Thursday, November 18, 2010

Reusing some much loved fabric

My daughter received the most beautiful dress for her first birthday. I loved it, particularly the fabric. Unfortunately, it was way too big, and by the time the next Summer rolled around she was too tall for it.

Since then it's been sitting in her cupboard, as I loved it too much to throw out. It's been waiting for daughter #2 to show up, but there's every chance I won't have another daughter, so last weekend I decided to cut the dress up and put the fabric to good use as a new top for my little girl.

I've wanted to make Oliver + S's Swingset tunic for a while. I love the structured look of the bodice compared to the floaty main panel. I used the recycled fabric for the main panel. It's printed floral voile and so sweet. I used a plain white quilter's cotton for the bodice.

I also *finally* got around to making some puppet show shorts too. I have long admired these and am really pleased with how they look and how easy they were to sew. I wanted them to match the Swingset tunic, so used the same deep raspberry colour that's in the top, to make the shorts.

The shorts are made of voile, which is super sheer. I ended up using a double layer of the voile for the main part of the shorts (so no-one has to be subjected to my little one's Dora knickers!) with a single layer for the pockets, waist and binding.

I really, really recommend these shorts. They look so cute on and are quick to make.

The original dress

A few hours of unpicking and sewing later, turned into this. Hurrah!

I love the structured yoke with the floaty gathers. Liesl from O+S is a genius :)

The back is buttoned with three white, glossy plastic buttons.

The finished shorts. The colour is washed out here, it's a deep, almost red, raspberry colour.

The shorts have a cute gathered pocket, and gathers at the cuff, which make them bloomer-ish.

The finished ensemble.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Monogramed shirt for Baby Z

A little while ago I posted about this set I made for a baby shower. Well, on Thursday morning my friend delivered a beautiful baby boy. Eeeee!!! I'm off to meet him in an hour and cannot wait.

He arrived a little early and I was completely unprepared with a present (especially as I didn't know his gender before he was born). But I knew I really wanted to bring something to the hospital, so I pulled out my well-used Sketchbook Shirt pattern from Oliver + S. I have made this four times now and it gets easier every time.

I didn't have time to go fabric shopping, so I used some blue and white seersucker from my stash. I was very tempted to use one of the many cutesy boyish prints I own, but I think the stripes work better for this shirt, especially as it is sized 12-18 months (for next Summer). In any case this little man is going to get a zillion gifts from me over the coming months so I can use some of the cuter fabric for those.

I have never sewed with a narrow stripe before and it was challenging. It shows up every little mistake. You have to be so precise with your cutting and that is hard with seersucker!

I knew I wanted to personalise the shirt, but didn't know how. I thought about an embroidered pocket like I did here but that wouldn't really work on the seersucker. I eventually decided to play around with the stripes and applique a 'Z' monogram (first letter of his name) using horizontal stripes on the vertical pocket. I'm really happy with it. It's kind of subtle, but funky. My husband thinks I should have stitched it on using navy thread... I'm undecided. It would have made it stand out more, but I kind of like it the way it is.

I used navy snaps instead of buttons - I didn't have anything appropriate in my button box.

Time to grab some lunch and then get to the hospital. Can't wait to meet you Baby Z!

Finished shirt. Size 12-18 months.

Monogramed pocket detail.

Close up. I picked a font I liked on the computer, enlarged it and flipped it. Then I traced in directly from the screen onto some vliesofix. After ironing it onto the fabric I cut around the Z.

The back. The yoke is cut across the grain. I thought about chevroning it but I only had a few hours to make this shirt, so decided not to.