Archive for April, 2013

Sunday, April 28th, 2013

KCW :: Roly Poly Pinafore



Ohmygoodness! My girl Rachael developed this pattern and was sweet enough to send me a copy. I was nervous. I’ve never really sewn anything from a pattern that I printed at home. After I printed the pattern I was still nervous. I couldn’t tell, just looking at the stack of paper, how it was supposed to go together but it’s all in the instructions. I was so happy! It took no time at all to put the pattern together after that. I was even inspired to trace the pattern for the size I needed rather than cutting out the paper so now I can make one for Avery without printing it out again.

I am super happy with how this turned out! It’s cute, cute, cute on the baby. I put it over a teeshirt and bloomers but in the summer it will be fine for her to wear it without an undershirt (I don’t know if bigger kids can pull that off). I didn’t add the pockets so I cut it out in just two pieces. It’s a lot of sewing but it’s crazy easy to put together. I was able to put it together in a single evening. Though, as always, I may have skimped on *ahem* attention to detail. That was a lot of top stitching! But I know you’re up for it. I also had to fudge the straps a little so I did the buttons and button holes backwards. Meaning the buttons are on the back straps instead of the front. In short, there were some hang ups but they were all of my own making. The pattern is great and instructions are totally clear and easy to use and follow.

I’m so glad that she encouraged me to try this pattern, I love it. It’s also cool because it’s reversible. The hexie fabric is a yard of Quilt Blocks fabric that I think I picked up at G Street by Ellen Luckett Baker and the floral reverse I bought at Mood while I was pregnant. I’ve used so much of my stash this week that I treated myself to a yard of new fabric today! But just one.



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Wednesday, April 24th, 2013

Vintage Baby :: Simplicity 1813

front outside

It’s Kids Clothes Week! This time I didn’t even sign up (because keeping it real). HOWEVER, I did happen to make this romper and it does happen to be KCW so I’m calling it even. I just won’t bother to title the post “Day 3!” as if I’m even a little bit optimistic about their being any subsequent days. I’m just sayin, maybe there will be any maybe there won’t.

Simplicity 1813 is a vintage repro pattern for baby girl summer clothes. I love a good romper and the one included with this pattern is super quick and easy. I loved making this! It was a breeze. There are only two pattern pieces and if I hadn’t been using a directional print I would have had it cut out in no time. Stupid, stupid directional prints. I used not quite a yard of Opal Owl by Free Spirit that I bought at Lake Country Patchwork last summer. I simplified it a little by using fold over elastic at the legs instead of making a casing (best modification ever!) and by using diaper velcro instead of snap tape at the crotch (I just cut it in half to make it narrow enough to fit.)

I can’t decide if I should make another romper or try one of the little tunics. I’m thinking another romper in a light gray bias gingham that I have no other plans for.

back leg



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Wednesday, April 17th, 2013

Merrily We Sew Along!


I’m so excited to have worked on this over the weekend. I hadn’t seen this book yet but I love, love, love the idea of Improv Sewing. It’s pretty much the only way I sew. I also made three pairs of bloomers over the weekend using a pattern I traced when Avery was a baby and fabric I bought when Chase was a baby, followed none of the instructions and had a great time!

I worked on this project as part of the fourth episode of merrily we sew along (and just in time for Kid’s Clothes Week!). It’s inspired by the two-tee dress. (you can find this project on page 262 of improv sewing.)

This dress started as a drapey woman’s tee. It had drapey sleeves with slits in the tops. It’s hard to see but this is the only before picture I took. Avery immediately loved this shirt. To her it immediately looked like a dress and it was VERY difficult to get her to take it off in order to make any modifications at all. Anything I wanted to do had to be done while she was sleeping. She’s probably worn it 5 out of the 6 days it’s been in the house.
I started by cutting off the drapey sleeves, cutting the shoulder seam and re-closing the shoulder with a simple knot. I took in a couple of inches on the side and fixed the arm scythe… aaaand that’s pretty much it. That was pretty much all she would allow me to do. She just really likes it the way it is and, frankly, so do I and so I didn’t really follow the instructions (shocker!). Though because I felt like a slacker I added some appliqued hearts one night. I was really, REALLY worried about the addition. I was afraid she would take one look at it and collapse in a heap wailing about how I RUINED her dress but I got lucky and she loved it.
Has that ever happened to you? We have this cute little sundress that I made when Chase was little but Avery won’t wear it because it has two decorative buttons. I mean honestly. Makes me crazy.
These lovely ladies are inviting anyone who’s inspired to stitch up their own two-tee dress to sew along (merrily, even) and share pictures in the merrily we sew along flickr group.
merrily we sew along

but before you start stitching, if you’d like a bit more inspiration there’s another fabulous guest poster:

