Thursday, January 10, 2013

Family Portrait Dress

We have BIG, extended family portraits coming up later this month and our color scheme is grey, yellow and navy. I've been hunting for things for our family to wear. When I saw this blouse hanging in my closet,

I knew it was perfect to upcycle into something for one of the girls.

And since Project Run and Play has started up again, I decided to sew along. This week's challenge was to remix the Party Dress pattern by Cottage Home.

I decided to move the turn the bodice around so that the closure was in front and the pretty pin tucks and lace insets could be featured. I added sleeves, narrowed the sash and skipped the hem band. Instead of lining the bodice, I underlined it with my contrasting fabric and used a self-fabric binding to finish the neck edge.

For the skirt, I only gathered it at the side fronts and back; I wanted to keep the lace insets lining up with those on the bodice. 

I really love how this turned out. I need to tighten the elastic in the sleeve hems, and I MIGHT gather the sleeves a little where the upper and lower sleeve piece meet... can't decide on that one. Otherwise I think it turned out pretty perfect.

Oh... and thank heavens for a camera that has continuous shooting mode! It is H.A.R.D to get pictures of a one-year-old!

I'm linking up to the Sew-Along for Project Run & Play, Season 6 week 1!

Monday, January 7, 2013

The Mountains are Calling

To call my Dad a mountain enthusiast would be a pretty massive understatement. The man lives and breathes mountains. I think they are his first love, though I'm confident that his love for my mother trumps love of mountains. Barely. ;)

For Christmas this year, I tapped into my dad's love of mountains for his gift. I found my inspiration via Pinterest. And when I decided it buy myself a Silhouette late this fall, I knew that making my own version could be a pretty perfect gift.

It was a pretty quick craft: bribe the husband to cut a bit of leftover 1/4" plywood down to size. Paint it blue with leftover sample paint. Distress with sandpaper and dry-brushed white paint. Paint some more, distress some more until happy. They cut  the typography from white vinyl. It was my first project with my Silhouette and I did learn some things.

1) Never leave anything crafty or interesting with a 5 year old. She's bound to destroy it somehow.
2) Turn on the grid in the Silhouette software and make sure you make you project the right size.
3) Fiddly little serifs in small type are a big of a pain. Go with with bolder, less fiddly fonts.

All in all, I like how it turned out, and my Dad loves it, which is what really counts.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

One might think...

One might think that my lack of posting in the last 9 months indicates a lack of doing... completely not the case. Here's a quick sampling of what I've been up to since Easter (or at least a quick sampling of the things I didn't forget to take pictures of!). Oh... and forgive the terrible pictures. Most of these were taken before my pretty pretty new camera was part of my life. ;)

Kid's Three Season PJs

Two three piece sets for the boy, 1 3 piece set and 2 nightgowns for the girl. Somehow I didn't get pictures of all the them, though...


Using Jessica's free pattern over at Craftiness Is Not Optional, I made a pile of Baprons for baby girl. Love how they turned out. I mostly used scraps and made my own bias binding for them. Almost the best bibs ever... I still prefer the one with sleeves that my mom made for Allison years ago. Brian dubbed that one "Baby ARMor". I haven't braved making one of those yet. Maybe if a #4 is in our future.

 Boy Bedroom Decor

Carter's room officially became the room closest to "finished." I painted the canvases myself, using a few things I'd pinned as inspiration. And crate bookcase was an idea from Crazy Little Projects that I found via Pinterest. I love how it turned out. His room probably still needs one more big art piece (I'm holding out for him to agree to a LaVell Edwards Stadium Poster... Go Cougars!) a bedside table, a desk eventually, and I'd love a new dresser.  But, for now, definantly close enough to be called done "for now."

Halloween Costumes

I took the easy way out with the baby (Monster costume that we've had since #1), but the big kids requested "Rescue Hero Billy Blazes" and "Unicorn" as their costumes. Billy Blazes was pretty easy, since I had an action figure to copy, but I had to get creative on the unicorn. Sorry for the lack of detail pictures... it was too close of a finish. :)

Oh, and a fun Halloween treat too. I sent these witch fingers to Allison's class for her Halloween party. They were pretty fun to make.

Thanksgiving Centerpiece

We hosted Thanksgiving this year and I was determined to show to have a pretty floral centerpiece in on the the pumpkins we had leftover from Halloween. Take that, hard-to-schedule Floral Design Lab class! I never was able to make Floral Design if into my schedule during my BYU days, but I think I didn't do half bad for no real floral arranging knowledge. Oh... and I made the table runner too. :)

Does It All Diaper Bag

I tested this pattern for the Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop late this fall. I don't believe she has it available yet, but its a pretty great pattern. I've really loved how functional it is as I've been using it the last 6 or so weeks. Very roomy, lots of pockets.

Mermaid and First Birthday Cake

Allison wanted a mermaid cake this year. I had to get a little creative, since I don't have the doll pan, but I think this turned out pretty well. Its a 9 inch round base with the "rock" baked in a small pyrex bowl. Barbie had her legs saran wrapped together and was very unceremoniously shoved into a small hole I cut in the cake. The hole helps keep the cake from splitting. I didn't QUITE get my hole big enough... we had a bit of splitting, but nothing some more frosting couldn't fix.  Her tail was piped on using a star tip. The sea shells are colored almond bark in the Wilton candy mold. I don't love them, but Allison insisted. Over all I do like how it turned out.

