Sunday, April 22, 2012

Burda 7828, Vogue 1224 and Simplicity 3503

Now that my part time job reading applications to graduate school is over for the season (yay!), I have a lot more time to sew (double yay!). I've been getting in some seriously drool-worthy fabrics for Bamblue lately, and could not wait to get them sewn up.

I started with Burda 7828. I love the idea this pattern: a mock wrap dress pattern that does not leave you vulnerable to sudden gusts of wind. I tried it first in this supremely soft supima cotton fabric and loved the look and fit so much that I made the top version in hemp right afterward.

Pattern: Burda 7828
Fabric: Floral Supima Cotton Knit from Bamblue Fabrics

Here's a close up so you can see the pretty fabric:

And here's the top version. I did lengthen this one by 1.5-2 inches, and I'm really glad I did.
Pattern: Burda 7828
Fabric: Asian Turquoise Print in Hemp from Bamblue Fabrics

I have a lot more of these planned: short sleeve tops and long sleeve dresses, sleeveless versions...this will definitely become one of my go to patterns.

I also wanted to give Vogue 1224 a try, as it made the Best Patterns of 2011 list on For this one, I used the floral burnout supima cotton. This stuff gets so incredibly soft after you wash it - it is  just as soft (dare I say it?) as bamboo jersey. I'm pretty sure this is what a cloud feels like! This being a burnout fabric, the pattern was perfect because there are all those gathers in the bodice and the bottom part is double layered. 

I'm not totally sure at age 40 I can pull this off as a dress; I just can't see myself picking up the kids from school wearing this. However, it makes a great beach/pool coverup, or I may wear it with leggings or denim underneath. I decided to leave the bottom unhemmed, as the fabric curls rather appealingly.

Pattern: Vogue 1224
Fabric: Floral Burnout Supima Cotton from Bamblue Fabrics

Finally, I really wanted to make some things to take on our Kauai trip which is coming up in a few weeks. I thought Simplicity 3503, the halter view, would be the perfect choice. I used this polyester print that I've had around for awhile, as I thought it looked suitably tropical.

Pattern: Simplicity 3503
Fabric: A poly knit from my stash

Well, that's it for now. I've got a ton more patterns lined up to sew for Kauai, although how much I actually get around to is up for debate.

Friday, April 20, 2012

An Easter Elodie and a Zakka Style Bag

We spent our Spring Break in Illinois, visiting my family. The trip was fantastic, but rather exhausting! Our kids are finally old enough to enjoy all the wonderful museums in Chicago, so we spent a couple days touring the Field Museum and the Museum of Science and Industry.

The trip also coincided with Easter, which happened to be my daughter's 7th birthday (April is a very busy month for us!). I have been dying to make an Elodie since the pattern was first released, but something about the dress intimidated me. I think it was the zipper - I couldn't quite figure out how a zipper would work in a peasant-style dress. But, armed with a Google translation of the German instructions, I set out to conquer this thing. It was nowhere near as difficult as I had imagined it would be - quite simple, actually. I'm positive I did not do the zipper the way the designer intended, but no matter - it works and it looks fine.

The Elodie is fantastic for twirling.
Pattern: Farbenmix Elodie
Fabric: Robert Kaufman

My mother had a birthday a few days before we arrived, and I didn't want to show up empty handed. I made her this little bag from the Zakka Style book, which I just adore. This was so much fun to make! I used a piece of vintage 60s fabric, on top of which I stitched on a twill tag, stamped with a flower (I used heat set ink). Inside the bag, I put some birthday cards that the kids had made for her.

In a previous blog post, I had mentioned that my nephew's wife had a baby boy recently, and I made a little outfit for him (which you can see here). The little guy has a big sister (who, incidentally, is the cutest thing in pigtails), so of course I had to make her something as well. I chose the Modkids Isabel pattern, which I've made a couple times before as it's a great, easy pattern. I'm having a little remorse about putting the dark green ribbon on the pocket - the color was not exactly right, but it has hedgehogs on it! I was torn, but decided the more hedgehogs the better.

