Saturday, 1 November 2014

Dressing up Disney Style;) with a modified Vogue 1314

       Never too old to dress up, especially if there's a Disney theme involved;) The Little Mermaid is, hand's down, my *favourite* Disney movie ever!! I loved it as a kid. I thought Ariel was so beautiful & I was fascinated with the idea of mermaids. So cool! I actually wanted to make a mermaid costume last year but found out that I was pregnant, so that costume went on hold till this year;) Dan was such a sport to dress up as Eric, my prince charming;) The only part of his costume I made was the red sash (a red rectangle of fabric with 1/4 inch elastic sewn along the sides to gather and seam up the back.

     I just winged it for the most part. Well, I had *some* idea beforehand but, I mostly made it up as I went. I really liked Kim Kardashian's mermaid costume a couple years ago. I just happened to notice a photo in our local paper and thus, inspiration struck;) I used my old standby pattern, Vogue 1314, to create a ruched "tail", cutting it just at the underarms of the pattern and adding a gathered rectangle of light blue fabric for the "fin".


     Here I have the lining and the tail fabric, right sides together, and used an overlock stitch to sew them together.

       Fabric turned right-side-out and pressed. I used a double needle to sew around the top to make sure the lining wasn't going to roll out. I attached the main fabric and lining on the inside, as the original Vogue pattern instructs. I left the lining hang free at the bottom, and didn't bother hemming, as it was a knit (and a costume). I attached the fin to the main fabric only:)

      I purchased this gorgeous sparkly turquoise "tail" spandex at Atlantic Fabrics. It feels very good quality. The "fin" fabric, however, I believe is just a novelty fabric & it was very difficult to work with. I had to create a casing for elastic to gather it, as basting stitches was impossible with the skipped stitches galore!:p The fabric runs easily too & has poor recovery. I was pretty much just drawn to the colour, but I suppose as it was for the fin, I didn't feel the need to inspect it as I did the tail fabric.

Looks like Pacman;)

     For the seashells, I made a pattern by tracing a shell shape (with a dart in the proper position;) on muslin fabric (directly on my body) and "truing it" as best I could & transferred it onto paper. I used a purple spandex that had a matte side and a shimmery side (was marked down due to defect on the shimmery side).

  I used a layer of fleece, left over from Isaac's Flounder costume, to "pad out" the shells slightly:) This is the back. I used the less flashy matte side to show, and simply marked freehand where I thought the lines should have been and stitched over them. Not shown, but you can see more detail in the photo below. I overlapped the shells slightly when I attached them to my costume. I added a strap because, well, strapless wouldn't do!:) I thought halter style would be nice:)

My self-sparkled wedding shoes:)

        If you're familiar with The Little Mermaid,  you'll recall the scene where Ariel comes out of the water in a sparkly purple dress. I thought these shoes would be perfect :) Nice to wear my wedding shoes again!

   Til next year! Thanks for reading:)

Thursday, 2 October 2014

Under the Sea;) with Simplicity 1767

    Wow, October is here yet again! And you know what *that* means??? Ohhh yeah!! It's costume time!!:) Yay!! This year, not only do I get to make *myself* a costume;), I also got to make one for my little Isaac! Dan and I were out shopping at Costco last week and there were a few inexpensive costumes out for baby, but what fun would that be?;) Besides, I'm going as Ariel, so I thought it would be fun to do a theme! I considered making a crab costume, but Flounder won out:)

 I think Isaac makes a cute little Flounder:)

"My" Flounder:)
The "real" Flounder:)

    Soooo, I scoured the internet for ideas for Isaac's costume. Although mermaid costume tutorials  abound on the world-wide-web, there's next to nothing for Flounder! I did find a couple of costume images that I used as a guide:

....and this one which is actually my favourite one that I've seen. I couldn't find anything but the photo (no accompanying blog post:(. It was helpful as a reference though. If Isaac was younger, I probably would've made him a bunting costume like this.

