Teaching kids to sew

A video taken a few weeks ago of my little girl making her first pillow.

Pretty darn cute isn’t she? I think she is on her way to being one good seamstress…then again I am just one proud Momma! As you already know I  have strong passion for sewing and seeing my kids show interest in it is pretty special. My kids are ages 3, 5 & 6 and they really are the perfect age to start learning. My three year old can be a little tough behind the machine at times but she is learning and that is what it’s all about. Heck I am still learning.

Don’t know where to start? Well Hayley from Welcome to the Mouse House and Jenn from A Jennuine Life have started their own sewing series centered around teaching kids how to sew.

Kids Can Sew by Welcome to the Mouse House
Welcome to the Mouse Houseand

Tiny Sewists by A Jennuine Life
69afaafc-22bf-46bb-a8e0-4ceaf8c9ea12_zpsae9a86d2

I am really looking forward to following along both of these series and hope you will too. Let’s get our kids loving to sew just as much as we do!

One Round Stuffed Chicken

IMG_3472 IMG_3490 IMG_3491 IMG_3492 IMG_3493

Pattern: Cute Cotton Creations        Fabric: Jo-Ann Fabrics

She wanted a sewing machine.

My little girl turned 5 a few weeks ago and for her birthday she requested a sewing machine. As you can imagine my heart just melted! After a little research I decided or more like she decided to go Janome Fast Lane Fuchsia Portable Sewing Machine from Amazon. Pink is her favorite color and this one really caught her eye…and I can see why. Once she picked out the machine she decided that she needed some butterfly stickers to go on it. So I purchased these Colorful Glitter Stickers. I can honestly say it was love at first sight for her. The moment she saw her sewing machine for the first time you knew she loved it! 
IMG_3067 What I am loving most about this machine is that it is small in size and the kids are able to sit and sew all by themselves. They don’t need to sit on my lap nor do I have to push the pedal for them. They are doing it all by themselves. I was a little nervous about their fingers getting too close to the needle but the plastic foot that came with the machine actually has a bit of a lip on the front so it makes it a little harder for their little fingers to get in there. I’m not saying it is impossible to them to get hurt on it, I am just saying it keeps them a little safer then a regular sewing foot. I also purchased the book  Sewing School to go along with the machine. Not that I need anymore ideas, but it is great for the kids to look through and see some ideas on what they can make. Most of the time they cannot decide on just one project. They have sewn with it almost everyday since we bought it. They all are loving it and as you can imagine I am loving every second of it too! The machine works pretty good and I really don’t have any complaints other then the lack of a light. It has jammed up a few times but that is usually when a little 3 year old is behind the pedal. So yes, I would totally buy this machine if I had it to do over again.

IMG_3066My little girls first project was a pillow for her foxy. I may be a little biased but I think she did an amazing job!IMG_3062 She was pretty proud of herself too!IMG_3064Do any of your kids love to sew? Do they have their own machines?

KCW Day 1 {Debbie’s Birthday Dress}

Kids Clothes Week has begun!kid's clothes week

Will you be sewing along? I will be for sure! For day 1, I spent a couple of hours making Debbie’s Birthday Dress from sewponyvintage on etsy. Suz from sewpony is the designer behind the pattern. The dress is a sweet little A-line style dress with a button and loop closure on the back. debbies birthday dress 083The pattern comes in PDF form and can be instantly downloaded and printed off at home. It ranges in sizes from 18 months to 7 years. The dress can be sewn in heavier fabrics like wool, denim or corduroy as well as quilting cottons. I actually love the dress in wool like the picture shown on the pattern cover, but I am trying to use up all of my fabric stash before purchasing anymore fabric.debbies birthday dress 090The dresses sew up really quickly. It took me about 2 hours to make both dresses. The pattern was very easy to follow and had lots of pictures throughout. It is a great pattern to try if you have never sewn a dress before. You will need to know basic sewing skills but you can make this dress without having to sew a button hole or insert a zipper. Even I like the idea of that.
debbies birthday dress 083I made one of the dresses into a shorter tunic length while keeping the other dress longer. And instead of using store bought lace or trim I made some ruffled pieces out of fabric to be added to the bodice.

