Archive for the ‘Sewing’ Category

Combining Old and New

In Clothing, Sewing on September 10, 2013 at 10:51 am

In the middle of August my Great Grandmother passed away. She was 99 years old and unfortunately had been sick for quite some time. We were blessed to have her as long as we did and blessed to have her suffering come to an end.

Great Grandma Visit

We were going up to Chicago for the funeral and the visitation and I wanted something new to wear. I decided that this was a perfect opportunity to make something.

I knew that I wanted a high-waisted pencil skirt and a flouncy blouse. I went through the pattern cabinet here at home and found exactly what I wanted. Thankfully my fabric stash also had what I wanted; the shirt is a silk blend that I found at Hancock Fabrics on clearance a few months ago and the skirt is corduroy that I found on the $2 rack at Wal-mart 1-2 years ago.

Pencil Skirt Pattern Sleeve

50s Shirt pattern sleeve

The skirt pattern (from 2003) wasn’t going to be high enough on my waist so I simply measured from my hips to where I wanted the top of the skirt to be and added the inches to the top of the pattern.

The shirt pattern (from 1953) and normally (at least in my experience) vintage patterns are really easy to follow and easy to make. This was the first one I’ve found that’s been difficult. The yoke on the back was not lining up correctly and after many, many trials and errors I re-cut the yoke piece (smaller this time) and was able to make it work.

Funeral Outfit Front

I loved how it turned out and I’ve been able to wear the skirt with quite a few other shirts.

Funeral Outfit Back

The unfortunate thing with the skirt is that I lost an inch off my waist about a week afterwards (no idea why I’m sure it has something to do with being finished breastfeeding and no longer lactating) and now the skirt is already looser than I’d like it to be! Thankfully it’s an easy design and easy to take in!

Have you had any luck with vintage patterns? I’d love to hear about it!

Happy Crafting!


Quick and Easy Shorts! *tutorial*

In DIY, Momma Must Have, Sewing on September 2, 2013 at 10:48 am

Finally a crafty post! Here’s an easy project to do while you enjoy your last day of summer!

I found this fabric in the remnants bin at Hobby Lobby at the beginning of the summer. When I got it home I realized how little of the fabric was there! I loved the small polka dots and so I set to work finding a pattern for this little amount of fabric.

FabricOne of my favorite go-tos for projects like this is the book One-Yard Wonders. In the book there is a pattern for sleep shorts and I knew that was going to be my project!

Shorts Patterning Information

The pattern is simple enough.  Measure your hips, measure the rise (from your waist, between your legs and then back up to your waist on the backside) and decided on long you want the shorts to be.  Plug your numbers into the equation and voila! A pattern that actually fits you! (After making this I felt that I needed a little more room in the butt so next time I am going to give myself four inches for the back instead of three inches.)


Now that you’ve got your measurements create your pattern. I used basic tissue paper for mine.

Pattern laid out on fabric

Lay the pattern out on your fabric. Be sure that you allow room for any patterns.

Fabric Cut


Sides Sewn


Back Cut and Sewn togetherPut right sides together and sew together your sides. I used a 1/4″ seam but feel free to use a more standard 5/8″ seam. I didn’t wash my fabric beforehand so I used a small seam to allow for some shrinkage in the wash.

Crotch Sewn

Now it’s time to sew the crotch together. (Don’t you wish there was a nicer way to say that?)

***Would’ve been nice if I’d taken a picture of the hem, eh?***

Now that the shorts have been sewn hem the bottoms. Feel free to make this has small or as large of a hem as you’d like.


Waistband OpeningFor the waistband fold the fabric as you’d wish and sew along the bottom of the fold. Leave an opening for your elastic in the back of the shorts. ( It’ll be a good reference point for the back of the shorts when you want to wear them)

Elastic With Saftey Pin

The best way I’ve found to thread elastic is to attach a safety pin and the end of the elastic. This gives you something to grab on to as you work.

Elastic Sewn

Pull the elastic threw and sew together. Take care not to turn the elastic in ANY way so that it lays flat in the waistband.

Waistband Sewn Closed

Sew your opening closed.

Shorts On Front

Tada! Shorts!

Shorts on Side

Like I said before, I felt like I needed a little more room in the butt because I feel like they dip in the back. It’s not as noticeable as I thought but it feels very noticeable. Especially when I squat down.

Shorts on With Charlotte

Charlotte felt she needed to be in the picture to 🙂

Overall I love the shorts and I love that I was able to use this fabric! They were so simple to make and they look nice enough that I can wear them out to the store and yet they are super comfy as well.

I hope you all are able to make some shorts from your own patterns!

Happy Crafting!






Circle Scarf/Nursing Cover

In DIY, Momma Must Have, Sewing on May 31, 2013 at 6:54 am

Here’s another Etsy item! Circle Scarf DoubledI had bought this fabric a few months ago with the scarf in mind. To get the length I was wanting I bought two yards and cut the fabric in half lengh-wise to keep it from being overly bulky.Scarf French Seam

I used this project to try out a french seam. I thought that since you’d be seeing both sides of the scarf it would look nicer if it was a clean, edge-free seam. After I wrapped my head around how exactly to put the fabric the seam came together nicely, albeit time-consuming. Circle Scarf LongI LOVE my scarf. I’m hoping for some extra money to buy the same fabric in other colors so I have some more options; alas bill paying comes first. American Apparel Circle ScarfAmerican Apperal makes this scarf and has this great idea brochure on ways to wear it. So far I’ve kept it simple. If you have other ways you wear your circle scarf I’d love to see them!

I have also found that this scarf works great as a nursing cover! It’s perfect for those days that I forget to bring something extra with me for more discreet breastfeeding.

Nursing Scarf

Though Adelaide thinks it’s more fun for peek-a-boo. Oh well, what can you do?

Happy Crafting!

Easter Dress 2013 (Nursing Friendly)

In Clothing, Sewing on May 7, 2013 at 7:55 am

This year’s Easter dress was a little more fun than usual because I had an idea in my head and I was trying to match it. Thankfully I was able to match it nearly PERFECTLY with only a small change to an existing pattern.  The patten came from the pattern cabinet and was the first one that I’ve used that was a send-away pattern. I don’t know the brand but I know that they come from New York and the mailing date on the pattern was Sept. 1960.

I wanted the dress to have two different fabrics, the sides to be a solid white and the front and back panel to have a pattern. I wanted a square neckline so that had to be changed from the pattern and I wanted a full skirt using this petticoat that I had made before. This meant that I needed to add extra fabric to every panel equally so that the skirt laid out correctly. The dress also had short sleeves but considering that we had 13″ of snow the week before Easter I thought 3/4 length sleeves were a good idea.

Easter Dress 2013

I also noticed that on the pattern they had shown the design with buttons. I am not great at buttons and this was before I made the Hub’s vest and rocked the button holes.  I decided to add pearl snaps down the front and voila! The dress is now nursing-friendly.

Easter Dress Snaps close-up

Easter Dress Snaps Undone

I didn’t want to make a belt because let’s face it, I was tired. I opted to use a wide satin ribbon to tie everything together and I think it turned out well. I even got to have fun putting in a side zipper, which I had yet to do. I think next year’s dress is going to be a challenge because I’ll want to outdo this dress.

Easter Dress Back

Happy Crafting!