Wednesday, October 22, 2014

KCW Day 3: Let it Go!

Welcome to Kids Clothes Week day 3! I am having a blast sewing so far. Here is my twist on Elsa's icy dress. Now, I know, that besides every other little girl this Halloween, there is no one else that wanted to be Elsa, so this costume is totally original. Ha. All joking aside, I think my take on Elsa came out pretty cute.

Again the bodice and skirt are separates. I made a peasant style top using a pattern for the sleeves and a self drafted bodice (yay, me!). The top is a sheer sparkly netting overlaid on a white costume satin (thank you, Joann clearance bin). We opted for short sleeves because this will be put in the dress up box and my girls don't like long sleeves on their dress up clothes. The blue sparkles on the bodice are courtesy of some crazy sequin/netting stuff that I thought would be terrible to sew with. My machine chewed it up like a champ, no broken needles and no bunching or slipping. So I didn't have to do any hand sewing, yay! My serger, however, made it about an inch and then protested by snapping a needle in half. I gave up serging sequins after that. Oh well, who needs serged edges anyway? (Sing that to the tune of "the cold never bothered me anyway...")

Instead of serging the lower edge of the shirt, I used some bias tape to contain the raw edges, it gives it a nice finished look and keeps L from leaving trails of sequins wherever she goes.

The cape is another type of sparkly netting that I attached to the back of the bodice. I gathered the top to fit and finished the edges up and also trimmed the bottom in a crescent shape to make it seem more "capeish" (is that a word?).

The skirt is a simple circle skirt, I did some fun circle math thanks to Dana's tutorial. Instead of an exposed elastic waist, I created a waistband and put the elastic inside that, just because I like a clean finished look. The skirt passed the twirl test, that's for sure.

The look on her face when I showed her the finished dress was PRICELESS. She was beyond excited. We may finish off the costume with the Rapunzel wig that I made last year. I would just need to add some white yarn to it to make it more like Elsa because "Mom, you know that Elsa has white hair, not yellow, right?"


Tuesday, October 21, 2014

KCW Day 2: A is for Anna

My girls are 5 and 3 and they love Frozen (duh). The hysteria died down around April, after watching the movie 8.4 million times, but as Halloween approached I started to hear murmurings about wanting to be Anna and Elsa. I tried (unsuccessfully) to steer them towards non-Frozen characters for their costume inspiration. That didn't work, so I gave in and made a few sketches of my ideas. My sketches were approved by the boss ladies and then I went to Joann's to shop their costume fabric section. I got lost in the sparkles, sequins and yards of tulle. It looked like an atomic glitter bomb had gone off in that section of the store, so fun! I made it out alive and went to work cutting and sewing like a crazy lady.

May I introduce, our first Frozen inspired look, Princess Anna's Coronation gown.

I opted for a green crushed velvet instead of black for the bodice. I used a pattern for the sleeves and drafted the bodice on my own (gasp!) that's a big deal because I've never really done that before so I was worried I would completely screw it up. Fortunately, I didn't. The bodice detail is just freehand with some fabric paint. No freezer paper stenciling for me, I'm lazy.

The bodice and skirt are separate, not sure why I went that route but I like it and it's easier for her to put on by herself.

May I have this dance?

The skirt is pleated with box pleats but I was lazy and left out the pretty stenciling that the "real" Anna's dress had. That just looked like way too much work. Instead, I sewed a darker green ribbon down the inside of every pleat and called it good.

Here's the only problem with the bodice and skirt being separates. When there is serious jumping involved, there's a little bit of belly button peeking.

I'll leave you with a sneak peak of tomorrow's costume, take a wild guess at who it is. I know, it's a really difficult guess, it isn't obvious at all.


Monday, October 20, 2014

KCW Day 1

It's Kid's Clothes Week! I missed out on the last week in July because my sewing machine and I were separated by about 2600 miles. So I have been looking forward to this week for a while. It feels good to sew again, I haven't been able to since mid-June!

