I am still crafting...

“Take some more tea," the March Hare said to Alice, very earnestly.
"I've had nothing yet," Alice replied in an offended tone, "so I can't take more."
"You mean you can't take less," said the Hatter: "it's very easy to take more than nothing."
"Nobody asked your opinion," said Alice.” 
― Lewis CarrollAlice in Wonderland

Crafting with a new baby (well, now a ONE YEAR OLD!) is possible. Yes, it means I fall behind in laundry, dishes, and other such exciting things. But I can do it. And I do. The only thing I'm missing is actually writing about it. Since my last post I have:
finished a quilt
sewed a new dress for baby
designed and put on a killer "Little Golden Book" party.
made napkins
ornaments for the tree

and little things in between. So not bad. And I might even get some pictures of it up.

My latest project was a set of invites for a tea to invite new members into the chapter of Delta Kappa Gamma, an international group for female educators. Of course, I had to make it way more complicated than it needed to be.... but I just LOVE how these turned out.

I used a tutorial I found through (of course) pinterest. The tutorial and template can be found here. I changed it a little because I wanted the look of the two colors of paper (one for the cup and one for the flap) but I didn't want to paint all my own white paper. So instead of cutting out two pieces of paper, I cut three. The front of the cup, the back, and the "top" or the flap.

The two rows of stitching on the top are how I attached the "top" flap to the back of the cup. Then I sewed the cup parts together and I had an envelope!
To make the tea tag I stamped paper and free handed the cut out. I cut the cup template down a bit and used it for the template for the card inside. Then I sewed the tea tag to the card.
I love it.

So the crafting continues.


Autumn and a School Days Jacket

Now's the time when children's noses
All become as red as roses
And the colour of their faces
Makes me think of orchard places
Where the juicy apples grow,
And tomatoes in a row.

-Autumn Song by Katherine Mansfield

Done! The Olive and S School Days Jacket. It's lovely. It's delightful. It's the perfect jacket. The whole time I was sewing I worried baby would be too big for it. I picked the 12-18 month sizing. Our little darling suddenly went up to 18 month clothes and we've even bought some 24 month.

But it seems to fit perfectly. I'm glad it's not any smaller. But I think it will get us through to spring.
Oliver and s proved again to be a wonderful pattern to follow. While challenging, it was not impossible. In fact, the whole thing moved a long smoothly. I had read some sewers had trouble with the hood, but I found that pretty straightforward. I love how it turned out.
The hardest part for me turned out to be the sleeves. I did a lot of learning while I battled it out with FOUR sleeves (darn that awesome lining).

The outside fabric is a corduroy from Mill End. The inside is the softest woolly material from Joann's. I love how the two go together.

All the details give the jacket a professional finish. The top-stitched seams, the hidden "unfinished" work. The pretty toggles on the front. Wonderful.

The lining is made a little big, so there is movement built into the jacket. I just love it.
A special thank you to my parents, who came over and watched the Oregon/USC game and the baby while I sewed. Once I started I couldn't be stopped. It felt great to have some solid hours to get the jacket done.
Even better, though, was the time today to hang out with the little baby who gets to wear this jacket. And she makes it look GOOD.


Goin' for it.

Long hair minimizes the need for barbers; socks can be done without; one leather jacket solves the coat problem for many years' suspenders or superfluous.
- Albert Einstein

Hopefully this endeavor will solve baby's coat problem for the winter. So help me, if it turns out not to fit her when I'm done... but then, that's always been my biggest fear with garment sewing. Working and working and then discovering it's not really what I wanted. So far sewing clothes for baby has proved rewarding. And it's all fit. 

But I digress...

So, I'm doing it. I'm staring on the Oliver+S School Days Jacket. Evidenced below:
Late night cutting session
The pattern is now only sold as a digital version, but I checked out a local fabric store called Bolt and they still had hard copies for sale. Thank goodness. Printing and taping pieces together would have probably stopped me from taking this on. 
As you can probably see in the picture, I used Swedish tracing paper. I love it. When my instructor at a sewing class offered by Modern Domestic introduced it to me, I was floored. Finally a way to preserve my pattern so I can use it for other sizes in the future. Plus, it's just easier to work with and to pin to fabric than the actual pattern pieces. It's amazing. 

This pattern intimidates me a bit. It's a big project and there are lots of pieces. See-- it's three scissors of difficulty! My hardest pattern yet.

