Creating With Cricut

This post was created in partnership with Cricut.  All opinions are my own.
#SewWithCricut #CricutMade #Cricut #Ad

Hey all!  Today I’ve got an awesome DIY project for you using the amazing Cricut Explore Air 2 machine!  I got this machine just a couple weeks ago and within about an hour of unboxing, had the whole thing connected to my computer and smoothly cutting out samples.

If you’re unfamiliar with the world of cutting machines let me just give you the teensiest preview: This baby cuts vinyl, iron-on, paper and cardstock, leather, chipboard and FABRIC to name a few (yes, fabric!! I’m already in love).

I’ve put together a fun video showing a step by step tutorial for cutting out and ironing on the flowers on this cute swing dress I made but I also wanted to share my favorite features of this little baby!
* It’s WIRELESS!  Excuse the shouting but I honestly am drowning in cords on my desk and am super short on space so I really appreciate a device that can cut from across the room.  And they even have a smartphone app you can design and cut from!
* It is beautiful and has handly little storage compartments where I can store tools for weeding, scissors, pens, etc.
* It cuts so. many. things.  Did I mention that already?
* It’s ridiculously user friendly.  I can usually figure out a device, given enough time, but guys – my MOM could figure out this thing (no offense, Ma, be we know you’re not that great with the technology).  Once you’ve designed your shape on Cricut’s super easy design site, you just set the machine to cut the correct material, load the mat and press ONE button.  It really is dummy proof.

You can read more about it and shop for your own HERE – Use coupon code ChristmasinJuly for free shipping (US only)!

Last thing…Today is just day one in an AMAZING line up of talented sewing bloggers who are featuring this awesome machine over the enxt 2 weeks.  Their projects are gonna knock your socks off, I’m serious.  I wanna grow up to be just like them all!  Be sure to check them all out and enter to win your OWN amazing Cricut machine at the link at the bottom of this post!

But enough talk!  Scroll on for the video and let me know what you think!

NOTE:  I essentially used this tutorial for my dress.  It’s one of the easiest dresses you can make and SO comfy!  Also, if you’re looking for the flowers I used in my design, you can find them here: 1, 2, 3, 4.


Enter to Win a Cricut Explore Air 2 

Week One: July 19th

Week Two: July 26th

I was invited to participate in the Cricut Party Blogger Program Kickoff.

This experience is based strictly on my opinion.  Others may have a different opinion or experience with the product listed above.  I was provided the sample free of charge by the company or PR agency and I have given my honest opinion.

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Cricut. The opinions and text are all mine.

Tiered Ruffle Skirt Tutorial + A Chance to Give Back!

Ruffles are all the rage right now; make an adorable tiered ruffle skirt for your little girl (or yourself)!

Last year I was involved with Skirting the Issue: Project Run and Play‘s massive effort to donate new handmade skirts to girls in foster care before they go back to school.  It was so fun and rewarding! I’m excited to post about it again only this time with a brand new tutorial.  You can learn all about the effort here, including how to participate yourself.  It runs through July, so let’s get sewing!

I’ve been seeing tiered ruffle skirts all over the place lately and finally got a chance to try to make one. I used this cute red & white polka dot chiffon from my stash, along with a white cotton woven for the lining.  Read on for the full tutorial!

What you’ll need (for a girls’ size 6):

1-2 yard woven fashion fabric (I used chiffon; you could also use quilting cotton, rayon, linen, or just about any light to mid-weight fabric)
1 yard lining (optional)
22″ 1″ elastic
coordinating thread

