KCWC Day 6 + 7 – Striped Swing Coat and a Recap

KCWC is officially over!  I have one final project to share that I worked on over the weekend – it’s a the Stylish Double Breasted Coat pattern from Dear My Kids.

I totally stole the idea to make this coat from Jessica, when she mentioned it in her KCWC planning post.  And then she didn’t even make hers.  Hehe, I basically stole her project.  Thanks Jessica!  :P

The pattern was pretty simple and very easy to follow.  I made the coat in the 2T size and didn’t bother making any adjustments.  The coat came out super long on Yuki – It’s about the length of a dress and I have to fold the sleeves up.  I probably should have looked at the measurements and shortened everything, but I wasn’t thinking.  Now the coat will fit her for several years! :)

I made the coat in a striped knit (continuing the knit theme of my KCWC collection) and lined it with a really soft cream colored knit.  I added a layer of fleece in between and so the coat is SUPER soft, thick and warm.

Of course, with the jacket getting so thick, I did have trouble sewing some parts and in fact, I since there was no way of getting the buttonhole foot to work, I decided to hand sew the button holes.  The first tutorial I looked up was a basic blanket stitch around the buttonhole.  I kinda like it/kinda hate it.  While it’s got a cute hand stitched touch, it also looks a bit messy and frankensteiny.

I think this could be really cute on a different type of garment, if done well, in a contrasting thread for a decorative look.  I’ll try remember that for later.

Anyways, I’m done!!  I checked off the 6 main things I had on my KCWC list.  I feel a pretty huge sense of accomplishment for not only finishing 6 garments but because I tackled knits – which I’ve always been a bit scared of.  I’m by no means a knit expert now, but I feel a bit more confident about sewing with knits and won’t be scared off by them so easily.  I finally learned how to use my serger and I’m feeling more confident about using that too.  And I LOVE it!  I’ll be using it on all my garments from now on.  I don’t know why I was so afraid of it!

So here are the things I made last week.  Oh, and I should clarify – KCWC is a challenge to sew for an hour each day for a week, but since I sew that much on a weekly basis, I like to challenge myself a little differently.  Last week, I decided to make Yuki a fall wardrobe that is appropriate for her active toddler lifestyle :)  (click on the photo to check out the post)

Phew!  What a fun week!  If you haven’t already, you should definitely go check out the elsie marley flickr pool where everyone has been uploading their KCWC creations.  There is so much amazing inspiration there and browsing through all the pictures is my favorite part of KCWC.  If you didn’t participate this time, don’t worry, there will be another one in the spring!  Thanks so much for hosting, Meg!

Alright, back to work.  You’d think that after so much sewing in one week, I’d be burnt out, but I’m actually really pumped to tackle more projects.  This week I’ve got some custom order stuff I’m working on, pattern testing, a tote bag I want to make and maaaaybe something for me?  Plus I’m itching to make a dress after all this unisex knit stuff I’ve been working on :)

Happy Monday!

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KCWC Day 4 + 5 – Greenpoint Cardigan

So my latest KCWC project is the Greenpoint Cardigan, a pattern by Adrianna of Crafterhours.  She recently started a new pattern shop, hey june, and this is her first pattern for sale (wow, that’s a lot of links).  Adrianna was kind enough to send this pattern to me as a gift, but all opinions are my own.

The fabric that I used was a knit from Joann’s with a gray plus sign pattern all over it.  I rarely see knits with cool prints on it, and I thought this was pretty neat.  For the wristband/waistband/neck binding, I used a tissue thin soft knit (same one I used for the FBST I made earlier this week).  This turned out to be a total mistake because it’s so thin that it doesn’t hold its shape well and sags around the chest (you can see it folded in the picture below).  Looking back at the pattern, I notice that Adrianna TOTALLY warns against using this super thin stretchy stuff, but of course I didn’t realize that earlier – I just thought it was a pretty color.  I still have a lot to learn about knits . . .

I went with the colorful buttons with my sister’s advice.  I think it adds fun and youth to an otherwise more serious print.

The pattern is great.  It is well written and the diagrams are clear.  Overall the cardigan is pretty simple to construct and sews up super quick.  The size is worked out well for Yuki – I made hers in size 2 and I can tell it’ll fit her for awhile.  The only adjustment that I made was to shorten the sleeves.  I love that it is a basic pattern with lots of room for remixing.  And I LOVE a good unisex pattern too :)  I highly recommend this pattern for your library.  It’s a great go-to pattern and I will definitely be making up a few more of these.  You can find it here.

I’ve been seeing a bunch of Greenpoint Cardigans popping up this KCWC.  You can check out Adrianna’s here and here, plus these ones on Zaaberry, Running with Scissors, and
Boy, Oh Boy, Oh Boy!

