Archive for October, 2012

I saw this post on Prudent Baby last year and I’ve been daydreaming about making bird wings ever since.

Luckily Lila made no specific requests for a Halloween costume, so I was able to steer her in the direction of “bird” pretty easily.

I had a hard time getting motivated and came close to ditching the idea of a handmade costume, but once I got started, it was a totally pleasant project – time consuming with all that feather cutting, but straightforward and easy. And choosing the fabrics was the most fun…per usual.

I used this tutorial from Llevo el Invierno for the wings, and just made a few changes.

After measuring Lila’s “wingspan” I decided to add a few inches to each wing (the directions say they’ll fit 18 months to age 3, but it doesn’t hurt to measure and cut accordingly). So my wings are 15 x 15 inches, rather than 13 x 13. I added 1/4 inch elastic loops instead of finger ties, and instead of tying at the neck, I attached elastic shoulder straps under the top binding so that she can get into them herself.

I also bound the side edges along with the top, just to clean things up a bit.

And a felt bird mask to finish things off.

Happy almost Halloween!


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Unfortunately, I didn’t get all my KCWC sewing done last week. Things got in the way. But had I been able to sew a little more, you would’ve seen a second Oliver + S Swingset skirt.

Not much new to report since I just made the same skirt last week. I still love the pattern. It’s full and twirly and fun to wear.

The fabric is an Anna Maria Horner Field Study print (Sundials in Glow), and I used the same ribbon as last time, but in coral. And the same lightweight cotton lining in white.

I stuck with the size 3T lengthened to a 4, which leaves plenty of room to grow.

And I was all ready to dress it up for fall with tights or leggings, but it was suddenly warm and sunny at photo shoot time, so we’re pretending it’s summer again.

I almost just wrote that Lila is on the fence about her new skirt. Not funny, I know. That’s why I didn’t. 🙂

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fall pattern review series

If you’re looking for fall pattern inspiration, Caila of Cailamade is running a series this week to get you in the mood for fall sewing!

I’m guest posting today with a review the Oliver + S School Days Jacket + Coat, which I made for Lila last fall.

I loved making this coat – it’s one of my favorite fall patterns, and it still fits a year later!

Click here for the full review at Cailamade!

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For as much as I’ve complained about boy sewing, I will say that I’ve always wanted to make the Baby in the Hood jacket from Anna Maria Horner’s Handmade Beginnings book.

And I specifically wanted to make it for a boy baby. It was this jacket from Catherine of White Apples that originally caught my eye – just perfect in my opinion. I even saved some of my gray elephants to copy her jacket, and I’d still love to make that version. But I had never made anything from the book before, which made me a little nervous – even after all this sewing, I still don’t trust myself to follow new patterns that don’t happen to be Oliver + S! So I used some green baby cord (and I just noticed that my last four projects have been corduroy…I guess it’s fall) and lined it with a fabric I got on the sale table at Fabric Depot for $4 a yard.

The instructions turned out to be pretty great – easy to follow, and detailed enough for a beginner, though it definitely helped that I’ve made a few lined jackets and set in some sleeves before.

And I did have an issue with one pattern piece, which I checked three times against the pattern, and as far as I can see I traced the correct piece in the right size. Anyway, I made the 6-9 month size, and the hood stripe was too short for the hood by about 5/8ths of an inch on each end. Those were the first two pieces to sew together, and it was enough to make me set the jacket aside for the last month. Apparently I’m easily discouraged. So I’m curious to hear if anyone’s made the 6-9 month size and had that same problem, or if I really did just mess it up. The latter is still a distinct possibility. Eventually I got over it (I probably have KCWC to thank for that) and just cut out new hood stripes. And I’m glad I did, because the pattern yielded a pretty sweet little jacket!

Okay, happy sewing, everyone! 🙂

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I finally made something for this baby boy. Nothing fancy, but it’s a start.

Just your basic appliquéd onesie – that’s our great state of Oregon cut out of some Joel Dewberry woodgrain. I just did an image search of “Oregon map” and traced it right from the computer screen.

I made some tiny cords to go with it, too.

They’re newborn sized and it’s hard to believe they’ll actually fit a baby…they look like doll pants! I used a pattern I’ve had forever called Bloomers and Britches by Jackie Clark Designs. But if you’re looking for a freebie, Rae’s Basic Newborn Pants pattern looks pretty similar.

I gave them a miniature back pocket with a matching mini Oregon. And an acorn tag.

That’s it for today!

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I’ve made a lot of skirts in my day, but this was my first go at the Oliver + S Swingset skirt. I’m a fan.

In fact, you may or may not see another one of these later in the week. I warned you I was keeping it simple for this installment of KCWC.

This pattern was indeed very simple – just two pattern pieces, two rows of 1/4 inch elastic, and two buttonholes for the drawstring (you can make it yourself, or use ribbon, which I chose). It really wasn’t that much more work than a Lazy Days skirt, and while I love making those, it was fun to do something a little different.

It’s fully lined, which is a nice touch.

It gives the skirt a bit more fullness, I think.

And I was really thinking fall with the gray cord, maybe with tights and a sweater, but it’s been so warm here that we had to go with no sleeves and flip flops today. No complaints of course. It’ll start raining soon enough.

The details:

Pattern: Oliver + S Swingset Skirt, size 3 lengthened to 4 (the length on this pattern is at the waistband rather than the hem, so I had to tweak the buttonholes a bit to get them in the right place…and I didn’t quite get them in the right place)

Fabric: charcoal gray 21-wale corduroy from Joann’s, with a light-weight white cotton lining (batiste maybe?)

Ribbon: Anna Maria Horner’s Lime/Cream Spinning Wheels

And I leave you with these two, who just can’t keep their hands off each other…

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It’s that time of year again…Kids Clothes Week Challenge is upon us!

I’m guest posting today at Elsie Marley (I know, I can’t believe it either!) and I’m super excited to be part of the pre-KCWC excitement this time around! I hope you’ll go check out all the fun variations of Dana’s basic Kid Pants in the lineup this week. I went the corduroy and hedgehog route myself. Here’s a peek, but you can get all the details here!

If you’re not familiar with KCWC you can read all about it right here (and more here), but the jist of the challenge is to sew kids clothes for an hour a day, for seven days. The event happens once in the spring and again in the fall, and the great part about participating (aside from ending up with some lovely little garments for the season) is that hundreds and hundreds of people are sewing along with you and posting photos in the flickr group, which is full of the greatest handmade kids clothes you ever did see. It all starts on Monday, so if you haven’t done so already, go sign up by leaving a comment on this post!

And preparing is part of the fun, too – I don’t have any definite plans yet for next week, but I’ve got a big list going and these are some of the things I’m hoping to put to use:

I like to have all my patterns traced and cut out the week before so that I can just sew when the time comes, and while I never get around to completing everything, it’s amazing how productive you can be with all that prep work done! I’m trying to keep things simple and realistic this time, being eight months pregnant and all. Cutting out patterns on the floor and standing at the ironing board all evening (along with staying up past 8pm, frankly) are challenges in and of themselves at the moment. But I’m going to try!

Happy planning and sewing, everyone, and hope to see all your amazing creations next week!

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