  1.  First we’ll need to cut our fashion fabric into a variety of strips, one of each of the following measurements:
    *waistband: 28″ x 3″
    *skirt body: 28″ x 6″
    *ruffles: 47″ x 6″ (cut TWO, 1 for top ruffle and 1 for bottom)Cut the following strips out of your lining fabric (or out of the same fashion fabric)
    *skirt body lining: 28″ x 6″ (optional – I only needed a lining for the skirt body because my fashion fabric was sheer)
    *top ruffle lining: 30″ x 5″
    *bottom ruffle lining: 32″ x 4″NOTE: As a rule, I always use a 3/8″ SA unless otherwise noted.
  2. Sew your skirt body into a loop by stitching short ends RST, and press well (if you’re using a sheer fabric like I did, first baste your skirt body lining to wrong side of skirt body before sewing into a loop.)
  3. Create waistband by also sewing short ends together (RST) and pressing.  Then fold waistband loop in half lengthwise (like a hotdog!), WST and press well.  (I didn’t line my waistband because the elastic made it opaque, but I probably should have for durability’s sake). 
  4. Sew waistband to skirt body: pin them together, with raw edges lined up and right sides together, and stitch, leaving about 2″ of the seam open. Press waistband away from skirt.
  5. Insert elastic: pin a safety pin to one edge of the elastic and thread it through your waistband casing until it comes out the other end.  Stitch raw edges of elastic together with a zig zag stitch, being careful not to twist elastic.  Close up hole in waistband seam and finish raw edges with a serger or zig zag.
  6. Take the top ruffle piece and stitch it into a loop by sewing together short edges, RST . Gather your ruffle by stitching 2 lines of basting, 1/4″ and 1/2″ from the raw edge.  Pull thread taut and gather fabric. Take your lining piece and cut each short edge down diagonally by 1″ so that the top edge now measures 28″ and the bottom still measures 30″ (this makes the lining piece more of an A-line shape so that your little girl can walk better in it)  Then sew your lining piece into a loop as well and then baste ruffle to lining.  

  7. Sew the ruffle to the skirt body, matching back seams and lining up raw edges.  Adjust gathering if necessary to fit.

  8. Repeat steps 6 & 7 with the bottom ruffle (only when cutting down lining, your top raw edge will end up measuring 30″ instead of 28″ – so that it matches the bottom of your top lining).
  9. Hem both ruffles by turning under raw edge 1/8″ and then again 1/4″ and stitching close to fold.  If your fabric is slippery, you can sew down first fold before folding a second time to keep fabric in place.  Press well. That’s it!  Super cute little skirt that takes hardly any time to put together.  I hope you enjoy this little project and let me know if anyone tries it for themselves!  I’m dying to make an adult version along the lines of some amazing inspiration skirts below!

DIY Summer Shift Dress

Having trouble looking cute while staying cool this summer?  Check out this DIY sheath dress with a nursing friendly option!

Hey, hey!

I’ve been holding on to this gem of a dress for a few weeks now, anxiously waiting until I had a chance to share it with you!  It may not look fancy or super duper exciting, but now that our Phoenix temps are regularly topping 110 degrees, I can confidently say that I reach for this dress probably 3 times a week (don’t worry, I wear lots of deoderant :).

It keeps me cool, it’s easy to wear, it’s cute and did I mention keeps me cool??  Read on for the pattern details (including my pet peeves about it) and a quick overview of how I made this little number nursing friendly.  Check it out!

Ok, so first things first: I used pattern McCall’s M7562.  When I saw @alexiasotelo’s version on Instagram in this same fabric I thought – “Hey! I have that fabric in my stash and I bet I could make that dress nursing friendly!” So off I went.  (I found the fabric at my local Joann Fabrics)

In the interest of full disclosure, let me just say that this pattern took quite a bit of adjusting to make it work.  First I added about 3-4″ to the length because I wanted it to come just below my knees.  Then when I did my first fit test, the thing just swallowed me.  My measurements were right in line with the size 12 but in my experience, the Big 4 patterns always run big.  Now to be fair, I usually size down in storebought patterns for this very reason, but I thought this time I could get away with it since the dress is so loose fitting anyway.  NOPE.  It looked like a gunny sack.

In fact, after looking at these pictures, I still didn’t love the fit so I took it in even more and raised the hem about an inch.  So the sum total of my alterations included taking off about 4-6 inches on each side, lowering the hem about 2″, as well as taking the armhole up a bit since it was huge and showed my bra.  So if I make it again, I’d probably size down 2-3 sizes.

Now on to the button placket…guys, I’d never tried a hidden placket before and I loved making it!  I kind of just scrutinized a RTW dress and top I have with one of these plackets and figured it out.  It looks so seamless and neat and really wasn’t hard at all.  In fact, if you’re nervous about buttonholes at all (aren’t we all??) then this technique is great because it hides any goofs you may make!