This is how Yuki smiles when I ask her to smile.  Awesome, huh?

So how are you feeling?  The week is winding down, but technically, there are still two days left of KCWC.  Are you still sewing or finishing up?  I have one more project that I want to tackle before the week is done.  We’ll see if I have it in me.

KCWC Day Three – Orange Skinnies

So I’ve gotten a little behind on blogging.  Today is day 4 of KCWC, but I’m blogging what I made yesterday on day 3.  Yesterday’s project was a pair of pumpkin orange knit pants.  They are meant to be skinny in the legs, but they turned out pretty baggy everywhere else.  I guess it’s good that they are loose enough for her to move around in.

It’s a pretty basic pant from a self-drafted pattern.  I was going to go full faux fly with a button closure, but I got lazy and switched to a flat front/elastic back waistband.  The last knit waistband I made got a little slouchy, so this time I used a couple extra layers of knit and reinforced it with a few lines of stitching.

I added some striped knit fabric in the pockets and a couple of subtle stars – just for fun.  Stars have kind of become my lil trademark.  I’ve loved stars for a long time and I think I transferred that borderline obsession to Yuki :)

Yuki’s also wearing her Crossed Shoulder Vest (I re-did the shoulders to bring them in a bit) and those shoes were TOTALLY her pick.  Guess she likes color :)

For just another pop of color (cuz this outfit didn’t have enough already), I added a bit of blue on the inside hem of the bottom of the pants that show when you fold the pants cuff up.

I realize that this is a very boy-ish outfit, but I like it.  I think it suits Yuki’s personality pretty well and is perfect for school.  It can, of course, be paired with other things if I wanted to “girly” it up a little bit.  But she approved of it – so I’m happy :)

I have 2 more things left on my list that I’m hoping to finish.  How’s your list coming along?  Do you sew all the way through Sunday to complete the full week?  Feeling tired or still pumped?

KCWC Day Two – Flashback Tee and Basic Pants

Day Two, people!  Today I have a Flashback Skinny Tee that I made on day one, and a pair of super comfy simple pants (based off of Dana’s Basic Pants) that I finished this morning.

The tee is made with Rae’s pattern and it’s my first time sewing it up as a regular tee.  The only other time I’ve used this pattern is for this cardigan.  It’s a great pattern to have in your collection because it’s such a classic style.  I can imagine making a good solid handful (in long and short sleeve) in every size – it’s a wardrobe staple.

The brown and blue knit that I used is suuuuuper thin and soft, so it was a bit tricky to work with (the machine tried to eat it several times, just like Meg’s!), but it worked out OK in the end.  And the finished shirt is really comfy – Yuki didn’t want to take it off and she wore it to bed!

The pink pocket was added for a fun splash of color.  I decided to just cut a rectangle and sew it to the shirt without folding or finishing any of the edges.  A very raw look.  I like how the top of the pocket rolls out.

The back pants pocket was originally made for the shirt, but I didn’t like it, so I used it on the pants instead.  This pocket is finished on three sides, but has two unfinished edges on the top.  Double roll.

The knit that I used for the pants is a super thick, comfy, cozy, warm, delicious white-with-gray-pinstripes knit that I got for super cheap.  It reminds me of a new sweatshirt.  I bought a lot and I’m hoping that there is enough leftover to make something for me!  So these pants are basically sweatpants, but I wanted them to look like a regular pair of pants and I think the stripes and pockets help make them look more trouser-ish.

They were made based off of Dana’s Basic Pants tutorial and pattern.  I used her pattern for the shape and then resized it to fit my tiny 2 year old.  I also added a separate waistband (on top of the original pattern, which is meant to be folded over), which was great because it added to the rise of the pant.  I feel like most of the pants/shorts I’ve made for Yuki have not fit well because there is not enough room for her enormous diaper booty, but this pant has great coverage!

The one thing that I could have changed is maybe adding another layer of fabric (or interfacing) to the front of the waistband, because it slouches a bit.  But it’s probably comfy this way and the pants stay up just fine, so it’s all good.

Maternity pants!!  She looks a few months along.  JK!  Don’t they look comfy though?  I wish I could get away with wearing elastic waisted sweat pants all day.

So I feel like I got off to a great start, but I’m already exhausted and I think I’m getting sick!!  Time to slow down a bit.  How was your day two?  Are you just getting rolling or are you already burning out like me?

Time for sleep.

KCWC Day One – Crossed Shoulder Vest

Happy Indigenous People’s Day!  And Day 1 of KCWC Fall 2012!  What a fun day it has been!  Did you get to sew?

