Emergency

We have been without a boiler in our house for over a week now (and more than 2 weeks left to go until the plumber can “squeeze in” fitting our replacement).  We have a couple of electric heaters, but, err, my sewing room is too untidy to squeeze one in so consequently my sewjo has taken a big hit.

It also means that clothes are hard to dry (we don’t have a tumble dryer, not normally an issue but when the house is cold and the sun aint shining it does slow things down rather).

It also means that even my normally hot blooded daughter wants to wear winter pj’s in bed.

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So, one pair of long pj’s still damp + one pair ripped + one tired girl = tears.

And tears = guilty mamma.

(These pj’s have actually been on the To Do Pile for a while. I was quite happy to whip up a replacement pair as I had enough of this fabric left over, but when I was informed that they had to have the same red satin cuffs (with ric rac) and waistband that nearly did me in the first time round my motivation withered somewhat and then it transpired she was quite happy wearing summer pj’s in the winter so they got pushed to the back of the cupboard)

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So, I this evening, to prevent more tears, I got off my backside and sewed up a replacement pair in the next size up (no point making something she’s about to grow out of right?), with french seams none the less. I tapered the bottom of the legs to the width of the size below so that I could harvest the cuffs from the old pair and just sew them on.  I simply finished the raw edges on the new pair with a zig zag, cut off the cuffs from the old pair about a cm about the join, turned the raw edge under, pinned it on top of the new pair with an overlap and then sewed them on. I didn’t harvest the waistband (too small, too complicated), but to make up for it I added a little bunny to the inside at the back.

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I was rewarded with a happy dance, big smiles and a cuddle.

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No more tears, and not a bottle of shampoo in sight.  (Plus a couple of extra dusters for me.)

Puffin Pyjama’s

Seasonal Sewing Wardrobe 2, the sleepwear edition, and my third pair of kids summer pj’s are now completed. (Which means I’m either half way through or I’ve finished depending on if you count a set of pj’s as one item or two.)

These are quite clearly made from the leftovers of my puffin t shirt.

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However there wasn’t quite enough so the shorts are made from some grey knit. I was a little worried that The Girl would reject the grey, as too grey-ey, so as well as puffins on the pockets and the waistband I added orange puffin feet. I’m quite pleased with these, the “toes” are sewn with my twin needle for an authentic raised effect (do a search or puffin feet and you’ll see what I mean) and you might just make out the claws that I zig zagged on in black. Not bad for 10 minutes work!

As you can see, they have been deemed acceptable. Yay!

Oh and the t shirt top is an version Simplicity 1573 of that I altered ages ago and the short pattern is the Domi Sweatpant shorts from Sofilantjes.

Ketchup

Or what I have been doing of late. ..

Well I finished the first Seasonal Sewalong Wardrobe, by the skin of my teeth, and by sticking to the letter of the sewalong (so including things I started before the challenge that I finished during it, which was allowed, but I hadn’t planned to include them,  however I ran out of time). My theme was Everyday Essentials, and as I’m a pretty scruffy dresser who has to resist the urge to dress like a toddler whose been given complete free range, two mad print t shirts fit the bill well, as did two pairs of jeans. I upped my style quota a bit by making a Mila shirt too. I desperately needed warm tops in my life, the planned awesome hoodie never got started (sorry Thimberlina, it’s still on the to do list), but I did include my camel jumper, and the top that it was a muslin for, my (unblogged) dandelion jumper. This was a long standing UFO as I printed the dandelions onto the fabric at the screen printing day I went to last year and then it got put on one side whilst I faffed about testing my pattern rubbing skills on the camel jumper (which required screens to be ordered etc). However, despite being made with the same pattern pieces, it doesn’t fit as well and I think I might like the ribbed neck even less than the failed collar. Hey ho, they are both comfy and will be worn lots. I also made a pair of leggings, but didn’t finish the skirt they were planned to be worn with, so they don’t really fit in. They do however look really good with the red skirt I made last year so all is not lost. Plus I have finally made a pair of leggings that I’m happy with, huzzah.

Things that didn’t make it into the SSW1 but are now languishing on my pile are: Another pair of Liana jeans that are driving me insane for no apparent reason, I think it might be the fabric. Anyway, the pockets are now done (I’m liking the illusion image topstitching but can’t help thinking they’d be better further down the pockets. Oh well, I’m not doing it again now as this wasn’t my first attempt at the pockets). A woven top that I found part made in a Box of Broken Dreams and was going to finish but just did nothing with instead. Another Mila, that will be a variation that opens all the way at the front cos I messed up cutting it out. And the Evan skirt that I got really confused by and then never finished, despite having a very lovely and comprehensive email reply to my query from the designer. Turns out I can’t read (my conclusion, not hers I should point out, but definitely a valid conclusion).

We’re now on SSW2, sleepwear, and I’m going so much better. I’ve done 2 pairs of pyjama’s, which I think means I’m 1/3 way through the 6 items I need with two months still left to go (and if I’m wrong, I’m 2/3 way through, but making more items is fine too).