There are lots of tutorials out there for making a hidden placket in a jacket or shirt that opens all the way, but I couldn’t find one for a partial placket (i.e. one where the dress doesn’t unbutton all the way to the bottom hem).  So I’m making a video for ya!  You’re gonna love how easy this technique is.  Stay tuned!

More full disclosure: I ran out of time to finish the buttons and buttonholes before taking pictures so it’s just pinned shut here.  HA!

Lastly, if you want to save yourself the headache of retrofitting this pattern, instead you could use my instructions for this nightgown tutorial to make a dress instead! It’s basically the same shape; you’ll just need to make it a little more narrow if you want to slim down the silhouette a bit.  But ain’t nothing wrong with making a street-friendly muumuu either!

If you do decide to use the McCall’s pattern to replicate this, the only modification you need to make for the placket is to leave off the little V-shaped neck opening; in other words, don’t cut into the neckline as instructed in the pattern, only do so once you’re ready to make the placket.

That’s it!  Let me know if you have any questions about this one. I can’t recommend this style enough for the perfect mom-friendly summer outfit!  Check out the widget below for links to my shoes (I wear them more often than this dress!) and similar bag & earrings.

Patriotic Dress and Blanket-Tote

This easy sewing project yields the perfect patriotic blanket for all your summer picnics. Bonus: it folds into itself to use as a tote!

patriotic_dress_sewing

patriotic_dress_knit_diy

You guys might remember this patriotic sewing idea from last year when I guest posted on the Sugarbee Crafts blog. This dress and blanket are still some of my favorite patriotic projects so here’s some inspiration for you this summer! (Side note…do you believe how little Marilyn is here?? #allthefeels)

The dress is simply an Alcoy Dress made out of patriotic fabrics (red stripes from Girl Charlee several years ago, anchor fabric from a repurposed skirt)…read on for instructions on how to make the blanket/tote bag!

What you’ll need:

  • Large square of home decor fabric (mine was a 56″ square that I bought at Ikea; or about 2 2/3 yards of 56″ wide fabric)
  • 6 1/4 yards of coordinating bias tape
  • just over 2/3 yard of coordinating fabric for pocket and strap
  1.  Begin by sewing the bias tape around your square of fabric.  You can also choose to make your blanket two layers thick (a front and a back side) but mine was thick enough that I chose not to.
    picnic_blanket_carrying_tote
    You just sandwich the raw edge right inside the bias tape and stitch close to the folded edge.  If you look closely, you’ll notice that bias tape has one side that is slightly shorter than the other.  Be sure to put this shorter edge on top of the fabric so that your stitching catches the longer edge underneath.
  2. When you get to a corner, stitch all the way to the end of the fabric, then flatten our your bias tape corner as shown below.  picnic_blanket_carrying_tote_tutorial
    picnic_blanket_carrying_bag
    Fold the rest of the bias tape around the adjacent side of the fabric, creating a mitered corner like in the picture above.  Resume stitching right at that folded corner (you can use pins or binder clips to hold it in place).  Repeat with all four corners until you’re back where you started.
  3. Stop stitching just a few inches from the beginning.picnic_blanket_carrying_bag_DIYpicnic_blanket_bagUnfold the raw end of the bias tape and fold down horizontally about 1/2″.  Fold your previous folds back in place, overlap the beginning of the bias tape and sew to your blanket.picnic_blanket_bag_DIY
  4. Once your bias tape is in place, you’ll begin your pocket!  Cut two pieces of coordinating fabric into 14″ squares (you might need to adjust the size of your pocket if you make a bigger blanket than 56″).  Lay the pieces right sides together, and sew around 3 sides.  Clip the corners of your seam allowances and turn pocket right sides out.picnic_blanket_tote
    (A portion of my 4th side is sewn shut in the above picture but just ignore that goof! 🙂  Press all your seams and corners well, and fold in the open raw edges of that 4th side about 1/4″ to the inside.
  5. Create your straps by cutting a strip of your pocket fabric 40″ long x 5″ wide.  Fold it in half lengthwise and press.  Stitch down the entire long side opening, creating a tube of fabric.picnic_blanket_bag_tutorial
    Turn your tube right side out and press well.
  6. Insert your straps into the open edge of the pocket and topstitch this open edge closed.
    picnic_blanket_sewing
  7. Now topstitch your pocket to a corner of your blanket, along 3 sides, right along the bias tape trim.  Be sure the edge of the pocket with the straps is on one of the sides facing into the blanket, not along the bias tape (and leave this edge unsewn to the blanket!).  When you’re done, it should look like this:
    picnic_blanket_sewing_tutorial
    Voila!  All done!  Now just fold up your blanket like this:
    picnic_blanket
    picnic_blanket_tote_DIyFold it in half, then in half again lengthwise.  Then fold it into quarters, ending with the edge where the pocket is.  Turn the pocket inside out so that it surrounds the blanket and the strap hangs free.  Bonus: you can stash your wallet, phone, water bottles & any other essentials inside the bag when it’s all folded up!picnic_blanket_fold_into_tote
    picnic_blanket_DIY
    patriotic_dress_pattern
    Fun, huh?  Now I want to make all my blankets into blanket-totes!