For day #1 I sewed up another oliver + s Garden Party Dress. You can see my first version here. I used a silk that I thrifted about 3 years ago, I have no idea what it is other than it says "thai silk" on the selvedge. It's been sitting in my stash and I never quite new what to make with it. It is very sheer and unravels easily so I lined it with a simple broadcloth and made sure to serge all my exposed seams, which I usually do anyway. The blue accents are some satin that I got from the clearance bin at Joanns. It has also been sitting in my stash for a few years (notice a pattern here?)

I didn't have a blue thread that matched so I used a contrasting green because I was too lazy to load all four kids up to get one spool of thread. I am glad that I didn't succumb to the temptation of matching thread because I like the contrast that the green provides and I also like my sanity. Bringing four kids into a fabric store will steal your sanity (or make your head explode), even if they are pretty well behaved, just in case you were wondering.

She was a little disappointed whenI told her this was not a bike riding dress. She is such a fun mix of princess and daredevil.

Bella insisted on being in the picture too. These two are lucky to have each other.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

Why, hello there.

I took another blogging hiatus. I didn't mean to, but life happens. Blogging is always in the back of my mind, but after a long day of preserving the life of my toddler (he's a climber), teaching Leilani to read (we're homeschooling now), making sure Bella feels included (middle child syndrome) and then, of course, helping my 5th grader with his homework (stubborn like me), sometimes there just isn't time for much else. Usually, my bed looks way more inviting than editing pictures and trying to come up with a witty paragraph or two. 

Some days I feel like I am in survival mode, barely making it through the day until my knight in shining armor comes home. Other days, I actually get everything done and find an hour or two to make a creative mess. Usually it's not the latter, but I can always hope. I know this is just a busy (physically/mentally exhausting) season and things will get easier as my little climber gets older (at least I keep telling myself that). Until then, I will become a pro at toddler proofing my house. I mean, who knew that you could use a high chair to climb onto the counters or climb baby gates to get into the bathroom and proceed to unroll an entire roll of toilet paper into the bathtub, or use a seemingly harmless toy to inflict the most searing pain my shin has ever felt. Toddlers are nuts, completely nuts. This kid would climb the walls if he could! 

He's lucky he is so cute.

I hope to be back here a little more frequently, sharing pictures and perhaps even some creative endeavors. Wish me luck!


Wednesday, June 4, 2014

sharing my home - the master bedroom.

I don't know about you, but I get a spring cleaning bug about the same time every year and this year was no different. Just about the end of March, when I was so sick of being cold and wet, the temps start to creep up and my house seems just a little brighter during the day. It also seems like it needs a decor facelift and perhaps about 15+ hours of deep cleaning. Ok, it's not that dirty, but the decor could use an update.

It's funny how your decor tastes can evolve and change every so often. We worked so hard on putting this little house together last year before the baby came. I painted every piece of furniture in sight, we made countless trips to IKEA and slowly but surely our drab little rental house started looking more like a home. We still have more work to do, but we have a nice bit of work done. I thought it would be fun to show you the portions that are somewhat complete.

We'll start with the master bedroom/nursery. We have four bedrooms, but I have never had a room that is dedicated solely to my creative addiction. So we opted to give baby a corner in our bedroom and keep the back bedroom open for guests and my creative messes.

Here is my bed before, pillow cases were from target and the throw pillows were from IKEA. None if them were my favorite, but they fit my color scheme so I lived with them for a while. Pardon the crooked pictures, those are my photography in some frames from IKEA.

Here is the after shot. I found new pillow cases with a pretty aquamarine print from Target. New life was given to the IKEA throw pillows by giving them fresh covers. Dana has a great tutorial here. There is even a headboard in the works for our bed and I'll share that soon. That is kitty's side of the bed, it's his favorite napping spot.

