Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Little Pearl Birthday Dress

little pearl dress

This is the little dress I made for V.'s birthday. I'm so glad I was able to finish it in time, it's so cute and suits her so well! It's the Little Pearl Dress from Liberty Love.

dress detail

It was quite simple to sew and I love all the little details like the ribbon and the buttons that give a big impact without being complicated to execute.


The buttoned back is so pretty and cute, I think, and goes so well with the classic and retro feel of this dress.

dress back
 It's nice to have this little dress as a special keepsake of V.'s first birthday celebration. We had such a great day and she was enjoying herself very much.

napkin blooms

I simply had to make some of these Wallflowers. They turned out so pretty!


Another thing that can't be missing at a Finnish celebration is voileipäkakku or sandwich cake. It is basically sandwiches made into what looks like a cake ... yes, a bit tacky ... and delicious! I really like making it, mostly because the decorating part is such fun and all the rest really simple. The fillings in this one are prosciutto, red pesto, tomato flavoured cream cheese and goat's milk cream cheese.

Next on my sewing list: more dresses for V.! (There are just too many cute designs out there that I would like to make!)

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

some machine embroidery and FMQ

Last week the theme of the patchwork course I'm taking was quilting and I finally had the courage and motivation to try some machine embroidery and Free Motion Quilting. It was such fun to try out a technique I was afraid of for so long and see that it's like with any other crafty thing: you just need to try it and practise!

I was really inspired by the possibilities of the machine embroidery in particular. For some time now I've been wanting to draw a bit more again, but haven't been feeling too inspired. This could be a fun way to mix things up.

We were having a beautiful day when I was making this, so I stitched some little flowers, leaves and a little butterfly.

For my FMQ project I cut into my piece of the Loulouthi Summer Totem print I've been hoarding. (One of my coursemates was a bit horrified that I was able to cut into it ...) I'm planning on quilting it and then turning it into a big rectangular cushion cover. It's fun to practise my stitching on this lovely piece of fabric and the pattern is so beautiful in itself that I think my less than perfect stitching won't be too noticeable in the finished product.

I hope I'll be able to finish this soon, this lovely fabric is perfect for Spring!

Tuesday, March 11, 2014

three-piece girly outfit

This little outfit was already finished in December, but I only now got some half-decent pictures taken. The patterns are all from Ottobre Design 1/2008 (a lot of cute patterns in that one, by the way). I've made versions of the tunic and blouse before. You can see them here.

This time, I cut some corners by using one of J.'s old shirts for the blouse and keeping the button placket intact so I didn't have to sew one myself. I think it works well and making the blouse this way was quite fast!

At first, I had planned to keep the original buttons, but it was a bit bland with simple white buttons and when I found these cute flower ones, I changed them.

For the tunic I chose this gorgeous print from Loulouthi (I used the same print for the blouse trimmings as you can see).

The hem and string closure are a Kona solid cotton, I'm almost sure it's Lagoon ...

I used the same solid for the trouser belt facing and the main fabric is a fine wale corduroy with tiny hearts on it.

Here you can see them a bit better. So cute!

I made another simple tunic around the same time. I followed a pattern I made myself for my niece some time ago (you can see that first version here).

This time I chose this fun print from Put a Lid on It from Michael Miller fabrics, which I think is so pretty and am glad that I've finally put it to use. I decided not to add a pocket or a contrast hem for this one, because I wanted the fabric to shine by itself. I used pink bias binding, because like that this tunic coordinates with a lot of clothes V. already had.

I still love those simple white buttons! :-) At the moment, I'm planning on sewing a little dress for V.'s first birthday, which will be quite soon!!! I think I will make one using the Little Pearl Dress pattern from Liberty Love. I already bought some grosgrain ribbon and some little buttons and I already had some of that eyelet cotton and a piece of that lovely Liberty print. I hope I'll get around to actually sew it in time!

I'll keep you posted!

Wednesday, March 5, 2014

beary cute hoodie and sweatpants set

I made this little set for V. some time ago. The fabric was so irresistibly cute and cozy, I had to buy some of it. I bought it here in Helsinki and unfortunately have no info about the manufacturer. Both patterns are from Ottobre Design magazines, the hoodie from 3/2009 and the sweatpants from 4/2011. I chose the hoodie pattern because of the asymmetric front. I wanted something a bit special, but not too busy to take away too much attention from the print.

I like this kind of pattern for babies, the wide and foldable rib in the waist and at the legs gives the trousers some room for growth.

