are both fully lined.
But I decided to keep the sleeves unlined, as I liked the idea of the effect from the light shining through



 and if you look closely you may be able to see below it worked just how I planned.....
love it when that happens!



 I decided to make a alteration this time around, because I quite like playing around with patterns, and this is a great one to do that with.

I chose to gather the sleeves traditionally and bias bind the cuffs in a contrasting fabric ( actually the offcuts from the previous dress ) 
 I did this using the same circumference measurement provided for the elastic plus a extra inch.


 Teamed with a contrasting rouleau bow,
 this finished the dress of nicely.

And Lil Miss who was reluctant at first to let me take photos, soon enjoyed it, especially once she decided to accessorize with some of my Nana's collection of earrings, which are now part of her precious collection.  And believe me they are Precious! Even I need permission! hahaha


Bellbird Dress - The Perfect Addition to Your Little Girls Winter Wardrobe


Sophie from Below the Kowhai patterns has just released her first pattern the Bellbird dress.
A sweet timeless design that was just the piece I was looking for to add to my girls winter wardrobe


 With the addition of a optional embroidery on the bodice,
 this makes for a very special piece.
However due to the nature of my chosen fabrics, I found the embroidery design was getting lost, aswell as that, it was making my eyes go cross-eyed and giving me quite the headache.  
 But determined to make this work, I had to find a solution as this fabric was part of my opshop fabric stash, and I am desperate to use more of my fabric finds from local thrift stores, as well as keen to upcycle more ( but more of that on a future post ) 

 The woolfelt worked out to be the best replacement for the embroidered flower petals, which made it alot easier for the flowers to pop against my fabric.  


I'm quite pleased with how it turned out, even though the silk stitch is not my strong point.....I'll leave that to the more talented embroiderers out there such as Sophie.

 I also love to make roleaux loops so I took the opportunity to make one for the button closure at the back, looping around the sweetest vintage button.


The pockets make a nice touch to this timeless design, and I'm sure to find many odd things in these pockets come washing time, including in the washing machine, if I've forgotten to empty the pockets......which I often am likely to do.


 The pattern itself is well written and Sophie guides you through the whole process with detailed photos, including how to line the whole bodice which tucks away all the seams and gives a nice tailored finish to the garment.  
It's perfect for any kid whom itchy seams are unbearable.

I don't know about you, but even though summer didn't really show itself much this year, I'm ready for the change of seasons with the layering of clothes, wool, tights and boots and a dress like this I think fits right in.




Sunday, September 27, 2015

A Pink Princessy Dress Success!


For such a long time now I've been waiting for the day my little girl would reach that age that she would enjoy dress ups......I've tried to introduce them to her plenty of times over her six years

 

but each time, in her own delightful way she would accept them with the utmost admiration, only for it to be left lingering in the toy basket for eternity.


 In fact the local toy library has been invaluable for us lately as her interest is lost rather quickly in conventional toys.  
Her type of favourite game has more of a repetitive structure to it....or one of her favourite's is scribbling in her notebook


So when we started her at school this term, she fell in love with a pink princess dress in the classroom dress ups, and then followed the request for a 'pink princess dress' for her birthday.....and seeing as this year she finally understood the concept of birthdays, I had all the items she wanted including this dress faithfully told to me each time her birthday was mentioned....hahaha!

 

 So putting the past behind me, I threw myself right into it and started collecting all the things needed...metres and metres of tulle and netting and the ideas then started flooding my mind.

I drafted up a little bodice, and with a some sort of concept in mind, I started putting this poofy princessy creation together.

 

I really love how the centre bodice turned out, and I'm very happy with myself that I took the time to baste the layers together at every step....it reduced much of the possible unpicking that I could have faced with such a challenge.


 The only part I would happily not do again, would be all the layers of netting/tulle and satin.....when all these are ruffled up and sewn one at a time onto the bodice, it becomes quite a feat!

But the end result I have to say I am estactic with, mostly because she just adores it, and walks around pretending to be a princess....It's hard for me to keep my eyes off her as she floats around in it.....shes just adorable!


And here's one more photo because she is too cute! 
Here she is with one of her favourite books at mums...
the tiny bible....(anything tiny with words she loves!) 


 


Friday, September 11, 2015

Update to break my Hiatus!

After a 3 month Hiatus from this blog its time to get back on the wagon and start writing again....nothing fancy just plopping on some random photos and a very brief update.

Some of the reasons for not bothering is life is busy (isn't it always) and I couldn't find my camera charger! 
That and Instagram has just been so much easier to connect with many of you.....if you haven't found me, please do! I'm on there most days, using Mikes phone because mine sucks!
(much to his amusement )



So whats going on with us now that we are mid September?  Well within the month our tiny 2 bedroom home will be moved off and the diggers move in to start leveling out for our new house!!


Yes finally, after many months trying to get quotes from three builders, we finally have nailed one down and we are to start in October!  This is going to be a interesting build as we are taking over from the builders once its time to put the insulation in, then its all us!! And right at our busiest time with our young business......so during that intense Christmas rush we will be insulating, organising plasterers, electricians and plumbers so that we can paint and do all the finishing touches.....
oh and Mike is making the bathroom vanities, kitchen cabinetry and stairs for my upstairs library/craft room!


All this and occupying my mums house for those months!  Oh boy, its going to be one interesting time!


And during all of this, I'm also considering diving in and starting up my own little side business...yip I said it! This makes me accountable! You'll have to hold me to it now ;) ( although I can edit this out! )


I've wanted to do this for so long and now with at least three kids at school now ( my eldest is at home still ) there really isn't much holding me back....lets forget the house build for now shall we? hehe


Not too mention the growing season also! Ummmm yeah....I'll be doing a lot of this....


watering and tending to plants too!

Until next time xxx
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