The shorts are the Domi sweatpants pattern made in t shirt knit fabric. I measured both kids, there’s 18 months between them and 2 inches height difference. There was only about 1cm difference in their waist sizes and nearer 10cm difference in their hip sizes. Which is why, when reading the “if in doubt go with the hip size” comment I picked completely the wrong size for him last time, as I hadn’t figured out that doesn’t work if you have a beanpole for a son. I made an age 11 in test blue fabric and it fit both of them ok (when buying her clothes I get age 9-10 at the moment as she is tall for her age, you just don’t notice when she stands next to him). She ended up with the blue test pair, made from mystery blue knit fabric (no idea where that came from) and remnants from one of my tops. They come with a badly self drafted raglan t shirt top that got turned sleeveless as it was too tight under the arms – but I think it looks pretty cool like that now. It also has a bow at the front, which serves a double purpose of letting her know which way round it goes and hiding the mend where I accidentally cut a hole in it.  He got an orange and white/green striped pair that used a t shirt pattern I adapted before and the Domi shorts again. I love this pair of pj’s so much. I also like the Domi short pattern a lot better now I’ve worked out the sizing a bit better (but they’re still quite baggy on him), however I’m not convinced by the way the raw edge of the pocket is just zig zagged down – maybe it’d work better in sweatshirt fabric?

Fninally the stashbusting theme this month is selfless sewing, which felt right after concentrating on me for so long trying to get 8 SSW pieces done. As well as the two sets of PJ’s, I also made a hat for my friends daughter, to replace one that got lost.  Blue and elephants, with floral trim. It was very popular. Plus I squeezed a bandana out of the remainding fabric and she made a bracelet out of the scraps. Also I took the opportunity to give to her mum  the bag that I made ages ago, and then misplaced until very recently. Turns out it was her I gave my Drape Drape top too, which explains why the friend I thought I’d given it to never wears it.

I have now offically made more things than I can keep track of (including the pile of leftover fabric that I’d set on oneside to make into pj’s for the girl that I discovered I’d made into shorts and had no memory of whatsoever. They have been rejected by her, but another girl is now loving them, so all is well).

The Dog’s Pyjama’s

So, recently I made dog pyjama’s. Which is kind of odd, because we don’t have a dog. However, the kids have a teacher who not only has a dog or 3, but also takes one of them out and about raising money for a dog rehoming charity and somehow when we met up with them in town I volunteered to make a set of dog pyjama’s. (Not quite sure how that happened but I don’t mind as it was an interesting challenge and she is particularly great with The Boy).

Plan view

Plan view

Luckily I was lent a pair to rub a pattern off because I wouldn’t have a clue where to start. The pattern itself was interesting as the back piece turns into the back legs (although I ended up with a seam cos it wouldn’t fit on my scrap piece of fabric), the front legs are separate, the front/underside is a lot shorter than the back to leave a large spacious hole for toileting purposes and there is a funnel neck and cuffs. (This was a lot less obvious on the orignal as it was all made from the same (mainly black) fabric).

Folded in half

Folded in half

I used the pin garment through greasproof paper into carpet method to get the outline of the tricky back pattern piece and then took the average line from the left and right sides to minimise any drafting errors.

In action

In action

I used the leftover fleece from the Boy’s Birthday Hoodie and I didn’t quite have enough. I got a couple of plain black cuffs from a bit of other left over fleece and then I found some other left over hoodie fabric for the front legs. I even found the perfect sized piece of left over black ribbing to go around the opening. The end result is pretty stylish, if I say so myself! (I even put the one red cuff at the front on his port side 😉 ). Not bad for leftovers.

What a face!

What a face!

Dog and owner are very pleased as he can now be warm and happy at his agility class even when his other set of pyjama’s are in the wash.

Quickie

I’m still sulking with the stripey fabric I have to make Jalie 3132. As it’s stripey, I did my usual trick of tracing the pattern piece and then flipping it to trace the other side so I can make sure the stripes are horizontal (a much better option than cutting on the fold). But I couldn’t get them straight 😦 The general consensus of all the helpful people on the facebook stashbusting sewalong page is to cut full pattern pieces, rather than half ones designed to be cut on the fold. So, this is the plan, when I can be bothered to retrace 3 pattern pieces at twice the size they are now (the sleeves are cut on the fold two, which is a new one on me).

In the mean time I have made one and half pairs of modesty shorts for my daughter. She got 2 nighties for her birthday, pretty with a few flounces, just up her street, but they are indecently short. This isn’t normally a problem, but so I don’t have to hide them when we have visitors staying, I decided to make some shorts.

new shorts

new shorts

This was really quick, I used the Ottobre sweatpant pattern I already had traced out for her brother, folded it up to shorten it and left the pockets off. Job done.

she likes these ones

she likes these ones

I cut the waistband the same width as the pattern piece but half the height as it’s designed to be made with pull cords. There was an annoying small bit of ribbing leftover, so I traced around a biscuit cutter to make an applique butterfly. I even remembered to iron interfacing on the back (big help). I thought it would sort of match the fairies on the nightie but it turns out they’re ballerina’s, whoops. Never mind, she still likes them and I’m half way through the next pair.

Off to bed

Off to bed