A Fancy 4th of July – Ruffle Skirt DIY

Copy one of the trendiest looks this year with a DIY ruffle hem wrap skirt!
Ruffles are everywhere and this one is SO easy to replicate.

Hey all! Summer is here and our family’s hanging with friends and cousins, at the pool most days and living off popsicles :).  Before we know it, it’ll be time for Independence Day bbq’s and fireworks!

This year I wanted to make a celebratory 4th of July outfit (since a girl only needs so many American flag t-shirts) and I wanted to be able to wear it after the holiday as well.

This skirt was inspired by the myriads of ruffly wrap skirts we keep seeing this season and it turned out just the way I was envisioning! It may look complicated but it is so NOT. If you can sew a straight line, you can make this skirt!  (Or check out these links to my fave ready-to-wear versions!)

NOTE: These measurements worked well for my post-baby waist measurement of about 34″…if you’re significantly smaller or larger than that, you may need to make some adjustments, although a wrap skirt is very flexible!  Also, I use a 3/8″ seam allowance throughout.

Let’s do it!

What you’ll need:

3 yards of 54″ striped blue & white shirting (this is the fabric used to make men’s shirts and what I used, but any number of fabrics could work for this.  A rayon would be flowy and gorgeous!)
Lightweight fusible interfacing (enough to line a strip of fabric 54″ x 3″)
Coordinating thread

1. Cut your fabric into the following: 1 piece measuring 54″ x 27″ for the skirt body and 3 pieces measuring 54″ x 20″ for the ruffles (you’ll also have a scrap piece leftover – save this for the waistband).  Lay the skirt body on the floor and cut one long side into a rough “U” shape as pictured. My short sides ended up being about 9″ long on the left, 11″ long on the right and the longest middle portion measured 26″ long.  This doesn’t have to be really precise so don’t stress!

2. Now we need to add some darts to the top of the skirt in order to account for the difference between  hips and waist.  Wrap this piece of fabric around you with the straight edge at your waist. Pinch any excess fabric at the waist, in 2 or 4 different places, and pin.  (I originally only made two 2″ darts in the back (as you can see in the photo below), but after wearing the skirt once, I realized I need to add 2 more at the sides or front.). Sew the darts from top of skirt down and instead of backstitching, tie your thread tails in a knot (my darts were 7″ long but this depends on the length of your waist).  The amount you take in for darts should roughly equal the difference between your waist and hip measurements.

Hem short sides of skirt (I didn’t do this before adding ruffles which was a mistake!)

3. Take the other 3 rectangles (measuring 20″ x 54″) and gather each piece along one long side: sew a gathering stitch about 1/4″ from the raw edge and then a second row of stitching about 1/2″ from the first row. Pull your bobbin threads taut and gather the fabric. Sew your three gathered pieces into one long piece by stitching them together along the short sides.  Hem short ends of ruffle.

4. Pin the gathered edge of your ruffle to the bottom (curved edge) of your skirt, right sides together, by matching up raw edges and distributing gathered fabric evenly.  Stitch ruffle to skirt by sewing between your two rows of basting; remove any basting thread that shows on the right side of the skirt. Finish seam and press well.

5. Create waistband and ties by cutting remaining fabric into 2 long strips, each measuring 2.75″ x 54″.  Take one strip and add the fusible interfacing to the wrong side of fabric.  Then sew the RIGHT side of this strip (waistband) to the WRONG side of the top of your skirt (see pic below).

