Friday, August 5, 2011

a blog break and summer reruns

Hey. I'm outta gas, blog wise. I'm going to enjoy some time off from posting while my kids are enjoying their school break. I'll be back later on with a fresh perspective and hopefully some makery to share. I've got Little Red underway and also have started some needle books.

In the meantime, for your reading pleasure, I'll be re-posting some moldy oldies you may not have seen in a while. First up a summery sundress I  made Thing 2 two summers ago. It's a nice pattern but I made some mods. It came to mind because she tried to wear it the other day and we found she'd grown out of it all of a sudden. Then I was surprised to discover she's almost grown out of the one I made for her older sister too. I'm always so sad when that happens.

Now from the way-back blog machine, a post from Aug 2009:

Here's the tiered dress for the youngest. Why isn't it pink, orange and brown? Because I'm easily distracted, that's why. I can't resist greens, blues and citruses together. It's my favorite combo right now.

Here's a side by side comparison. As planned from the previous post, I lengthened the bodice 1.5 inches and took out some of the width in the skirt. Even though I bought plenty of fabric this time (duh), I still cut the tiers 8 inches long (that's less than the pattern) to make up for the added length from the bodice. It fits her like a dream. I like the shape of this version a bit better. The added length on the bodice made her dress a bit longer than big sister's, which is fine. At the rate she's growing, she'll need it (four inches last year).

I made the fabric flower pin a tad different this time. Instead of puckering each layer in the middle and tacking it together, I took tiny tucks in the middle of each petal on only the two largest layers. Just a couple of stitches in each one with the machine to give it some depth. Easy. Then I layered it all together and put in a circle of blue behind the button for some extra pop.

The fabric I chose this time for the dress cost a mere $7. Total. For the whole dress. That is because it is super cheap 60/40 poly-cotton broadcloth. Why? I couldn't find the stinkin colors I wanted in cottons. I needed just the right olive green -- not foresty, not kelly-y, but the perfect dark true olive. I looked at two fabric stores with no luck. Then I stumbled on a huge row of great solid colors in all these scrumptious shades at Hobby Lobby and thought 'Bingo!'.
Then I read the fiber content.
But then I saw the price.
Sold, baby.

Of course, there are things I definitely did not like about the poly blend fabric.
  1. The drape is not as nice and it feels a bit flimsy.
  2. The surface texture is too smooth.
  3. There is no give.
  4. You have to watch the temperature on your iron or it starts to pucker.
  5. And what is UP with the bizarro resistance to pins and needles? It is a huge pain to pin it, the pins just refuse to puncture it half the time. It seems to have a force field around it. Also the machine needle has a tough time punching through. It makes a disconcerting pop each time, and also gets bogged down if it goes through multiple thicknesses.
However, there are things you have to love about it, plastic content or no:
  1. The price, I mean, seriously. It wasn't even on sale.
  2. The color range, all my favorite shades--why can't cotton come in that kind of variety?
  3. Also, this stuff does not unravel much in the wash and comes out wrinkle-free. To me, that is huge. I hate ironing.
  4. Lastly, when you press a hem over, by gum it stays pressed, with a knife edge. It makes a narrow hem so easy to do.

Sorry, this is the best photo I was able to get of Thing 2 sporting her new dress. She was very very VERY grumpy at the time. Then Thing 1 shut her finger in the back door as I was trying to shoot this. We were having one of those days.

I was thinking earlier today about this post and how this is so typical me. To be making sundresses at this point in the waning summer. It's a good thing it will be warm here through September, maybe October. I had all these high hopes and ambitions to make a bunch of summery clothes for the girls and for me too, waaaay back in the spring. I did get some things made, but as usual nothing for me.

(And I'm still wrestling with Lori's bag flap design. Great Scott! Why why whyyyyy won't this flippety thing come together? I've worked for hours on a version that I don't love. But I WILL press on. I WILL like it. And I'm scrapping what I've done so far. Back to the ol' drawing board.)


Flourish of harp music and soft focus transition...Now you are back in 2011! I'll be posting more from the archives soon.


  1. Beautiful dress-love it!! Hope to someday have a granddaughter to make it for! The little boy things are just not as cute! Enjoy your time away from blogging-your summer and especially your children!!~~Rain

  2. What a cool dress! Have a nice holliday time!

  3. oh, i like brown & aqua together... enjoy your blog break & your time with your 2 girls... i'm currently taking a blog break during the summer while my 3 children are home from school (did that last summer, too)

  4. Have a happy break, spending time with your family. I showed the dress to my daughter now she wants one too. But with yellow and brown. I think she'll look like a bumble bee. But oh well, maybe I can try and add an other color too it, so it won't. lol

  5. Fantastic! Wonderful!
    Mércia Faustino

  6. New to your blog - I really like it :-) I'm fairly new to sewing but I love it. I'm still in the straight lines stage!
    The reason why I commented today was to say I LOVE LOVE LOVE your OMG with the strike through it - way to go!
    Hope you're having a fabulous summer.


  7. *haha* I read first you had little red underware and wondered what this was about. Have to read more carefully. Beautiful dress!

  8. Thanks, y'all. I'm enjoying the time for sure! Not real productive as I'd hoped so far, but enjoying it all the same.

    Merlynn, love to see the bumblebee dress!

    Kate, thanks! Help yourself to the No OMG if you can use it.

    Needle Little Balance, ha! that's funny. I never buy red ones. Knowing me, I'd forget and where them under white jeans or something.

  9. I meant wear. but you knew that. ha.


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