Thursday, December 30, 2010

And back to bonnet sewing

So many adorable new fabric combinations!!


I love these retro, red cupcakes!!

So super sweet!

 Now listed in my shop.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Vogue V8511 take 2.

I failed in my first attempt of sewing this frock, but was determined not to let this pattern get the better of me. I don't know why I chose to be particularly stubborn with this frock, as I didn't even pay for the pattern, but I did.

So here is take 2, and it is quite cute if I do say so myself!
I'm not sure if I'll ever wear this frock though. The fabric was purchased because it was cheap and the dots were cool, but it is microfiber and it feels artificial against my skin, it clings and it billows quite a bit in the skirt.
But twas the journey, not the destination with this dress and I'm hoping to sew this pattern again in a much nicer fabric, possibly also with dots.
No alterations were made to the pattern except for upgrading the sizing at the waist and taking up the hem a bit. Unfortunately, I forgot to grade up the front skirt panel, so when I tried to attach the skirt to the bodice it didn't fit. To fix this I just re-sewed the centre front pleat, rather than re-sew all of the pleats. This means the skirt pleats are not uneven, which really, really bugs me. Most people probably wouldn't notice though.

The pattern review is here.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

Christmas wrap up.

Christmas went well in the little betty house. Very hectic and very tiring, but it's over again for another year - phew!
Notice all the decorations missing from the bottom of the tree?? Someone slowly destroyed them all.

Adele was very lucky to receive a little betty bonnet this Christmas. As you may have guessed it was made with my new, super favourite, fabric combination - Wonderland by MoMo and Kate Spain's Fandango.

The husband helped her open this gift and placed it on her head saying, "This is the right way right?"
Ummm no. But I know he was messing with me.

Here's James in his new little cap by little betty.
And Ollie in his. This smile is way too big!
I hope you all had a very indulgent and enjoyable Christmas.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Merry Christmas all!

I hope you all have a lovely Christmas.
This is my contribution to Christmas day. It's a little wonky and I'm quite concerned about the roof holding, but it'll do.

Drive safely and I'll be back in a few days.

Thursday, December 23, 2010

Buttoned up

New hair clip for me. The button was found on the ground while out and about. I think it's a little crazy, but very appropriate given my obsession and it matches my new two new frocks.
Hopefully I'll get my Christmas sewing finished today. I still have one hat and four skirts to sew.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Definitely a new product

These little caps are so cool!
This version is a little less wild than yesterdays. It is made with stone coloured linen/cotton blend and lovely, Denyse Schmidt Hope Valley.
I made this one especially for a lovely little friend of ours. He should receive it tomorrow. Hopefully it's not too big!!

I'll probably also list it in my shop. Well, when I get a moment I will...

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

New things

I think I feel a new product might be coming in the new year.
I'm still tweaking the pattern, but it's getting there.

Can't leave out the boys right?

I have far too much Christmas sewing to do this week. It's kinda making me regret all my selfish sewing these past two weeks.

I'm also still waiting for fabric from Hawthorne Threads. I'm starting to worry!

Monday, December 20, 2010

Crochet update

50 medalians crocheted with ends in and trimmed.

50 more inner medalians crocheted.

I'm aiming to finish this 100 then begin crocheting together with white yarn to gauge the finished size of 100 squares. I think I'm going to aim to make 300 in total. This means it won't be a queen bed blanket, but a large couch blanket.

Just to recap, this is the project and details ravelled here.

50 medalions in three weeks means there's potential to finish this project within 12 months... we'll see though. I'm likely to lose interest soon.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

More selfish sewing

While waiting for deliveries from Hawthorne Threads, I managed to squeeze in a little more selfish sewing and made myself a new denim skirt.
My old denim skirt is wearing so thin that it is becoming a little indecent. This skirt was made with a lovely light weight denim from Spotlight. I originally purchased it to trial a few bonnets, but realised when I got home that it was a stretch denim and therefore had a high poly content - not ideal for kiddie hats!
The pattern is New Look 6898, which has cool side pockets and pleats at the front,  but it isn't that great a pattern. The sizing runs really large, which meant I had to take at least 2 inches out of the overall skirt, even though I cut a size smaller than I normally would. This meant that the back darts are too close to the centre back zipper, but I'm still happy with it and have already worn it.
I also didn't have a zipper long enough, so used a vintage zipper from the Op Shop from my stash and placed it just below the waist band. I then created a simple tab and button for the waistband. It's a simple detail and I kinda like it. Clearly Ollie wouldn't let me take proper photos without him!
The pattern review is available here.

