Thursday, July 28, 2011

Another new skirt!!

I got to do some sewing yesterday - YAY!!  I made this!!

  I got my inspiration from this blog tutorial.  I didn't have striped fabric but I did have polka dot in stretch knit!  It was very easy and very quick to do!
Sorry this pic is a bit blurry (ceiling fan was blowing the skirt)... but it shows the rolled hem on the serger that I did for the bottom - so easy!

Seriously this skirt took less than an hour to put together! It is so very comfy too!

Friday, July 15, 2011

I did some more refashioning :-)

My sister gave me a bag of clothes that didn't fit her and they for sure didn't fit me - LOL!  So what do you do with those type clothes you ask?? Well you refashion them for your little girl of course!!

I refashioned two shirts today into adorable, long length (yay) dresses for Alyssa!  It didn't take long at all to do either one.  It would have been even less time if Alyssa hadn't wanted to "help" as much, and if she would have been more cooperative with fittings and stuff...which wore me out...which is why we only did two.


Here is the before picture of the first one - this was a Juniors medium shirt.

And here are the after shots.  I basically sewed some off the shoulders and brought in the sides.  I also put a pleat in the back to help bring in the neckline.

Here was the other top - a size Junior medium top.

Here are the after shots.  I took off the straps, brought in the sides, and then reattached the straps.  (note: I realized when I had the dress on for these pics that the straps needed to be shortened a bit more...the dress was a bit low...I did that but went ahead and did the pics because she was already fighting me (I finally got her to let me get pics if I put her on the table) and I knew she wouldn't do a pic the next time.  We were done...

I guess when you have a two year old under foot it is good that you can do quick sewing jobs like refashioning!  After 30 minutes of that I am exhausted LOL!

Until next time!

Friday, July 8, 2011

Another new dress - FINALLY!!

Yay!! I made it back to my sewing machine today!!  :-)  My mom was visiting the first part of this week and we went to JoAnn's and they were running some GREAT fabric sales so I got an early birthday gift from her and a got a whole bunch of fabric!!

We finally had a day at home today and I was determined to get to the sewing machine!!  I just finished a dress! WHOO HOO!!  (and thinking about heading back to the sewing machine when I get this post done - LOL!)

Here is the finished picture of the dress - with a cute belt (this is another one of those dresses that looks so much better on me than the mannequin...I just don't have good camera skills!)

I kind of followed this tutorial.  This was not a pillowcase though, it is a pretty embroidered linen-like fabric. But I figured it would still work using two rectangles of fabric and sew the shoulder seams as well...and other than hemming the bottom all other steps were pretty much the same.

I used my new dressmaker's curve ruler to make the curve for the neckline and armholes.

The neckhole ended up being too large and made the sides sit too much off of the shoulder so I added pleats at the midsection in the front and back.  And I was really pleased with the finished look of the neckline.  I don't know if you can see the pleats too well in the picture does look really nice on though (better than it does on the mannequin).

The dress actually looks pretty good with or without the belt, but I like the added touch that the belt gives it.

Gotta go feed my kiddos some lunch now and get them down for a nap so that I can do some more sewing :-)

Catch yall later!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


Hey guys!  I bet you done thunk I must have thrown away my sewing machine, huh?!?  NOT ON YOUR LIFE!  I love my sewing machine and I love sewing...just haven't found much time to do any sewing lately :-( :-(!

I even have some cute cute new fabrics that I got for Mother's Day and they are calling, more like screaming out my name to come and do something with them!

I did refashion one of my maternity skirts into a darling cute adorable dress for Alyssa last week!  She wore it to church on Sunday and I forgot to get a picture :-( and it took like only 20 minutes to do (all I had time for)!  I promise I will get a picture of it and put it on here!  I know I need to.

Oh I also refashioned a tank top that was way way too big for me to one that fit me and took the excessive I cut off and made a ruffled neck edge...but once again no pic...I need to get a pic...