6.  Press waistband and seam allowance up, then press down opposite raw edge of waistband 3/8″.  Finally, fold waistband in half lengthwise and topstitch on the front of waistband, very close to fold.

7.  Now take the remaining strip of fabric and cut it so that you have 2 pieces, one measuring about 37″ long and the other 18″. As you can see from the pictures, I wrap mine so that it ties on my left side which means that when looking at my skirt flat on the floor (ruffle closest to me), the left tie is super long (that’s the 37″ tie) and the right tie is shorter (18″).  Sew each of these ties to their respective sides of the waistband and iron the ties so they lay like the waistband (raw edges folded under 3/8″ and then folded in half lengthwise).

8.  Finally, topstitch close to the open edge, all the way down to the end of the ties so they’re closed up.  Then fold under short raw ends and topstitch those too.

9.  Finally, try your skirt on by wrapping the left side over your body first, then the right side over it.  Figure out where you want your left tie to go through the waistband on your right side; add a buttonhole there.  Again, this placement is very flexible since you can tie your skirt as tight or as loose as you like.  Finish by hemming your ruffle and voila!  All done!

 

I hope you love wearing your flouncy flamenco-like skirt and showing off your mad skills.  Comment and let me know what you think of this ruffle-mania trend going around and if you’d wear a crazy number like this one!

Protecting the Perfect Purse

This perfect purse inspiration has been compensated by Collective Bias, Inc. and its advertiser.
All opinions are mine alone. #CollectiveBias 
#WorryFreeMessFree

Guys!  I’ve been looking for a new bag forEVER and even though I keep telling myself it’s ok to spend some decent money on a handbag I use day in and day out, I just haven’t been able to pull the trigger.  I finally decided to see if I could DIY one that fit all my criteria (i.e. big but not huge, pockets but not super segmented, room for a billion diapers and lipsticks, etc.), and I DID!

I’ve only bought one bag pattern before (the super tote from Noodlehead) and I loved it so much that I decided to see if Anna had another tote pattern that might work for this project.  I snatched up the Explorer tote pattern this time and love it just as much!  It was a lot of fun to make using this southwestern-y home decor fabric and some vinyl for a sturdy bottom and straps.

I’d been meaning to make a bag out of this black and white geometric print for months (years??) and now that it’s done, I’m so happy I used it!  The only problem being, it’s mostly white.  And I have kids.  Like a a whole passel of them.

Enter, Scotchgard™ Fabric & Upholstery Protector.  When I was a kid, my mom used Scotchgard™ Products on everything. I’m the oldest of 5 kids, so my mom knew all about never having nice things.  Since I added the vinyl to this bag, I knew throwing it in the washer wouldn’t be an option, so I grabbed some Scotchgard™ Fabric Protector at Lowe’s (in the cleaning supply aisle) and gave my bag a once over!  You can learn about all of the Scotchgard™ line of products here.

And it was super easy!  I just followed these simple instructions:

  1. Went outside in the yard to avoid spraying anything else (but if you do accidentally, just wipe it off quickly).
  2. Shake the can well.
  3. Make sure your fabric is colorfast: spray on an inconspicuous area and then rub with a white cloth.  If any color comes off, don’t use it!!
  4. Hold the can upright, about 6″ from the fabric surface. Use steady, sweeping motions and overlap slightly.  Two light coats are better than one heavy one!
  5. Let dry between coats.
  6. Be sure to reapply the product after a cleaning, every 6 months or sooner depending on amount of use.

And that’s it!  It was super simple to use, didn’t have any horrible smell and it really did leave my purse feeling exactly the same.  No stiffness or sticky residue.  It can also be used on decorative pillows, couches, curtains, clothing (!), backpacks, ball caps, upholstered dining chairs, and more.  I’m seriously gonna take this stuff to my entire living room since I’m so sick of yelling at kids for eating on furniture they’re not supposed to mess up. #momlife

I’m really happy with how the entire bag turned out and can’t wait to put it to good use.  I’m also dreaming up a more colorful version in the near future!