We kept it simple for baby's first birthday. I really wanted to do this cute carved owl cake that I have linked on my Pinterest Board, but there was SO much baking and such going on her birthday week that it just didn't happen. But, she's only 1, so she doesn't know what she's missing, right? Abby Cadabby, pink and stars seemed just right for baby girl's birthday, anyway. :)

Tool Belt

Carter, my Mr.-Fix-It, tool-loving kiddo needed a tool belt and it seemed like the perfect stocking stuffer. I whipped this guy out in half-an-hour on December 23rd from a few remnants I had lying around the house. Carter loves it. It possible that he's spent plenty of time running around the house wearing pantless, but with his tool belt and yellow construction hat on. ;)

Doll Bedding

Allison got a doll bed (hand-built by my husband using Ana White's plans)and full bedding set for Christmas this year and I spent WAY too much time working on the bedding... it was so cute and fun! The quilt is all 1.5 inch squares. I made my own binding from leftover fabric. The pillows come out of their cases. Two of the cases have left over 1.5 inch quilt blocks, the other two have strips of rainbow ribbon that matches the ribbon on the sheet (Yes... I made a top sheet for a doll!) and the quilt backing. The last pillow is 4 leftover quilt blocks with a heart appliqued onto it. I L.O.V.E how this project turned out. Allison was thrilled Christmas morning.

What you DON'T see here are the tulle Halloween wreath, the Christmas gifts that I had to ship off, the craft fail I had while trying to make my mom a Christmas gift, the Crayon Wreath I made for Allison's teacher (I KNOW I took pictures of that one... I just can't, for the life of me, find them on my computer!)...

Probably the biggest project that been taken on in the last 9 months was the finishing of a basement sewing/craft room for me Brian did all the hard stuff and I've been trying to get it finished, furnished and organized for 4 months. I still don't have pictures of it... becuase its still not quite picture worthy. Its painted... its got a big ol desk... there are finally shelves. I've got some art planned. Just a few more finishing touches before its share-worthy.

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Easter Attire

I figured this year was my one ONLY chance to go full matchy-matchy Easter attire, so I ran with it. It took some work to convince Carter that wearing a pink and white tie was cool enough for him (Look! Zig-zags! Just like an Easter egg!), but I had him convinced by Saturday night. :) I also realized on Sunday morning that the perfect picture of all three kids will probably never happen. Of the ones I took, I got closed eyes, crazy eyes, hair in eyes, and baby eating the dress. And in this one, three of four.

For Allison's dress I used Simplicity 2460 with an added collar and contrast hem band (don't be fooled by the drawings! There is no contrast hem band piece!). Lindsey's is from McCalls 4351 (which is out-of-print... I bought it when Allison was a baby and had never used it!). The collar and midriff sash are added. I liked both patterns, but had to make changes to both of them to make them work with the fabric I used. The pink satin taffeta was in my stash from when a JoAnn's location liquidated nearby (just $10 for a 4 yard bolt!) and I was determined to use it. I love how they turned out with the pink and white... I was concerned that they pink would be too much "wow, pepto bismo puke!" but I like how the white contrast toned it down. Still very pink, but not so pukey. For Carter's tie I used my favorite online tutorial and pattern and appliqued white chevron's onto the pink. Its pretty thrown together, but I figured it will only get worn once... maybe twice if I can get him to put it on for portraits. But it held up surprisingly well in the wash, so I was pleased. :)

I hope you all had a wonderful Easter and were able to take time to remember the amazing gift of our Savior, His saving, atoning grace and the miracle of the resurrection that we can all look forward to.

Friday, March 16, 2012

Matching Skirts & Ties

Several months ago one of my friends gifted me 5 yards of fabric that she knew I wanted. I'd bought 2, then just happened to to run into her at the fabric store a few days later where she was buying the rest of it.

I did my project with it and realized that I wanted more... but there was no more. I started hunting some down on Ebay. She found out I was hunting and gave me the yardage she'd bought as a baby shower gift. I, in turn, told her that my first project would be 5 matching skirts for the 5 girls we have between the two of us. I went one better and made ties to match for my 3 year old and her baby due this summer... here's how they turned out.

I used the Emery Skirt pattern (acutally, I'd call it a tutorial... its not a pattern that you cut and use, its instructions for how to draw the pattern, then contruct it) that I purchased from SadieJames on Esty. I love the look of the skirt, but I didn't think that the construction was very well thought out. The pattern instructions leave an exposed seam at the waistband top... no facing or applied casing to give it a finished look, so after the first skirt I tossed the instructions and went with my good-construction gut. They're not perfect, particularly where I had to stitch in the ditch, but they turned out okay.

For the ties, I used this pattern and tutorial over at Very Homemade. Quick and easy. I'll be making a lot more ties like this for my son. He doesn't like clip-ons at all, so the velco-on tie is the way to go for us.

Monday, March 5, 2012

A New Bow Board

Two little girls and so many bows! Princess A's old bow holder wasn't nearly big enough, so we needed something new. I was going to do something like this...

Inspiration via Pinterest

But inspiration struck me while looking at the sale items during a trip to Pottery Barn Kids (where we only go for story time and to let the kids play... and apparently to get inspired). Here's what I ended up with:

Total cost: under $10

It was $5 for the plywood base (the guy at Lowe's marked a $15 2'x4' sheet of oak plywood down for me cause it had a lousy corner), $2.79 for a spool of grosgrain and a little more for hardware to hang it. The fabric and batting I had on-hand from other projects.

I had my sweet husband cut the oak down to 18 x 24 for me (the table saw tends to terrify me!)... aren't hubby's great? Once it was cut down I glued batting to it, then used a staple gun to attach the fabric and ribbons. All the bows and clips just slide right onto the ribbons. Also, once my girls outgrow the bow phase, this style board could be re-purposed as a bulletin board.

Now, if I can only stop making bows this board might be big enough. :)

Friday, December 30, 2011

Stationery card

Starry Welcome Birth Announcement
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