So cute!

 The resulting costume, doesn't he look thrilled??:) Oh well, at least Sabastian does;). I actually purchased this Sabastian online, to go with our costumes:)

My review on PR here.

    I used a basic one-piece baby costume pattern, Simplicity 1767, and added fins on the arms, tail & head to resemble Flounder. This is a pretty easy pattern, especially if you follow it for one of the views listed. Even with my modifications, I was surprised that I finished it over the course of a few days (which is fast for me!:). I started it on Monday and posted photos on Facebook last night (Wednesday) !:)

    I'm going to make something of a disclaimer here: I probably made this process a whole lot more difficult than it needed to be. I've never sewn any type of clothing for a baby, certainly not a costume, so it was a lot of trial and error since I think I botched the sizing (yes, on such a simple pattern, I admit it!). This isn't a tutorial per say, but I'd like to share my process. There's not a whole lot out there online for a Flounder costume, so this might prove helpful to someone!:)


     I printed a picture of Flounder to use to help me get an idea of how to arrange the back markings. I simply cut strips of blue fleece on the fold. I was going to make a template, but I found it easier just to cut freehand. I trimmed the pieces as I felt necessary.

Isaac sleeping why mommy sews, what a good boy!:)

 I used steam a seam & a press cloth (using a low temperature, fleece and irons are not friends!) so the markings wouldn't shift while I sewed them (maybe I would have been fine with just pins but I just love my steam a seam!!;)

Used steam a seam to secure stripes on tail fin before stitching..

   So, I *should have left a section of the centre back seam open so I could have sewn the tail into the seam, but I forgot! I used an overcast stitch too, so rather than unpick all those stitches, I did this instead...

Here the tail fin is sewn to the back, right in the centre back seam. I used a piece of seam binding on the inside.

I pinned the tail "pieces" together and sewed around.

     Sorry, this isn't the best photo. I'm sewing Flounder's "mohawk" fin into the hood seam. I just winged it, making a bigger fin than necessary, planning to trim it down to size later. More on that a bit later...

    Here I used the middle section of Flounder's fin (drew & cut freehand) and put them together and traced to make the bigger light blue part. I thought it would help make it more symmetrical. The light blue fleece is cut on the fold. I extended the middle piece, intending to trim off the excess later.

Note: I should have used a fabric marker, as Crayola washable markers bled onto my hands & sewing machine. Washes off easily, just annoying!

 Arranging the fleece sections...

   Sewing around the middle section (starting and finishing on the "fold line" to secure:) There will be a little section of the dark blue piece that is free, will be trimmed later.

    I basted the front & back of the costume together
so I could both check the fit and "fin" placement:)
Isn't he sweet!!?:)

Checking fin placement;)

 I marked the inside of the fin, where I wanted the
line of stitching to be, with chalk.

   I didn't take a photo, but I pinned the two flaps together and sewed around the fin to make it on piece.

  Dark blue middle part on the underside is trimmed away since I only wanted it to show on the upside:)

    Here I drew freehand, on Flounder's mohawk fin, and sewed along the marks, a couple of times, and trimmed the excess carefully...

 Ta da!!:)

  I used a smaller seam allowance to join the front and back pieces, as I was concerned it might be too small. I'll probably sew around it again closer to Halloween.

The back, with Sabastian:)

The front, also with Sabastian;)

Add caption

A couple more photos...

