Wednesday, June 29, 2011

birthing skirt

I've been thinking about the upcoming labor and birth of this child. One thing that came up was "what to wear?"

I know I want to be comfortable during labor and will probably do most of that at home where I don't care what I have (or don't have) on, but there will come a point where we will have to leave the house and go to the hospital. While I may be comfortable being mostly naked in my home, I'm sure strangers will not appreciate being subjected to the visual of a mostly naked laboring woman.  o_O

While cruising the interwebz, I came across a few mentions of a labor/birthing skirt. It makes sense. You need something that is easy to move around it and is also easy for any monitoring my midwife needs to do (as in "is it time to push yet?"). There is a company that does sell them for $65-$35, but I am not willing to spend that kind of money on something that may be worn once.

So, I decided to make a wrap skirt. I started with this basic pattern and made modifications. I had some olive green rib knit material that I had bought some time ago (because it was cheap), and digging through my stash turned up a complimentary cotton fabric.

The entire thing took a few hours. You can see from the photo that I was too lazy to switch out the white thread on the serger. Oh, the horror! LOL I doubt my doula or midwife will care. The baby certainly won't.  ;-)

Tuesday, June 28, 2011

an apron for me

After making the apron for my BFF's birthday, I decided to make one for me. I fell in love with this paisley fabric with bright green and turquoise some time ago. After realizing it matches my kitchen, I thought it would be perfect for an apron.

The first two pictures don't do it justice. The fabric is beautiful!

I did make a few tweaks on the pattern. The bib is wider than the original and I squared off the pocket.

I love it!

Monday, June 27, 2011

shorts for the munchkin

And here are shorts for the toddler! They are a variation of Made's Kid Pants with Flat Front converted into shorts and added pockets.

The floral print is just supposed to be a tester fabric, but it's pretty cute and she has a shirt that goes with it.

The real fabric is khaki cotton twill (just like the shorts for her older sister).

And did I mention she is a bit of a ham in front of the camera? =)

Sunday, June 26, 2011

organizing the projects

Since I have more ideas than time, my ever-growing stack of projects have been quickly getting out of control. One day last week while nesting organizing the bookcases in my sewing room, I found a package of large plastic bags.

I had an idea! Project bags! Instead of having random stacks of fabric sitting around (and sometime not remembering what said fabric was for), I could use the bags for storing the pattern, fabric, notions, notes and whatever else is needed for a particular project. Organization at my fingertips! No more searching for stuff!

Now my shelves hold neat project packs patiently waiting for me to find more time.  :-)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

happy birthday!

With the birth of the newest member of our family coming up quickly, I decided it would be best to get some projects completed ahead of schedule. One in particular was a birthday gift for my BFF.

First, the back story. You see, for quite some time I have been on the hunt for the perfect apron pattern. Aprons are fun to wear and I've never actually had one of my own. And my BFF is quite the chef, so an apron seemed like a good idea for a birthday gift. While cruising craft/sewing blogs one day, I stumbled upon this: The Flirty Girl Apron. Perfect!

The dotty fabric is just her style and the hot peppers... well, she is a natural redhead! It went together fairly easily even with the slight modifications I made along the way. And best yet... she loves it!

As an added bonus, I also made matching pot holders. :-)
Happy Birthday!

Friday, June 24, 2011

khaki shorts

Here are the khaki shorts! I really like being able to whip together a pair of shorts in three hours. Of course, I probably could do it faster without constantly being interrupted. Ah, the glamorous life of a Mama.

shorts for the kids

With summer upon us, I thought it would be a good idea to whip up a few pairs of shorts for each of the kids.

I easily found a pattern for the unborn one. It's Made By Rae's Basic Newborn Pants. OK, not really shorts, but will cover the tiny hiney.

The wild child gets a variation of Made's Kid Pants with Flat Front. Once again, not shorts, but easily converted into shorts.

The oldest took more of a search. I couldn't find anything in commercial patterns I liked, but after some online searching, found this PDF pattern on etsy.

I decided to make these first. I like the pockets and overall style, however, they were way too short for my liking, so I added 5" to the length. The photo is the 'muslin'. I like them. She likes them. All is well. The next pair will be khaki twill.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

not just sewing

I have another project in mind.

While checking craigslist for the 368612th time for a coffee table, I saw this one. This is exactly what I have been looking for and the price was right! I loaded up the kids and drove out to get it.

Since I am in the process of changing up the living room colors, I'm thinking I will sand this down and paint it teal or turquoise (since the husband isn't too keen on me painting the living room walls one of those colors).

