Mama’s New Shirt

After I finished the Bitsy’s new outfit, I cut out and sewed this cute Amy Butler top for me. It’s the Cabo Halter pattern and I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out — especially because it’s got a zipper. I used some sale fabric from JoAnn’s to make it, just in case I really messed it up. I think I’ll be making quite a few of these, since they’ll be perfect for our steamy summers.

The Ottobre top and bloomers I made Miss L are finished. They turned out so cute! I love the Heather Ross fabric and think it works so well with the set. As soon as I can get the young miss to agree to a fashion show, I’ll snap off a few pics and post them.

I think today’s project will be the oft-discussed-yet-never-cut-and-sewn green chicken outfit.

Oh, I completely forgot to mention yesterday’s big sewing news: I killed my sewing machine. My poor, $70 Brother cheapie from that big ol’ store I despise died during a sewn-in elastic waistband. It made this awful noise, I smelled some smoke and that was it. Goodbye, little Brother. It was a good 2.5 year run. My new machine is also a Brother and only slightly more expensive. It’s so quiet! And I love how it sews (the Cabo Halter was my first start-to-finish project).

Heather Ross Redux

I so love the Heather Ross fabric that I used for my sweet spring/summer purse that I pulled it out of the bin tonight so I could make an outfit for Miss L. When I’m done, she’ll have a sweet bikini-top-and-bloomers set that’ll be perfect for summer (and our upcoming trip to the beach).

Off to cut and sew!


Since my poor girl is not ready for her close-up, I opted to take pics of just the outfit — which is why the top of the bodice looks so distorted. Grr. Oh, well. You get the general idea. I love this Fresh Cut fabric! It is just so romantic and girly. I wish I could remember where I found the pattern for the flower. If someone recognizes it, will you please let me know? I’d love to give credit where it’s due. 🙂

This is the outfit Miss L will wear for her class pictures on Thursday. Perhaps the black eye won’t be as noticeable by then. Yeah, right.

ETA: Thank you so much to Autum for recognizing the flower! I followed Blair’s tutorial and can’t wait to make more.


I had plans to sew yesterday. I was going to work on an outfit for Miss L using that green chicken fabric. I ordered pizza and was getting ready to go when ..

One Frisbee, two teenage boys and a three-hour trip to the ER later…

My poor baby girl. She’s still asleep and I am dreading what her eye looks like this morning. Thankfully, no stitches were required and the eye itself is OK. But the eyelid looked just awful last night, all swollen and bruised and crusty from the tiny cut that looked much worse than it was because she wouldn’t let me clean it.

Groovy Cool

I stumbled upon the manual for my sewing machine a couple of weeks ago while looking for … something. I can’t recall exactly what. Anyway, I’d never read it. Not one page. Does that make me a bad person? Good, I didn’t think so. 🙂

It was nice to finally know what all those accessories that came with my machine are for. (It’s a lovely Brother that I bought for maybe $72 at that big store everyone — including me — loves to hate.) I have a zipper foot! I have a buttonhole foot! I have a button foot! I have a second spool pin!

Say what?

Yes, I have a second spool pin. It’s purpose? So I can use a double needle. See the fun things you learn when you read the manual?

I found some of those elusive double needles at the sewing expo last weekend. Tonight, I finally got brave enough to give one a whirl.

It’s so cool! I threaded it with two colors of thread so I could see and it’s just so neat! I did a double row of straight stitching and then tried a nice zig zag. I tried to take a picture but it’s like a cave in my dining room so there’s really nothing to see. I’ll try again tomorrow afternoon because I’ve just got to share! ha ha ha!

In other news … I got the new outfit sewn for Miss L. She’s been intensely cranky the past couple of days so there was no fashion show today. I’ll try tomorrow or else just photograph it without her modeling.

The Gumball Thief

I worry sometimes that I am losing my way around my camera. I’ve gone through a period lately where I have barely picked it up except for work — shooting static objects like crafts or food for the magazine — and I know that’s not good. I need to pick up my camera and use it, train my eye, improve my technical skills. Things that only happen with practice.

Today I spontaneously grabbed my camera and photographed my favorite subject, my daughter. She was amenable to it (a pleasant surprise!) and I was glad to play. My favorite, though, is this shot which shows virtually nothing of her. Or, rather, shows so much of her personality.

We have a gumball machine in our foyer. It doesn’t really “go” with anything and has spent more time in the corporate world in the past seven years, first at my office and then my husband’s. It’s been home since December and mostly ignored by the two year old until recently. She has discovered that the knob, when jiggled, yields the sweetest, most delicious treats she’s ever had. Now she makes her way down the stairs at least once a day to sneak a gumball or two — or three.

And here she is, caught in the act. My little gumball thief.

Plugging Along

I finally took my own advice and just did it.

I’ve spent most of this evening working on a top for my daughter, using the most beautiful Fresh Cut fabric. I had sketched an outfit for her months ago and when I saw the fabric, I knew it was a perfect match.

I sketched the pattern idea that I had after measuring L. Measure, draw, measure again, re-draw. I finally had something I thought would work, drew it onto some Pattern Ease and used it to create a bodice part from some leftover fabric. Tweaked the pattern and then used it to cut my real bodice pieces.

The realities of creating the outfit, however, are a little less fairytale-ish. I ripped out the seams — this one and that one — about six times, maybe more. Trying to figure out the best way to assemble it proved quite challenging for me. Accidentally yanking out the elastic did not help things.

Eventually, I figured it out and got it sewn up quite nicely. More or less. I ran out of the matching thread, so no topstitching until I make a thread run — and since I’m on deadline for the magazine, it likely won’t happen until this weekend.

Oh, well. I can occupy myself with making the coordinating pants until then.