The Days are Just Packed

4 10 2009

doodle

I love this photo. S is drawing a maze on a breakfast in bed type tray free-hand. He is so amazing at that. I wish I had had a chance to take a photo of the finished product, but I never even saw it before it went off as a belated birthday gift. A and E saw S “coloring” and wanted to join in.

Yard sale treasures

tree

How great is this! I had been wanting a small “plastic” or whatever it is Xmas tree for a decade. My timing was perfect as I grabbed it before she finished putting the “free” sign on it (nicely though, of course. I didn’t yank it out of her hands or anything). With a toddler, two boys and two cats, this is going to be perfect for an out of the way tree. And it was free!

pursefabric

$1.50 for 4 yards of this beautiful creamy flowery fabric. I think I found my purse fabric! While I was distracted with piles and piles of amazing fabric, Z was up to his usual yard sale magic. I turned around and he has this 5 inches from my face…

jaws

“It’s a lemon shark mouth”, he tells me matter of factly. He’s a smart guy and usually right, plus he had this mouth of shark teeth pointed at me, so who was I to argue?

“He caught it himself!” Z continued, “he wanted $5 for it but I talked him down to $3.”

Sewing
pjs

I did it, I made them all matching pj pants. At one point I didn’t think I was going to be able to figure out Z’s but hurrah! I got a twin sheet set at Target for $10 (not a thrifty find to be sure, but I liked the car pattern) and used one sheet, so 3 pants came out to $5.

Mini Golf

golf

This is how we spent part of Saturday. I think A won.

goofball

I have no idea what was so funny, but I love candid shots such as these.

Sneak Peek
I hesitate to post without knowing how it’s going to turn out but here’s your sneak peek.
peek

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Firefly/Serenity Kaylee Inspired Toddler outfit

1 10 2009

kbest

Please note the word “inspired” in the title. I tried very hard to make something more similar but man did I have problems. So I am a huge browncoat, and it’s exciting to say I saw the very first episode they showed on FOX the night it premiered and have been hooked ever since. That never happens, I usually catch on a season or two later. Like, I’m going to watch Fast Forward, really, I just haven’t had time! I won’t be too behind.

Back to Firefly:

Photo courtesy FOX and fan site Can't Take the Sky

Photo courtesy FOX and fan site Can't Take the Sky


I love the Kaylee character and I really wanted to make a few outfits for E inspired by Kaylee’s look.

I ran into a few problems right off the bat. There was this beautiful fabric I’d seen at Joann’s several times but on the day I had some extra money it was nowhere to be seen! And there was no way I was going to be able to explain the fabric I was searching for to anyone that worked there.

fabrick

So sadly, off the top of my head I grabbed two fabrics I thought would work. And I think they did!

kclose
The shirt didn’t give me any problems except one – I used white thread. I didn’t realize it would show up so easily. Oops. It did give me the opportunity to see how messy my stitches were, in case I started to get cocky and think I actually knew how to sew!

k1

The next problem was that I didn’t want to make a jumpsuit. That seems a little beyond me and who wants to put a kinda-sorta potty training toddler in a jumpsuit? So I had the brilliant idea to make a vest instead! You’ll notice you haven’t seen the vest, and you won’t. I made three different versions and none of them worked or fit right. It was getting to the point that I was so frustrated I wanted to quit, and I knew she wouldn’t wear a vest anyway. So what was I stressing over? I’m learning to let go of the things that aren’t going to be improved with my panic attacks/stress and that was one of them.

But I do want to find or make a heart and teddy bear patch, it really won’t be complete till I can do that.

k4

It really need something, especially since the vest wasn’t happening, so with what I believe is Kaylee’s approval, E got some ruffles. S helped me set the ruffles properly, he’s so handy to have around. When I did it they were way way off! I will next time, however, put them higher up. I also used clear elastic for the ruffles on the pant leg and the gathering on the ruffles themselves.

k3

Total cost: $6ish.