I've already switched out the pillows. See the icky before and awesome after pics. I am really digging the new print with turquoise. In fact, look for more pillows in the very near future.

And before you say anything, I'm already on the lookout for some neutral-ish fabric for the drapes... that will mean another trip to Golden D'or.

Oh, and I'm searching for the perfect cream rug.

Stay tuned!

and we are back!

I was at Costco this morning stocking up on the regular things we use when I decided to take a look at the cameras. For the record, I <3 Costco, and today they did not fail. They had a newer version of our old camera with $20. off! I could afford that!

So, without further ado, we return to adding photos to the posts. :-)

Sunday, June 19, 2011

rest in peace my faithful camera

You will have to just imagine what I am talking about for a while. My camera has fallen victim to the two-year-old. :-( 

I did not notice that she put it in the washing machine before I washed a load of laundry. Needless to say, it did not survive. Thankfully the photos I had taken had been downloaded the night before.

So, I will continue to sew and post and hopefully will come back to add photos when we find a replacement camera.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

fourth time is a charm

In my shirtmaking adventure, the first shirt was, um, icky.

The second was too small. I may go back to it after the husband loses some weight. Until then, it's a UFO (unfinished object) on the side of my sewing table.

The third was too big and I had to alter to twice. And there were flaws. Also the fabric was heavy.  However it may work for a winter shirt.

But the fourth one... the fourth one is AWESOME! It fits perfectly!

I think I have gotten the hang of it now. There are just a few more little tweaks, but overall I am pleased. Just in time for Father's Day!

I have several fabrics stacked up ready to make into beautiful shirts!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

no more fear... of buttons!

Before the purchase of my 'new to me' sewing machine, the Elna Quilter's Dream 6003, I had avoided buttons and buttonholes like the plague. My old machine (as I understood, but never actually tried) took a four step process to make buttonholes. This scared me.

Then I got the new machine. It came with 3 automatic one-step buttonholes. This seemed fascinating and I wanted to give it a whirl. It took two things for me to take the first step. The first was for my friend Jacki to come over and show me how to use this interesting device called a buttonhole foot. The second step was to have a project to practice making buttonholes.

I watched in awe as she put a button in the back of the foot, pressed a couple of buttons on the front of the sewing machine and then pressed the foot control. Like magic, the machine make a prefect buttonhole! That was sooo cool! I think I could do that.

I made my first buttonholes on my first tester dress shirt. They were... not perfect, but looked good enough. As I write this post I now have put buttonholes and buttons on half a dozen projects. I love it! Now I even have a preference (other than the default) of settings for perfect buttonholes.

Even better... Jacki has a blog post on How To Machine-Sew a Button. I've taken this one step further after a conversation with my sister where she told me she puts a toothpick under the button as she sews it to give a little wiggle room. Of course, I couldn't get that to work, but found perfection when using a fondue fork under the button for the wiggle room. ;-) Sometimes you have to get a little creative.

Now, I have no fear of buttons!

Monday, June 13, 2011

sewing, but not posting

I know, I know... it's been crazy around here.

I made up a few snoodsnood™s before we left town for a week. As soon as I can locate my camera, I will show them. I also made a shirt for the husband from Kwik Sew 3422. Alas, it is a bit snug. I am not upset since he has started a weight loss program. I'll try it on him again in a few months.

As soon as we got back, unpacked, decompressed and relaxed a bit, I started on another shirt for the husband. This time it's a dress shirt using the pattern Kwik Sew 2777 (in a larger size). The fabric is a bit heavy, but overall I am pleased. I have to add buttonholes and buttons today. Of course he is out of town for a few days. When he returns, I'll have him model it for a photo.

Moving right along... I'm making another shirt from the same pattern with a few modifications. I'm finding the more I sew, the more likely I am to ignore the pattern instructions and wing it. For example, I didn't like the plackets from the pattern, so I made my own. Also, I prefer the cuffs from another pattern, so I'm switching those out as well.

Of course, time away from the sewing machine gave me plenty of opportunity to stack up new projects. One is a new cover for my Boppy pillow. The original cover had something spilled on it that will not come out, and since I had some cute fabric just sitting around, I used the original as a pattern and made a cute new cover. :-) I didn't like the way the flap was closing, so I added these cute little green flower buttons.

I probably should start on baby clothes as I only have eight weeks left of baking the little one!

One last thing... on a 'I really will do that this year' note, I am already planning my Christmas presents for the family!!! Of course, exactly what it is will remain a secret until the end of the year. ;-)