Monday, April 11, 2011

45-minute Sunday sweater

Sweet has been wanting to wear this one particular dress in her closet, but it is always too cold on Sunday morning for her to wear without a sweater. Unfortunately, the colors in the dress don't match anything she has to wear over it, and I kind of like her to match, at least when she's dressed pretty. I feel like she looks not-well-cared-for when her clothes don't match. Anyway, I felt badly about having to always say "no" to that dress, which was a gift from a friend, who is dying to see her in it and who never has, because, well...see above. So Saturday night, after saying "no" again, I decided to try my hand at remaking a hand-me-down sweater in my upcycle closet.

It started as an adult ladies turtleneck sweater. I used one of her jackets for sizing and cut the bodice, keeping the side seams intact. Then I cut up the middle of the front so that the sweater would open like a jacket. I cut the sleeves down to fit her 5T arms and then sewed them right into the new armholes. I looked at it and thought it was awfully boring, so I proceeded to shape it bolero-style by cutting up from the bottom front corners, up and around the back (hoping for it to fall right under her shoulder blades). It's kind of hard to describe, but you can see in the picture. I think it ended up a little higher in the back than would have been best, but I still like it. Anyway, because it is a true sweater (albeit a little tighter knit than some sweaters), it was a little ravely and frayish on the edges (I like to make up words), so I used a finishing stitch on my regular sewing machine all the way around, stretching it as I went to create a sort of lettuce effect. I love the intentionally-unfinished look. Finally, I added a pearl snap at the top for closure (why did I wait so long to buy a snap applicator??) and to make it fit right, but I waited until she was awake to do that so I could try it on her.

I didn't get a picture when she was wearing the dress, but here's the sweater. I'm so happy with how it turned out and definitely will be repeating this one. The best part is that it only took about 45 minutes!

Saturday, April 9, 2011

baby shower gift: leg warmers, appliqued onesie, & hair poof

I have been so busy sewing Easter dresses that I barely managed to squeeze in time for a baby shower gift before the party last Saturday. But I made it! The "C" onesie...I still had 2 plain white onesies left from some I had prewashed a few months ago. The purple fabric came from a [terribly hideous] gradient-dyed, pilled, stretched, cheapcheapcheap Juniors t-shirt. I cut the "C" from the weird puffy design around the neckline. When my [wonderful] mom brought me this thrifted shirt, I seriously considered tossing it altogether because I could not imagine how I could possibly use it. But use it I did, and I think it turned out pretty cute! In fact, it kind of bailed me out. Anyway, I also bought these two pairs of knee socks at Walmart for $2 each, and used this tutorial (sort of) to make leg warmers, switching the cuffs to spice it up a bit. Then I made a little poof out of a skinny strip of tulle by gathering it around and hand-sewing it to a piece of elastic. I did end up hot-glueing a piece of felt on the back side, just to finish it off a little better and to make sure it would be comfy for baby Claire. I was very pleased, in the end!