BUT I do have something very exciting to share!  I am hopefully going to be able to teach a sewing class in the fall semester of our homeschool coop!  I am so excited about this possibility - to be able to instill in young girls the love of sewing!!  It will be my first time to teach sewing and I am so tickled about it!  I hope it all works out :-)

We are having a wonderful summer though - lots of play dates with friends at the park, a vacation at the beach, camping in our RV, visiting family and swimming. This week we are having a bunch of our friends over for a play date at our house.  The kids are going to play outside while the moms make homemade fruit jams and jalapeno jelly!!  It is going to be MUCH fun!

I hope you all are having a good summer as well!!

Until next time,

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I am loving shirring!!

Ok - yesterday was a BAD DAY for dressmaking!  I messed up two, yep two, dresses!!  OH MY!  Nothing was working!!  (I guess that is what I get for trying stuff on my own without any patterns...)  But I did learn some things and took plenty of notes of what not to do!

But - third time was definately a charm!!!  I finally have a new dress!! And it was a very easy dress to make!  I am sure I will make it again!!

Here is the finished product!  Pictures do not do it justice and I so wish I was a better photographer.  It is made from a stretchy blue polyester.  The waist is done with shirring (I have grown to LOVE shirring) and the shoulders are shirred as well (close up on that below).

Here is how I made it (in case you want to make one for yourself!)

You need 4 Measurements:

A - length you want the dress from shoulder to bottom.
B - width you want each shoulder to be x 2
C - width you want your neckline to be
D- length you want your arm hole to be

Here is how you use those measurements to make your pieces (you need two - front and back)

*Note: I only drew measurement D on one side - make sure to mark this measurement on both sides.

Cut out your pieces.  Sew your side seams. You will sew from the bottom of measurement D to the bottom of the rectangle.  Do this for both sides.

Sew your shoulder seams.  Then finish your neckline and sleeve edges.

When you are at that point your dress will look like this - a great big "moo moo dress" as we call them!  Not pretty at all!  But trust me - it will be when you are done :-)

You will also see in the above picture that I have white marks along the middle of the dress.  This is where I have marked for the first line of shirring for the waist.  You need to figure out where you want your waist band to sit.  Measure how far down from the top of the dress.  Then mark a light line (with a washable fabric marker) where that line needs to be.  Then shirr that line.  (I explained in this post about shirring and there are also other great resources online if you need instructions on how to shirr).  I shirred 6 lines for my waistline.  You may want to do less or more depending on how wide you want your waistline area.

Below is a picture after I shirred the first line to show you how the dress starts taking shape just after one line of shirring!

I then shirred the shoulder seams.  I shirred three lines on each side of the seam.  (once again you do as many as you like to your liking).  I really liked the finished result of shirring the shoulders!

Here is a close up view of the shirred shoulders - see how nice they gathered!!

Here is the finished dress!!  (once again it really does look better in person!!) 

I also decided that the dress needed something added...since it was navy blue I thought it needed some yellow!  So I made yellow fabric flowers and sewed a blue button in the middle.  I then attached them to a set of my not real pearls.

Enjoy!!  And let me know if you decide to make one!  I would love to know how it turned out!!

Thursday, April 28, 2011

My New Dress and Showing Off Alyssa's Easter Dress

Well I woke up this morning wanting to make a dress for myself!!  And I DID!!  It was so simple and so easy!  I may have to make some more of these for the summer!!

Here is the dress!
 It looks great with my ruffled shrug I made a few weeks ago!!

Basically I took a rectangular piece of fabric, just the full 45" width and the length was the length that I wanted the dress to be.  I sewed up the seam and then shirred the top!  I added straps and sewed the bottom hem!  The longest part of making this dress was the shirring!  But still, even with that it took about 2 1/2 hours, with MANY interruptions!  I probably could have done it in an hour if I didn't have interruptions!

I also wanted to show yall what Alyssa looked like in her Easter dress I made (remember this post?)

She loved it and was the prettiest little girl at church :-) (of course I am quite partial!)

Such the drama queen!!!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Ready For Easter!!

