Thursday, 29 August 2013

Sew & Tell: Retro Red Romper

So, first off, let me tell you about something super cool. If you've noticed my blog makeover (more like a I-get-bored-and-change-the-blog-layout-every-few-months thing) on the sidebar there is a nifty little badge that looks like this:

That's my little sister Betty! And she has a blog! It's brand new, and she's a little shy about it because there isn't much content yet but I mean, she JUST started blogging (she has high expectations of herself!). Add her blog to your BlogLovin or Feedly or whatever reader you use to keep tabs on your blogs because Betty has some pretty cute things in the works!

Anyway, this weekend/week she was up for a visit and she dug up one of mum's old sewing books. I've mentioned the Toddler version of this book before when I used a pattern for Vincent's College Jacket tutorial! I also have my own copy of Kwik Sew's Sewing for Baby*, and when Betty decided to make a little pair of short overalls for her daughter Ruby, I decided I wanted to make a pair for Edison! We were so chuffed with how they turned out, and how we used the same pattern with different results, we decided we should do it more often! And so I bring to you:

(You're lucky we didn't go with some of the other punny titles...)

There aren't any rules, just Betty & I will both make something from the same pattern, each giving it our own little spin on things. Ruby is 8 months younger than Edison, although she is almost as tall as my plumpkin! We won't exclusively be doing little girl things, as I have a little boy who has not been too impressed with my sewing-for-his-sister of late and also Betty & I would like to sew things for ourselves too!

This episode of Sew & Tell (lol!) we used this book!

You can buy it here on Amazon* (there is also a Toddler version* and a children's version* (size 4-12)(should probably get myself one of those!). The cool factor about these books is that they provide master patterns for every single piece of your child's wardrobe in a multitude of sizes. T-shirts, bodices, pants, nappy covers, shorts, jumpers, dresses. Everything.

Oh and in the back of the book are patterns for cute little appliques!

Look at that rainbow! And the pony!
So anyway, that was the most ginormous ramble of rambly proportions! Onto the good stuff. Betty decided to make Ruby some 'Bib Shorts' as they are referred to in this book

We both made up the Large size, which is 6-12months or a size 0 here in Australia! Ruby is pretty long in the body, and awesomely enough the same pattern fit both our babes! The pattern book is geared toward stretchknit fabrics, however a lot of the patterns are also suitable for woven fabrics.


It only took me about an hour and a half to make these. I use this red broadcloth-type fabric I must have scored from an op-shop (the only solid fabrics I buy at the fabric shop is either poplin or cotton drill, so if it's not one of those I claim Op-Shop!). It's a nice sturdy fabric, perfect for playing and crawling in (this kid is super hard on the knees of her pants!).

The cuffs and bib facing are lined with this cute retroesque quilting cotton I got from Spotlight way before I decided to never set foot inside their stores (for how long I don't know, but I've successfully avoided them the last 6 months). I have a bout a metre of it, and it has just sat there in my stash for a long time. I decided to just CUT INTO IT because then it is being used and worn instead of waiting patiently on a shelf. Right?

She was trying to put the shoe on..
 We altered the pattern slightly. Betty didn't want the centre seam down the front of the bib, and so I helped her and mum change it so the bib was on the fold and there was a waist seam instead. It wasn't difficult, as the bib was a separate piece to start with. I also added roll up cuffs, stitched in place, to the hems of the shorts out of the retro space kids fabric.

I made a patch pocket for the front of Edison's bib. Totally useless on a one year old, but still super cute! I really love how these fit Edison, and I will be making her a few more pairs for this summer!

The labels were part of my prize from Project Run & Play from Jennifer's Jewels. The customisation options are insane, and they're quite affordable! I made These for Edison, and I also have teal ones for Vincent, as well as a bunch of size tags which helps when my handmade clothes for my kids end up as hand-me-downs

I didn't elasticate Edison's at all, I kind of like the 'sitting in a bucket' look. It's quite boyish, but on Edison that totally works.

The buttonhole foot is missing from my sewing machine, which is terrifying and hilarious all at the same time (you should see my SAD attempt at buttonholes, post upcoming), so I have been opting for snaps. I got this neat set of Snap pliers and assorted snaps and it's SO easy. Way better than the silver-coloured ones I hammer together! I didn't have any nice big red buttons, which means I need to buy some red FIMO and MAKE some, right?

Head over to my sister's blog to see the shortalls SHE made for her daughter Ruby! Would you believe we both used the exact same sized pattern? Check out Betty Again.

* denotes affiliate links! 


Friday, 23 August 2013

My new favourite colour combination

I'm very excited to be one of the last stops of the Jersey Love pattern tour by Fishsticks Designs. The tour is sponsored by Riley Blake Designs and I was fortunate enough to be able to choose some fabric from their Knit Basics line. This was like, VERY exciting for me! Being in Australia I miss out on a lot of opportunities like this (most of my Project Run & Play winnings were taken up with the cost of shipping the goods to me!) but when I asked Bonnie if they would ship to me so I could participate in the tour, she found out that they would! And they did! Thanks Riley Blake!

