Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Today is my stop on the Willow & Co. Glamping Tour!

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-5

Laura (of Craftstorming and Titchy Threads) kindly invited me along, and anything she’s involved in is automatically legit in my book. I’ve been so impressed with her patterns (Small Fry Skinny Jeans!), and I figured she’d only take part in the most awesome of pattern collectives. And once I read more about Willow & Co. and looked through the collection, my assumption was confirmed.

Choosing from all the patterns wasn’t easy, but I thought Oscar would look pretty cute in the Hawthorn Zip-up Sweatshirt.

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-10

The Hawthorn jumped out at me as being both practical and stylish, and that it happened to be Laura’s pattern was the icing on the cake.

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-14It’s a perfect little collared sweatshirt that can be made in a full or half zip, with options for side seam pockets or a split side-seam with lower back hem. A basic, well-designed zip-up sweatshirt is such a useful pattern to have in your collection. The fit is great, the details are professional, and what kid wouldn’t want to wear it? This one is a total crowd pleaser.

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-7

And back to those details – Laura does them so well. I’m somewhat of a zipper novice, and I really appreciated the directions for inserting the zip – the Wonder Tape (I used this stuff) really did work wonders, and the interfacing kept everything hanging straight.

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-4

I did the full-zip version with the pockets, and used a soft, lightweight french terry (smooth on one side, loopy on the other) from a men’s Target sweatshirt.

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-3

I have such trouble finding good knits locally, and I hate ordering online without seeing and feeling the fabric first. I always check Target and Old Navy for pieces to re-purpose, but I’ve noticed lately that a lot their sweatshirt and jersey knits are cotton/polyester blends. You really have to search for the 100% cotton stuff, but that’s what I prefer to use when I sew for kids. This one fit the bill – the quality was surprisingly good, and I liked the minty-jade color. For the pockets and facings I cut up an old hoodie of Lila’s from Old Navy.

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-11

One nice thing about using a ready made sweatshirt is that the existing ribbing could be re-purposed for the cuffs – and it all matches. That’s my other gripe about knits – every variation of every hue is available when I shop for woven solids, but when I’m pairing up knit fabrics, I usually feel pretty lucky if I find a random contrast color that doesn’t totally clash.

((Oh hi, Lila. How’d your dress get so short?))

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-12

Anyway. Can we talk about “glamping” for a moment? That’s glamorous camping for those like me who were not in the know. I am not in the know about 7/8ths of all pop culture references, so it was no big surprise that I had to turn to the Google for guidance. I must say though, I can get behind glamping. I grew up in an Indoor Family. We read books and played Boggle and we were all proficient with rubber stamps, but we did not camp. Roughing it is definitely not in my blood. I did marry a camping enthusiast though, and we recently acquired a pop-top camping van. Sleeping inside this hunk of German engineering has to be more glamorous than the hard ground in a tent, right? Now that we’ve got the van AND proper glamping attire for the boy, I think we’re set for the summer. See, Oscar says, “Let me in! Let me glamp!”

hawthorn sweatshirt -- probably actually-8

Okay, enough already. Go check out Willow & Co. if you haven’t already. The lookbook is overflowing with Vanessa‘s beautiful photography, and it’s sure to inspire you. So many patterns, so little time. The Fawn Lily dress and the Senna Tote are next on my list.

And for even more inspiration (just a few days in, and so much gorgeous stuff already!), here’s the full tour schedule:

glamping tour

Happy sewing, happy glamping, and thanks to Laura for having me along!

little cotton rabbits

For my next installment of “things I didn’t knit” I’d like to introduce you to the bunnies my mom made for this year’s Easter baskets.

little cotton rabbits -- probably actually-3

They’re pretty cute on their own, but they also have tiny bunny wardrobes, which of course takes things to a new level.

little cotton rabbits -- probably actually-13

We take dressing up our little friends pretty seriously around here, and we’re having so much fun playing with these.

little cotton rabbits -- probably actually-11

I’m definitely including myself in that “we” – technically there was one bunny for each kid, but you know how it goes.

