Me Made June


I know that I'm a bit of a late-comer to this game, but have you heard about the awesomeness that is Me Made June?

It's a commitment to wear at least one handmade item each day in the month of June (hence the name, right?).  My favorite thing about this?  The fact that they tell you to ignore all the small mistakes in the garments and accessories that you've made and to wear them proudly, because I am notoriously bad at not wearing things that I've made because of wee little mistakes that seem glaringly obvious to me, but are probably not so obvious to other people (or so I hope).

So, I'm about to make a quasi-committment here (how very big of me, right?).  I'm going to endeavor to try to wear at least one handmade item a day in the month of June.

Knowing my attention-span, I'm guessing that this will last approximately five days but that's better than nothing right?

And We're Back!


The vacation was, well, it was marvelous.

It started out a bit bumpy when we realized that despite the fact that we knew that it was going to be 50 degrees and rainy the entire weekend, we managed to leave O's warm coat at home.  Fortunately, I had thrown one sweater in the bag and a rain slicker, so both of those items together managed to save the day (they did not, however, manage to save me from arguing with Ben about who's fault it was that we left her coat at home.  For the record, I'm pretty sure it was mine - but don't tell him I said that).

Once we finally got to our destination though, things turned around.  How could the sight and sound of waves crashing against huge rocks make you feel anything but calm?

During our three day stay on the coast we  hiked a bit - and got rained on.

Attempted to fly a kite - but ended up having to run inside because it began to pour and Ben was convinced that we were going to get hit by lightening.

We entertained ourselves on the beach.

We ate a ton.

We visited some cute towns along the way.

Oh, and I got to pet a one month old lamb named Sammy - um, is it weird that that was the highlight of my trip?

Oh, and let's not forget a brief pitstop in Portland for some more delicious food and fabric shopping (because what vacation would be complete without that?)

As for O, she was far better on this trip than she has been on past ones.  She was fairly good on the car ride and surprisingly good at all the restaurants that we ate in.  She went to bed okay (although far later than I would have liked her to).  As for our days, there is something somewhat annoying about having to stop everything you're doing to make sure that your toddler takes a nap, but there is also something somewhat amazing about having to stop everything that you're doing to make sure that your toddler gets a nap - because with that we were all forced to have some downtime.  Some of us took advantage of the downtime to take a nap of their own.

And some of us took advantage of the downtime to secretly eat cookies, read mind-numbing books, and watch trashy television.

All in all, the vacation was wet, but fabulous (and as a bonus, nobody got appendicitis on this trip to Oregon.  Hurray!)

How You Know That You're Packing For A Pacific Northwest Beach Vacation


When your packing list includes the following items:

1) Rain boots.
2) Rain coat.
3) Rain hat.

And not a bathing suit in site.

The One In Which I Find My Happy Place


I didn't use the most precise methods to alter Vogue 8380 from a dress into a shirt, so I shouldn't have been surprised when things went wrong along the way.  Like when I stitched and then serged both sides together only to read the directions later to find out that I was supposed to leave one side unstitched.  Too bad I did the same thing with the armhole facings too.  Oops.

What did surprise me, though, was my utter lack of indifference when these things did go wrong.  After all, I ended up cutting off at least 2 serged edges (and who knows how much fabric ) and yet I found myself shrugging my shoulders and saying "eh, I'll just make it work."  It was very un-Carolyn-like...and yet, it appears that I did just make it work.

The shirt actually fits (always a plus), and I like it (double plus!).  And as a triple plus, my husband told me that the shirt actually flatters my lady-parts (of course, I then needed to bust his bubble by telling him that it's only because my strapless bra is padded).

All in all, I'm ridiculously happy with how this turned out.  And to all started with a little picture that I happened to see on flickr.

Pattern: Based off of Vogue 8380, but shortened into a shirt
Size: Size 4 on top but graded out to around a size 8 around the band
Fabric: The Garden voile from the Haven's Edge collection by Tina Givens (lovely stuff!)

Look at the little orange munchkin
sneaking into my photo shoot!

The Wheels In My Head Go Round And Round


The wheels have finally begun to turn and I'm thinking about digging into my voile stash once again for my next project.

After seeing this gorgeous shirt in the Spring Top Sewalong flickr group I remembered that I currently own a Vogue pattern that is somewhat similar to the Jamie dress that inspired the awesome woman who made that top.  And then I got to thinking that perhaps, just perhaps, I could shorten the Vogue dress into a shirt too (because imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, right?).  And so I'm beginning my next sewing project by folding the tissue pattern in all sorts of very un-scientific ways (like "eh, this looks about right").  This oughta turn out well...

Who Had The Hardest Time Sleeping Last Night?


