Thursday, July 25, 2013

Tie Dye!

An awesome friend of mine has been throwing an annual tie dye party for the last several years (which I thought I had posted about other years, but I apparently not).  I have a bit of a love/hate relationship with tie dye.  On one hand, I think it looks so fun, and O. really enjoys designing his shirts.  On the other hand, I like precision.  Which, you know, is pretty much the polar opposite of tie dyeing. So every year I agonize for way too long over everything, and it ends up turning out just fine.  Two things I have learned over the years, though, are to use way more dye than you think you need and that looser rubber bands = less white (shocking, huh?).

Here are our finished products from this year:

Skirt for me, tee and dress for E. (skirt and dress blanks from Dharma)
O's tees -- he's really into purple at the moment
Tie dye obsessing was aided and and abetted by Pinterest this year.  I can barely remember life without Pinterest. Heh.  Here's my tie dye board, if you'd like to check out the inspiration and instructions for some of the folds.

Monday, July 22, 2013

KCW Days 6 & 7: More Tees

What happened to Day 5?  I had good intentions, but never got around to sewing.  Whoops.  Day 6 was spent cutting and prepping, two things I always say I will do before KCW starts and have yet to do. Maybe for the Fall challenge.  But probably not.

When I asked O if he had any requests, he said he wanted a purple shirt with silver stripes.  I suggested grey, thinking that would be easier, but no, he wanted metallic silver.  I wasn't sure what to do with that one, but decided to try cutting strips of freezer paper and painting on stripes.  He originally wanted the whole shirt striped, but I was concerned that would make it too stiff.  Not to mention it would take forever, so we compromised and did three stripes instead.

I used the Charlie tee pattern again. The only thing I did differently this time was a narrower neckband, since I used the existing one from an upcycled tee.  I think I like it better, so I'll have to remember that for the next time I sew one up.

When O saw the finished shirt last night, he immediately said he loved it and asked me to make him a long-sleeved one just like it for winter.  That was high praise coming from him!

I made E one more tee also.  Hers is Jalie 2806, which is one of my favorite patterns.  This is her third (one, two).  The knit is from a box of fabric a friend passed on to me, and I had it slated for this right away.  I really like the white on white floral.

I'm a big fan of the tulip sleeve too.  It adds just a little extra touch of girliness without being over the top.  It's especially cute on, but my model is still sleeping this morning.  I'll try to get an action shot later.

And that wraps up Kids Clothes Week for me. It was fun!  And this time I made a conscious effort to clean up as I went, so instead of being left with a disaster of a sewing room, it's still functional.  Woo-hoo!

Did you sew along this week?

Friday, July 19, 2013

KCW Day 4: Madras Plaid Capris

So these are certainly not my best work.  More Favorite Things Little Smarty Pants, but capris as drafted this time rather than made into a skirt.  I know better than to try to rush cutting out plaids, but rush I did.  Folding the fabric in half -- even relatively carefully -- and hoping for the best is not the way to get things to line up properly.  Oh well.  Maybe I'll just have E wear a tunic with them.  The leg side seams match better, at least.

I love the bias cut back waistband, although it would be a more noticeable detail if I didn't have to pull the elastic so tightly for the skinny one.

Thursday, July 18, 2013

KCW Day 3: Charlie Muscle Tee

It has been ridiculously hot and humid here this week, so yesterday's project was a quick sleeveless tee for O.  I used the Fishsticks Designs Charlie Tee pattern and trimmed off a bit of the shoulder, eyeballing it based on the Made Muscle Tee tutorial.


Next time -- if there is a next time, not sure if sleeveless is out of O's wheelhouse or not -- I will make the arm bands longer.  I measured and cut the ribbing at 70%, which is what I usually use for neckbands, but either I made a mistake or arm bands need longer ribbing.  Hoping it'll look less puckered when it's on? 

I'm quite pleased with how the hem turned out.  I seem to be hit or miss with the double needle, but this one looks pretty nice.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

KCW Day 2: Seesaw Jersey Top

Yesterday's project was a top to go with Monday's skirt.  I upcycled an old tee of Ray's into the Seesaw Jersey Top from Ottobre 3/12, design #17.  She usually wears a size 5 top in RTW, so I traced a 104 for the width, but a 122 for the length.  The pattern runs quite short. 

Using existing hems makes me happy.

I don't have any yellow serger thead, but I did find some variegated pastel Wooly Nylon to finish the sleeve edges.  I was hoping the color repeats would be shorter -- I hadn't used it before -- but it adds a nice touch of color.

This may be my new favorite summer style for her.  Shoulder coverage, but more like a tank under the arms, which I think feels so much cooler than a full short sleeve.

Playing with her beloved bee toy

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

KCW Day 1: Little Smarty Pants/Tiered Skirt Hybrid

I'm super excited that there's a summer edition of Kids Clothes Week this year, because it was just the incentive I needed to clean up the sorely neglected sewing room and tackle my mental to-do list. 

First up was a skirt/skort/whatever we're calling it for the resident bee lover.  I used the Favorite Things Little Smarty Pants pattern as a starting point.  I chose it partially because it has a separate waistband and partially because she was wearing her linen bermudas from that pattern when I started.  I'm not sure I would have thought of it otherwise!  Since she is growing up but not out, they still fit her well, so I didn't even have to trace off a new size -- two years later.

I cut the shorts at the notches for the cuff fold-line and the waistband pieces as normal.  For the skirt (size 3 width, approx. size 5 length), I used two 7" strips.  The top tier was 33 3/4" and the bottom was 53 3/8".  I followed the instructions for the capris up until the waistband is attached to the legs.  At that point I gathered the top tier to fit the top of the shorts, basted it in place and then applied the waistband. Then I added the bottom tier and sewed a narrow hem.  I also narrow hemmed the shorts and added a row of shirring to make them more bloomer-ish.

Flat front
Elastic at back waist

I never put skirts on E because she is likely to pull her foot -- or both feet! -- up over her head at any given time, so this is perfect for her.  It went together even more quickly than I thought, so I'm sure you'll be seeing more of these.


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