little cotton rabbits -- probably actually-8

The patterns come from Julie Williams of Little Cotton Rabbits. There’s all sorts of adorableness to be seen on her blog and in her Flickr stream (the rabbits! the elephants! the miniature dresses and sweaters!) – I’m in awe of this woman. Her knitted animal and dress patterns can be found in her Etsy shop. And she occasionally sells her own creations in the shop, too.

little cotton rabbits -- probably actually-11

That’s all. I’ve got my eye on the robin dress next – stay tuned for expanding bunny wardrobes!

little cotton rabbits -- probably actually

 

 

I finally finished up the third of the spring Oliver + S patterns, the Lullabye Layette. Just one of the many things I had planned for Kids Clothes Week but didn’t make – that’s always the way.

lullabye layette -- probably actually-15

It’s such a sweet little set, and I was so happy to see a little baby pattern from Oliver + S. The sizing goes up to 24 months, but to me this kind of thing is cutest in the tiny sizes (and for girl babies!), so I opted to make it in 3-6 months as a baby gift. Good thing other people keep having babies so I don’t have to miss out on sewing stuff like this.

 

lullabye layette -- probably actually-4

The pants are shot cotton, which I chose for its baby-softness and orange hue – they’re light and airy and they feel great, but I should probably apologize in advance to their recipient because I have a feeling they’ll end up a wrinkled mess out of the dryer. It’s love/hate with shot cotton, I tell ya.

lullabye layette -- probably actually-3

I added a little band of the shirt fabric on the back pockets by making some single-fold bias tape from a one-inch strip (cut on the grain). And I swapped out the snaps for buttons, only because I had three matching buttons in the correct size, which was too good to pass up. Otherwise I followed the pattern to the letter, and no surprise, it all came out just right.

lullabye layette -- probably actually-7

Originally I chose the print (Leah Duncan’s Gentle Breeze from her Meadow line) for Lila’s Hide & Seek dress, but after I got it home I decided to set it aside for the layette. It’s such a delicate little print, it seemed just right for a baby girl.

lullabye layette -- probably actually-2

Oh, and I forgot to mention that the pattern comes with two addition garments, a sweet little jacket and a bubbly bodysuit. I highly recommend the Lullabye Layette, both for its undeniable Oliver + S quality and its squishy-baby cuteness. Thanks to Liesl for sending it my way!

 

shearwater kaftan -- probably actually-3

Okay, it’s technically still KCW according to Pacific Standard Time, so I’m squeezing in this one final project – a Mini Shearwater Kaftan from Make it Perfect. Toni released this pattern (it’s a kids’ version of her Shearwater Kaftan pattern for women) a couple weeks ago and was kind enough to send me a copy.

shearwater kaftan -- probably actually-2

This is a comfortable, breezy shirt, perfect for spring. The sleeves can be worn long or rolled up and secured with sleeve tabs, which are my favorite part. It’s a digital pattern and comes in two size ranges (0-5 and 6-10) – I made a size 5, which was a good fit for Lila.

shearwater kaftan -- probably actually-6

Toni suggests something light and airy such as double gauze (like her beautiful Nani Iro version), voile, or lawn, and the minute I saw the pattern I thought of Palos Verdes voile from Cloud9 Fabrics. I’ve been drooling over this line for quite some time, and seeing and feeling it in real life only confirmed my belief that it’s positively divine.

shearwater kaftan -- probably actually-12

It was hard to choose from all the beautiful prints, but I went with Malaga Cove (from LiMa Sews – she has the whole line in stock). And if you’re looking for Palos Verdes inspiration, the new Oliver + S Lullaby Layette was made up in this voile for the pattern cover. It’s perfect.

shearwater kaftan -- probably actually-14

I was happy to discover that last year’s chambray Class Picnic Shorts still fit – they turned out to be a nice match. I think a pair of Sailboat pants would be awfully cute with this top, too.

shearwater kaftan -- probably actually-11

Incidentally, the weather has been glorious here. See? Sun.