I chose the Runaround Pants pattern, as I know I can't go wrong making shorts for Vincent. He's obsessed with shorts, and the fabrics I chose were a solid lime green and black & white stripes. There's something about that combination that is just doing it for me, and I predict lots more items with those colours to be made soon!

The patterns in this Jersey Love collection all focus on quick and easy sewing, no hemming and letting the natural curl of the fabric be the feature! Now this is very cool, but I wanted a more 'finished' look for my shorts. And in doing so I made a WHOLE lot more work for myself and broke a needle HOWEVER I really like the end result.

Instead of leaving the ends raw, I tucked everything in and made some binding for the side pockets (because I'm a sewing rebel like that you guys!). I put side pockets on only one leg, and that hem is quite thick with all the layers (and I was working with a blunt ballpoint needle also!) but my machine soldiered on. If you made these shorts/pants up as instructed, you would definitely not have this problem, it would be literally half the bulk at the bottom of the shorts because there is no need to fold them under and hem.

If you look at the hem on this picture, you can see the parts where my machine was totally freaking out over the bulk lol! 
 I LOVED working with this fabric, so soft and stretchy and forgiving! I would 100% buy this fabric for future sewing projects and after making up these shorts and seeing them on Vincent I would 100% make these shorts again. The length is not a usual length I would make for him, but when he put them on I just died a little. He looked SO CUTE.

Vincent LOVES his shorts. He came home from kindy and stripped down right away, grabbing them off the couch and proceeded to prance around the back yard on the first sunny warm day we have had here in AGES. I grabbed my camera quickly and BEGGED him if I could take some photos of him in his new shorts before he got dirt all over them. I have discovered very quickly that I need to take photos of items for the blog before they are worn to death. 

I have already added a few more pairs of these shorts for Vincent to my sewing queue so expect to see this pattern up on the blog again! There is so much room for customisation with the pocket combinations, and a multitude of fabrics (you could even use just one fabric colour the whole way through if you wanted to). OH! Piping! You could do piping on all the pockets, or some of them. Must try that! The waistband is super soft, just a rectangle with no elastic in it. They seriously look and feel like the comfiest shorts ever.

The sizes are from 12months to a size 8 - you can bet Edison will be getting a pair of these pants quick smart too!

Don't forget to head over to my girl Shannon from Little Kids Grow (we played PR&P together!) to see what she made up for the tour!

Tuesday, 8/13: Call Ajaire & Rock the Stitch
Wednesday, 8/14: imagine gnats & Busy, Beautiful and On a Budget
Thursday, 8/15: Shaffer Sisters & Blue Susan Makes
Friday, 8/16: Rooibos Mom & Mama Says Sew
Tuesday, 8/20: Designs by Sessa & Hopeful Threads
Wednesday, 8/21: Making More with Less & Sew Can She
Thursday, 8/22: Crafty Hour & Winter Wonderings … Wanderings & Whatnot
Friday, 8/23: Little Kids Grow & Max California

Perfect for "Running Around"!


Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Pastel Tribal Jeans: The Small Fry Skinny Jeans Sewalong Part 1

Laura of Craftstorming is currently doing a sew-a-long for the Small Fry skinny jeans. The good part is that she is only up to Day 2, so if you haven't started yet there is still time (I only started about 2 hours ago). The best part is that Laura has offered up a FREE pattern for toddler skinny jeans in a size 2. She is planning on releasing a paid pattern with more sizes in it, and you have the chance to win it by sewing a long and presenting your pair of jeans to see if they rock the casbah!

The pattern pieces are amazing. I have been sewing with A LOT of PDF patterns in the last year and Laura's pattern (her pattern company is called Titchy Threads) is probably my favourite in terms of easiness to piece together. Every single piece was clearly labelled, with multiple markings to make sure your pieces lined up when you joined them together. Argh I love it. I totally geeked out over it too when I was cutting and gluing. Sorry not sorry!

Look at that butt pocket. So niiiiiice.

Okay so I only managed to get through cutting all my pieces out and stitching up the steps of Day 1 (the pockets & the back yoke). I chose this pastel tribal-esque cotton drill that I scored at the op shop. Oh yeh man, I got 2.5m of this baby for $6. Who knows what I will use the rest of the fabric for but you're probably going to see it a lot ahha. Originally I was going to use the pink teddy poplin leftover from Vincent's Hosh pants, however I decided I wanted the back patch pockets to be in a stand out colour so I grabbed this grey button-up shirt of Tim's that had bleach spilled on the front of it (should get into the habit of taking BEFORE photos for ya'll!)

These won't fit Edison for another year, but hey, I'll be prepared ^_^