If you’re tired of cleaning up the messes of life, get your buns over to Lowe’s and grab some of this Scotchgard™ Fabric Protector for your nice things.  And don’t forget to take along this coupon deal for $1 off!

DIY Ruffle Sleeve Top

This super simple ruffle sleeve top is sure to be a new favorite and is totally on trend!  Check out the full tutorial…

I haven’t done too much sewing for myself in the last year or so; pregnancy and birth makes for an ever changing body that’s tricky to fit!

But I’m SO glad I started again and gave this top a try because it is currently my very favorite shirt out of my whole closet. It skims over my belly bulge without being too boxy, it’s got a cute sleeve detail and anything black and white striped is just classic.  I was inspired by a similar top from J. Crew a few months ago and I can’t imagine I’d love the original any more than this one!

It’s super duper easy to recreate, I just encourage you to find the best quality knit fabric you can find.  A sturdy knit (like a cotton/spandex blend) will make all the difference in drape and durability.  I’ve also included a link to an illustration with cutting instructions and all the measurements I used; my shirt fits like a size medium/large.

Ready? Let’s get making!

Supplies:

1-1.5 yards high quality stretch knit
Coordinating thread
Get the illustration with all my measurements here

1. Grab a T-shirt with a great fit to use as a template.  Fold your fabric in half (with the stretch running perpendicular to the fold) and your ready-to-wear (RTW) tee in half lengthwise (from neckline to hem). Lay your RTW tee on your fabric, with folds aligned, and cut out your front bodice by following the lines of your tee.  Be sure to leave a seam allowance  along the shoulder, armhole and side seams (I usually eyeball about 1/2″) and a hem allowance along the bottom (about 1″).

2. Do the same thing for your back bodice and sleeves.  Be sure that the stretch of your fabric is running around the circumference of your sleeve (from underarm seam to fold).  Cut out 2 sleeve ruffles measuring 35″ x 5″ (the direction of stretch doesn’t matter on the ruffles). Be sure to save a long scrap for your neckband!

3.  With right sides together (RST), sew your front to back along shoulder seams and side seams.  Finishing the seam (with a zig zag or serger) is optional with knit fabrics.

4. Sew your first sleeve into a tube by folding it in half lengthwise, RST, and stitching along the straight edge. Repeat with the second sleeve.

5. Create your ruffles by first sewing the strips into tubes: fold them in half widthwise RST and stitch along the short ends.  Next, gather them along one opening: I like to sew a basting stitch about 1/4″ away from the raw edge, then another basting stitch about 1/4″ from the first line of stitching.  Pull the bobbin thread taut from each line of stitching while pulling the fabric into gathers.

6. With sleeve RIGHT side out and ruffle WRONG side out, slip the bottom of the ruffle over the bottom edge of the sleeve.  Match up gathered edge of ruffle to bottom edge of sleeve and pin, adjusting gathers to fit.  Stitch in place; remove any basting stitch that shows on the right side, if necessary.

7. With bodice WRONG side out and sleeve RIGHT side out, insert bottom of sleeve into bodice armhole until top of sleeve and bodice armhole are flush; pin raw edges together, matching seams and stretching to fit, if necessary.

8. For the neckline: measure around the opening of your neckline and subtract 2″ (give or take 1-2″ depending on the stretchiness of your fabric. This is kind of a trial and error thing!). Cut out a neckband measuring this number x 2″. For example, if your neckline measures 21″, then your neckband would need to be 19″ x 2″.  Stitch neckband into a tube by sewing together along short sides, RST. Fold tube in half lengthwise (wrong sides together) and press.

9. Pin neckband to neckline RST by matching raw edges, with neckband seam in center of bodice back, and by inserting pins evenly in 4 places: at shoulder seams and at center front and center back. BASTE neckband to bodice, stretching to fit.  At this point, try on your shirt to determine if the neckband is the proper length.  It should lie flat without any puckering or flopping over.  If so, you’re ready to stitch it on securely, if not, take the band off and either cut it slightly shorter or cut a new longer one!

10.  Once you’ve stitched neckband in place, finish the seam with a zig zag stitch or serger.  Press seam allowance towards bodice, then topstitch close to seam on bodice side using a double needle.  It’s very important that you NOT stretch the fabric while topstitching so that the neckline doesn’t end up wavy and stretched out.