Well I got Alyssa's Easter dress made!  (it looks much better on her than it does on the hanger!  I will upload pics of her wearing it Sunday sometime next week hopefully!!)

I used the Ellie Twirl Dress by Lilibelle that I purchased on  I thankfully already had some adorable seersucker and matching solid purple coordinating fabric!  I added a ruffle to the straps (along with a ribbon trim to the straps and the top of the bodice.

Here is the front:

And here's the back!  Don't you just love that bow?!?!?

For my dress instead of making something new this year I decided to pull out a dress that I made about 8 years ago!!  I haven't been able to wear it for quite some time because I had gained all that weight - but now that it is back off (and has stayed off!!!) I can wear it again!  All I had to do was replace the broken zipper on it!  This is still one of my favorite dresses that I have ever made!
 Here is a close up of the bodice (sorry the picture turned out a bit blurry) but there is yellow decorative stitching around the neckline (and also the bottom hem) is tulips...the tulips were done on my embroidery machine using eyelet lace as appliqu├ęd material for the petals.

Last year I made a decision that every year I would try to do something homemade for kids for Easter...why you ask?  because I LOVE Easter! It is one of my favorite holidays and there are so many cute things you can do!

Last year I made bunny neck pillows and bunny hand puppets for the boys, and a bunny blanket for Alyssa.  (I thought I blogged about it but can't seem to find the post)

This year I made bunny bean bags.  I got the idea from here on family  I used fabric markers to make the facial features (less likely to fall off that way LOL!).  I also used a 2nd rubberband to seperate the head from the body (instructions just called for a ribbon to do that).  I hotglued a ribbon around the neck and then hotglued a bow on. (looked better than tying a bow around the neck.  I had some cute craft pom poms to hot glue on for the tails!

Here are the front of the bunnies...

and here are the backs!  :-)

I think these are going to look DARLING in their Easter baskets on Sunday!

I pray everyone has a Blessed Easter!!  I will report back with pics of Alyssa in her dress next week :-)!

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

The Princess Dress

Remember this post where I showed off the princess dress that I made??

Well I thought you might like to see Alyssa in that dress!!  She loved the dress!  It fit her perfectly!

 And I can't believe she kept on the clip on earrings ALL DAY!!

Here is a view of the back of the dress with the bustle.

And here is a view of the awesome dress up shoes!!  (they were entirely too big but she didn't care! LOL!)

Everyone loved the dress!  She even wore it to church the next day (without the bustle or pearls and flowers belt).

I am working on her Easter dress for Sunday!!!  I was so excited to find a very cute pattern on !!! If you haven't checked out that site you need to! (They have some GREAT patterns!  The pattern that I tested (and blogged about here) is on that site as well! )   I was excited to already have some very cute fabric in my stash to use and can't wait to see the finished product!! (and yes of course I will share on here!)

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Ruffled Shrug

Here's my ruffled shrug I made today!  I used another shrug I had as a pattern and then just added a ruffle all the way around and at the bottom of the sleeves.

The material is a soft very lightweight sweater material.

Here it is paired with my white ruffled shirt!

Alyssa's Petticoat

Isn't it adorable?!?!  It was so easy to put together too!  I had some nice rose colored soft stretch knit fabric. I used one of her other skirts to know how big to make it.  I cut out one long rectangle (by putting the skirt on the fold of the fabric and cutting out a rectangle the size of the skirt.  I then cut three pieces of lace.  Each piece was three times the width of the rectangle (so that I would have full ruffles - since this is a petticoat and fullness it what we are going for!).  I gathered up the lace and sewed it to the rectangle.  I then folded the rectangle (wrong side facing out and sewed the seam.  I then folded over the top of the rectangle to make a casing for my elastic, sewed it and then inserted my elastic!  I was done!!  How easy was that!!!

Now her outfit is complete!  It's my turn!!  :-)  Not doing too much.  I just have some lightweight stretch knit sweater material in almost the same color of the dress.  I am going to make a ruffled shrug to wear with my rose and ruffle shirt.  Of course I will post pictures when I finish!!  :-)

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Alyssa's Princess Dress For Her Birthday

It is hard to believe that Alyssa is fixing to be two!!  OMG!!  Where does the time go??

