Tag Archives: Spray paint
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Christmas Dress aka I Made Puffy Sleeves!

11 Nov

I’ve been sewing since home ec in middle school.  When I was 12 or so, I spent the weekend with my grandmother (an avid seamstress and quilter) sewing a dress for myself from a pattern.

In middle school and early high school, I would invite friends over to sew with me and we made nightgowns out of muslin.

When I moved into a house in college, I sewed myself a quilt, stripes on one side and a starry moonlit sky on the other.

After college I sewed trim to the bottom of jeans like it was going out of style, and in fact, it was going out of style.  THANK GOD!

I got my own machine for my 23rd birthday and promptly sewed myself 800 purses and jewelry pouches and the like.

Then life took over and I put the sewing machine away. I got married, I moved, I paid someone to make curtains, I had babies and I moved again. I bought curtains from Target and forgot about my sewing skills.

Pinterest came along and I got the crafting bug and I spray painted some stuff and thought about getting out my machine.  One day my mom said she’s buy my girls American Girl Dolls, and my girls became obsessed with the idea of matching clothes.  So I began scouring the internet for outfits that were nicer than the AGD ones and perhaps more affordable.  I found them  in the form of MakMay Designs, my trusty Christmas/Birthday/Halloween outfit designer.  She’s super talented and equally creative.

But then I wanted clothes for the girls and their dolls that was outside of what Becky creates and I stumbled upon a site that had tunic tops and dresses for girls and their dolls as well as Mom’s.  The catch was that it would cost $60 to dress the girls $20 for the dolls and $80 for me.  Way more money than I was willing to spend.  And then it dawned on me! I could make these tunics and dresses myself!

Thus begun my renewed interest in sewing. I went from an A-line dress, to PJ’s and then got bold and purchased the Precious Dress pattern from the Scientific Seamstress.  I even contacted her to see if she could hold my hand through the process because it seemed a little daunting.  And of course, not only did I want to make the dress, but I wanted to add my own little flair.  She kindly agreed but before I had the chance to visit her, I decided to try it on my own, button holes and puffy sleeves and all.

The pattern isn’t just a pattern, it’s also a full picture laden tutorial with detailed instructions! I started with the skirt, which is where I wanted to add the ruffled faux bustle. I cut out the pattern pieces and freehanded the bustle pieces. I constructed the whole skirt in one night and was super pleased with my efforts.  Last night I set to work on the scary part…..the top with the button holes and puffy sleeves.  I started by watching an automatic buttonholing video on Youtube, that happened to be on a machine similar to mine.  Then I followed each incredibly well written, easy to understand step and before I knew it, I had a gorgeous top. Attaching the skirt to the top was easy and the finished product is better than I had pictured in my head!  The only thing missing is a nice thick grosgrain ribbon sash!

I relate this whole long winded story because I am so glad that I found sewing again and am finding such joy in spending quiet time piecing my patterns together.  It is incredibly gratifying to know that I can do this and I am so happy to be able to give these dresses to my girls.

Without further ado…THE CHRISTMAS DRESS!

Details of the Christmas Dress

Puffy Sleeves and Buttons...yeah I did that!!

 

Christmas Dress

The front and back of the Christmas Dress with the ruffle accent

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Week in Review

4 Nov

Dining Room Mirror

I spray painted the IKEA mirror and hung it in the dining room.  It exceeded my expectations and looks awesome.  i’m on a tear now to complete the dining room makeover!

One coat of primer and one of the pink was all it took.

One coat of primer

Finished product, Hung!

Shoes from Ebay

I can thank Pinterest not only for my crafty indulgences but also for helping my shopping habit.  This week someone posted a picture of adorable bright orange ballet flats with an $11.50 price tag! I had to check them out and once I did I felt compelled to purchase them in pink and orange.  They arrived TODAY and are beyond precious! Cheaply made as the day is long, but who cares!

One of each color!

They’ll look super cute with my navy blue dress tomorrow when my husband and I go out to dinner!

Christmas Clothes Making

I looked and looked and finally found a pattern for the girls Christmas dresses, the Precious Dress Pattern from the Scientific Seamstress.  She also makes the tunic patterns that I’m eager to try and works with a fabric designer named Jennifer Paganelli, whose fabrics are right up my alley.  And the BEST part, she’s local! I reached out to her to see if she would help me through any rough spots and she was sooo super duper kind and nice about it and said YES!!!

I plan to adapt the dress a little for a surprise in the back (inspired of course, by a Pinterest post).

So the next part of the dresses, was to find the fabric. I searched for HOURS on the interwebs and came up with lots of possibilities but not winners.  And then I found Tanya Whalen and fell in love!   I found one vendor who had enough of the fabrics that I wanted and ordered them earlier this week.  They too arrived today! Take a peek! I can’t wait to get to work on them.

I plan to use the red as the main fabric and the other two as accent fabric.

Since I got the dresses squared away I set to work finding just the right flannel to construct Christmas PJ’s for the girls, and since I was going to make them, I figured I’d make some for me and for Colin as well.  When I asked him last night if He’d wear them Christmas morning, he was super excited about it!  (Normally he gets all dressed before he comes downstairs so this is nice of him).  It’s tough to find a gender neutral fabric that is festive and fun that we’ll all like, but I settled on this Grinch fabric and Colin approved it.  Finding enough yardage was a challenge, but the Cotton Blossom Farm on Etsy came through for me!

I’m looking forward to starting these projects and am curious to see how I fair.  With each I will have to learn to make buttonholes and I’d like to work on my finishing skills, a la a zig zag stitch and more pressing of the seams.  I really like sewing and the fact that it makes me slow down and think about each step.  It’s good for my lack of attention to detail.  Makes me pay attention to the details a little more.

Anyway that’s the sum of the week here at the White House.  Hope you have a great weekend!

Shopaholic

27 Oct

The birthdays have passed, Halloween costumes are complete, my work is at a manageable level and my sewing machine is in the shop.  This is NOT GOOD for my wallet.

I have a shopping problem.  I can curtail it most of the time, it’s best if I’m busy too.  But right now there’s nothing standing between me and my shopping binges.  It’s focused on home elements right now due to my recent fascination with sewing.  And thanks to Pinterest my creative juices are working on overtime.  I’m desperate to create things and make my home new.

Yesterday’s shopping involved a trip to IKEA where I procured this rack to hang on our metal kitchen shelves.

As well as some hooks from which to hang things off of the shelves.  I’m using the shelf to hold our bread and the hooks are holding up pans, lids, and bananas.

I also found this mirror.

Which I will be painting bright pink and hanging in my dining room.  There are future plans to reupholster the chairs myself and make some wide pink and white striped curtains in an effort to make my dining room a more casual environment.  I’m taking my color palette from my love of pink and from our monogrammed china.

I also found some great frames for my children’s silhouettes.

I’m still debating whether or not to turn those black.  What do you think?

The day before, I shopped at Target and got some bright pink and grass green 8 x 10 picture frames, which I will use to frame our fabulous family photos from the beach this summer.  9 pictures in a square pattern, alternating the pink and green frames, also for the dining room.

I’m stalling the urge to shop now, by writing this blog post, because in reality, there is nothing I need, but if I leave my house now, I will go to a store and I will almost certainly, find something to buy.  For no reason.

Also, I could be cleaning my house, doing laundry, or any number of productive things to prevent the shopping, but I’m not b/c I hate all of those things with a passion.