11.  Hem sleeves and bottom of shirt by topstitching with a double needle.

And you’re done!  Try it on and admire your handiwork…doesn’t it look amazing??

Photos by Let Me See You Sparkle

Easter Sewing

Check out the full line up of all the girls’ Easter dresses! 


You guys! I can’t believe I pulled it off, but I got dresses made for all my big girls in time for Sunday. It’s an Easter miracle!

Of course I had planned to make a dress for baby Alice as well, and then decided it wasn’t worth the effort for something she’d wear for 3 months. The first two and a half dresses I sewed at a leisurely pace a week ahead of time..and then the last one and a half dresses I finished on Saturday. At 10pm.  Because if you’re not doing things at the last possible minute, you’re not living, am I right??

I used the Infinite A-line dress pattern and hacked it into a pinafore following the instructions that I posted last week.

My dress is also me made, from a couple years ago (details here).

While I love fresh spring outfits and the opportunity to celebrate with family, around here we try to remember that the real reason for Easter is the resurrection of our Savior, Jesus Christ.

Because of Him we can hope for a future free of pain and suffering. He’s given us hope for a life full of joy with our loved ones and because of Him, we don’t need to fear death!  I can’t think of a single gift more important and life-changing than that.

Hope you had a wonderful Easter!

(P.S. Baby Alice didn’t make it into the pictures cause she was asleep in the carseat and I pretty much never wake a sleeping babe!)

Easter Pinafore Pattern Hack

Another simple yet adorable Infinite A-line pattern hack – just in time for Easter!

I was really hesitant to commit to sewing everyone Easter dresses this year. After all, I have a newborn and five girls to sew for.  Some people might call that crazy.

But crazy has always held a certain appeal for me.

When designing this dress, I was really inspired by all the gingham popping up everywhere lately; it just screams spring to me! I also really wanted to make another pinafore style like this one I did last year.

This is another Infinite A-line pattern hack, although I decided to keep the back bodice piece on this one instead of just using straps.

To create this style, I followed the Infinite A-line dress instructions for View D and just discarded the side bodice pieces instead of sewing them to the center & ruffles.

Then I loosely followed these instructions to create a waistband and facing.  After you’ve cut them out, you’ll sew the short ends of each piece together, to create 2 loops.  Place 4 pins in the band and facing, all equidistance apart (one pin will be in the seam you just sewed).  Pin the band and facing to the front and back of bodice (as shown in the other tutorial), matching 2 of the pins in band/facing with the centers of the bodices.  Be sure the seam you just sewed is on the side of the dress so it won’t be as visible.  Then sew the bands to the bodices and continue following the other tutorial to attach the skirt.

It’s really a very simple and straightforward dress… the only problem I had was accidentally serging a big HOLE in the center of the waistband after thisone was almost complete! It was also after midnight at the time and I admit, I cried a little bit.

But all’s well that ends well! And now I just have six days to sew four more dresses. I can do it right??

Pray for me.

Get your own copy of the pattern HERE and let me know what you’re making for Easter this year!

(You can find the tutorial for this woven Easter basket HERE – the bottom zips off so that it stores flat!
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Chubby Thighs and handmade shorts

An easy refresh for any kid’s summer wardrobe: shorts!

It’s been quite a while since I sewed something super simple for my kids; I’m always full of ideas for new pattern hacks and designs so it’s refreshing to go back to the basics!

Our sweet Mimi is a total chunk of a baby and after pulling out summer clothes recently, I realized that she can’t fit into a single pair of shorts her sisters wore before her!  I decided to pull out the Kid Shorts pattern from Made Everyday to whip her up a couple pairs.

GUYS, she’s not even 2 years old yet (her birthday’s in a few weeks) but I ended up making her a size FOUR!  Her little thighs and belly are hilariously chubby.  In fact, her waist measurement is a whopping 1/2″ smaller than Kira’s, who is almost 6…haha!

I love all three of these pairs; I made the shorter racer shorts with bias trim for two of them because they are THE easiest ever!  Seriously, after cutting out fabric, I think they each took me about 20 minutes to sew.  A great way to amp up a kid’s wardrobe in just one afternoon.

I think the cute animal print pair are my favorite…which do you like best??