Sunday, September 19, 2010

Birthday Garland

So my baby just turned 3 years old! I can't believe how time flies! It feels like the past couple of weeks have been crazy busy and not time for much sewing and/or crafting. However, before her party, I happened upon a blog that gave me a great last minute (literally) idea for party decorations.

Gracie Birthday

For the kids' birthdays they get to choose a theme for the party. My daughter is currently obsessed with all things princess, so I was not surprised at her choice. I really wanted to avoid the Disney princess theme though. We love us some Disney movies...but for some reason, I really dislike any character clothing and any other paraphernalia (including party decorations). If she had really wanted Disney specifically, we would have gone that route, but she is generally easy to please (well....other than the multiple times a day when a melt down occurs and a tantrum ensues...but that is another subject). So, when I found these princess invitations, I thought they were adorable and a great neutral foundation for party decorations as well.

Birthday Invitations

My sister is awesome at making cakes, so I commissioned her to make a cake based upon the invitation (I have made the kids cakes in the past and I normally end up in a panic and completely stressed I have decided there are some projects that are just best left to others). I gave her complete creative control other than the basic design and as always, I was very happy with the end result (she also made my son's cake this past year - a very cool race track)!

Birthday Cake

I decided to just use pink & purple for the decorations. I could not find any decorations that were princess-ey that did not look cheap and/or were not Disney. I would have loved to have found some plates, garland, etc. that matched the invitations, but no such luck. The party was very small, mostly just family and just a couple of friends...and being frugal (i.e. cheap) I also did not want to spend a huge amount of money on decorations. The day of the party, I remembered a blog I had recently seen, showing how to sew paper circles into a garland I didn't want circles...but I had a couple of extra invitations, so why couldn't I do the same with princess tiaras instead?!

With literally minutes to spare before the party, I traced the invitation onto pink & purple construction paper.

Trace invitation

Start of the garland

Once done tracing, I cut several layers at once. I then went to the sewing machine and got started! I started about midway through the tiara and sewed a straight line.

Sewing the garland

Sorry for photo quality!

I decided to make the garland with one tiara pointing upwards and the next going downwards. So, I laid the next tiara close to the first that was on the sewing machine and kept stitching. I connected at the "bulb" part of the tiara.

Attaching another tiara

Again, sorry for the quality of the lighting is not good near my sewing machine!

I continued to add tiaras until I reached my desired length. This a picture of a few tiaras attached together.

Garland view

I made a total of four garlands with 10 tiaras per garland. If I had allowed myself more time and supplies, I would have likely made them a bit longer. I used one garland on the cake table and then used the other three as table runners on the three guest tables.

Birthday Garland

I was happy that I was able to decorate in the desired theme, without "characters" and on the cheap! It was a win-win! Most importantly, my daughter had a great day! Thanks to Creative Passage for the inspiration (she is blogging from my part of the world too!).

P.S. Thanks to the new followers of the blog!!


I will be linking to these parties:

The Girl CreativeJoin  us Saturdays at for the weekend wrap up        party!

Monday, September 6, 2010

No Pattern Outfit!!

Okay...while there are many, many bloggers out there that are quite adept at creating their own patterns, this is new territory for me. I am soo super excited about how this outfit turned out! I created a two layer top and ruffle pants without a pattern!!

Two Tier Halter & Ruffle Pants

First, I have to say that the fabric for the top was from my mom's stash (I am not even sure it classifies as a stash anymore since it takes up an entire room) and I was not overly fond of the material. I had the idea for the top in my head for a while and decided this would be good practice material. I also just happened to have the magenta fabric on hand from a plan never executed several years ago. I am actually pretty happy with the end result...even with the less than desirable (or so I thought) fabric choices.

Back of outfit

Quite a while back, I had saw this post from The Sewing Dork for a tie back halter she created. I decided to go in a different direction with my halter (if you can call it that), but I really like the loops that were used at the back of her halter to tie the top on. I have seen other ideas where button holes are used in the middle of the back of the top/halter...but I like the idea of the straps each having their own home! :) You probably are not able to see this on my "model" but I like to criss-cross the straps before looping.

Strap Loops

I created my pattern for the bodice by using a tank top that I knew had a generous fit on my daughter and then folded the shoulders down and the tummy up. I basically traced what was left. I added some interfacing to the bodice and also added the loops and straps (the straps are really too long...but I will tweak that when I make another). Once done, I added a couple of layers of ruffles. The top ended up being long enough that my daughter has worn this once as a dress. It will also be nice as the weather gets cooler to pair it with the ruffle pants.

Two Tiered Top

Back of Two Tiered Top

For the pants, I again took a pair of pants that fit my daughter and traced the pants and then added a ruffle at the bottom. The pants are a bit snug around the bum for my there is some tweaking for the next pair I make. For me, making pants without a pattern was daunting for me in concept...but they were SUPER easy to make. My daughter is a shortie (she comes from a long line of them) and so pants are always a struggle for the right length. I am excited that we have more options now!!

