Saturday, April 2, 2011

Got hats?

My friend Heidi's husband is a survivor of Hodgkin's Lymphoma.  In his honor, his sister started Luke's Lids for Kids--they are collecting hats, headbands, bandanas and other head coverings for kids at Mott Children's Hospital at the University of Michigan who are receiving treatment for cancer. 
Check out Luke's Lids for Kids.  If you have any fun hats, headbands, etc that would put a smile on a kids face, send them to Luke's Lids for Kids!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Sweet Simple Skirt

I think this will be green enough for St. Patrick's Day...right?
This is just a plain elastic waist skirt...but the ruffle totally completes the skirt!  I bought this shirt a few weeks ago at a Just Between Friends sale and then found the fabric--I am totally in love with this outfit!  (Don't mind the of her brand new sandals seems to have walked away after only wearing them once!)

I am notorious for making things more difficult than they really are, especially when I'm sewing late at night.  But not this time!  I made the ruffle with my ruffler first...then measured the ruffle and cut the skirt to match that size.  Talk about easy!  I'm more of the "cut the skirt, then ruffle the fabric on the skirt--run out of fabric--take out the ruffle and try it again" type of girl, but I'm getting better.  I finished the skirt off with an elastic waist and topstiched the seams. 

The skirt has just the right swings when she walks and has a lovely twirl when she spins!  And the colors...LOVE!

Monday, March 7, 2011

Thrift Store Find to Art Caddy

I always see people post their awesome thrift store finds.  I never find much of anything, but the last time I went, I left my mind open and saw beyond what I saw on the shelf.

I found a wooden caddy for $2.99.  It looked like something that could be useful after a little spray paint and love (of course, it was assembled in the store).  
My spray paint skills leave a lot to be desired, but hey, it's for a toddler's art supplies.  It probably will have crayon or marker on it in a few days!  I finished it by adding vinyl from my Silhouette.  Jilli will be happy to see it tomorrow, although, she liked it just fine without the vinyl and the art supplies inside...she would grab it and stand by the door saying she was going to work and that was her toolbox!  

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Making a Pettiskirt with a Ruffler

With Jilli's 2nd birthday fast approaching, I decided to tackle a big project:  a pettiskirt.

I had been wanting to make one for awhile, but they are so intimidating.  After making one, I now know why the handmade ones are expensive!  I've seen many in stores, but they are not nearly as full (less fabric) and don't cost much less than a handmade one.  

I found many tutorials, but decided to follow this one by Make It and Love It.  She purchased her chiffon in rolls from AFC Express--I would totally recommend them (plus they have a link to the Make It and Love it Pettiskirt tutorial)!  They shipped my order very quickly. 

I priced out the nylon chiffon by the yard and by the rolls, and there isn't much difference in price once shipping calculated.  And for a small difference in price, who wouldn't want to have their chiffon precut!

I followed her [great!] tutorial for the first one, the only difference is that there was no way I was going to ruffle 60 yards of chiffon by hand...I used my ruffler.  That created some small problems as it is so hard to calculate the settings on the ruffler so you end up with exactly the right amount of ruffle.  That being said...I ripped out 20+ yards of stitching!  The first pettiskirt took me many, many hours to complete...but my second one took a little over 3 hours!

What I did differently on my second one to make it easier for me:
1.  Use a ruffler (have I mentioned I L-O-V-E my ruffler???)!  I don't think I would have even attempted to to this if I would have had to to the ruffles by hand (gathering stitch).
2.  Minimal handling of the chiffon as the edges will curl a little the more you handle it (I had handled the pieces for my first skirt a lot).
3.  Instead of following the tutorial and cutting the two - 10 yard pieces of chiffon (5" width) and then ruffling each one, I cut a piece of the 5" chiffon 20 yards long and started ruffling the 2" chiffon with my ruffle, sewing it directly on the 5" chiffon...and when I was finished, I cut the 5" piece of chiffon in half.  Perfectly ruffled and I didn't have to worry about running out of the 2" chiffon.
Pile of 20 yards of 5" chiffon with a ruffle...I then cut this in half to make two 10 yard pieces.

4.  Instead of holding the  rolls of chiffon or letting them fall to the floor, I rigged up this holder.  It worked great!  The rolls were positioned so they fed straight into the ruffler.  I just held it loosely.  It took approximately 45 minutes of continuous sewing, with the ruffler, to ruffle the 20 yards of chiffon! 
I used spools of thread to hold the rolls in the right place.

Being fed perfectly into the ruffler!
5.  The tutorial mentioned adjusting the thread tension to help with gathering.  I did this for the other two seams on each layer of the skirt and it worked wonderfully!  I happened to get one of these so perfect, I only had to adjust it 1"! 

1st Pettiskirt
Color:  Arabian Blue (this pic does not show the true color--it is really a bright turquoise color)
2nd Pettiskirt (a gift for Jilli's friend)
Color:  Fuschia (hot pink)
(I also made a hair clip out of the leftover satin and that is clipped to the waistband)

A view from the bottom looking up at all the ruffles!  If you love ruffles, this is a beautiful sight!
I added 3 flowers out of leftover chiffon to a plain tank to go with the first pettiskirt.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Happy New Year!

Where does the time go???
I am getting laid off from work (along with 100+ other people) and crafting and sewing have been the furthest things from my mind this past month.  But...I will be having a birthday party for a 2 year old in 2.5 short months so I need to get my butt in gear! 
Princess Birthday I come!!!  I did a few things for her birthday party last year, but we decided on a cupcake theme a few weeks before her party, so I hope to be able to a lot more with more time to plan...and possibly a lot of free time on my hands without work! :-)

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Canvas Shoes with Bling

From drab..
To FAB...

Every little girl needs to have some *bling* in their wardrobe.  And of course, you can't forget that girls, little and grown up, love shoes.  This is the perfect combination of the two!

For the life of me, I could not find plain canvas shoes in a size that would fit Jilli Bean's feet, so I splurged and got the Converse shoes.

I bought the Tulip Heat Setting Tool and got 3mm & 4mm crystals--I do not recall what brand, but they have the glue on the crystal (the first package I bought was adhesive crystals instead of the kind with the glue).  

I didn't want too much *bling*, so I put a 4mm crystal on each point of the star (just the star that was on the 'outside' of each shoe) .  I added a "J" (for Jilli, of course!) in 3mm crystals to the heel of each shoe.

I love the way these turned out!  I can easily change the look by changing the ribbon laces. 

The Tulip Heat Setting Tool worked great.  It is battery operated (therefore I had to take batteries out of the tv remote!).  To use it, you have to move the switch to the 'on' position and hold down the button while it heats.  I used a tweezer to place the crystals where I wanted them, then put the Heat Setting Tool on the crystal to melt the glue.  Because you have to hold the button down, to make it heat up, it will lose a little heat when you set the tool back down...which is ok since the time I forgot to unplug my hot glue gun!

lil luna link  party button

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Who doesn't love candy corn?!?

I've seen a lot of adorable candy corn-type outfits out there, but I fell in love with Nancy's Couture's Corn-y Project.  I'm glad I copied her idea for the candy corn hair clip...people finally "got" the outfit once they saw her hair!  I didn't see her tutorial before I did mine...had I checked it out, I would have realized earlier that I did mine upside down!
This really was a simple project! I used a t-shirt in each color that was a little big on her.  The top of the white is the hem of the white shirt and I used the bottom of the yellow shirt so I didn't need to hem anything!  I threaded a strip of the white t-shirt through the top (hem) of the white shirt and I was done!  Only 2 seams!!!  I didn't even finish the arm holes.