Saturday, 31 March 2012

rose garden dress

original dress from debenhams
this is s totally different copy of the same dress as for the denim dress. this time i included pintucks ( which are on the original). The fabric is perhaps a bit fussy but the geometrical design really helped in doing the pintucks and the button holes on the back. The construction is basically the same as the denim dress except that for some reason the shoulder seams were too narrow to attach the lining in the normal way, i just used zigzag stich instead - much less satisfying. I made the sleeves simpler too as there is quite a lot going on in this dress. The ribbon rose turned out well and is from a tutorial i found on line. I am pretty happy with this - it turned out very neatly

Friday, 30 March 2012

demin dress with bird shaped pocket

I've not posted anything on here for ages, I've not really made anything, but, I had a new baby girl in november and got my sewing machine up and running again. One of my friends gave me a beautiful dress for Baf (the new baby - its what her brother calls her - it has stuck for now - she may never forgive us) at christmas time - I love it, she is only 4 months now, her dresses look better in the hangers than on her right now. Too much pink or too many bows and she looks a bit like a tiny Grayson Perry so I wanted to make something that would suit her feisty charecter, A much loved blue cotton print shirt had recently worn out but I couldn't bear just to put it in the bin so I used scraps of material for the sleeves, collar and pocket. I traced roughly the shape of the dress back and front and cut it out in the demin and lining material from and old bed sheet, I sewed the shoulder seams together to attach front and back on both the outer and the lining, tacked in place the sleeves and collar. I then stitched the lining and outer right sides together around the neck. To stitch the arm holes I lay the dress out the right way around and rolled the fabric up so it was right sides together at the armholes whilst still being wrong sides together at the neck - difficult to explain - easier to work out with the dress in front of you, the last stage of this involves pulling everything through the loop formed between the neck and the armhole, with the denim being quite thick this burst some of the stitching and I had to fix with a needle and thread. I closed the bottom of the arm holes when i stitched the side seams on the dress and lining. The buttons on the back were added next - I find this stage the most frustrating - its a lot of faffing about but it is worth taking the time to do it right. The bird pocket was inspired by the shape of the collar - I am not very artistic so had to Google, print and trace the bird, despite this I still managed to get the wing upside down, it looks OK though. Believe it or not it won first prize in the dressmaking section at the local show - it didn't deserve to - there was not much competition - but what there was seemed much more accomplished

Thursday, 10 February 2011

beach trousers - north ayrshire style....

 Laika was going through one of her 'phases' a few months ago when she chewed a hole in the back of Mr Midnites best waterproof jacket. He has a shiny new one now thanks to the amazing sale at trespass in largs so she has been forgiven (ish).

anyway - I took the oppertunity to turn them into a pair of waterproof trousers for james. They sat in my sewing box for months - althrough the snows of december and rain and mud of january when they would have been really useful. Now I have finished then the sun has come out - not that I am complaining about that though.

Its the same basic pattern as all the other dungarees I have made over the past few months, I left the back open with cross over straps as it will usually be worn over a jumper and it is easier to get on and off as you don't have to undo them to take them off. I stitched a small piece of thick elastic between the base of the straps as it was gaping  a bit. the strap fastenings were harvested off a rucksack - it has loads of straps - they cant all be useful? well hopefully not anyway. The front zip pocket was transplanted directly from the jacket - so no fussing about with the zip was required - I lined the front sction and a strip around the waist with the fleece material left over from the dressing gown. I was going to line more of it but James couldn't really move his legs so I trimmed it right back.the hem at the foot holes is elasticated on the inside to fit snugly around the wellies, I used the elastic cord from the jacket to do this, and threaded it through the jacket cuff hem ( the legs are made from the jacket sleeves)

I did take some photos on the beach but they are stuck in some dark recess of my cameras memory that i cant seem to access

Sunday, 23 January 2011

everybodys happy!

 my sister gave me this fabric for Christmas, its dark blue fleece with large cars and trucks on it - I'm gussing she had james in mind when she bought it and not me!

Mr midnite immediately suggested that I made a dressing gown, I had wanted to make some kind of hooded poncho for post bath/swimming pool running around, but Mr M pulled a face and insisted a dressing gown with lapels, pockets and a little tie would be cute. He won, kind of, it basically is a dressing gown with all those things but I added an oversized hood and a button fastening on the front  so I can  can just do that up when he comes out the bath and let him run himself dry. the best of both world? Everybody's happy.