Friday, December 17, 2010

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Not quite New Look 6774

So not having any bonnets to sew yesterday was actually an awesome thing. While I didn't make any money, I did indulge all day in selfish sewing.  That is, sewing for me on what I wanted, not what I needed to do or what other people wanted or needed. And I made myself this.
I just love this dress. It's based on New Look 6774, but please don't rush out and buy this pattern to make a dress like this. I had to quite significantly alter the bodice of this pattern to get it like this, but I'm really glad I did.
I used Anna Maria Horner voile from her Innocent Crush line and fully lined the dress in voile from Lincraft.

I adore this fabric. As soon as I received it I was just itching to make something. But my plans changed a few times. I'm so glad that I ended up making this truly cool and wearable dress though. I even wore it to our street Christmas party last night and got a bunch of compliments from people that don't know that I sew or that it was handmade - yay!!
The back fully conceals bra straps, so no need to worry about uncomfortable strapless bras.
I also trimmed the skirt lining with lace again - I think I'm quite hooked on this detail which I originally saw on the Sewaholic blog.
Some of the significant pattern alterations happened after I made up the two bodice pieces as drafted in the pattern. I realised that they were way too generous in the bust area. The gathers looked empty and the whole pattern piece swamped me.

So the changes I made to the pattern include:
  • narrowing the shoulder straps
  • reshaping the cross over bodice by removing about an inch from the inner side of each piece
  • removing about half and inch from the underarm/shoulder strap
  • removing an inch from the bottom of the bodice
  • repositioning the cross over, so that each inner cross over line angled down further reducing gaping at the 'v'
  • omitting the bust gathers, in favour of a couple of unstitched darts under each side
  • inserting an invisible zipper
There were a lot of changes to the bodice of this dress to get it to work. I tested the original pattern by pinning it to me and then pinning where changes needed to be made. It's times like these that I wish I had a dress makers dummy, but it worked, so why complain.

The good news is that I still have about a meter of this fabric remaining, so I think I may still make another dress with it. Possibly a simple and easy pull-over dress with a sash - after all it's my specialty!

Pattern review is now here.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Good friends = awesome new bonnet!

Can you believe I've run out of bonnet fabric? Don't get me wrong, I have bucket loads of fabric in my stash, but there are particular styles and types that people want. $2 Spotlight voile's do not belong on bonnets!

Then this very generous friend offered to let me 'shop' in her stash and look what I found!!!

Yes - it is Wonderland by MoMo fabric!!

Every time I make a new style of bonnet I claim it to be my new favourite. Well this one definitely is and I've made one especially for Adele.
 I've matched it with another new favourite fabric by Kate Spain from her Fandango line.

There are only a few bonnets available in this precious fabric combination, so if it takes you fancy please let me know soon.
This is Adele's new cool trick. She busts this move quite a bit at the moment and it's hilarious - head down, foot up and freeze!
Now - back to stalking the postman, waiting for deliveries Hawthorne threads.

Monday, December 13, 2010

Hoot Hoot!

With a portion of going towards keeping me in supplies for the whole selling biz and a portion kept for family needs, naturally a little needs to be used for my own interest. So here's a little collection of fabric that is all mine. It's from MoMo's new range 'It's a Hoot' and I love it!
It's so sweet. I can't wait till I can turn it into a quilt, which will probably be for my bed or the spare bed. I purchased this lot from Quilthome during a 20% off sale recently. Unfortunately I'm so busy at the mo, that I can't see myself beginning this project until close to Autumn. But quilting is more fun in cooler months. In the meantime it's folded neatly and displayed on my sewing table. Every now and then I bring it down and admire it's loveliness!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

On the go baby!

Frans wonderful tutorial for "On the go art satchels" is getting a massive workout in the little betty house at the moment.

If you have kids and own a sewing machine, you'd have to be nuts not to make one of these. Both of my boys have one kept under the pram and used every time we go out to dinner.

Modifications that I now make to this pattern include:
 - Using strapping for the handles - I picked this up for 50c per meter from a discount fabric shop
 - Home decorator fabric on inside to avoid interfacing
 - Add 1 inch to the length of the bag inner and outer, which gives a little more room for pencils.
 - I also make the outer of denim, so that if hubby or I need to carry them in public they are a little more discreet. The kids generally get a kick out of carrying them themselves though.
These ones, pictured on our art cable (notice how much sticker art there is?) are off to good homes soon. Not only is December busy because of Christmas, but we also have a bunch of kiddie birthday parties to attend. So if you're in my mothers group and are having a party soon, you can probably guess what you're getting now.

Friday, December 10, 2010

New frock for me - hooray!

So I've been burning the night oil this week, sewing and unpicking and sewing and scratching my head, trying to construct what I think is an awesome new frock for me.
What do you think? Pretty cool huh??

I love, love, love this dress. I love the deep v neck, I love the cross over, I love the pleated full skirt, I love the sash. I only wish that the construction process was a little less challenging. I first fussy cut the bodice pieces to prevent some of the more prominent star bursts from ending up on my bust points, but realised after half constructing the bodice that I was off and ended up with the exact result I was hoping to avoid! So I re-cut the bodice and started again.
The dress is based on New Look 6805 and the fabric is Anna Maria Horner Voile from her Innocent Crush line. The dress is fully lined in lovely soft white voile from Lincraft and the sash is also voile from Lincraft.