debbies birthday dress 094debbies birthday dress 097 debbies birthday dress 099 debbies birthday dress 101 debbies birthday dress 103 debbies birthday dress 104 debbies birthday dress 109debbies birthday dress 106If you look close, you can see that I made the lined bodice pieces in the coordinating fabrics as well as the pockets and ruffled pieces.
debbies birthday dress 113 debbies birthday dress 115 debbies birthday dress 116 debbies birthday dress 118
Pattern: Debbbie’s Birthday Dress from sewponyvintage

Fabrics: Amy Butler Henna Paisley from The Ribbon Retreat, Polka Dot fabric purchased from Jo-Ann Fabrics

Flower: Jo-Ann Fabrics trim section

Project Sewn {The Little Black Dress}

Have you heard about Project Sewn?  It is just like Project Run and Play but for women.

Project Sewn is a 4 week sewing competition comprised of 6 designer/seamstresses.  Designers are given a theme each week to base their looks on.  These looks are then scored by their fellow competitors and are opened to an online popular vote.  At the end of the voting period the scores and votes are tallied together.   Then according to this combined score one designer gets “sent home” and one will be announced “the winner” for each week.  This continues until the final week where a 1st, 2nd, and 3rd place winner will be announced.
 

Just like Project Run and Play, Project Sewn has a sew a long group and the first weeks challenge is all about The Little Black Dress.

little black dress 001I used this pattern from McCall’s and as you can tell its an old pattern. The date on the back says 1979. I don’t normally sew from older patterns but I really like this one and will make more dresses from it for sure.

little black dress 015The fabric that I used was a medium weight knit of sorts. It has a lot of stretch to it and I’m not sure which it is but it has either lycra or spandex in it. The wrong side of the fabric is smooth and the right side of the fabric has a nice woven look to it. I really wish I knew exactly what type of fabric it was because I would buy more for sure. It is the most comfortable material I have ever worn! It was a little hard to work with though. Super stretching and smooth. It definitely challenged my top stitching skills.

little black dress 009The pattern was for a loose fitting dress so I had to do a lot of altering. This type of fabric just looks better as a more structured fitting dress.

little black dress 004 I did shorten the capped sleeves and made the dress fall about mid-calf.little black dress 007 little black dress 013 little black dress 011 Now head on over to Project Sewn to see what the competitors made. They are all simply amazing!

Ruched Collar Shirt

I have been making clothes for myself lately and have really been loving it.
collar tee 013I have finally dared to wear my creations in public and thankfully they stayed in one piece. Yes I was nervous about it so much that I always brought backup clothes just in case. Now I have to admit that I am still having a hard time taking pictures of myself. Taking pictures of yourself is really awkward, is it not?
collar tee 012 copyThe other night I made this ruched collar shirt and I just love it. It is super comfy! I simply used one of my favorite shirts as a template. The tee came together really quick and easy. I didn’t do any top stitching and I even left the edges raw. I am actually a fan of raw edges on my tees for some reason. The fabric is a nice sweater knit fabric that I purchased from Michael Levine when I went to LA for Fabric Weekend. It is lightweight and has a great stretch to it.
collar tee 016Who else is trying to do some selfish sewing? I still have a dress in the works that I must finish for a wedding this weekend.

Project Run and Play {Mad for Plaid}

This weeks theme for Project Run and Play is Mad for Plaid.mad for plaid 011This is one of my favorite themes…I love me some plaid! Luckily I had two yards of this plaid fabric in my stash. I had purchased it from Walmart when it was on clearance for $1 a yard.
mad for plaid 006The dress is a pretty simple A-line shape with fluttery sleeves and a ruffle on the bottom.
mad for plaid 009At the neckline I added a little ruffle down the front of the dress and topped it with some bias tape. I was going to add a button for a closure but decided against it in the end. It is kind of a fun way to make a dress with no closures.
mad for plaid 008The hooded cardigan was made from some more $1 a yard fabric from Walmart.
mad for plaid 010So the whole look cost about $3.00 to make.
The tights are from Target and are lined with fleece. The girls are loving these tights! The cute little boots are from Target as well.
mad for plaid 014mad for plaid 016 mad for plaid 017 Her reward for being such a good model!mad for plaid 018

