Monday, October 14, 2013

Let the Wild Rumpus Start

Fair warning: this post is picture heavy!!

I love this kid!

I was having a hard time trying to decide what I wanted to make for Little Man this year. Last year's was just so darn cute, I didn't know if I could top it. This is probably going to be the last year that I get to pick what I want him to be, and I couldn't really settle on anything. I was considering everything from a tiny Link to the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man. So finally, as I was browsing through the Pottery Barn selection of rediculously priced (rediculously cute) Halloween costumes and came across this. Super cute, right? $80, not so super cute.

Where the Wild Things are is Little Man's current favorite book. It was my favorite as a child as well. A quick google search can pull up images like this and this and this. Inspiration indeed!

I pulled out the trusty McCalls 6105 and got to work. I sewed the stipes using orange and yellow ultra cuddle fabric for Joanns. It's very messy stuff. It looks like I murdered a muppet in my sewing room.

The scales were cut out of felt. All 116 of them were then sewing in rows along a piece of scrap fabric for the legs. The face and teeth are made with felt, and the tail and hat are made with fake fur (also messy).


As it turns out, the costume was made with 192 pieces. Yikes! At least it only cost me $20 for all of the materials (I already owned the pattern from last year, which is a bonus).

From the back
He discovered the tail...
...and decided to hold it the rest of the time

Thursday, September 5, 2013

The Peacock Saltspring

There was a sew along hosted recently by Caroline for the Saltspring Dress. Because my first version gets so much wear, I figured that I would make the shorter version.

Due to me also sewing a pair of Thurlow shorts (pictures to come at a later date), I finished the dress late. Better late than never.

I've had this version planned in my head ever since I finished the first one and realized the zipper was unnecessary for me. The back of this dress is draped and slightly open with a "peacock" chain closure.

The results are awesome (minus the grommets, I need to redo them. I think I have found my sewing achilles heel).

In order to achieve this style of back, I eliminated the back lining. Instead, I created a smaller facing piece.

I also cut the back skirt on a fold instead of separately. It's superfluous to have two pieces if I'm not sewing a zipper. To counterbalance the weight of the chain in the bag (I want it to drape, not sag) I added mini pockets to the inside of the front lining. The pockets can be used to place "weights" inside (I used quarters).

From there it's sewn as usual (eliminating the zipper steps) and insert to grommets in the top. The chain was created with two jewelry closures, a large chain, and a pretty beaded peacock. The best part of this is that the closure can be removed before the dress is washed.

Also added to the dress, a skirt lining. The fabric was very clingy, so it was needed.

The fabric used was a polyester purchased at a fabric warehouse in Dallas. It's incredibly slippery (even more so than the first dress I made). And so, I have discovered the greatest sewing tool EVER when dealing with slippery fabrics - Spray Starch!!!


Seriously, it's the best stuff ever! Just spray it on and iron before you start cutting, and it makes life so much easier. Then, when you are done sewing, just wash it out. Done! So EASY!

Still love the pattern, and I love this dress. The shorter version, I feel, might be a tad too short. I had to do a baby hem to achieve this length. So if you like a deeper hem, I might add an inch or two to the skirt portion.

Also, I just had to take pictures at the same place as the first Saltspring! ;) And nothing says summer in Texas more than a sundress and cowboy boots!!!

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Leggy Dress

I've been seeing a lot of McCall 6744 lately. I was really digging the easy, drapey vibe of the dress so I made my own.

I used a bright knit fabric purchased from the local Joann

This dress was cut and finished in under an hour. When I tried it on for the first time, I realized something looked "off" about the dress. I couldn't quite figure out what was wrong until scrutinizing it on the manequin.

I sewed the skirt and shirt parts going the opposite direction. Oops! I could've left it like that since it's a faux wrap anyway, but I couldn't. I ripped the seam out and redid it.

Minus that small hiccup, it was an incredibly easy and quick project. The results were fabulous.

Quick word of advice, if you live or are going somewhere very breezy, please tack down the skirt a little bit. I almost had a wardrobe malfunction in San Francisco.

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Lady in Red

When I first saw the July 2010 Burda Style on someone's blog (I'm not sure who, it's been so long), I knew that I had to have it. I wanted to make this dress, in red.

Now, I've never made anything from Burda Style magazine, so I didn't know what to expect...

This is NOT what I was expecting.


After finally figuring out where the patterns were, I carefully cut out the pieces, stitched the dress together and made....doll cothes.

In my excitement to make this dress, I forgot to read the directions. The directions clearly state that there are no seam allowances. *#$@&^*&%#%&*^@^#%**&!!!!

And so the pattern sat, forgotten, in the corner of my sewing room until I rediscovered it. This time I was determined to get it right. I carefully read the directions and sewed up this beauty! Better late than never, I suppose.

Moral of the story, read the directions first!

Fabric: Joanns
Pattern: BurdaStyle Magazine 07-2010-111
Interfacing: Whoops, totally forgot some. Somebody forgot to read the directions, yet again! Haha! Oh well, it still looks great!

Now if only I could find that model's shoes...

Friday, August 23, 2013

That Time When Being A Sewing Rebel Actually Paid Off!

I've had Vogue 8631 in my stash for a long time. I liked the curved shaped of this cute dress. So when I finally decided to sew it, I went to a fabric warehouse in Dallas to find the perfect flowy fabric.

And all I could find was swimwear fabric.

Ok, so that's not completely true. There were hundreds of other fabrics to choose from, but I was drawn to that swimwear fabric.

I had to have it. I would make it work.

Let's face it, when I want to do something, I'm going to do it! I'm just a rebel like that!!

lol, this is what happens when a fly is buzzing around when taking pictures

And I'm glad I did. The bodice is really low cut and drapey. The stiffer fabric allows me to get away with wearing the dress without a cami underneath.

Do I get bonus points if it can double as an awesome swim coverup?

The pattern itself is fairly easy and straight forward (it's very easy vogue, afterall). I recommend going down a size or 2 because it's HUGE! Thank goodness I read the reviews beforehand. Other than that, the only changes I made were fabric selection (obviously) and I added a decorative clip on the outside to keep it together instead of the inside snap.

Close up on the closure

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Pendrell Blues

I've made 2 Pendrells so far. While I think the pattern is great, neither version is working for me anymore. Let’s take a moment to review these beauties before they are shipped off to the local Salvation Army. 

The first unfortunate case, in it’s final hoorah, is the brown polka dotted Pendrell. I made view B in a mystery fabric In February 2011. It fit like a dream! It was my favorite shirt for a short while. 

Unbeknownst to me at the time, I was pregnant with my son. Now, sadly, the shirt just doesn’t fit me comfortably. Every time I put it on, it feels like the shirt is trying to strangle me. It’s time to let go, and hopefully somebody else will appreciate it properly.   

The next sad, sad case is this pendrell. Post pregnancy, I wanted to make another Pendrell (you know, one that I could actually breathe in). So I decided on version A, and off to the store I went. That’s where I fell in love with this beautiful blue printed QUILTING cotton (what can I say? I’m a sucker for blue!). I know I shouldn’t have chosen a quilting cotton for a drapey blouse, but I’m a rebel. There was no talking me out of it. 



Ok, so it’s really not that bad. I get complimented on it every time I wear it (I’ve only wore it twice). It’s just so stiff…. and LOUD. I really didn’t realize just how loud the print was until I wore it. 

Double EEK!

Next time, I’m going to get it right.