I’ve really enjoyed being inspired by Kaylee and I would love to make her “pretty” from the episode, “Shindig”, but that’s biting off a lot for a complete novice. Unless I make a sort of twirl skirt. We’ll see.

Next up: Z wants to learn how to make dolls or juggling balls or something small he can sell, which means I have to learn how to make something easy for him to learn how to make. Any suggestions?





A Sneak Peek

29 09 2009

My latest finished project

blouse

Ta-da! My first peasant blouse I’m alright with sharing with the world. I used another of Vegbee’s fabulous tutorials. (On a side note: I wish blogspot would let me log in so I could tell her how great I think her tutorials are and how much they’ve helped me. Trust me, go read them! On top of her tutes, she just has the most fantastic outlook on life.)

At any rate, I used a pretty little purple flowered remnant from Walmart and what is probably-supposed-to-be-used-under-a-skirt white material that was also a remnant. That’s why E isn’t wearing it. She has worn it a few times, but there is already a tear in the white (and that wasn’t even her fault – bad mommy!) so there’s no point in her wearing it until I can salvage it.

Total cost of this practice garment: $1.50 … ouch. I shouldn’t have used the purple on a practice shirt, it’s cute. I try to shoot for less than $1 per outfit. Oh well, rack this up to another learning experience. I’m even happy with my failures, what is going on?! :p

I like to make a “practice” garment with material that is cheap before I start my “real” project. Usually I use sheets. But all this has been leading up to an outfit for E I’m pretty excited about. I really hope it turns out! I’ll even give you a sneak peek and a hint.

Just a little sneak peek

Just a little sneak peek

And here’s the hint: Firefly/Serenity.

Upcoming Projects

Because my list is getting huge and I need to get my act together, this should keep me on task. I have quite a few presents and costumes to get together before the end of the year!

    September

finish swing skirt
E’s Halloween skirt Finished 9/29/09

    October

My own circle skirt from S’s shirts, using Vegbee’s tute
B’s birthday tutu Or even better, some sort of criss-cross tutu, these are gorgeous!
hoodie for S
pjs pants for at least 4 for xmas 10/3/09 Finished
S wants me to make him a “Gumby” costume a la Monty Python. I’m not sure much sewing is involved, but I better put it here.

    November

Dishtowel aprons for Xmas
Something pretty for my cousin who is having another girl, a blanket? This itty bitty baby dress? Maybe a baby tutu? Suggestions welcome!
This incredibly cute bag for ME! Or maybe I’ll give it to my mother who loves purses the way I love geek stuff. Very special thanks to Jessi Linn for drawing my attention to it.

I’m sure I’m going to end up adding more, maybe a scarf for my mother in law. Maybe something my brother in law can use in basic training. Maybe I can find some inexpensive Betty Boop fabric and make something for my sister.





Free Pirate Stuff

17 09 2009

Are you ready for Talk Like a Pirate Day on Sept 19th? I dunno, I’m kinda over pirates, but I do love free stuff!

UT1791

Isn’t that cute? You can get this for free, just head over to Urban Threads. They also have an adorable thread and needle Jolly Roger.

I think I will make eye patches for the boys. They are very much into pirates and are always shouting about “booty and grog”. Other parents look at me funny.

If you are into paper crafting, which I would love to try, you can make this cute little treasure box.

Have fun pirating! And of course, don’t forget to knit like a pirate.





Treasure Tuesday

16 09 2009

What’s that you say? It’s Wed? Wait, is it? Now I don’t even know anymore. Let’s just play pretend.

Yesterday, whatever day that was, E and I went thrift shopping. I usually thrift on Tuesdays, for whatever reason, on weeks I have a bit of spare change. I came home with all this, a good 10 + yards.

fabric

That “black” is actually a very deep purple that was perfect for the waistband of a swing skirt I finished. Unfortunately, it’s too big for E and she refuses to keep it on. I guess we’ll get pictures of it next year.

I love the floral, take a look:
floral
I just love the big print here, I dunno! It’s a sheet, so I imagine I’ll make another swing skirt for E.

