Thursday, June 27, 2013

Another Scoop Top, Another Anthro Inspiration...

When I made my first Scoop Top from the great Skirt as Top free pattern, I already had a plan that if that one worked out, I had another version I would try.

This shirt was based on this mixed-fabric top I saw on the Anthropologie website.

Anthropologie Pattern Drop Tee

Mine, of course, has mixed prints, since I can't help myself.  But I went with neutrals, since the shirt was a birthday present for a friend of mine and I didn't want to go TOO crazy.

Here's the front:

And just for fun (no, actually, it's because I was combining an upcycled sundress with a mere 1/2 yard of knit from Girl Charlee so I had to get creative with my cuts), the back switches the prints so the stripes are up top and the floral is at the bottom.  I really like the curved line joining the two fabrics in the back.

The floral part of the shirt came from an old dress of mine that had a wide ruffled hem (the paisley-ish part of the back of the shirt). I left the ruffle on for added interest--I thought it looked cool to bring in the variation on the print, but also I liked the dropped hem.  Also, um, I wouldn't have had enough fabric otherwise.  But I wouldn't have done it that way if I didn't think it looked good!  My husband thought it was kind of weird, but what does he know?

It didn't come out perfect on the first try--I had some issues with getting the ruffle to lay right.

Before prehensile-tail removal
I know that just what every girl wants is a ruffle extending out from her natural butt to make it look wider, but I thought I'd better take it in just to be safe.

It is so dang hard to get a photo session done period, there was no way I was doing another one once I fixed the tail issue--so my mom cropped out the tail for me in that initial photo.  That really is what it looks like now.  But these back and side photos were also taken pre-tail-removal, so the shirt lays better now than how it looks in these photos.  It's a little tricky working with a ruffled portion in the back--I had to do some angled tucks to get it to lay right, but I think it's worth it for the added detail.  And I curved the edges up to meet the front portion of the shirt (the same basic shape as the Scoop Top pattern), so I did have to hem the bottom edge of the shirt even though it was an upcycle.

Side view--shows how the prints line up
Yes, I cropped out my grown-out roots.  It's my blog, I can do what I want.
Good view of the pre-taken in extra-wide butt ruffle.
I really really love the end result on this one. So, Jess, if it turns out you just don't like this shirt enough to wear it, let me know--I'll take it back and make you something else!

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Cutting up a Purple Jersey Sheet!

I've been having fun playing with the yardage that you get when you cut up a sheet set.  So far I haven't even touched the fitted sheet or the pillowcase, and I've got lots of the flat sheet left of this lovely purple jersey from a twin sheet set.  It was free, so I feel like I can try things and not be too worried about the results because there's only the investment of time, not actual money.

I'm super happy with my first experiment, and Little Sister wants to wear it over all of her tank top dresses, so I consider it a win.  I made a flyaway cardigan with a single button closure using this great tutorial from Caila Made:

But I took the raw edge a step further.  I didn't make a binding strip to go around the neckline, front, and hem; instead, I folded the edges of my front panels and hem over to the outside of the garment, then used a decorative stitch to sew them flat.  SO easy and fast to finish it this way!

You could totally use this method on short sleeves, a shirt hem, whatever, as long as you're using t-shirt fabric that doesn't fray.  I think the detail looks best when you stay right by the raw edge of the fabric.

I used a decorative stitch, but it would be cute with a simple zig-zag too, like in the Caila-Made tutorial.

When I did the corner at the neckline, I just tucked a loop of elastic under and made sure to sew it securely. I sewed the button on the other side afterwards.  And at the corners of the bottom hem, I tried to fold my fabric into a neat mitred corner.

It's the perfect lightweight topper, and I might make one for myself too!

Happy about her cardi

Giving me a very "Church Lady" vibe

Here it is just on it's hanger, in case you like that sort of thing.

And since I had so much of the fabric, I made myself another cap-sleeve tee as well.  I was a little sloppy with the construction on this one and I'm not as happy with the results.  I thought I might like it a little looser, so the waistline was more pronounced, but I think it just looks sloppy.

I've been wearing it with a belt, which helps:

And here's how the back looks:

How about that lovely backdrop, huh?  The hubby's been tearing up the backyard and there is literally NOWHERE I can stand back there that doesn't have a huge pile of dirt or dead plants in the image. So hello there, potted tomato plant, let's be friends.

And in other news, this summer is the first in my stay-at-home mom career where both kids are at home full-time (other than a few camps here and there--and even those are only a couple of hours a day).  The last two summers The Boy had preschool 3 mornings a week, so it was just me and Little Sister, and running errands and whatnot is definitely easier with one kid than two.  My kids are pretty good about playing together these days, but if I pull out the computer to try to blog, or do some work on my MIL's website or photos, or whatever, it's like an alarm goes off that WE NEED MOM'S IMMEDIATE ATTENTION!  So while I'm looking forward to this summer for spending some relaxed fun time together, I have a feeling the blog is going to be on the back burner for a while.  My precious alone time will be spent working on the website where I actually get paid, and hopefully with MAKING stuff, and maybe at some point I'll get a chunk of time to blog a whole bunch of projects at once.  But, fall is not too far away, so don't give up on me if you don't hear from me for a while around here!

Monday, June 10, 2013

Appliqued Raglan Tee

So, you've probably noticed that I don't make as much stuff for The Boy as I do for Little Sister, and one of the reasons for that is that he has drawers full of clothes that fit him, and he just grabs whatever is on top.  It just doesn't make that much of a difference to him, it would seem.  One t-shirt does the job as well as any other.  And he's been living in too-big freebie or gifted tees for so long that most of them still fit just fine, even if he's had them for a year or two.  Little Sister won't wear t-shirts and pants or jeans, and it's so expensive to buy the kind of dresses that I like, and she's really opinionated about what she wears, so it's cost-effective for me to make stuff for her.  And I won't lie, it's definitely more fun (and easier, most of the time) to make dresses than to make standard-issue boy clothes.