For this KCWC, I thought for a long time about what I wanted to make.  While you can spend the time making whatever you want or need, I decided to make it a little extra fun for myself and try to pick a theme or tie all the pieces into a collection (I think I’ve been watching too much Project Runway).  I started thinking about what kind of clothing Yuki might need and I remembered her preschool mentioning that as she’s potty training, she’ll need to wear elastic waistband pants that are easy to pull off and on.  And in general, she needs some simple clothes for school that is comfortable and practical, but with some style (of course ;)).

So I developed this idea into a list of fall separates that Yuki can mix and match with each other and other things in her wardrobe.  And they will all be KNIT.  Though it’s been almost a year since my first successful knit project and I’ve definitely tried using it here and there since then, I am still pretty intimidated by it and it is certainly not my first choice in fabrics.  But it seems so practical for children’s clothing that I figured I should just tackle it head on.  Plus it’s the perfect opportunity to force myself to learn how to use the lovely serger that has been sitting around oh so long without being touched because I was too scared!

So to describe my KCWC Fall collection (which only exists in my mind at this point), I’d say – fall separates, knit, unisex, simple/classic, bold colors, solids and stripes.  I’m not going to be making anything breathtaking here, just a couple of pants and tops.  Though hopefully cute ones :)

Here’s the pile of fabrics I was considering before I started cutting yesterday.

Today I was able to get TWO pieces done!  I’m feeling super pumped.  I only photographed one though, so the other I’ll show you tomorrow.

So the first is a Crossed Shoulder Vest.  I want to make it very clear that I take no credit for this idea – I totally stole it from a Japanese pattern book called 男の子と女の子の服 (Clothes for Boys and Girls).  I actually have the book but I’m saving it for a giveaway, so instead of using the pattern, I drafted my own.  But the concept and construction were definitely taken from this book.

It was very simple to sew up and I love how it looks with different fabrics on the front and back. The only problem with the pattern that I drafted was the shoulders came out a bit too wide.  I MIGHT go back and adjust it, but that’s pretty low on my priority list – it still fits her fine.

Oooh, check out my serger work.  Actually don’t look too close cuz it’s totally wonky (I’m still getting the hang of it), but how fancy is that!?  I’m psyched.  I have a feeling I’m going to use a serger on everything I sew from now on!

Oh and you may notice no live model in these pictures.  I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned this already, but the last two years of constantly putting my daughter in front of the camera has totally backfired and now she really dislikes having her picture taken.  She yells out “No pictures!” whenever we pull out even just our phones and flails her arms in front of her face and/or charges the camera.  Sooooo – to limit the torture, I’ll wait till I have a few pieces of clothing I can throw on her and photograph at the same time instead of doing one piece every day.

Woohoo – Day One went well for me.  How about you?

KCWC S12: Done!

I started one more project that I thought I MIGHT squeeze in before KCWC ended, but I realized I didn’t have the right buttons and I wouldn’t have been able to photograph it till tonight anyways.  So I’ll share that with you later this week and just call it a wrap for my first KCWC.

I finished 4 projects last week and feel like I was super productive.  Not just with sewing, but with photographing and blogging too.  Sometimes I’ll sew something and maybe even take pictures, but who knows when they’ll get transferred to my computer.  And blogging about it?  That’s a big maybe.  Writing a blog post takes me FOREVER.  So it was a good challenge to not only sew quickly, but also try and take less photos and blog faster as well.  There’s no way I could ever keep that kind of schedule up for good, but it was fun to try.

So here’s a little recap of my projects:

Shirt to Skirt RefashionOriginal pattern
Fabric: Thrifted shirt

Double Ruffle Top

Every Little Thing pattern for the bodice
Original pattern for the body + felt bow pin
Fabric: Gray and white striped cotton

Chambray Summer ShortsOriginal pattern
Fabric: Chambray

Jump Rope DressPattern: Oliver + S Jump Rope Dress
Fabric: PR426 from the line Maya by Leah Duncan for Anthology Fabrics

Phew!  KCWC is certainly a nice way to whip up a new spring/summer wardrobe for your little one!  Thanks to Meg from Elsie Marley for hosting such a fun and motivating sewing event and to all the other participants for SO. MUCH. AMAZING. INSPIRATION!

Alright, now back to sewing . . .

KCWC S12: Day 6 – Jump Rope Dress!

It’s finally done!  I finished the Jump Rope Dress for Yuki and I love it!

This was my first Oliver + S pattern and it was a great experience.  I can see why their patterns are so popular!  The directions were extremely clear, the pattern was precise and the techniques are legit, so you end up with a great looking, high quality piece of clothing.

I worked on the dress in steps on 4 separate days (over 6 days).  The collar and the placket were definitely the most difficult and time consuming, but once those were done, the rest came together very quickly.

The only changes that I made to the pattern was shortening the belt loops like Gail did by 1/2 inch (on each belt loop) and I also hemmed the skirt much shorter than you’re told to. Yuki is such a shorty and the skirt would have been down to her ankles!  I kept all the fabric though, in case she grows up and not out and I want to lengthen the skirt at all.