Baby's crib fits nicely next to our bed. It was a hand-me-down crib that I sanded and painted gray to match our color scheme. The crib set is from Land of Nod. The granny stitch baby blanket is made by me, I blogged about it here.

I found the mobile kit on etsy and, I thought it added a little bit of sunshine to that dark corner of the room. 

Just need some art work to hang a baby's corner will be complete!

Of course, you can't have a nursery without a changing table. This is a dresser from IKEA that I painted the same color as the crib, the rug is from Zulilly and the artwork is me-made.

 I painted these using acrylic paints on 8x10 canvas, I finished these about a week before baby came last year, when I was up all night with false labor contractions. Might as well create if you can't sleep.

Now on to the adult corner of the room. This was my Grammie's nightstand that I painted an icy blue. I updated the drawer pulls by spray painting them black.

The dresser is another unfinished pine piece from IKEA. I used the same icy blue for the drawers, replaced the knobs and painted the everything but the drawers with an off-white for a nice contrast. I am still working on pictures for this wall. I want a wedding/engagement pictures gallery wall. You can't see all of the mirror, but that was from some hotel furnishings sale and I painted it black. It didn't have a home when we lived in Seattle, but it fits nicely in our room.

Like I said before, it is a work in progress and we will probably finishing everything right before our lease is up. Then we can start all over someplace new!


Friday, May 30, 2014

Pictures week #2

We just returned from the most wonderful vacation, EVER. I am not even joking. It was perfect from start to finish. I brought my lap top along thinking I would blog some projects I completed beforehand and share some pictures, but I opened it one night for about 2 minutes and then shut it. The ocean was calling and I didn't want to look at a computer screen at all. Here are some photos from the week before we left. I'm editing the rest of them and will share soon!

It was pretty warm the week before we left, so we spent as much time as possible outside running through the sprinkler and riding bikes.
 Even this little guy got wet!

The weekend couldn't arrive fast enough. We drove over to the South Carolina Coast and were greeted by cheerful beach decor and an ocean that was just a short walk away.

Baby B enjoyed the water and sand so much, the last time he was at the ocean he was just a tiny baby that slept the whole time.

It was good to be at the beach again and see some of our Seattle family. We've missed them both!


Thursday, May 15, 2014

Ice cream tunics (almost).

I love sewing the o+s ice cream dress. It's such a cute style and the options with it are endless. My favorite is the "ombre" editions I made for the girls a few years ago. I also made a pair that were inspired by a vintage suitcase, too. The ombre version was featured on the oliver+s blog, that was a proud moment for me! 

For KCW I thought I would make two more for the girls that didn't match, but coordinated instead. I wanted to make the blouse version and then thought they would be cute at a tunic length. In my rush, I forgot to lengthen the pattern before cutting. Oh well, I just continued on and stuck with blouses since I already cut everything out. These didn't make it to the sewing table for KCW, so they were sitting for about a month before I was able to start on them. 

I pulled them out last week and found a huge issue. I hadn't bothered to think about making sure the blouse length was long enough. It wasn't for either of the girls in the sizes I cut (Miss L a 4T and Miss B a 3T). These were going to be crop tops. Not cool. I thought about adding on the bottom layer from view A, but I really didn't want to cut out more fabric (lazy). So, I dug into my stash and found some lace, it just so happened to be a very pale pink, which went with the color scheme just perfectly. Sorry for the picture overload but these girls are just too cute.

Miss L's top is muslin on top and a light pink quilting cotton on the bottom, she is wearing a 4T. I only have the smaller sizes version of this pattern, I may have to buy the bigger version because I love it so much.

Miss B never wears shoes outside, she is my little hippie. For her blouse, I used a white polka dot on top and a bright white for the bottom, she is wearing a 3T.

Aww, some sister love. They love each other but sometimes you wouldn't know it with all the arguing and fighting they do.

They are still a little short for my taste, but I averted the crop top disaster, thank goodness.