But if (when) I do finish it will be oh so sweet for the winter months. I'm already regretting not making it one size up, so it fits longer. Hopefully this will get us to spring. I'm using a sweet flowered corduroy I got from the sale section and Mill End (the big one on McLoughlin Blvd.).

 I'm still deciding on what to use for the lining, I have a few options. 

Here's hoping in a week (or two or three) I have a finished product to show off. Fingers crossed. 


Perfect Little Dress

I did it. I sewed the perfect little dress. From the perfect fabric. With the perfect buttons. It's perfect. Once again I turned to an Oliver and S pattern and found it to be.... perfect. The pattern was the Family Reunion dress . The directions were easy to follow and the details in the dress make it look like a much more complicated pattern that it was. See the pleating?
And it was so simple!! I actually had the cut out a month ago, but had avoided starting it because I was just sure it would be too hard. Suddenly it hit me that my daughter would not fit it for much longer, so I had reached the point of no return. I gave up a weekend of housework (darn) for sewing.
I love the buttons down the back...

Look, even the birds like it!!I saved some time by sewing in iron safe plastic snaps, then just putting the buttons on for decor. It makes getting it on and off baby a snap.
I love how it looks classic and old fashioned, without being frumpy.
And she can move in it! Here she is showing off the back buttons,
ACK! Baby legs!! I never knew I would love little legs this much. Seriously, who knew?
I love this picture because it shows off the pleats and the detail:
The detail that doesn't show in any picture is the way an Oliver and S pattern finishes each seam so nicely and really hides most of the raw edges.
And, one more picture to take it home:
FLOWERS!! She wants to eat those dandelions, that's for sure.

I would say this dress totaled about 10 hours of work. I'm still new at sewing clothes, so I know this time could be shortened significantly. I plan on making the pattern again in the next size up, so hopefully I'll find it moves along a little faster. It was so nice to slow down for a weekend and make something so sweet and perfect for a little person who fits the same description.


The gift of time...

M is for the mudflaps you give me for my pickup truck
O is for the Oil I put on my hair
T is for T-bird
H is for Haggard
E is for eggs, and
R is for REDNECK.

"Up against the Wall, Redneck Mother"- Jerry Jeff Walker

For my very very FIRST Mother's Day, my husband and daughter showered me with love. Lot's of it. But, perhaps my favorite gift came in the form of TIME. Time to sew!! A little time in my sewing room. I have one thousands things I want to do... but today, being Mother's day, I focused on my little bit of joy who is the reason I even get to celebrate this day. And the result:

Four (one not pictured) new bibs for my baby. Soft soft flannel on one side and terry cloth on the other. She now has four bibs that do NOT tell you how cute she is (very), how much her mother loves her (a lot), or how special she is to Grandpa (super special). Just simple, pretty and sweet. 
I traced a favorite bib and adjusted a bit, since girly continues to grow. The front flannel I found on sale and Mill End. Love that store. I always feel like I've gone back in time when I walk in and I always find something unique and pretty. The back is just a terry cloth from Jo Ann Fabrics.
I copied the technique of a friend who gave us bibs for our baby shower. I sewed them good sides together and turned them. Then I sewed as close to the edge as I could all the way around. Taking an idea from No Big Dill, but instead of triple stitch, I went double. Gives the bib a little more oomph. 
My little model makes it look good. 

Happy Mother's Day to all!!



I am determined to finish this quilt SOON.

I finished the quilt top before Baby came to us. I have finally found time to finish the quilt back. Hopefully this will mean making a quilt sandwich and figuring out my quilting design soon. I can't wait to snuggle under it. (Obviously, kitty can't wait as well). The pattern is from Elizabeth Hartman's book: the Practical Guide to Patchwork


Month by Month

Finding time to craft since my daughter joined the word has not been easy. The couple of projects I have done are for her. I've started an outfit tradition- showing off how old she is. Right now I'm going month by month, but have we get to one year I plan on doing this year by year.
Here is month one. I cut out felt and hand sewed it on to a onsie we already had. It gave it a nice bold look.

Here is month two:

With Valentine's day coming up, I couldn't resist the theme. Again, this is felt. I embroidered on to it and then hand sewed it on to a onsie. Baby is laying on a bit more of my Valentine's day crafting. The mat is not quite finished, but I'll have some pictures of it in time for the day o' love. It's been great to create. It all comes at the expense of chores that don't get done. Sometimes, though, the chores are not important and creativity takes precedence. I'm doing a lot of hand sewing, so I can stay close to my little gal. All it all, it's a pretty nice gig.