Pattern: Modkids Isabel

Close up of hedgehogs and offending, non-color-coordinating ribbon:

As I said, our trip was a little manic, but wonderful all the same. Now I'm madly sewing for our next trip: Kauai! I finally get to use all the Hawaiian themed fabric I've been hording for years! Plus, it's a great opportunity to sew up some of the new fabrics I've been stocking lately. I've already sewn several dresses and a top; I just need to take some pictures. New blog post coming soon!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Paris je t'aime

To say I've been busy lately would be the understatement of the century. I have 3 kids, two jobs, and wonderful machines that sit around all day and tempt me with promises of a crafty good time. I don't get to indulge my creative needs nearly as often as I'd like, but I give in to temptation at every possibility. It helps when friends and relations have babies or need a birthday gift, as then I can indulge without feeling too guilty!

My lovely niece had a birthday not long ago. I gave her the link to Huups and told her to pick whatever she wanted. Thoughtfully, she chose the very embroidery set that I had been dying to try - Bonjour Paris. I love everything about this set, including the absolutely spectacular bag made by Anja in the design examples. I normally try very hard not to copy someone else's design elements so overtly, but her execution of this was so flawless I couldn't help myself. She takes all the credit for these! 

I made one for my niece and one for my daughter. I carry the stripe in Bamblue Fabrics. The twill tag is birdie-stamped with fabric ink that I heat-set with an iron.

Pattern: Lotti
Fabric: Red and Gray Cotton Knit from Bamblue Fabrics

My niece's birthday was also an excellent excuse to play with my Cricut machine and do some card-making. I made the "Love" card using the Groovy Times cartridge. My kids made the other three using the Wrap it Up cartridge. So much fun!

 For a long time, I had purple in my serger and given my ridiculous lack of free time, I didn't really have an opportunity to change colors so I strategically set up purple sewing projects. Two of these did not turn out very well so will not be pictured here, but I do like these. To make them, I took advantage of the new purple-y bamboo colors I have in stock at Bamblue Fabrics, which are divine. 

Pattern: Ottobre 1/12
Fabric: Deep purple, aubergine, lilac and almond bamboo jersey

This one is a Burda pattern that I previously made using my chevron crochet knit fabric - you can see that version here. I was originally going to make my new version in bamboo jersey, but I used up most of the jersey I had ready to go in my daughter's dress, so I decided to try it in bamboo french terry. I was concerned the terry might be too thick for this double layer top, but I love the end result. so soft and cozy! I wear this constantly on cool days.

Pattern: Burda 8/10
Fabric: Aubergine and Lilac bamboo french terry from Bamblue Fabrics

My sister has recently been blessed with not one but two new grandsons! Pouncing on the opportunity to do some much-missed-and-sentimentalized baby sewing, I whipped up a couple of NCBE's. Good heavens, I had forgotten how quickly and easily these come together. 

I loved the fabric combinations so much that I decided to make a few shirts my Skoober. I also used my Silhouette Cameo to cut out some heat transfer vinyl. I've had mixed results with this stuff in the past; the vinyl kept peeling off in the wash. I finally figured out this was because I had used fabric softener when washing the fabric after purchase, and it was affecting the adhesive. I re-washed my stripes without it, tried again, and boom! Problem solved.

Pattern: Farbenmix Quiara

 Image: Four cars
Pattern: Farbenmix Quiara

 A friend of mine needed a birthday gift for a mermaid loving girl, which meant that I finally had a wonderful excuse not only to sew, but to purchase this mermaid embroidery from I already have several mermaid embroidery designs, of course, but how could I possibly resist this one? Love it!

 Pattern: Farbenmix Henrika
Fabric: Turquoise bamboo jersey and red wavy dot supima cotton,
both from Bamblue Fabrics

And finally, we have some more fun-with-the-Cameo sewing. I love the variety of images one can find at the Silhouette Online Store - so many great options, even for older boys. I thought this rock star smashing a guitar over his head would be "cool" enough for my 3rd grader. Again, I used two colors of heat transfer vinyl for this.

Pattern: Ummm..not sure. Possibly Otto, possibly Farbenmix
Image: Rock Star
Fabric: Yarn dyed hemp from Bamblue Fabrics

OK, I think I'm all caught up now. Next on my sewing table is a Modkids dress for my grand-niece and a Farbenmix Elodie for my daughter's Easter dress. Which I sincerely hope I can finish before Easter!