shearwater kaftan -- probably actually-8

Bye KCW, see you this summer…

scissors_button_300_square

silver dot school bus t-shirt -- probably actually-7

I made this shirt two weeks ago, so it’s technically a cheater KCW project. But Liesl of Oliver + S just announced her collection of digital t-shirt patterns (kids’, women’s, and men’s – you can outfit the whole family!), and I was a tester for the kids’ version, the School Bus T-shirt pattern. I sewed up one for each kid, so I thought I’d share Lila’s today.

silver dot school bus t-shirt -- probably actually-10

The School Bus pattern is a basic t-shirt that comes with several options – three different sleeve lengths and two neckband widths. This is View B, with a more feminine, capped sleeve and a narrow neckband. Views A and C are your standard short-sleeved and long-sleeved t-shirts. It’s so nice to have basics like this from trusted sources like Oliver + S – you always know just what you’re getting into, and it’s always something good. And as with all great basic patterns, the options for customization are endless.

school bus t-shirt-9

I sewed a size 5 and was really happy with the fit – it’s relaxed but not overly roomy, and the capped sleeves and narrow neckband definitely give View B a girlier feel.

silver dot school bus t-shirt -- probably actually-14

The silver dot knit came from a sale rack Old Navy tee. I don’t know if it was the fabric or the fact that I skipped the walking foot this time, but it sewed up like a dream.

silver dot school bus t-shirt -- probably actually

If you want more info on any of these new T-shirt patterns, check out Liesl’s introduction post on the the Oliver + S blog. Each pattern is available on its own, or you can purchase a “Family Pack” that includes all four (men’s, women’s, and two size ranges for kids). I’m looking forward to trying the women’s Metro T-shirt myself. After KCW, of course.

sewing_machine_button_300_square

As usual I have many projects on my list for Kids Clothes Week, but OBVIOUSLY my number one priority was brother/sister bunny pajamas for Easter. I never pegged myself as the type to sew coordinating anything for my children, but apparently I am exactly that type.

sleepy bunny pjs -- probably actually-6

Every year I envision myself making Christmas pajamas, and every year December fills up with other things. In fact the only year I actually made them, they were finished in November. That’s probably the key. Anyway, I found this cute bunny fabric right before the New Year, and fresh with my failure to deliver Christmas pajamas, I snatched it up for Easter pjs. I figured four months of lead time should be enough to make it happen.

sleepy bunny pjs -- probably actually-7

The pants are made with the Oliver + S Sleepover Pajamas pattern. Oscar’s are size 18-24 months and came out pretty big, but I’m not concerned – they’ll probably fit tomorrow. He is huge for his age and just keeps on gettin’ huger. And I would’ve preferred to make Lila’s in a 5 (her last pair were 4s), but since I only have the smaller size range in this pattern I used the 4 and added a 1/2 inch to the rise and another 1/2 inch to the legs, which worked out just fine. I like that the cuffs on the Sleepover Pajamas can be rolled up or let down for a more adjustable fit.

sleepy bunny pjs -- probably actually-10

I used Old Navy t-shirts for the tops, and added snoozing bunny patches. T-shirts are easy enough to make, but at $4 a pop, they sure are easy to buy, too.

sleepy bunny pjs -- probably actually-3

The bunnies (Bunny Brigade from Critter Patch Organic) are from Clothworks and were designed by Alyssa Thomas of Penguin & Fish. So that explains why they’re so cute. Just like her embroidery patterns.

sleepy bunny pjs -- probably actuallyThe cuffs and waistbands are Lizzy House’s Jewels in Aqua and Peach.

sleepy bunny pjs -- probably actually-8

I hope to finish at least one more project this week – in the meantime I’ll be perusing everyone else’s KCW creations!

pincushion_button_300_square

 

 

f i v e

Lila is now a full two weeks into five.

nani iro lap duvet -- probably actually-11

I must say, I felt differently about five than I did about the proceeding birthdays. I’ve always been the type to get a bit nostalgic and sad around birthday time, trying to hang on to those final days of each year before they’re gone forever. Five, though – I’m just plain excited for five. Every year has been pretty extraordinary, of course, but I have these wonderfully high hopes for five. I can’t wait to see what this year brings.

