Oct 052009
 

I am going to carry some patterns by Fledge / Studio Tantrum. They are European patterns – which means that you have to trace off the pattern pieces and add seam allowances. (Most people I know choose to trace boutique patterns anyway so that they can use all the sizes over and over again!) The patterns are kid friendly with a great sense of style.

What really drew me to them was how customizable they are. The pattern instructions are a quite general, so it helps if you have some sewing under your belt and understand basic construction. On the Farbenmix site, they have tons of design examples, and I’m also only including patterns that have instruction sheets in English and  Sew-A-Longs in English. I’ve linked those in the listings on my website. I decided to pick out a few patterns that I have been wanting to try and we’ll go from there.

Downtown Tucson

This weekend I was able to sew my very first Feliz….and it won’t be my last!  Feliz means happy in Spanish,  so I wanted the Feliz dress to have a Spanish vibe.  I envisioned something that you could wear to a party.  (The parties are always grand and always fun!)  I needed bright festive colors and patterns.  This fabric immediately came to mind.  

It is called Beatrice Dream and is by Michael Miller fabrics.  I used it for the overdress.  The under dress is Fuschia Ta Dot.

And the bustle on the back of the underdress are other Ta Dots from the Jewel Tones line.  I used Bubblegum, Celery, Lagoon and Tangerine.

Water feature

I added a bottom tier to the underdress that I gathered only in the back with the rest of the ruffles. And since my serger is still getting fixed, I decided to use the premade Bias Trim from Michael Miller. I love the result!  (But I can’t wait to get my serger back to my seams don’t have to be zig zagged!) 

Christmas is just around the corner, (really!) so I plan to make her Christmas dress from this pattern.  I think I’ll leave off the ruffles on the back and the extra bottom tier.  I’ll also possibly applique something on the over dress.  It will have a completely different feel!  I can hardly wait!  And I’ve picked out the fabrics I want to use for the Redondo and Laguna patterns too.  I doubt I’ll have time before I leave for Quilt Market.

The patterns are listed here.  I really do hope you will love them as much I already do!  Just thinking about all the possibilities makes me happy – so use the code Happy for 15% off all patterns this week.   :-)

Oct 012009
 

This is something you should probably mark on your calendars.  

Tree Climbing
Haley
– my daughter –
the dress wearing queen 
wanted to wear pants.

 

I have wanted to make her these cute pants for a while now.
I was afraid my efforts would sit in the drawer.
Untouched.
Unloved.
Unworn.
( I’ll make up words as I see fit)
My husband said, “Just make her some.  She’ll wear them.”

 

Noah's Ark

He was right.  
She loved them!
She wanted to wear them!

 

Pattern: Sophie by ModKid 
View C with View A Pockets
Fabric: Carnival Bloom Corduroy

The pattern was easy and fun to make.  I LOVE the detail of the twin needle on the pockets and leg slits.  I’ll have to get a close-up picture of that.  The only change I am thinking about for next time is adding a light weight interfacing on the front waist band.  She won’t wear jeans just yet – so I’m going to make another pair  but this time in lightweight cotton.  I have to say though, that the corduroy fabric (by Michael Miller) is da bomb diggity.

That’s right I just said bomb diggity.

And with that, I’ll say goodnight.

 

Sep 282009
 

The last Monday of September….and therefore the last of our celebration of National Sewing Month. And I’d have to say….

 

GOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOOAL!

 

Seriously you guys!  Totally awesome stuff you’re making!!!!  I hope you will all go look at the pictures, and I wish that I could share them all here! Please keep adding more pictures as you finish projects.  Who knows, I might surprise a lucky person now and again with a little blog feature.   ;-) 

Many people I know start sewing (again) when they have children.  It’s just fun to make them stuff.  So I figured that I HAD to do a feature on children’s clothing. 

Amanda sent me these photos of little lounge sets.  LOVE them!  And love that they are for little boys – because how often do our little men get left out of the sewing fun?  Too often!  She sent me several pictures – so be sure to look at them all in the Flickr pool.  The Cowboy print is from Alexander Henry and the Monkey print is from Moda!  Thanks, Amanda for emailing them to me!  