So, the specs of the project. After reading that the sizing in the bodice ran large, I cut a size 8 bust, size 12 waist and size 10 skirt. While I struggled a bit with constructing the cross over bodice, I pretty much stuck to the pattern. I did however, put in an invisible zip, I lengthened the bodice by about an inch and cut about three inches from the length of the skirt. I also fully lined the skirt and after reading about trimming a skirt lining with lace by Tasia from Sewaholic, I decided to trim the lining with this sweet lace.
If I were to make this again, I'd also reduce the width of the back a bit too, as it does gape a tiny bit. I'm not sure what this modification is called, but I've noticed quite a few items that I've sewn myself probably require a modification here.
It's also perfect for twirling!

So now that this is finished, tonight I plan to go to bed closer to 10pm, than 1am. Tomorrow I'll be back to Christmas present sewing and bonnets.

Pattern review is now here.

Thursday, December 9, 2010

My Creative Space...

From bonnets to bloomers to a new dress for me!

After my bonnet sewing frenzy last week, I decided to get started on some projects for me and the family. First up, some long over due bloomers for Miss Adele.

While I'm happy to preach that little girls should avoid the fashion faux pas of showing their nappy under their dress, I'm often guilty of being responsible this fashion crime. To remedy, I've half made a bunch of bloomers for Miss. These have been made with the Bettsy Kingston baby bloomers pattern. I still need to put elastic in.

Next on the 'me' sewing list is a new frock made with some of the lovely Anna Maria Horner Innocent Crush voile that I purchased recently.
Rather than make the Collette Chantilly dress with this fabric, I opted for New Look 6805. This is a style that was more 'me' with a deep V neck and sash at waist. It also has a full pleated skirt, which I think will be fun.

Unfortunately sewing just this much of the dress has taken me f.o.r.e.v.e.r! I originally tried to fussy cut the bodice pieces to avoid getting a dominant star burst over my bust point, aka nipples, but failed miserably and the first bodice ended up with two big red stars where I didn't want them! I'd take a photo but it really is a bit rude.

Stay tuned for more progress on the dress - I'm hoping to finish it by this weekend.

BTW - bonnets are pretty much sold out again! More to be made this coming week.

For more creative spaces, head to Kirsty's...

Monday, December 6, 2010

The project ahead....

So this is my new l.o.n.g term project that I anticipate should take about two years to complete.
It's a lovely crochet blanket that I've been wanting to make since I first saw it over a year ago. This particular blanket is called flowers in the snow and the pattern can be found here.

Here's the stash of wool that I will be making it with.
All from Bendigo Woollen Mills, purchased recently on sale. Most are Luxury, but some Classic and Silky Supreme too.

I took a short break from bonnets last night to try to pattern out and I'm quite happy with how easy and quick it is. Despite how quick it was to work these little rounds, I'm still anticipating that this project will take forever to do. I'd love it to be a queen bed blanket, but after measuring my first square at 9cms, I think I'll need about 400 for a queen size. So now I think it may be a couch blanket instead.

I was speaking to my Aunty Margaret about this blanket just last week. I told her that I anticipated it would take me 2 years to complete, she thinks it will take me 5. We'll see though. I'm so bloody stubborn I'll probably try to finish it in a few months just to prove her wrong! Please - if I become too obsessive about this TELL ME and if you are close by smack me with something! You all know how obsessive I can be!

Project details are ravelled here.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Keep Calm and Sew On

There's been a bit of a sewing frenzy in this house of late, but unfortunately I have no new dresses or outfits to show for it. You see, I've been making quite a stash of bonnets to sell before Christmas. I'm trying to make them all in one hit before I embark on any further personal sewing and boy is there a lot on my 'to do' list at the moment - new dress, skirt, boys shorts, Xmas pressies!
Warning: bad photography ahead!!

These are some of the new bonnets that I've pulled together and there are more to come.
 Above is one side and below is the opposite side for each bonnet.
I'm so happy with these new fabric combinations. I love hearing the great feedback from those who've  purchased one and I'm finding most people want more than one for their little sweetie.
I really feel that the photography really lets down my product. Maybe that'll be a new years resolution - to pick up some better photography skills.
Please let me know if you think you want one of the pictured bonnets, as I'm hoping a bunch will be leaving me this week.

Hopefully I'll post more tomorrow. That is, if I can steal any more sewing time tonight.

BTW - I know the 'Keep Calm' thing has been around for a while and is probably passe, but I just love this little print. It's makes me laugh. It was purchased recently from Nan Lawson on Etsy.