Anyways - I am doing a princess party for her.  If you are going to have a princess party you have to have a princess dress!

My mom said she wanted to buy the dress...but of course, being the sewer that I am, thought it would be funner to make her dress :-)  So my mom bought all of the items needed to do so!

I wanted something that she could wear more than just for dress up play!  So I decided to do the basic dress, that she could actually wear to church, and then do a dress-up layer (or what I call the "ball gown" layer) to wear to her princess party to play dress up in!

I used the tutorial I found here for the basic dress.  I decided to do it in pink and white instead of yellow and white.  I made the dress out of men's t-shirts.  (it was a very sad fact that I found the pink color that I wanted in the men's t-shirt department!  My sister and I looked all over the ladies department at Target, even in the intimates section, maternity, sleepwear, everywhere and not one good pink color t-shirt or jersey knit!  But we did find it in the men's department.  I know my husband would not be caught dead in this color t-shirt! LOL!)

Anyways, I bought 2 of the pink shirts and one white shirt.  My pink shirts were size L.  For her dress which is probably truly about a size 3T it took EVERY BIT of those two shirts...I would suggest buying larger sizes if you want to make this. :-)

So here is the basic dress...

When I first tried it on her it was a bit too long (went all the way to the floor) so I decided to pull up the sides.   I made two fabric flowers and attached them to safety pins and used that to "tack" the dress up (this way as she grows the dress will grow with her).  I really liked the result of how it looked though with the sides pulled up like that!  I think it really added to the dress.  Here is a picture from my phone of the dress before I tacked the sides so you can see the difference.

Here is a close up of the top.  It is a peasant style top and I shirred the neck and arms instead of doing elastic!  I liked the shirred look better.  I just used some eyelet lace trim that I got on clearance at Wal-Mart for the collar.  I used an elastic hoop in the middle to gather the collar at the middle.  This also sets the necklace in place (so she won't be so apt to play with it...but lets the necklace be removed before the dress is washed.)

For the "ball gown" layer I found a elastic and jersey knit braid headband on clearance at Wal-Mart for $1!!  (it was actually a set of 3 headbands - so two for Alyssa to wear and one to use for this project!  What a deal!!)  It fit very well around her tiny waist!!  :-)  I thought it would be perfect to attach the embellishments on to add flair to her dress for her party!

In the front I added pearls and fabric roses.  In the back I added a ruffl knit and lace bustle!!

Here is the front of the dress with the added layer.

Here is the back of the dress with the bustle!

Here is just that layer to show you what I am talking about!
 Here is a close up showing you the headband that I used.

Here are other items that were bought to go with the dress for her princess party!

Her dress up shoes!!  (yes they will be a bit big on her but aren't dress up shoes suppose to be big??  She is going to go crazy over these!! She loves shoes!!)

Here is her birthday girl tiara!!  Can't be a princess without a tiara.
 It even came with clip on earrings!  How fun!!!

And here is her bracelet that matches the necklace on her dress (the necklace and the bracelet were on the $1 aisle at Target!)

And I have decided to make a petticoat to go under the dress to make it poof out even more!  I was trying ot figure out if I had material on hand to do this with and remembered that some time back my grandmother gave me 124 YARDS of lace!!  It sits in the top of my closet because I have not found much to do with it.  I have used a little here and there...but not much of it!  I think it will work perfect for a little girl petticoat!!  The wheels in my head are turning to figure out how to make this so that it can grow with her because a little girl will always need a petticoat, right?!?  :-)

So more on that later!!

I can't wait to see Alyssa all dressed up in her princess dress!!  I will make sure I share pictures!

Another thing I am trying to decide is what to do for the cake!  Do I use the cake pan I have to make a princess doll cake (using a Barbie doll) or do I make a castle cake (you know with the sugar cones)??

Well I guess I better go...I have lots of thinking and planning to do still!!
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