      So there you have it! In hindsight, it would have been simpler to construct all the fins and then sew them into the seams, but oh well, I was making this up as I went & it turned out ok I think. :)

Next up: Ariel! ;)

Monday, 28 July 2014

NewLook 6936

 "And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you."  Ephesians 4:30-32

       Hello sewing (and non-sewing;) friends!:) I finally have another project to share, New Look 6936 in view A. Although this pattern is rated "Easy, 2 hour", it took me a lot longer than 2 hours (oh, I wish I could crank out projects that quickly!) Maybe if I didn't have a now 2 month-old to take care of I may have sewn it faster. My hat (if I had one) goes off to any and every mom out there who is juggling parenthood with hobbies (and all the other stuff we do on a daily basis:)

        Isaac is sleeping peacefully at the moment, so yay, I can do some blogging along with coffee-sipping (household stuff can wait!:)

Mommy & me:)

       The fabric I used is a beautiful rayon jersey from, where else, Fabricville!:) I love their end-of-season sales where you buy 1 meter and get 2 free! I almost always get 1 & 1/2 of two different fabrics and therefore have material for two different projects! Yay:)

Pattern photo.

       Here to the right is New Look 6936. I've sewn it once before in view D, pictured below and reviewed here. My current dress reviewed here.

New Look 6936, summer of 2012:)

      I didn't take photos of the construction part because, well, this is such a simple pattern that it isn't really necessary. I suppose the only thing that may have been helpful was the sewing of the neck binding (I *loathe* narrow hems at the neckline, especially when the fabric is lightweight, as is this rayon). I just winged it, and cut a strip of fabric for the neck (like a t-shirt binding), and ended up with less than a 1/2" widthwise neck binding. I found that any wider looked a bit too sporty (IMO) for the this print of fabric. I also used Steam A Seam lite 2 to the sleeve and skirt hem to help avoid unsightly puckers.

More photos...:)

        So there you have it! If you're looking for an easy-to-sew summer dress, this is one pattern that is worth trying. Bye for now & happy sewing!:)

Monday, 7 July 2014

When life gives you lemons...

... or in my case, when you mess up what was supposed to be a simple sewing project, and in the end, it turns out better than you thought, that's what I call "lemonade";)

       Let me elaborate:) So I had this great rayon/polyester/spandex tropical print fabric from, where else, Fabricville. It was a great deal @ $5/metre. I've had somewhat of an obsession with Hawaiian/Tropical prints lately and was *dying* to make some kind of summery item with it. I was torn between making a skirt or a dress. In the end I decided to make a mermaid style skirt from a tutorial on youtube. I was in somewhat of a rush to make something quick (my last project, a Minoru jacket took a few weeks to do). I was in too much of a panic, and botched it up. Also, I don't think my fabric was stable enough for the intended project. Very sad face:(

     I vented to Dan and he, being the encouraging husband he is, suggested that maybe it would turn out better than I thought. I was tempted to trash my skirt, but decided to sleep on it. Next morning, I googled "easy summer dress to sew", for some ideas for another project and stumbled across this, the "Two Become One Dress"!.
My inspiration!:)
This lovely lady provides a free pattern, and though I hadn't used her free pattern (yet!) it was the perfect fix to my botched-up skirt! I had a black maternity shirt that was damaged, so I cut it across the midriff and sewed it to the skirt at the waistband seam and voila, I then had my new favourite summer dress!! I can't tell you how much I adore this dress! I want more!:) I wore it to church yesterday and received many wonderful compliments:)

      This is not so much a tutorial, but this is what I did to make this cute summer dress: :)
First of all, I laid my fabric out (folded), and cut around a pair of jeans with the knees folded up to make a pencil skirt of sorts. For the waistband, I winged it, and made a waistband that's the casual fold-over style you find on some workout pants.


My soon-to-be-hacked maternity top!

    I had to cut and re-sew the side seams to fit my non-pregnant midsection:) and then try on the top with the skirt to figure out where to cut my top before sewing it to the waist seam. Again, just winging it!:)

    Here, hopefully you can see that the waistband remains free. Not perfect, I have to adjust the waistband "gathers" whenever I put it on, but hey it works! The top is now sewn to the waistband/skirt seam and is ready to wear!:)

I didn't even hem the skirt! I just cut it across with my beloved rotary cutter and I was good to go!:) I like the longer length, I think it's rather sophisticated;)

      Here are some more photos....

And for your viewing pleasure!:)


Thanks for reading and happy sewing!:D