Ruffle Pants

Obviously, neither of these "designs" are my original ideas...I have used pieces here and there of what I have seen others make and created how I wanted to put it together. I have thought about putting together a tutorial for my version of these "patterns"...but we will have to see!

P.S - I have 3 (yep, count 'em) followers now!! This is soooo exciting!! Thanks so much!! WhooHoo!!

P.S.S - I was featured (like two weeks ago now...because I am a little slow in blogging) on the
Creative Itch after linking up for a party!!! Yea!!!! How awesome!!

Thanks for stopping by!!

I will be linking to these parties:

Party Button
Photobucketmake it wear itThe Girl CreativeJoin  us Saturdays at for the weekend wrap up        party!

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Baby gifts finale (for now)

So here is a wrap up the belated gifts that I made for a recent baby shower...a total of three more gifts.

I had purchased some minky fabric when my daughter was a baby as well as a couple of flannel prints. I had used the minky to make her a car seat cover for the winter...but had lots left over. The fabric is so soft and feels sooo nice to touch...however, it is not my favorite for sewing. I have made a couple of blankets with minky now and I never feel like they end up looking quite as "finished" as I would like.

For this blanket, I measured the blanket to be the size of the remaining minky fabric and then cut the flannel print to size as well. I made a basic box, with right sides together. I then serged three of the edges and part of the four edge. I then turned it right side out and top stitched around the edges, closing the last half of the fourth edge. Overall, a very basic concept...just lots of stretching and slipping the minky fabric. In the end, I still handed it over as a not so bad that I thought it had to be converted into another project.

Minky Blanket

In between some of my frustrations with a couple of these shower gifts, I needed a simple project to restore my confidence. I used this
tutorial to make a couple of burp cloths.

Burp Cloth

I purchased a fabric remenant for $.70 and used some Warm & Natural that I had purchased on sale. Super inexpensive (i.e. cheap) and super easy to make gifts! I was not sure that I really like the unfinished/frayed edges...but I only washed the cloths once (due to time sake). I wonder if I had washed more if it might have looked better. I still would make these can't go wrong with cheap & easy!

Burp Cloths

The last gift for this mom was a diaper wipes case. I started with the intention of using this tutorial that included a diaper pouch. It was a great concept and super cute...but I decided I needed to start with the basics first. I ended up using this tutorial instead. I am not normally a glue gun the glue gun & I had to come to an understanding...but after...things went smoothly. My only disappointment with the finished product is that the glue used under the ribbon embellishment is visible.

Diaper Wipes Case

I haven't decided if it bad or good, but I still have two other people to make baby gifts for as well. One is a friend who lives overseas and just had her baby girl (all 11lbs...can you imagine!!). Those presents are my first priority. There is also someone at church that is due at the end of October and I want to make a few things for her baby girl as well. Hopefully, I might be able to fit in another, un-baby, project in before her gifts!


Monday, August 16, 2010

T-shirt dresses

Earlier this summer, I was in a t-shirt dress craze. I bought the Sienna Dress pattern from Lil Blue Boo. There are seriously almost endless possibilities of how this dress can be customized. I was particularly smitten due to how inexpensively I could make these dresses. My daughter can be pretty tough on clothes and so I hate to spend much for "play" clothes. The dresses are also very quick and easy to complete - something else I find very appealing in a pattern.

The first dress that I made was from 3 t-shirts that I purchased at a garage sale. I had less than $1 invested in all three t-shirts. I still had material left, so the way that I figure, this dress was about $.50 (or less) to make!!!! I can't tell you how INCREDIBLY exciting that is to me!!! Yes, I am cheap...and proud of it!!

Sienna Dress - from Lil Blue Boo

I was nervous about leaving the serged edges on the outside of the dress...but I ended up loving it. I thought it made the dress look funky and relaxed.

Sienna Dress - from Lil Blue Boo

My first attempt at the Sienna dress ended up being my favorite (below). I found the Old Navy tee (I Heart Mom) at Goodwill for $2. I didn't know what I was going to do with it when I bought it, but I couldn't pass it up. It worked perfectly for this dress. I paired it with another Goodwill t-shirt and some white scraps courtesy of my mom. While the picture below is a bit cheesy....I love this dress (maybe due to the saying on the is pretty good)!

As a side note, this dress does not have instructions for cuffs on the sleeves. I wanted the sleeves to be capped, so I added this feature to both dresses. I added two pleats to each of the sleeves (sounds strange but I think it looks fine) to account for the extra fabric in the sleeves to fit into the "caps" that I made for the sleeves.

I LOVE Mom - Sienna Dress from Lil Blue Boo

I made two more dresses from this pattern...but I have taken any pictures of them yet! I think that both look quite a bit different than both of these as well. many possibilities...all with t-shirts that could otherwise be thrown away!!!