I'm pretty sure it was me. I found myself waking up with every whimper and thump that I heard, only to not be able to fall back asleep again. At one point I decided to go check on O in an attempt to appease my anxiety. When I went in her room I found her laying on the floor - which meant that at some point she had rolled off of the bed and which meant that I was now going to spend the rest of the night worrying about her falling off of the bed again. Needless to say, O was a bit of a grump today and I was sporting some awesome under-eye concealer.

Here's to another attempt at a good night's sleep...

Why Yes, I Am Still Alive


Oh, I'm sorry, did I not tell you that I was going into temporary hibernation after completing KCWC?  Well that was my plan at least.  In reality, I've spent the last week cleaning up, taking care of O because Ben has had some sort of event to go to every night after work, hoping that our furnace lives through the last cold days of the season, and taking O to the doctor for some crazy-looking rash on her booty (on a side note, don't ever do a google image search for "rash on buttocks" in an attempt to figure out what your child's rash is.  No seriously.  Don't do it).

In the midst of all the craziness, there has been absolutely no sewing.  And in fact there hasn't even been much thought as to what my next sewing project will be.

Don't fret though.  While there hasn't been much sewing going on, with the warmer weather around here lately, there has been much wearing of home-made outfits.

Well, hello there, bra strap... 

Ending On A High Note


First of all I have to say, KCWC, you kicked my ass!  I am exhausted.  And my house if officially a disaster area.  That said, I appreciated the motivation to get a little sewing done every day and I now have six little clothing items to show for all my hard work (we'll just ignore the fact that only four of them actually fit my child).

In an attempt to end on a high-note, here's my last little creation.

My favorite thing about this shirt?  The ridiculously small amount of fabric it took to make this shirt.  I had about a 1/3 of a yard of this fabric left over from a dress that I had made and I had no idea what I was going to do with such a small amount of fabric.

Then I remembered the unique construction of the dress that I had made and I figured that it was worth a try to make it into a shirt for O.  And surprise, actually worked.


KCWC Item #6

Pattern: Based off of instructions for Anna Maria Horner's Museum Tunic
Fabric: Anna Maria Horner's Little Folks Dobby Voile - Gray

When Sewing Goes Wrong


Once upon a time I told myself that sewing children's clothes was a stress-free activity because you never had to worry about the fit.  You know, a child's never going to tell you "the shape of that skirt makes my butt look big" or "I really don't have the right bra to wear with that shirt."  And most importantly, if the garment comes out too big, no worries, they'll just grow into it.

I'm now seeing the folly of my ways, however, because the one thing that I didn't take into consideration was making something too small (which seems to be a theme around here lately).

I've been working on this little hat over the past two days and was super-excited to try it on O since we were having a much-deserved sunshine break around here.  But when I went to put it on her I found that it literally was only going to sit on her head.

Damn it!  I swear I measured her head and everything.

Mommy, get this ridiculously small hat off of my head!

KCWC item #5

Pattern: Jack and Jill Hat Pattern by Ivy and Izzy
Size: Small
Fabric: corduroy fabric that I purchased at Joann's several years ago

Sunday Brunch Skirt Deja Vu

With two parents working outside of the home, we find ourselves in the same dilemma every weekend.  To play or to work?

You see, we get very little done around the house during the week and so when the weekend comes there is laundry to be washed, clothes to be folded, floors to be mopped, groceries to be bought, and meals to be cooked.

But it's also the weekend - the only two days that we get to spend with O - and the last thing that I want to spend those days doing is grocery shopping (have I ever told you how much I hate grocery shopping?  That and pumping gas...I loathe them both!).

So yesterday I had to decide...chores or fun?  And with the sun making a much-needed appearance around here yesterday, fun won out and we headed to a local trail where we could get a little fresh air while O attempted to not get run over by the bikers.

Of course, she needed a new skirt for our day-o-fun and fortunately I had made one more Sunday Brunch skirt since I am madly in love with this little pattern.  I have to say, she looked incredibly adorable running up and down the trail in her new little outfit (although I will fully admit, that as her mother, I'm a bit biased).

KCWC Item #4
Pattern: Oliver and S's Sunday Brunch Skirt
Size: 2T
Fabric: Corduroy fabric purchased at Joann's several years ago

Oh, and here's my favorite picture of them all.

That's right...don't be fooled by her cuteness...O is totally badass!

Blogger's Quilt Festival 2011


First of all, many thanks to Amy's Creative Side for hosting yet another Blogger's Quilt rock!

Now on to the show...

My family moved a lot while I was growing up and as a result I often felt that I was living just a bit outside of my comfort zone.  So when it came time to leave home I found that I had a strong urge to develop my own comfort zone and to make choices in my life that would allow me to remain firmly within that happy place.  While that was certainly what I needed at the time I'm beginning to wonder if that's still the right choice for me.  Which brings me to this quilt, (see, there was actually a point to this long and rambling story) which is very much outside of my comfort zone.

