Hot Air Balloon Peasant Top

This is the top that I mostly made on the last day of Kids Clothes Week. I had finished all but the hand stitching on the applique which I finished up Monday morning. Naturally, it is Friday before I manage to take pictures and post. 🙂

I love all the things I made for KCW, but this one really expresses my true aesthetic more than the others. The very neutral base fabric, with just a small pop of muted tones, throw in a little imperfect hand stitching and I am smitten.


The main fabric is a cotton that I picked up at Hancock’s on super sale on MLK day. I think it was 2 something a yard. I’m not even sure what it is except that it is 100% cotton. It was next to the muslins, but looks so different and was the only one that seemed to stick out like a sore thumb. Perhaps it is just a looser woven muslin. I don’t know, but I love the loose nubby texture going on.Image

The fabrics for two of the balloons are Hello Pilgrim Jewels in two different color ways. The largest balloon is a scrap of silk that I dyed eons ago in college.

I really enjoyed KCW. It was a great motivator to make some things for Norah, and hopefully next time around I’ll make some things for the boys as well.


KCW- Modified Peasant Top

This top has been in the works for some time. I’ve been trying out different ways of modifying the basic peasant top/dress. I love the ease, but wanted to try and get a more polished look without upping the work too much. I have gotten a couple of looks I like now, but I’m not sure I succeeded in keeping the work low!

I initially intended to put a rounded collar on this, just like the Little Folks dress, but once I got the main body sewn together and saw it hanging there I knew I wanted a more square neckline. I turned to bias tape and between this top and another similar one that I’m working on for my niece I must have attempted to put on binding at least 6 times! Of course I had to rip it out each time. I don’t have to tell you how fun that was, right? If I weren’t so in love with the way this fabric comes together in this little top or if I had enough of the fabric to just start over I probably would have cut it into scraps long ago. It’s not that I’m a quitter, I just don’t have time for all these little hiccups!

So, I still don’t know exactly why the bias tape didn’t work, but I finally gave up and just made a fitted squared piece. I kept it pretty thin so it wouldn’t be that different from binding.


It’s not perfect (so don’t look too close!) but, I do adore this little top. I had no idea what I was going to do with this fabric when I bought it, but now I want to buy more! It’s from Anna Maria Horner’s Little Folks Voile and it comes with 4 large squares (the front and back) and 8 little squares (sleeves) per yard. I just love looking at it and thinking about how those squares might come together in different projects.


So this wraps up KCW for me. I did start on another peasant top last night, but didn’t quite finish. It’s totally sewn together, but I decided to do a bit of hand stitching embellishment while watching Sherlock. Perhaps, not the best idea if you really want to finish, but what a great show! I’ll be sure to show the finished top here when I finish it, hopefully soon.

KCW Day 5- School Photo Dress

Today is actually Day 7, the last day of the challenge, but this dress was finished on Day 5, hence the title.

So, I love how this dress turned out! I wanted to used this beautiful brown wool suiting that I had, but I was concerned about it irritating the little girl’s skin. It’s not terribly rough, but I didn’t want her to be uncomfortable. The bodice of the dress is lined so that wasn’t a problem, but the sleeves and neck are not. I opted to use some very soft voile for the lining, the sleeves, and the neck. I was going for the look of a jumper over a blouse and I think it worked out pretty nicely. There is another option for this dress that I actually prefer with a looser sleeve and a not gathered neck. I decided to go with this view because I felt it looked more like a blouse under a dress. I’m happy with how it turned out.


There is one thing I would have liked to have done differently. I would love to see this dress with a peter pan collar. I knew it would take more time to get it all figured out and this was my first time using this pattern so I went ahead and did it as written. Here’s the back.


One of the reasons I wanted to make this dress was for the invisible zipper. I don’t love following patterns, but Oliver + S patterns are so well written and often include techniques and explanations you don’t see in other patterns. Anyway, I know I have put in an invisible zipper before (it might have been about 8 years ago), but a few weeks ago when I attempted one on a pillow cover I ended up with a big mess which is now buried at the bottom of the fabric bin! If it hadn’t been some of my natural dyed fabric I probably would have chopped it up for scraps, but instead I determined that I must be doing something wrong and put it away until I had time to figure out what that was! There is some puckering around the zipper from the stretch of the wool, but I don’t think it looked as bad on her as it does in that photo.

Here’s a shot of the kangaroo pocket. My seams didn’t line up perfectly on this, but I didn’t stress over it, because I know that it’s never going to just lay flat when she’s wearing it. Lot of mistakes get covered up by children who are too busy to slow down!Image

Now here is Norah in the dress. She seemed to be pretty comfortable in it and it didn’t restrict her movement at all.Image

Unfortunately all the pictures of her standing in it were quite blurry. She was more wobbly than normal during the photo shoot. Here’s one of the blurry shots so you can see how the dress fits.Image

I’ve got at least one more post coming to show you what I finished up last night and possibly another if I get in a quick little hour project sometime today.

A Tale of Two Fabrics

I know you’ve been really worried since my last post. You don’t recall? Well let me refresh your memory. I had those two fabrics that I had planned for months to use together and ended up with too separate pieces that do not go together at all, though they each wonderful on their own. Now you remember. Well, let the fretting cease, because I did in fact managed to make something that I love that places those two fabrics delightfully together!Image

You may recall the baby gown I made for Norah. Well, this gown is the next and I think final step in my process to create a great baby gown. I did some tweaking and changing based on having actually used the other one.


I love the tie at the bottom as opposed to the elastic that gowns sometimes have. My first never could wear a gown because he wriggled so much it all ended up around his waist. Tying the bottom closed prevents that.


The velcro closure was fine, but not my favorite. Still, I needed something easy to get on and off of baby. This gown has two buttons and that is it! Well there is a piece of elastic hiding in there to keep things in place and still allow for easy on and off, but the buttons are all you have to mess with.


And no, this little beauty is not for Norah. That girl is growing like the prettiest weed you’ve ever seen. This one will be for sale along with a few others at the Autumn Street Fair in October.

Piecing Scraps

Last weekend I wasn’t particularly interested in any of the projects I already had going so I pulled out a bunch of scraps and started piecing them together. Here’s what I ended up with.


I think eventually these will find their way into a baby quilt of some sort.


It was fun to just let the size and shape of the scraps steer each piece.



Overall my sewing drive has been dwindling as I find myself more and more focused on getting this baby out! I tried to work on something yesterday and in my haste made a pretty major mistake that will require a good bit of seam ripping. Yay. I’m going to just put things on hold unless something particularly grabs at me. Maybe I’ll trace some pattern pieces I’ve been meaning to work on.

I’m in the end stages of pregnancy where it could be any minute or several more weeks. I hate trying to be prepared while also not having any expectations that it will happen soon. I feel much more at peace at this stage than with my first, but slightly more engaged in preparing for birth than I was with my second. We’ll just have to wait and see.


Circle Skirt Outfit

A friend of mine recently had a little girl and I decided to make her a little something. I went back to that circle skirt tutorial, threw in an appliqued onesie, and a simple little headband.

ImageFor the skirt I used two layers of voile.ImageThe headband a couple of simple cloth flowers on some decorative elastic.Image

Have you noticed that I am completely addicted to this Anna Maria Horner Loulouthi fabric? I really do have other things in my stash, but I guess I’m just on a roll.