On top of a few notions, I got all this for $3.75. I also scoped out some men’s work shirts for my latest project. But more on that later.

Because this part is even better

Yesterday, S called home from work just to say how much he appreciated me. Isn’t that sweet! He’s awfully good at that kind of thing. And he said he can see my sewing skills improve daily. Now that’s a compliment!

But when he came home for lunch he walked in with this:
rotarycutter
I hadn’t even realized I’d been saying I wanted one. But he did. He pays attention to me, more than I even do.

You guys, I did it right this time. I hit the jackpot in the husband lottery!





A weekend of sewing

14 09 2009

So it’s been a few days since I posted, between a migraine, followed by a sinus infection, I haven’t been up to much at all. Except sewing of course! I spent the weekend hunched over the ironing board/sewing machine.

I learned new things this weekend, which I’m always excited about. I learned how to make ruffles! I know that doesn’t sound like a big deal, but to me, every new thing I learn about making clothes opens entire worlds of design to me. Now I can add ruffles anywhere I want! Yay me! Plus once I learn a new skill, I can add to it with another new skill. I know I am too excited for my own good.

I made her a top based on the pillowcase dress, I shortened the length and the width and finished it with ribbon.

top1

top2

I wanted to try making her a shrug, so I grabbed an old top of hers that had a big stain down the middle. Excellent, she has a new shrug and that stain is cut out! I had made it while she was asleep and hung it up in the kitchen. When she woke up and saw it, she kept pointing at it saying, “PWEE! PWEE!” which is how she says pretty. Think she likes it!

shrug

Then I moved on to something harder (for me) and a step away from the pillowcase dress. I made her a little playdress, and followed that up with some pants to go underneath. This was where I learned ruffles! I’ve been practicing these attempts using the same sheet, so a lot of her new clothes are matchy.

dress

Sorry for the lack of good photos, it’s rainy outside or we’d go to the park for a photo shoot. Maybe later in the week.

Next I’m going to make another playdress. I guess I like to make everything more than once just to make sure I’ve mastered it before I move on. Any suggestions for my next lesson? I can’t wait to try something new!

Forgot to add, total cost of all this sewing: Free! or about 10 cents of notions
2 old shirts, 1 old sheet set, ribbons and thread.





Superhero Birthday Cape

8 09 2009

About 11:30pm the night before E’s birthday, I realized she didn’t have a birthday crown or hat. Well, I hadn’t bought one because I knew she wouldn’t wear it for more than 10 seconds. So S and I whipped up a quick superhero birthday cape.

Super E!

Super E!

It’s not super-well made, being as how it was late at night and I had so much to do before the party the next day. I plan on making ones for the boys so when I do theirs, I’ll be sure to seam the edges and cut straighter lol

So here’s how I did it: At an Estate Sale Saturday, I ran across some interesting patterned housecoats, the kind my grandmother always used to wear. First, I ripped out the back panel.
tutebackpanel

Sorry for the rather crummy pictures on this post, I was in a hurry.

S cut out the sides to shape the cape, he’s much much better at cutting a straight line than I am!

tutesidescutout

This would be the step the stitch up the sides and make the seams even. You know, the step I skipped!

Next, S traced out the “E” out of leftover from the housecoat and a circle of blue from my stash. Another thing he is very good at!

tutebackpattern

Something I’m not good at: sewing in a circle at midnight. I went back and hand-stitched the circle, this was just a mess!

tutecapestrings

To make the strings for the cape, I took the seam from that leftover blue so I wouldn’t have to iron or fold anymore. Like I said, I seriously got lazy. If I made her another one I would also change the cape, mostly because my family was horrified that it was such a choking hazard. I swear, do they not remember the capes we all wore when we were little?

Total cost: about $0.30 including notions. I am really loving this sewing stuff! I’m guessing a cape at a store would cost at least $15 and be sewn just as well 😉

Also, does anyone know why my pictures are lining up all weird? It is seriously annoying.