Friday, September 24, 2010

Jump rope!

There's lots going on in the online sewing community at the moment. First up, there has been a sew-along for Oliver + S Jump Rope dresses, and secondly, it is kids clothes week over at Elsie Marley.

The sew-along was actually held a few weeks ago but with all that has been going on here (my son has had pneumonia!) I missed out... so it's been a sew-behind for me, rather than a sew-along. Better late than never though.

The kids clothes week challenges people to spend an hour sewing each day, for a week (and for their kids, obviously). I have a few things on the boil but this dress in the first one I have completed.

I really adore this pattern. I bought it because I was completely in love with View A. I thought View B (which I have made, see below) was a bit shapeless, but after seeing some gorgeous View B versions on the O+S Flickr group I decided to attempt that first (and really, my two year is a bit shapeless too, so it suits her!)

View B was also better suited to my fabric. The fabric is by CoCoChi and it's not everyone's cup of tea, but it is definitely *my* cup of tea! It's a soft grey with pink, white and black doilies printed on it, with animal silhouettes scattered throughout. Sounds ghastly but I love it! I used a plain pink cotton for the inner placket, pocket trim and sleeve tabs.

The fabric is a heavy cotton, not quite as heavy as cotton canvas. It was a dream so sew with, the only criticism i have is that it frayed very easily.

As you'd expect with and Oliver + S pattern, it came together very easily. It was a '3 scissor' pattern but the only really involved bit was the placket, where you have to be pretty precise. The collar and set in sleeves have the same construction as the music class blouse and sketch book shirt, so were familiar to me and nice and straightforward.

My little girl has picked out some fabric for me to make view A next. Can't wait to get started.

If you like this pattern, go and buy it now. It has been taken out of print sadly, so is likely to sell out soon. I have just rushed out to buy the larger size range as I love it so much.

The completed dress. I am officially a 'view B' convert!

I adore the pockets.

In action. I made a size 3 for my very tall 2.5 year old.

Testing out the pockets (my little entrepreneur insisted I put money in the pockets before she'd let me take this photo).

More booties

Not much to say in this post... I have made these booties many times before (they are usually my 'go to' gift for a baby shower or new arrival). I made these last Friday night when I was feeling bored and my hubby was flicking between two codes of footy on the TV. I made them to go with the sleeping bag at my friend's baby shower.

I have no idea of the fabrics. The outer is a really cute Japanese print that mum picked up for me when she was last there. It's hard to tell in the photo but the balloons and animals' outfits are actually glitter. Cute :) The lining is something that has been languishing in my stash of scraps.

Wish they were bigger to show off more of the print.

They close with velcro. Snaps work well too, but are obviously visible on the outside.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Sleeping bag for a baby shower

I can't believe how long it has been since I last blogged! Things have been busy here, with a new job for me, my little one turning one, four trips to emergency, food poisoning, flu and illness. As I type my 2 year old has chicken pox and I'm waiting to see if the one year old has it - gah!

But in the midst of all that, I have been sewing. I've got a few projects on the go at the moment that I'll blog over the next few weeks as I complete them.

One of my very good friends is nine weeks away from having a baby (actually, two very good friends are 9 weeks away from having a baby - but more about that in another post). I knew I wanted to make her a sleeping bag, but didn't know which fabric to use, especially as her baby's sex is a surprise. But after seeing her nursery, all decked out in an owl theme, I knew the perfect fabric - Alexander Henry's spotted owl. Typically, Hawthorne Threads was out of stock, but the lovely Jen came to my aid by sending me some of her stash (thanks Jen - I owe you!)

I'm really proud of this sleeping bag. I made it up as I went along, which probably doesn't seem that impressive as it's such a simple shape, but I put a lot of thought into how to quilt the outside without quilting the lining, and it was my first time sewing a concealed zip (not sure of the technical name - lapped zipper perhaps?). I also am managed to conceal the zipper tape between the lining and main fabric, and am really happy with the outcome.

I used two layers of ultra soft cotton and bamboo blend inside the bag, and quilted it using vertical lines, two inches apart. Because I used a natural filling, the sleeping bag will take a little longer to dry, but I much prefer natural fibres to polyester, which is used in most commercial sleeping bags.

The lining is a Kaffe Fassett cotton. I can't believe how soft it is - easily the softest quilting cotton I have ever come across. It's a bluey/purple colour and hopefully suitable for a boy or girl. I also used this fabric to bind the arm and neck holes. I hand-stitched these for a neat finish.

I'm giving this to my friend at her baby shower this weekend and really hope she likes it! I really must make some more sleeping bags for my little one, as I really enjoyed the process and it'll be fun to match his sleeping bags to his sheets.

The completed sleeping bag. I made to fit from 6-18 months - so the baby can use it next Winter - and it took pretty much the full length of a yard of fabric.

The arm and neck holes, bias-bound using the lining fabric. I also sewed a guard to protect the baby's neck from the zipper.

I concealed the zipper tape between the lining and outer fabric (for looks and comfort). The inside is not quilted.

I included a fabric 'guard' to protect the baby's clothing from getting caught in the zipper.

My first ever concealed (not invisible) zipper. Hurrah!