We didn’t have a very good photo day because Yuki was feeling a bit under the weather.  But I can’t wait for her to wear this dress this spring/summer.

Isn’t this fabric awesome?  It’s PR426 from the line Maya by Leah Duncan for Anthology Fabrics.

So now that I’ve made this pattern once, I assume it will be easier the next time.  Which is good because I’d love to try View B, plus I have some ideas for making collared sleeveless or short sleeved summer tops too.

It’s the last day of KCWC!!  I started working on one last project but I’m not sure if I’ll be able to finish it in time.  Even if I don’t, I’ll still be proud of all that I accomplished this week.  I think the motivation to get so much sewing done this week, really made it go by so fast!  Part of me wishes it wasn’t ending, but the other part of me (the extremely sleep deprived, mess of a person me), is definitely in need of a break.  How are you doing?  Glad it’s over?  Wish you had more time?  Get as much done as you’d hoped?

KCWC S12: Day 5 – Progress

After skipping TWO nights of working on my Jump Rope Dress, I was determined to do some serious catching up today.  And I made some good progress!

Since last time, I top stitched the collar, added the sleeves and tabs, made the skirt pockets, belt loops and attached the skirt to the bodice.

I’m almost done!!  All I have left is the sash, attaching the buttons, making buttonholes and hemming the bottom.  I’m hoping to finish it up tomorrow and then I’ve got ooooone mooooooore project I’m going to try and slide in.  Although, it’s a slightly more complicated one that I’m starting from scratch, so we’ll have to see if I can finish it before KCWC winds down.

How are your projects coming along?  You burning out or pumped for the weekend?

KCWC S12: Day 4 – Chambray Summer Shorts

The sun has been playing a bit of hide and seek this week.  We’ve had a few gorgeous days, some fogginess, some rain and back to sunny again.  We’re not quite there yet, but I can’t wait for shorts and sandals weather!

I finished these chambray shorts today and the sun came out so Yuki could actually wear them today with a tank top.  They were supposed to be a knock off of these cuties from J. Crew:

I was trying to recreate them exactly, but it was way harder than I thought!  I think these are the first pair of shorts I’ve ever made and since it’s based off a pattern that I made, the shape is way off.  I used the pattern from Yuki’s track pants and just cut them shorter.  But I didn’t realize how straight the legs were around the thigh and I wish I had made them a tad roomier.  Also in the rise and bum.  I always underestimate the breadth of her big cloth diapered booty!

The welt pockets ended waaay too low.

Overall, I like them though.  The only thing I purposely changed is that instead of making them drawstring shorts, I put elastic all the way around for practical reasons (you know that drawstring isn’t staying tied).  Then I just added the twill tape for looks.  Pretty convincing, no??

I think the longer length is probably good for her and I like the little paperbag-ish waistband.

And I love the chambray!  I have admired chambray clothes for a long time and I don’t know why I haven’t sewn with it sooner, but it really is gorgeous.  It’s totally comfortable and casual, but it looks so nice!

We’re ready for summer!

Don’t forget to check out all the amazing stuff people are cranking out this week for KCWC!

So no Project Run & Play entry this week for the “Earth Day Challenge.”  It would have been so easy to incorporate an upcycled outfit into my week of sewing, but for some reason I was completely at a loss for what I wanted to make.  Since I was uninspired and had plenty of other projects that I was dying to make, I decided to sit one out.  And look, that’s fulfilling one of my goals!  :)  I already have ideas for the next two challenges, so if all goes well, you’ll see me in that flickr pool again in no time.

And I didn’t work on the Jump Rope dress AGAIN tonight, so now I’m two steps behind.  Luckily, I’ve finished the 3 smaller projects I had planned for the week so I have a few days I can just focus on the dress.  And maybe one more small project . . . :)

Anyone else feel like this at some point this week??

(This is how I know the photo shoot is over :P)

KCWC S12: Day 3 – Nothing

So I didn’t complete anything today.  I had a bit of an off day.  Spent all my sewing time before work having a major disagreement with a welt pocket.  I’ve done a couple before and I thought I knew how to do it, but I should have just looked up the tutorial from the beginning.  I had to undo and redo and undo and redo it soooo. many. times.  Grr!

So this evening, instead of working on the Jump Rope Dress, I decided to make the other welt pocket for these shorts before I forgot how and though I’m done with the pockets, I’m not done with the shorts.  And now I’m a little behind my Jump Rope Dress schedule, but I’m not going to stress about it.  Hopefully I can do steps 3 & 4 of the JRD tomorrow to catch up.

My finally conquered welt pocket.

Any projects gone wrong on your end?  Still chugging along?