rainbow lulu dress

this is E’s “back to school” dress and i took these pictures last fall.  i feel like i need to give you that disclaimer lest you think we’re all tan and wearing flip flops around here in january.  no.  the photos are seasonally out of date, but since this is E’s favorite dress of the moment, i couldn’t skip blogging it!

rainbow lulu dress

JoAnn Fabric has really upped their apparel fabric game lately.  i’ve been finding a lot of great knits, in particular, and we all know how hard good knits are to come by.   Continue reading

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lily pond lulu dress

I love blue. it’s the color of sky and water – it’s calming and peaceful and makes me happy.  so, when my friend Rae gave me a peek of Lotus Pond, her new line for Cloud9 Fabrics, and asked if i would be a part of a tour showing it off, it’s no surprise that i was immediately drawn to the gorgeous blues in her beautiful aquatic themed prints.

i was so inspired by the fabric, in fact, i knew i had to make the extra effort to get photos by a body of water!  like, say…the Pacific Ocean perhaps!  and i did!

lily pond lulu

oh the whole lotus pond line is so good – the colors are perfectly saturated and complement each other so nicely within each print and as a group.  i especially love the different florals!  such interesting/beautiful/playful designs – it was sooooo hard to pick my favorites for the tour.  the fabric i chose for this project, lily pond, is mostly green, blue, and aqua, but there’s just a bit of pink and orange and yellow in there too, which keeps the eye dancing around the print and makes me really happy. Continue reading

pot o’ gold nessie top

leapin’ leprechauns, it’s St. Paddy’s Day!

pot of gold nessie top

and this lass needed a new shirt!

pot of gold nessie top

Em’s school has a uniform, but for St. Patrick’s Day she could wear green.  she didn’t have a top that’d work, though, and she was super excited to brainstorm the outfit together on our way home from school last week.

pot of gold nessie top

well actually she wanted a new dress, but i was able to convince her that she already has a skirt with SHAMROCKS ON IT so that saved me a bit of work.  😉  details about the skirt right here.  we picked the fabric for the top together, and the rest of the outfit is her choice – i just set out the gold shoes which she was ecstatic about.  a holiday centered around gold and rainbows is a winner in her book.

pot of gold nessie top

the shirt is the Nessie Top Pattern by Craftiness is not Optional.  i’d previously made one for my niece and love the sweet girly shape of it.  the 4T was a bit big when i tried it on Em at Christmastime, so I knew it would probably fit now after a few months of growing.

i made it with short sleeves and didn’t hem the sleeves or bottom for extra flutter.  the fabric is a lightweight green slub knit that’s upcycled from an old dress of mine.  the skirt of the dress was pieced so i used one of those seams down the back of the shirt, and i like the look (and drape).

pot of gold nessie top

i painted some ultra suede with gold fabric paint (affiliate link) and zigzagged it onto the shirt with metallic gold thread to create a little “pot o’ gold” pocket. that’s her favorite part.

pot of gold nessie top

this is not the first time i’ve done last minute sewing for St. Patrick’s Day.

did you make anything green for your kids/you to wear?  it’s kind of a fun one to sew for since it’s only based on color, so the clothes can easily be worn later and can be as fancy/casual as you want.

my husband made her lunch – bagel and GREEN cream cheese! I can’t wait to hear what she thinks of that! I think it’s pretty cute. 🙂

gifts for the nieces

when my blog is quiet like it has been, it usually means i’m up to my eyeballs actually making stuff.

and aside from making a human (due to arrive in less than 2 months now!), i also sewed quite a few Christmas gifts this year – nine, actually.  that’s kind of a lot for me.  i got photos of MOST of them ahead of time, but may need to follow up on a few that i really want to photograph modeled rather than taped to a wall, so we’ll see how many of the nine show up here.  i even made a MAN gift!  anyway, let’s knock three out right now, eh?

i have three nieces – my sister’s kids – and i feel like i don’t sew for them very often.  i really wanted to make them each a comfortable, wearable, but uniquely handmade garment to go with some store-bought leggings I picked up on black friday.

for the 4 year old (Em’s best friend, currently in pre-kindergarten, and almost always wearing a knit top and leggings when i see her):

strawberry nessie top pocket

a Nessie Top!  i tried to pattern test this for Jess of CINO, but her pattern testings somehow come at especially busy times for me, and I wasn’t able to.  however, i still had the tester version of the pattern and was very excited to sew it up!  the top comes together really quickly (construction is similar to the FBST, since it’s a simple knit shirt), but i love the swingy girly shape and hi-low hem of the Nessie, and couldn’t wait to make it in some Heather Ross Briar Rose strawberry jersey knit (sent to me by the very same Jess for my birthday, and such a dream to sew!).

i hemmed it using my double needle and a walking foot and it worked great.

strawberry nessie top pocket

i added a little olive colored microsuede pocket for a little extra interest and to make sure it didn’t go “pajama.”  i left the pocket edges raw and zigzagged around them to secure.  word is, my niece is a fan and it fits great!  i made a 4T and she is average-sized (about the same size or bigger than 5.5 year old Em who tried it on and had just the right amount of growing room).

for the 2.5 year old…a peasant dress covered in bunnies and balloons!

bunnies and balloons sweet little dress

pattern is the sweet little dress by leila & ben.  i’ve sewed a bunch of these in my time, and they’re always Em’s most-worn everyday dresses (remember this one?).  they make it easy for a little gal to dress herself, they’re reversible and comfortable and cute.  they can be layered in the winter and worn alone with sandals in the summer.  the recipient of this dress pulled it on over her Christmas Eve jammies upon opening it and, i’m told, cried when it had to be washed.

always a good sign.

bunnies and balloons sweet little dress

i made a 3T for growing room, and flared out the sides a bit as i like to do on this pattern.  the fabric is Balloon in Aqua by Sarah Jane from her Children at Play line (still available here and here).  i think i got it at Fabric Depot way back when.

for their baby sis, who is 11 months and juuuust starting to take a few steps but still mostly crawls, another peasant-style top…

pierrot with ribbon trim

this is Made by Rae’s Pierrot Tunic, another pattern i’ve made quite a few times before.  i made this in 12-18 months figuring it’ll be a dress now and a top later (the way these things fit, i bet the middle sis could wear it now if she wanted!).  i omitted the neck ruffle but took a cue from Rae and added vintage ribbon trim to the bottom (can’t remember who so kindly sent that pretty ribbon to me!  help?  fess up!).

pierrot with ribbon trim

the fabric had no selvedge info but has a really nice feel to it (almost like pima cotton maybe?) and was sent to me by Sanae Ishida as a thank you for guest posting for her – thanks, Sanae!  it worked perfectly for the Pierrot.  i stitched the ribbon on by staying right on that purple edging – so glad my machine allows me to move my needle ever so slightly to allow me to get that precise.

and there ya go – three pink/purple garments for three sisters!  i didn’t want to make anything so fancy or precious that it wouldn’t be worn, and i put a lot of thought into the styles i chose for each little gal.  these were the first three gifts i made this year and i was nowhere near burnout yet, so they were super fun!  it was good to sew patterns i was really comfortable with, too.  that helped a lot.

i’ll be back with more handmade gifts!