BUT.  When The Boy gets a new shirt from me and chooses it from the drawer repeatedly because "it has a mother's love"...well, maybe it's time to send some of those library summer reading program shirts to the Goodwill (or the upcycling pile) and start making room for some more handmade goodies.

I made my pattern from a shirt The Boy already owns, and followed Craftiness is not Optional's Raglan Tee Tutorial.  I had made a few of these before and loved the tutorial and results.

The Boy decided I should spice up the shirt by adding some animals from the scraps of fabric I had leftover from his pj's.  The kid's got a good eye!  The patch on the sleeve was my idea though.  I just cut the images I wanted out of the scrap knit fabric and sewed them on using a ball-point needle--pretty simple version of applique.

He has also started having fun with his "modeling" sessions.  He's getting used to the idea that if he wants me to make him clothes, he's going to have to let me take pictures of him wearing them!  The green and blue striped fabric came from Girl Charlee, and the gray sleeves and ribbed neckline were cut from an old t-shirt of the hubby's.  I only had a half-yard cut of the stripes, which was plenty for this size 5/6 tee since I was doing contrasting sleeves.  I also opted to do a rolled hem, since this fabric rolled really easily.

He's looking so old.  I might cry.

And henceforth, all of our photo sessions will include an airborne portion.
 We were photobombed by "Princess Jasmine"--Little Sister in the "jingly dress" brought back from a trip to Puerto Rico by Grandma and Papa.

 She doesn't love sharing the spotlight.

Get outta here!
Here's the post about the last time I made these shirts.  Neither of them fit anymore (sniff).

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

Anthro Inspired Stripe/Floral Tee

I had a knit striped fabric in my stash that I've been itching to sew with, and when I saw the Pattern Pop Tee from Anthropologie I thought I could make a version of it that would work for me.

Obviously, I veered from the inspiration.
The Scoop Top (free printable pattern from Skirt as Top) was perfect for this!  It has a pocket, and it even dips down in the back!  It's a great pattern, the tutorial is easy to follow, and I've already got a plan for another Anthro-inspired knits-meets-woven that should be perfect with it.  The top went together really quickly.

I had ordered the striped knit (a cotton jersey blend) from Girl Charlee without knowing what I was going to do with it, and when I was dually inspired by the Anthro shirt and the Scoop Top pattern, I went digging in my upcycling pile to see what I had that coordinated with the stripes.  And lo and behold.  This gem.

Anybody else out there wear one of these babies?
I used to LOVE this dress in high school. Sometimes I wore it with pigtails and mary janes.  Other times I went with leggings and my Authentic Doc Martens Purchased at the Actual Dr. Martens Store in London, England.  You know, when I was feeling badass.  Or cold.   I found it at my parents' house, shoved into a corner of my old closet, and knew that I would be able to use it for something--other than, say, wearing it as-is, since my style has morphed somewhat since then.

Proof.  And yes, I did make that hemp necklace I'm wearing.
Photo shamelessly stolen from a high school friend on facebook.
Not only did the colors work, and the drapey-fabric-with-built-in-wrinkles was a nice weight to tie together with the knit, but I also really like the way the tiers from the original dress give the back of the top some shape.

Maybe easier to see what I'm talking about here?

I also like the striped binding contrasting the floral in the back.
Also, I'm not much of a florals girl anymore, so having the stripes up front where I'm looking at it all day but knowing those purty flowers are hiding in the back makes it more wearable for me.

Here's how it looks on me
 I did end up taking the sides of the top in a teensy bit, but that might have just been due to working with the curve of the tiers in the back.  I was a little worried that I would need to cut out the back larger than the pattern since it was a woven instead of a knit, but I needn't have worried.

Back panel peeking out
 And my knit was fairly thin but not a tissue knit, so I was able to use a regular old zig-zag to attach the neckline and a double needle for the hemming, without any stay-tape or stabilizers.

I also have to say, I love the pocket for drawing attention to the mixed fabrics.  I don't usually love pocket tees, but in this case it's totally worth it!  And ALSO also, when I cut out the pattern, I thought this shirt was going to be waaay long, but it's totally not.  It's just perfect.  Go Scoop Top!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Yet Another Nightgown

Since making my first nightgown a few weeks ago, Little Sister has refused to wear any of her old pj's to bed.  Pair that with The Boy having grown out of all of his warm-weather pj's, I've been making nothing but sleepwear lately!  This nightgown was based on this photo and tutorial that I saw on Pinterest:

Photo and Tutorial from Everyday Chaos

Pretty simple to make, but it is intended for a bigger kid than Little Sister, so I could have cut down on the width a bit.  I also monkeyed with the casing at the top and mine came out pretty bulky, so I'd recommend just following the tutorial.

I used a piece of foldover elastic to make the straps, and I just sewed the ends together so I didn't have to worry about tying/untying a bow.  I do like that adaptation.  I don't know how long it ended up being--I just threaded it through the front and back casing and sewed it together, then slid it around until the sewn part was well hidden inside the casing.

The pinkish fabric is a knit with a slight burnout pattern, so it is a little sheer.  That's why I left the width alone--I figured that if it was gathered up more, the sheerness would be less obvious.

The pink brocade print + black ruffle does lend a little air of Brothel Lampshade, but it's still pretty cute on her.  And it's twirly.

Perfect for dramatic bedtime scenes.

This style could pretty easily be used as a dress as well--I think in this case the knit fabric (especially because it's a little see-through) keeps it well in the nightgown family, but I could see doing a daytime version of this as well.