Totally adorable little boy set

Totally adorable little boy set

 

And Ericka shared with me these adorable outfits she has made for her daughter.  

skirt and shirt

This was made by sewing together Soiree charm squares and cutting the Little Hip Skirts pattern out of the pieced fabric. Way cute appliqued shirt too!

cuppycake

And this Cuppy Cake dress is soooooo cute! She used the Riley Blake Just Dreamy Fabric. Love it! Great job, Ericka!

Okay so I just have to include one more this time as well. I was so excited when Rebecca added this picture

DSC_7494

It is one of Patty Young’s new patterns that will be released at Quilt Market next weekend! Rebecca was one of Patty’s pattern testers. She use fabric from the Mezzanine collection to make this adorable skirt and appliqued shirt. I love it! Can’t wait to get my hands on the new patterns!!!!

Thanks everyone for playing along!  You’ve been great!

Sep 272009
 

Did you know that you can gather with a serger too?  Yep!  It’s a handy dandy trick, especially since I don’t have a gathering foot for my sewing machine. You’ll need to up your differential feed and lengthen your stitch. (Test out on scrap fabric to get your settings just right! I’m sure it varies by machine and how tightly you’re trying to gather the fabric, but I think my differential feed was at 2.0 and my stitch was at 4.0) Perfect gathers and no pulling a stupid thread to try and get it even.

gathering with serger

Sadly, my serger broke again in the middle of construction. (I assure you, it had nothing to do with gathering fabric.) The most devastating part of all of this was that I had to do a real hem on this skirt to finish it up.  (I LOVE rolled hems!)  So anyway, it’s back in the hospital getting it’s motor replaced- and I’m seriously considering a new serger. And this time I will not be going with Husqvarna Viking. This is the second time that the motor has given up….the last time was about 6 months ago. That track record makes me a little nervous. I feel a little sad because all my machines are Vikings. But they have failed me with this machine so it’s time to look elsewhere. I am looking at Bernina and Baby Lock right now. If you have a serger that you love (and the motor hasn’t gone out twice on you) then please let me know!

Back to the Art Gallery skirt! I made Haley a skirt with the Spellbound and Nature Elements fabrics and we’re both in love with it!  (By the way, the tonal solid prints in Nature Elements are great!  And you guys obviously love them too b/c they are selling well!)  She requested an ankle length skirt. I knew I wanted to use multiple fabrics and have it go together quickly. So the tiered peasant skirt seemed like a natural fit!

Fine, you can take a picture

I didn’t have a pattern, I just used her waist measurement as the starting point.  Each tier is 1.5 times longer than the one above.  Next time I’m going to up that to 2 or maybe even 2.5 to give her a little more twirling power.  My girl loves to twirl!  I also cut out a few of the floral motifs to applique onto a shirt. She has worn it for 3 days straight – so I’m pretty sure it’s a hit.   :-)   

Patricia Bravo, the designer (and owner) of Art Gallery Fabrics, is from Argentina.  I realize this may not be important to you – but for me that makes her extra special since I studied in La Plata during college.  Anyway, she is really incredibly sweet and I can’t wait to see what she has worked up for Quilt Market this year!  

Be back tomorrow with the last You Made It winner(s).  I have not even started writing that post – so it’s not too late to add pictures to the Flickr group.  I think you ALL should win because everything you have made is SO great.  It breaks my heart that I can’t feature every single picture!

Sep 072009
 

So my laptop sleeve is done!  
And I am in love with it.  
So in love, I think I might have to sleep with it tucked in right next to me at night.

laptop sleeve

See, here it is next to my Kashi waffles, grapes and chai.
MMMMMMM…..chai
I love chai

Regardless of if you are a Mac or a PC – we can come together over this way awesome fabric because it will love you regardless of your computing tendencies. It is by Red Rooster and is called Neutral Territory.

Neutral Territory

At Quilt Market in Pittsburgh, I kept walking past this booth and that red floral called out my name.
“Melanie, stop.”
“Melanie, come say hello.”
“Melanie, I’m neutral. I’ll love everyone and everyone will love me.”

It’s really freaky at first when fabric starts talking to you.
But you get used to it.
Kinda.

Anywho….I finally gave in to the siren calls and stopped by the Red Rooster booth. I love the red floral. But the fabric I really really  really love is the swirly dot.