nani iro lap duvet -- probably actually-4

One thing it’s brought already is a late birthday gift – a Purl Bee lap duvet made with double gauze and shot cotton.

nani iro lap duvet -- probably actually-8

There are so many great Purl Bee blanket tutorials, and when Anna posted her lovely baby seal lap duvet I remembered that I had some double gauze (Nani Iro’s Melody Sketch in Pastel) in need of a project. This is such a wonderful, cozy blanket. The double gauze and shot cotton are both extra soft fabrics, and the wool batting makes it so warm and lofty – I used a crib-sized Dream Wool and tacked it down by machine every six inches.

nani iro lap duvet -- probably actually-2

I really intended to give this on time – it looked like a pretty simple project, so I started it a couple nights before her birthday. After spending an entire evening trying to lay two pieces of fabric on top of one another without wrinkling (I’m not kidding – why was this so hard for me??), I got tired and gave up. The main problem, aside from general unwieldiness and ineptitude, was that the backing ended up two inches shorter than the double gauze, and I couldn’t bear to cut into that precious double gauze. The whole reason I was using it for a blanket (after hoarding it for 13 months) was to avoid taking a scissors to it AT ALL. But in the end it seemed silly to buy another piece of shot cotton just to save two inches of Nani Iro, and I was already a week behind schedule, so I proceeded.

a nani iro lap duvet -- probably actually-3

I ended up taping the fabrics to my kitchen floor prior to pinning, and besides not being the cleanliest option, it worked out alright. Both fabrics have some stretch to them and I never really got things to lay straight and even. My finished rectangle is a little wonky, but it’s passable. And what it lacks in mathematical precision it certainly makes up for in cuddleability.

nani iro lap duvet -- probably actually

The tutorial calls for 1.75 yards, and I only had 1.5 yards of double gauze (making it even harder to chop off those two inches!), but it’s still a good sized blanket, even for me. I didn’t have double gauze for the backing so shot cotton seemed like a good alternative. There were so many color options to go with those dots, but I eventually settled on Quartz – I’m not a big pink/purple person, but Lila likes it, and I found this shade to be wholly non-offensive.

nani iro lap duvet -- probably actually-12

I added (as I do) a little embroidered tag to the back.

a nani iro lap duvet -- probably actually

And just a few more birthday things to show – the traditional invites:

birthday-3

A birthday banner (which just came down today):

birthday banner -- probably actually-3

And she requested a birthday crown like Oscar’s – I used the tutorial from Heidi & Finn. They’re so quick and simple to make.

birthday crown -- probably actually

We thought about doing something more elaborate, but decided to keep it simple and have a little birthday party with neighborhood friends like we’ve done every year. She chose ice cream sundaes for the party – those little polka dot cups are filled with kid portions of the toppings, in a futile attempt to minimize sugar overload. Adults were free to make their own bad decisions. Not pictured: salted caramel sauce and hot fudge – both excellent recipes if ever you’re looking.

birthday

And on the real day, we had a gummy bear adorned chocolate cake. I think it’s safe to say that I’ll never use another chocolate cake recipe as long as I live (I like it with plain old vanilla buttercream, though).

birthday-2

We fulfilled (in the loosest sense of the word) her wish for a pet with a betta fish. It’s not the most exciting animal – in fact it’s hard to tell if he’s dead or alive or part of the plastic plant or what, because he almost never moves. Not exactly the rabbit she asked for, but what can I say, we aren’t pet people. And that big box in the back is her very own Janome Hello Kitty sewing machine (it was quite a bit cheaper in the store, just FYI). This thing is the real deal – it’s a great little machine. I don’t know, five is probably slightly premature for a sewing machine, but I got excited about the idea and couldn’t help myself. She loves it and is doing great so far, I just wish we had more time to use it together. But alas, the presence of a toddler in the house makes most activities utterly impossible. Still, it’s an exciting new development, and just one tiny part of why five is looking like so much fun.

birthday sewing

So there you have it.

F I V E.

 

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,139 other followers