Sunday, May 20, 2012

Many More Maxis and 1 Mini

A few weeks ago my sister asked me if I would create her some dresses similar to the ones I posted about earlier. Here are a couple more dresses I recently made.

1. I created a maxi for my sister using my Maxi Dress Pattern but omitted the pockets. This dress is out of a more sheer knit and requires a slip and cami underneath but I loved the color and feel of this knit. I also created a quick fabric belt that she could wrap around this waist but forgot to take pictures of it :( I just used a strip of scrap fabric and 2 D rings to create a quick and easy belt.

2. A pink version of the Here Comes the Sun Dress. After wearing my yellow dress several times I had to fix the ruffle hem because it was not sewn in strong enough to withstand walking, touching the ground, etc. So, lesson learned, this time I sewed in the ruffle using a double needle and then went back over the stitch with a zig zag single needle stitch. I am hoping this allows stretch for walking ease but holds up to walking and repeated washings...I guess I will wait and hear the report from my sister!

2. A non-ruffle version of the Here Comes the Sun Dress. This dress is for me and I decided to not add a ruffle to the bottom but instead create three fabric flowers using the scraps from the tank top. You can either attach the flowers to the belt or tank of the dress for different looks.

4. This is the "mini" dress. It is really not that short but compared to the maxi dress I guess it would be considered mini. I used the same tutorial that I used for the two dresses above but hemmed the skirt at knee length. I then created two small rows of ruffles using the same material as the skirt. I cut strips of one inch material, the width of my fabric and began sewing them together and ruffling them to get strips long enough to wrap around the dress. It took about two strips for each row of ruffles. It is an easy, casual dress for days you want to just throw something on with sandals.

Whew...feels good to check something off the "to sew" list!


Thursday, May 17, 2012

Full Coverage Nursing Cover

A friend of mine recently had a baby and asked if I could make her one with both front and back coverage.  I had made several nursing covers but never any with a back attached. This was her main priority to allow for comfortable nursing in public without worrying about her shirt riding up in the back and leaving her exposed. So I took a combination of the sewing cover I normally make, which includes boning in the front to help keep it open and allow you to see the baby, and added a back. I rounded the shoulder seams and left a side slit in each side to allow for more movement.

Monday, May 14, 2012

Pillowcase Skirt

I hope everyone had a great mother's day...sorry I didn't get my post up...I was busy celebrating :) The pillowcase skirt is nothing new, but I wanted to show this simple version for anyone looking for a quick and easy project. First you will need to find a pillowcase wide enough to comfortably fit over your hips, or two matching pillowcases to create your skirt. While at the thrift store I found these two pillow shams. They were plenty wide and allowed me enough room to create the skirt. I started by taking out all the seams of the pillow shams and separating the front from the back until I had two even pieces with the same print.

 Next I began pinning the two side seams. I created french seams in which you sew wrong sides together first, trim the seam to 1/4inch, turn the fabric right sides together and stitch again encasing your first seam. You could also easily just sew right sides together as usual for an even faster project. To determine the side seams I went the lazy route and slipped it over my body and marked each side where I wanted it to be. I left enough room to comfortably fit over my hips and backside. I then sewed the two side seams. Press each side seam after sewing.

After stitching your two side seams you will create the casing at the top of the skirt for the elastic waist. To do this press your fabric 1/2 inch towards the wrong side of the fabric. Then fold and press it another 1 inch towards the wrong side.  

Stitch your casing next to the bottom edge, leaving a 1 inch opening for your elastic.

Take your elastic (I think I used 3/4 inch elastic) and measure it by wrapping it around your waist. Pull it until it slightly snug but not tight. You want the elastic to stay up on your waist but not be uncomfortably tight. Cut your elastic and thread it through your casing by attaching a safety pin to one side of the elastic.
 Once the elastic is threaded through, stitch the two ends together by overlapping them slightly and stitching. Then finish stitching the casing closed. Finally create a hem on the bottom edge of your skirt. Simply iron the skirt 1 inch towards the wrong side and then another 1 and 1/4 inch towards the wrong side, press well, and stitch next to the edge. Finally, give your skirt a good ironing and you are done!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Circle Skirt

A long time ago I stumbled across the blog MADE and fell in love with many of the cute ideas. Dana posts great tutorials and makes adorable kids clothing. I decided to whip a circle skirt up for my daughter and within 30 minutes it was done! I love those projects. I used Amy Butler's Passion Lily fabric, 2.5 inch wide elastic on top and bias tape on the bottom edge. I did make one for myself in a silky fabric without as much success...think I may try a half circle skirt instead to decrease the amount of bulk around the waist and hip areas...I will post if it ever turns out :)


Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Green Dress

I was so hoping to get in the sewing room last weekend, but it just didn't happen!  May is insane with the end of the school year and everything that needs to be done for Kindergarten Graduation.  We may go a little overboard at our school, but it sure is the cutest thing I've ever seen!

I, once again, was inspired by Pinterest to make a dress like this one.  I decided to make it an even easier project than the original post I saw.  I went to the thrift store (where I get all my best fabric) and found a tank top and a dress that would match.  I didn't care what the dress looked like as I was only using the fabric from it.  I simply cut the skirt away from the top of the dress and already had my lined skirt done.  Then, I figured out where to cut the tank and attached them with the sewing machine.  I wanted something to cover up the seam, so I braided a belt and called it good!

With Summer coming, who doesn't love a fast and easy project to add to your wardrobe?!


Sunday, May 6, 2012

Maxi Skirt

Well...if you have been reading the blog you know I have a small addiction to maxi skirts and dresses. There are so many great tutorials out there and so many ways to easily create your own unique style. If you missed the other tutorials see HERE and HERE and HERE...see what I mean about the addiction :) (And if you just went to those links you also just busted me on another addiction- my denim jacket)

A long time ago I stumbled across this adorable blog: Elle Apparel. She has so many cute ideas for clothing. I decided to give her Maxi Skirt Tutorial a try and I am glad I did. This skirt comes together quickly and is so comfortable. The only negative for me is the fit. Because my waist is much smaller than my hips, I didn't cut it wide enough to allow for my shape. The first one I made was way too is a picture of this skirt.

While I like it, the fabric is somewhat thin and not the most forgiving. Add that to being too tight and it just won't work for my sister who has basically the opposite body of mine- no hips, is now the owner of this skirt :) When I made the second one I cut it larger and used a heavier knit. I still feel like it is a little too snug and will never be worn without spanx :) although I never wear knit skirts or dresses without them anyway...In my opinion, no one should :) I may give this skirt another try and cut it even wider to see if it helps. Using my serger the whole thing came together in under an hour for cutting and I think this is a great project for people to try that like quick and easy projects.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Painted Curtains

Shannon had given me these sheer curtains from Ikea that she had had for a couple years and were still in the package.  I decided to figure out how to paint a pattern on them to fancy them up a bit.  I had done some research on the best way to do this, but after talking to my art teacher friend, I decided to just mix the craft paint I wanted to use with something called a Textile Medium.  I used the directions on the back of the Textile Medium to mix the paint.  It is found right with the craft paints and looks like this (at least the one I found does):

I had found a pattern of a flower online.  I printed it out and make a stencil out of it with stencil paper and an Xacto knife.  I laid out a whole bunch of my crafting towels and put the curtain on top of those.  

Then, I laid my stencil out and painted over it.

I randomly laid the stencil out - again, I love randomness, but this is easy to adapt to what you want.  You could choose great colors and patterns for your curtains.  Here is my finished project for my guest room:

Let me know if you try it!  I would love to see what you come up with too!