Yummy Swirly Dots.
I Love it.
So I knew I had to use it for my laptop sleeve.
And the inside lining is also way cute.

inside fabric

Hello little green dot.
I love you too.

Oh – the applique.
I’ve been dying to use this Flights of Fancy fabric forever.
And now I have.
And I love it.
I just cut out a few of the motifs, adhered them to the cover and stitched them in place.

And I love it.
I love a lot of things today.
And I love you, too.

In fact, you can use to coupon code LOVE for 20% off your order over $20.
On my website.
Just this week (until 9-12-09)
Because I feel like sharing the love.
Regardless of if you’re a Mac or if you’re a PC. :-)

Sep 022009
 

I have said before that I love charm packs.  They are packs of 5 inch squares made from the entire collection of a particular line of fabric.  The packs usually contain around 40 squares.  The cost is generally about $8 and gives you a nice sampling of the line of fabric.  Obviously, you can also use the charm packs, but a lot of people are at a loss as to what the heck they are supposed to do with these little squares of heaven.  Here are a few ideas:

Little Charms

  • Arrange and rearrange all the pretty squares of fabric (just for entertainment)
  • Camera Strap Cover (just blogged about that)
  • Cards (visit Craft Apple‘s blog)
  • Little Girl Skirts
  • Little Girl Pants
  • Little Girl Pinafore Top
  • Dish Towels (jazz up plain ol’ towels)
  • Quilts  (TONS of patterns out there using charms & combos of precuts)
  • Apron (pieced diagonally – seriously cute!)
  • Tote Bag
  • Pincushions
  • Patchwork Memo Board (Just saw this on Moda Bake Shop!)
  • Yo-yos
  • Notebook Covers
  • Patchwork Pillow cases
  • Applique Bibs
  • Applique or patchwork burp cloths
  • Applique Onesies
  • Applique T-shirts
  • Applique Pants
  • Patch holes in Pants
  • Patchwork placemat
  • Decoupage furniture
  • Decoupage picture frame
  • Decoupage mirror frame
  • Patchwork Scarf
  • Patchwork anything and everything you could possibly think of sewing.

So that last one is totally cheating – but basically true.   :-)   Also be sure to check out Moda Bake Shop.   They have tons and tons of ideas for precut fabrics (not just charms).

Sep 012009
 

Patchwork Camera Strap Cover

I could have actually worked on my “to-do” list today. It is long. It is growing. It would have been the responsible thing to do.

But I had to visit the dentist. (Follow up work, nothing new or unexpected.) Paying him even more money kinda put me in a bit of a mood. For me, sewing helps right that mood. So instead of being responsible, I made something pretty.  This not totally irresponsible now that I now get to share it with you!   :-)

Here’s how: I determined I needed my cover to end up 2 inches wide by 20 inches long (I wish now I had made it 2 inches x 22 or 23 inches so it’d go onto the leather strap area.)  I used a charm pack as my starting point. That along with a scrap of fabric for the back and some fusible fleece was all I needed to make this quick project!  (and the fleece is optional!)

3 inch squares
I used 9 – 3 inch squares from the charms and sewed them together.
(If I made it again, I’d use  11 or 12 squares instead so it’d be longer.)

Sew together

Then sewed the patchwork piece and the solid piece together.

fusible fleece

Iron fusible fleece on the wrong side.

top stitch

Top stitch the patchwork squares.

Fold ends

Fold over the ends and stitch in place.
(I did 4 rows of stitching because I though it looked cooler.)

Right sides together

Sew right sides together.

Trim excess

Trim the excess so the seam is not bulky.
(if I had used 2.5 inch squares this wouldn’t be necessary)

Turn and iron

Turn right side out and iron.

Camera Strap

Slide it onto your strap and you’re done!

****** BONUS ******
I have an extra one laying right here. It measures about 2 inches by 20 inches.
Would you like it? Just leave me a comment. I’ll draw a name in the next couple of days.

PS. The FABULOUS fabric is Momo’s new line for Moda.  It is called Odyssea and I am so in love with it.  The pre-cuts are here now.  The yardage will be here sometime this month!

Off to be “for real” productive……