You see, I'm a white-sashing kind of gal, usually with clear or muted colors.  I am most certainly not a red-sashing kind of gal, with bright, bold colors.  

And yet I found myself making a quilt that distinctly fits into the latter category when I made this one.

And you know what?  I love it.  Which leaves me to wonder if perhaps it's time to venture outside of that comfort zone after all...

(quilt originally blogged here)

Mermaid Dress


Yes, it's true - there's an explosion of Heather Ross's Mendocino fabric around here.  In my defense, however, I should point out that I actually cut this dress out a year ago and it's been sitting on my shelf ever since

The dress is the flower girl dress pattern from Heather Ross's Weekend Sewing.  I have to say that the straps look much wider in the picture in the book than they actually come out on the dress, so beware if you actually want the look of the wider straps.  Other than that it seems to have come out as it was supposed to.  I use the word "seems" very strategically here, because I actually have no one to try it on  to check the fit because apparently O has grown quite a bit in the past year.  I tried to put the dress on her yesterday and it wouldn't even fit over her head.  Sigh.

Oh, and in the spirit of full disclosure, I need to point out that half of my mermaids appear to be swimming in a downward motion.  Oops.

KCWC Item #3

Pattern: Flower Girl Dress from Weekend Sewing
Size: Small
Fabric: From Heather Ross's Mendocino line

Okay, I'll Admit It - I Was Wrong


Allow me to be honest for a moment and say that I really just bought the Sunday Brunch Jacket and Skirt pattern for the jacket and I couldn't have cared less about the skirt pattern that accompanied it.  When I originally saw the skirt on the cover I thought "Ughh, a-line skirt...boring!"  

But I'm here today to publicly announce that I was wrong - very, very wrong - because I freaking love this skirt!  

That's O very kindly giving you an unobstructed
view of her new skirt.  How kind....

I love the pockets and the ability you have to make them "pop" by cutting them out in a contrasting fabric.

I love the little kick pleat at the back (which was so incredibly easy to make).  

I love how it has a nicer looking flat band in the front but some elastic in the back to allow for a great fit.  

I love how easily the pattern came together.

Oh, and I love that apparently it provides the perfect outfit in which to do yard work.

In fact, I would have to say that there is nothing that I don't love about this skirt.  It's just an overall love fest around here.  

KCWC Clothing Item #2

Size: 2T
Fabric: Gray cotton with a bit of stretch that I bought at Joanns and some left over Alexander Henry Blooming Bubble fabric

Because Every Kid Needs A Shirt Covered In Seahorses


There are times when everything goes wrong and there are times when things just seem to fall into place.  Fortunately, this little shirt falls into the latter category.

In digging through the stash to find fabric to make this top, I discovered that I had just enough leftover Heather Ross fabric laying around.  And in sewing the shirt together there was a much appreciated absence of yelling and cursing as everything came together beautifully and the mistakes were kept to a minimum.  And in my search for the perfect button, I found this one in the stash and I could not be more pleased with how it looks.

KCWC Clothing Item #1 - Success!

Pattern: Oliver and S Ice Cream Social Top
Size: 2T
Fabric: Heather Ross's Mendocino



Ah, the internet, you make me do all sorts of crazy sign up for Elsie Marly's KCWC.

While it's certainly not the greatest commitment in the world (you're only committing to sewing kid's clothes for at least one hour a day, for seven days), the truth is that I'm not all that great at commitments (except for the whole marriage thing...that seems to be working out okay).  But despite my committment-phobic nature, I'm throwing caution to the wind and joining KCWC.  Now those who are far more organized than me having been planning for this week, well, for weeks.  They've been scouring the internet for new patterns, purchasing said patterns, finding coordinating fabrics, and cutting everything out.  Me?  Well, let's just say that I'm a wee bit less organized - as in I have no idea what I'll be sewing.  But I'll at least be sewing and after spending most last week just painting it'll feel good to be back at the machine.

Because A Party's Not A Party Until Somebody Throws Up


Thank God birthdays only happen once a year, because they are exhausting.

Between the cooking, the cleaning,the painting (which was was not finished, by the way), the baking, the pinata, the Easter egg hunt (every day's a good day for an Easter egg hunt, right?), and the presents, I am tuckered out.

And O?  Well, judging by the large meltdown she had after everyone left, I'd say that she's tuckered out too (that was solely our fault by the way...what do we expect when we pump our kid full of sugar and then delay her nap by an hour?).

She woke up in a great mood from her nap though only to end the day with a "splat" - as in a splat of vomit hitting our bathroom floor.  Poor little kiddo.  Her vomiting definitely gets a gold star though - one, because this is the first time that she's thrown up in two years and two, she did it on the linoleum rather than on the carpet.  Well done, O.  (And also a gold star for Ben who cleaned up the vomit.  I tell you, that man is a keeper).