The best thing about working with this material is it does not fray at all - you can just sew, and go.....

The basic shape was based on the wizard's costume I made at Halloween which in turn was based on the shape of an Ikea sleeping bag. The sleeves are narrower - I made the too narrow initally - they need to have a bit of flare to allow the arms to fit easily - I had to re cut them but I was able to reuse the original sleeves as the side of the hood. this is the first time I have made a hood and I am pretty pleased with it - It fits pretty well and looks good too.

I made the belt out of a strip of the material folded over with regular seams sewn through it - I put the belt loops in completey the wrong place and had to move them - cuttung a small hole in the fabric :(

In the end I decided against pockets - there was a lot going on already - I might still add some

James loves running about in this at bed time - I sometimes regret putting the button and button hole on as it spoils the look of the lapels - but it is functional.

Saturday, 13 November 2010

reversible dress

 I wanted to make a dress to go with the shoes - The fact it is reversible is of no practical use whatsoever , I just had that idea stuck in my head and I had to do it. I had to line it with something anyway so it did not take much longer to do it that way.

The pattern I used was the retro-re-do dress by korpfan  which is free on the burdastyle site. I had to use a pattern as I have no idea what size and shape baby girls are! This was evident when I printed the pattern, cut the fabiric and almost completed the dress before reatining that something was very wrong - I had altered the settings on the printer and printed it out 20% to small! If anyone has a use for a dolls dress let me know! Anyway - I had to start again with very little fabric - I just managed to squeeze in the floral side but had to make the top of the pink side from the floral fabric - it looks like it was ment to be that way - honestly! The pink semicircles on the floral side are little pockets. The pattern suggests using fake buttons on the straps - I used poppers to keep it reversible and also because my material was not stretchy and I thought that the babies head might not fit through.anyway - all done and sent off - I hope she likes it!

Friday, 12 November 2010

tiny wee baby shoes

My cousin has just had a wee baby girl, more babies in the family is always a good thing , and, at last, a wee girl to make cute girly dresses for. I saw this clever little pattern for shoes from sweet pea patterns on etsy a few months ago - I am so pleased to have a reason to make them now. The detailed PDF instructions look complex but when you actually get down to it they were quite easy to do and not as fiddly as I had thought. I did initially make 2 right shoes by putting the sole on one upside down  but it was easily solved. I made the 6-9m size as I know how quickly james grew out of the smaller shoe sizes. I made a few changes to the pattern - I did not have any interfacing so I just used an extra layer of fabric - this made the shoes nice and soft but next time i will try them with the interfacing. I also did not fancy the idea of using glue as i wanted the shoes to be machine washable and safe to chew so i just omitted it from the uppers with no ill effect and used 2 small velcro circles stitched to the  cross strap as fastenings rather than attaching them to felt circles. it took a couple of hours to do both of them (including time spent unpicking and restitching the sole I put on the wrong way round). they are totally reversible. I like the pink side best - they look a bit like ballet shoes. 2 more of my friends are having babies this month - I hope they are all girls so i can make more of these!                                                                                          


 Winter has arrived - All of a Sudden - I think autumn lasted for about 4 days with its mists and mellow fruitfulness and now bleak novembers win's ensuin, baith snell an' keen. James has only 2 pairs of long tousers - both jeans and both getting a bit small for him.

I had had these tweed trousers for a couple of years - I did not realise when  I bought them that they were a hideous fashion disaster, but fortunatly for me, I worked in a pub at the time and the regulars there were only to happy to to tell me. Phew. I have not worn them since.

I used the pattern i had made for the blue linen short dungarees, just made it a bit bigger - far to big in fact - I had to trim 4 cm off each of the legs fold up a big flap in the front that then became the waist band. The waist band looks quite smart - I will try to copy it in future projects - it was a lucky mistake!

! used the pocket flap from the trousers fro the front pocket, everything went a bit skewif with the single welt pocket entrance under the flap - but nevermind, the flap hides it all. I used 3 buttons from the trousers on the front but the dog chewed off and ate the pocket button so that was replaced with the only other spare button i had - a big flat tarnished brass one

I am pretty pleased with this - it turned out way better than I expected. Its a shame james wouldn't pose for a proper picture of the front, he has now poked a hole in the front of one of the legs where the material was damaged from before so the dungarees are patched now and decidedly less smart