Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Onesies! It's a wrap!

After two months with a baby, you start to prefer some types of clothing over others.  At this point, I prefer the kimono wrap-type onesies because they fit over the baby's head a lot easier.  In fact, you avoid pulling something over the baby's head altogether! Hee hee.  Inspired by this preference, I thought to make several onesies and an all-in-one in 2 sizes bigger than my baby's then-current size.  But, after lots of starts and stops, and a baby-growth spurt in between, I finally finished the sewing of the onesies, and they are actually his current size, and just slightly larger.  ((Insert "they grow up so fast" sentiments here))  I still have yet to install all the snaps, but alas, I've run out of them and am on the look-out for 8mm ring snap variety.  What's with me and the snaps, eh?

That one with the pirate fabric and red ribbing is my favorite so far!
Pattern: Warmly Wrapped from Ottobre 6/2014
Fabric: Organic Cotton jersey from Lillestoff in "Pirates" print
Notions: fine ribbing in red, a gazillion snaps, and stretchy interfacing G785 from Vlieseline/Vilene

Here's the all-in-one in progress...


Friday, July 11, 2014

My First Mabel

Sewing for two new shapes (baby + me) has been interesting!  My figure has definitely become fuller after having the baby, and it continues to change even now that I'm two months postpartum.  I'm not getting too attached to my new bust-line because I've heard everything shifts and changes after having a baby, but in the meantime...

Knits!  I've been sewing a lot with jersey in order to give me a little flexibility with this changing body of mine, and that adorable and speedily growing baby in my life.

The first project I tackled was a super fast pattern that I heartily recommend to those with little time to sew: Colette Patterns' Mabel.

I made a slightly more A-line adjustment to the pattern and added a lining to diffuse some unexpected bulges, but other from that,  it's straight from the pattern sheet.

Pattern: Mabel from Colette Patterns
Fabric: single jersey

For baby, I've been working with knit hemp and knit terrycloth in order to make some cloth diaper inserts.  I've since tested them, and they work really well! They're trim and really absorbent. I'll share the pattern as soon as I trace it digitally  ((we'll see when that happens! Hah!)).

Project: Baby's cloth diaper inserts
Pattern: self-drafted
Fabric: hemp knit, cotton terrycloth

And, those failed diaper covers were converted into breast shields.  Yep.  I just cut 'em up and sandwiched some soft interlock on both sides of the PUL fabric.  So sad to see all those snaps go to waste.  Oh well.

Friday, June 13, 2014

DIY Diaper Mishaps!

I love sewing as you all know. And, I thought I'd try my hand at making cloth diapers for the baby.  Already, we have a collection of cloth diapers that I used as references, but I started with The Nappy Network's online resources.  That website has a plethora of links, and I found a few patterns that I thought would work... collected materials: PUL (polyurethane laminate fabric), stretch terrycloth, hemp cloth, FOE (fold-over elastic), etc... and plastic snaps.  I bought a KAM snap tool and lots of snaps.  Little did I know that the snaps would be the weak link in this particular DIY effort.

my first effort - a bit wonky working with the FOE

After making a plain, unlined diaper (grey and yellow), I made a couple with the stretch terry lining.  These are basic diaper covers.  I installed the snaps and ran into a bit of trouble when I installed one backwards - sleep deprivation!  Then, I tested the snaps.  D'oh.  That should have been my first step.  I should have tested the snaps, but I didn't.  So, the majority of the snaps are the bulk, cheap, e-bay variety of KAM snaps and they do not want to unsnap!  The snaps fit so tightly into one another that they don't want to let go!  The PUL tore before I could get two of the snaps on the plain grey and yellow to unsnap.  Oh well.  I don't know how functional these first three will be, but I'm happy to at least get back into the sewing swing of things.

Have a great weekend, and I hope your crafty efforts are more successful than mine were this week!

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

MMM 2014 Wrap-Up and Thoughts

Wow!  I'm still trying to catch my breath after a whirlwind month.  May 2014 totally kicked my butt!  I'm still reeling from giving birth, and the steep learning curve that is early motherhood.  I don't know if I'll ever have a real sleep routine again, but I'm at least getting some shut-eye and getting out and about a bit more.

As a result of all the new routines in my life, MMM 2014 took a bit of a back seat.  I definitely wore mostly second-hand and me-made items, but I had trouble keeping up with photographing and posting regularly.  I think I may have to use my mobile phone a bit more to photograph.  Surprisingly enough, with the help of my parents being in town, I was able to make new items!  I made a white sleeveless nursing top with some success and I even finished a Baby Surprise Jacket for the little dude.

Project: White sleeveless nursing top
Pattern: Simplicity 2317 - with a LOT of modifications to Top "A"
Things to change for next time - choose a smaller size!  I added darts to the bust, overlapped the top to make a nursing tank, drafted a higher back.

This year's MMM definitely made me realize that I inherited lots of maternity clothes, but very few nursing tops so my goal is to make some nice, fashionable nursing tops to get me through the summer and fall.  My jelly belly is also quickly shrinking and all my favorite maternity trousers are getting too loose.  Believe it or not, I'll miss a lot of those clothes - they're so comfy!  Perhaps it's time to bring back my old clothes?  We shall see.  Even though I'm shrinking, my body has changed a lot and I will likely have to make some new items or adjust old ones.  And, I also realized I need a hands-free way to hold the little dude.  I use a wrap when I'm going out, but I think I need to make a sling or something that's a bit faster to get him in and out of... perhaps learn new wrap ties, too.  So many goals!

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Wide Leg to Slimmer Leg Trousers

My friends were so generous during my pregnancy.  They gave me so much of their maternity clothes, that I really only had to buy new underwear (when my attempts at making my own fell flat, or to my ankles in this case)...

Either way, one of the most useful items I was given was this pair of trousers that I wore constantly since the middle of my pregnancy.  And, post-partum, I'm still wearing them, but they're getting loose!

Here's what I did to make them my style:

They started out as these wide-leg Gap trousers which make me look even shorter than I already am.  Too much fabric at the ankles really made me look bottom heavy, and they were really not my style.

So, I turned the trousers inside out and placed my modified slim-leg Jalie jeans pattern over the trousers. I wrote about that here. The results looked like this if you recall...
I placed the hand drafted pattern piece over the trousers so the crotch gussets would roughly match, and drew a curve that would ease the new leg design into the already existing style.  I left a lot of ease so the change wouldn't be too dramatic. Here's what they looked like after serging and turning up the hem.

Finished the legs using a blindhem stitch and that was that!