This knit is quite bulky and I broke one double needle when sewing the hem. Since I didn't want to break another, I used a stronger single needle and decided to zigzag the hem, arm openings and the rib on the front of the hoodie. I really like the way it looks and I think it's a good solution for a problem like this. The seams are still stretchy this way and it is actually a fun feature for a children's item.

I had some of these simple snaps for the front at hand, and I think they are perfect here.

And the inside of the fabric is so snuggly!

Most of the time we use the items seperately. That's quite a lot of bears to pull off! ;-)

Wednesday, February 19, 2014

fabric play with curves and circles

This little pile is fabric I picked out to play with in a patchwork course I am taking right now. I've been to the course twice so far and it has been such fun and I've already learned a lot of new things and helpful little tricks. The theme of the course is Curves and Circles and we are learning different techniques to cut and piece those shapes.

Here you can see a sample of the different techniques we've been trying.

These bikes and cobblestones will be sewn into a little curvy patchwork square.

Last week we learned a technique to make perfect circles with the help of freezer paper. Above is my first version. One of my classmates had the brilliant idea to fussy cut the circle, and of course I had to try that right away as well:

I think it looks really pretty and I love to see how choosing a different fabric affects the look of the block so much! Fun! Taking part in the course has been quite a spontaneous decision, which I'm glad I made. And I tried to keep my fabric choices etc. quite spontaneous as well and not to overthink or fret too much about which print to choose for what technique and so on. It's fun to work like that, concentrating on the process of making and not to worry too much about the outcome. My plan is to make a quilt with all the samples we make in the course and I would like to keep the quilt quite spontaneous as well. Let's see what will become of those little exercises in fabric! It's nice to venture out of one's crafting comfort zone once in a while. :-)

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Daisy Chain Sampler finish

It only took me about 3 years ... ;-) Finally, I finished my Daisy Chain Sampler and had it framed! I think it is so pretty and all those imperfections and little creases stemming from my emroidery "skillz" don't even bother me anymore! Actually, I have to say that after making this, I've become quite confident in my embroidery skills. This design incorporates so many different stitches and those are so well explained, that I'd like to try something similar again. French knots are fun now, not scary! :-D

When I first started the sampler, I actually made quite fast progress. It's motivating to be able to work from letter to letter and so having small little goals you can achieve relatively quickly. Around "W" I had some problems with the stitches and was not happy with my work, so I set it aside for a while. For a long while as it turned out ... This is not the first project that was abandoned so close to the finish line. Does that happen to you, too? Anyways, at the start of this year, boosted by some New Year motivation, I finished it really quickly and it made me feel so proud of myself! Hehe! :-)

I'm really happy with the frame I chose. I'm always a bit insecure, since the finished framed work always looks a bit different than when you just try to hold different frame samples next to your artwork and imagine how it will look. Luckily, I really like this one. I think the chapped look suits the retro and romantic feel of the sampler really well. I treated myself to having it framed for my birthday.

Here's a pic before it was framed: 

Now I just have to decide where to hang it ... For now it looks really pretty on top of that shelf, though! :-)

I've finished and made some other little things, mostly for V., but for some reason feel very unsuccessful about taking good pictures of them. At the moment it's very grey outside again, but even when we had sunshine last week, I was lacking some photoraphy vision ... I hope I'll get out of that rut again, soon. It's so nice to have good pics of one's projects as a souvenir and also it makes me happy and motivates me sharing them here and on my flickr.

I'm thinking about what to make V. for summer clothing (we're all set for winter and spring, I think, thanks to Christmas gifts and a couple of items I made!). I think some leggings, shorts and cute T-shirts made with the Briar Rose knits I bought last summer would be great! Let's see! I'll try to keep you posted! Have a lovely rest of the week!

Thursday, January 23, 2014

gift basket

Hello! Here I am with the first project started and finished in 2014! :-) I've been making some other things and finishing some small stuff that has been brewing for some time, but this is the first "official" finish of the year. Yay!

I made this Divided Basket for my sister-in-law's birthday. She always makes us such great socks, so I thought a basket to stash her current sock project and some knitting supplies in would be a nice idea for a gift. I also included some yarn, of course. I had several possible fabric choices, but when I saw those skeins at the shop, it was clear I'd go with these fun birds.

I've had these fabrics in my stash for a while, and it's fun to finally put them to good use! Like so many others out there, I'm trying to use up some stash. And in fact it's much more fun to use a favourite print than have it lingering around in a drawer! Also, I think it's a nice creative challenge to work with what is at hand. Who knows if I'd arrived at this combination otherwise, but I really like it and I think it works really well.

My sister-in-law was happy about the gift, so I'm happy, too! :-) I hope I'll be able to show you what else I've been up to, soon!