Jane of Buzzmills

… and don’t miss the posts from our lovely sew along co-hosts: casa crafty and imagine gnats!

episode four: two-tee dress is sponsored by Creativebug. we’re excited to tell you that the winner of this project will receive a one month subscription to the fabulous classes on the Creativebug site!
perhaps you fancy learning how to crochet at midnight or have a hankering to paint in your pajamas? as a Creativebug member, you’ll have unlimited access to all of their workshops, anytime. featuring workshops from some of my favorite artists like Liesl Gibson, Kaffe Fassett, Anna Maria Horner… and even improv sewing’s Debra Immergut and Nicole Blum, you’re sure to find plenty of inspiration.

so, stitch up yourself a two-tee dress and share a picture in the merrily we sew along flickr group by april 30 to be entered to win!! we can’t wait to see what you stitch up.

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Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

Almost One


I can’t believe it. It just hit me the other day that we are a mere month away from a first birthday. UNBELIEVABLE. As in I CAN’T BELIEVE IT. Can’t. I’m so glad that I’m having lunch with a friend tomorrow so I can lie on the floor in her living room and wail about how I just CANNOT BELIEVE IT. She’s so big now. Crawling, pulling up, standing, signing milk, drink, all done. The girls love, love, love her. Laughing, hugging and kissing in abundance.

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Wednesday, April 10th, 2013

And They All Had Seconds

ravioliBen usually takes the train to work but on Monday he drove in so that he could stop at Costco on the way home to fill up on gas and pick up supplies. We didn’t want to give up precious weekend time going to Costco. Somehow that task has fallen way down the weekend fun list so Ben agreed to take one for the team. He asked for a list which I provided and yet, somehow, he still came home with a bagful of unauthorized purchases. Not the same unauthorized purchases, mind you, that I would have brought home (possibly underwear but also maybe magazines) but unauthorized all the same. His unauthorized purchases included 10lbs of Pop Chips and a Costco sized package of kielbasa.

He requested that the kielbasa be cooked with sauerkraut. Meanwhile I had already done the groceries for the week and, surely, he didn’t mean all of it. I had some pesto to use up and Google turned up this recipe. It doesn’t even sound appealing to me but I had all of that veg on hand, even the green onions. I couldn’t not make it. Maybe it didn’t sound appealing to me because in college we referred to anything chopped up and served with pasta as crap in a bowl (wow, I’m really selling this recipe!). I made it. I made it and I expected nothing. Nothing but whining about how what everybody really wanted was just plain noodles.

But those crazies they ate it and ate it and ate it and it’s not even the worst looking dish I’ve ever made.

Stay tuned for our Family Sketchbook Project post!

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Tuesday, April 9th, 2013

The Week So Far

They just speed by lately but the weather’s nice and we’re feeling fine.


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Thursday, April 4th, 2013

Ina’s Raisin Pecan Oatmeal Cookies


These cookies are SO good. Sure, I substituted walnuts and currants and added chocolate chips (still for a total of 3 cups of add ins) but I bet they’re good as written too. Another solid cookies recipe to put into rotation! Here’s the recipe.

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Wednesday, April 3rd, 2013

Family Sketchbook Project

{family sketchbook project}
One sketch a week from any family member who’d like to take part.
Just fun. No pressure.

This week I’m sharing A book Chase wrote last week. We haven’t had much time for doodling over the past week because we spent so much of it on the road. But this book really caught my attention. At this time last year I was still wondering if she would ever be interested in writing! This little book has it all, a title, an author and illustrator, a beginning, middle and end, some naughty deeds and a little math thrown in for good measure. Without further ado, The Zombies by Chase

zombies come to town


One night two zombies came into town. They were very scary. (I LOVE the lamp post and all the attention that she gave to the buildings’ many windows.)

zombies left and rightOne went to the left and one went to the right. One was noisy and one was quiet. (I love the way she shows them going off in their respective directions and tries to show changes in their spatial relationship by pushing the buildings off the page.)

zombie beach

One went to the beach and pushed down all the trees on the beach. (Mischief!)

zombies forest


And one went to the forest and met another zombie. (Mayhem!)


And that nite when they went home they had a party. (Math and cake!)

She was super excited about the finished product which she taped together. Today she drew a little fish. When I asked her how she did it she told me that she used the zombie stencil to trace half a zombie. Apparently there isn’t only one way to use a zombie stencil.

half zmobie fishDon’t forget to pop in to see what Miranda’s family has been working on.



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