Dritz Twin-Fit Petite Dress Form

My birthday was last week and I decided to treat myself to something that I have wanted (and I think needed) for some time now…a dress form.dress form 005  I had debated for weeks on what type of dress form to purchase. My logical side was telling me to buy a cheap adjustable dress form but my (hi, I want to be like project runway) side was telling me to buy a good professional dress form. And then there was my interior decorating side that wanted a cute vintage one. But as you can see I went with my logical side.dress form 006And I am so glad I did!  My body is pear shaped and I’m petite, but this adjustable dress form is me to a T. I know I would not have gotten this from any other dress form.dress form 008So this is a Twin-Fit Dressform by Dritz. I purchased it from Amazon for $121.00 with free shipping. It is sized petite. You can adjust the measurements at the neck, bust, waist, hips and at the height. Like I said, I was able to get my exact measurements on this dress form.
dress form 009The dress form is pinnable but it does not pin as well as I thought it would. I have read that using tape or velcro works well when working with these types of dress forms.dress form 007

The legs are a little wobbly and the quality is not the highest but I don’t mind. It does what it is supposed to. And I already LOVE it!dress form 010So do you have a dress form? Do you use it all the time?

“Grampa’s Candy” Dress

This weeks theme for Project Run and Play is Candy Inspired. I will admit I was completely lost on this one until it came to me one night. I was going to make a dress inspired by “Grampa’s Candy”. You see, my Father-in-law passed away a few weeks ago and he ALWAYS carried Life Savers around with him. He actually carried them around in a white sock and would ask the kids “Who wants a candy?” and the kids would all go running up and reach into Grampa’s sock to get their candy. It is one of our favorite memories of him and it just seemed fitting to sew a dress inspired by “Grampa’s Candy” for this week.grampa's candy dress 009You know them as Life Savers, but in this house they are known as “Grampa’s Candy”.grampa's candy dress 015To make the dress: I used some men’s XL white t-shirts for the top of the dress and for the circle skirt underneath. The skirt underneath is the base for all the ruffles. The ruffles are made from a thin white knit that I purchased from Walmart for $1 a yard. I actually love how the fabric is wrinkly as it resembles the wrinkles in the candy wrappers. And yes, a circle skirt since they are circular candies.
grampa's candy dress 010I used the same thin white knit around the sleeves and neckline.
grampa's candy dress 006It is a very simple design and nothing inventive but I wanted a dress that can act as a layering piece.
grampa's candy dress 001It is starting to get cooler here and this way I can add one of their favorite summer tee’s over it and they have a new outfit. I am all about getting as much use out of their clothes as I can.
grampa's candy dress 002And with it being made of knit fabric it is super comfy. I even tried it under a few pinafore dresses and some of their summer dresses that are sleeveless and it looks super cute! All of the ruffles give the other dresses a lot of volume.
And as you can guess it is a great dress for twirling.

grampa's candy dress 005
I happen to love the dress alone too. There is something about kids in white that I just love!
grampa's candy dress 011
grampa's candy dress 012

grampa's candy dress 014We sure do miss that Grampa of ours! Thank goodness for sweet memories of minty candies!grampa's candy dress 016

The Madonna Ruffle Top

 A few days ago Shauna from Shwin & Shwin launched her new fall patterns. They are all amazing but the moment I saw The Madonna Ruffle Top I had to have it!madonna tops 010The pattern comes in PDF form and is sent right after purchase, something I always love! That afternoon I quickly put the pattern pieces together and started cutting out my fabric. For me, cutting out the fabric pieces is always my least favorite part to do. So I have been trying to do this the day before while the kids are eating lunch.
madonna tops 002 The next day I sewed both tops in under 2 hours worth of time. They went together super fast and without any issues.madonna tops 003And as you can see my girls LOVE these tops! I used some regular knit fabric that I had along with some ribbed knit that I purchased for about 50 cents a yard a few weeks back. The colors look great together.madonna tops 005 I made both tops a size 4t. One of my girls is more like a 3t but I always make a 4t to allow for growth. For her, the top is more like a dress then a top and that is perfectly fine with us. This way we can pair it with leggings or tights and hopefully we can get a few seasons out of it.
madonna tops 006 I love how the sleeves can be shorter or longer just by pulling them up. The ribbing on the cuffs keeps them in place perfectly. One of my girls likes the sleeves up and one of them likes the sleeves down. Funny how they are!madonna tops 008 Of course their favorite part is the ruffles on the bottom.madonna tops 011And I would have to agree!