Wednesday, December 28, 2011

This is the life.

I had wanted to make these "cloaks" since I saw them made up by Dana.  They seemed so fun to play in.  So I made them for Christmas presents and I love the way they turned out.  I contemplated whether to buy the new book for awhile and finally took the plunge.  Growing Up Sew Liberated.  I think I will probably make a few things from this book.  I have a pants pattern traced and the pattern cut so that might be the next project. 

The pattern was super easy to follow.  I made the bigger one first and there are a lot of little errors manipulating the satin fabic     But it ended up fine.  The smaller one was a bit easier since I had experience. 

I am never sure what my kids will actually play with when I get them stuff.  Especially my daughter. 

But they have flown around the house a few times already. 

Happy Make Believe! - Clover

Monday, December 19, 2011

She really did make me do it.

That is Made by Rae.  She came out with this pattern a couple months or so ago and I thought "Oooohhhh" But I knew S wouldn't really like it because it has "stuff" up around the neck and its 3/4 sleeves.  But I kept thinking about it, and thinking about it, and damn I kept thinking about it.  I started to think maybe I could entise her if I made it in flannel and I let her help me.  Ah Ha.  Surely she will love it.  So I bought the flannel and got busy.  I did cut it on the bias and didnt really measure her for the size I just cut the size 5 and hoped for the best I knew if anything it would be too big.

Well I tried it on her before I stitched up the elastic around the neck and hemmed it all.  Boy am I glad.  She was so excited to try it on after helping me sew on that ruffle.  Before it was even all the way on screaming ensued.  Pulling at the neck and general hatred.  Well really I wasn't suprised. So what am I to do??  I ended up adding four inches of elastic to the neck line and When she tried it on....Success. She liked it and wore it the rest of the day.  It is a bit challenging when we need a jacket on cause of those big sleeves but she looks fantastic in it and....she likes it, she really likes it.

Do blondes really have more fun?

Gotta love the bias cut swing. 

Can I officially call this sun flare??

Well, how about you.  What are your latest triumphs?

Friday, December 2, 2011

I have an "Innocent Crush" on Anna Maria Horner

As usual I have been sewing away.  Maybe a bit slower than normal.  We have all had cold after cold. Then Thanksgiving and of course Sophia turning five!  It has been a busy month and at night time when I usually hide away and sew I have been sitting like a blob on the sofa and then going to bed a bit earlier than normal.  Which in itself has been a good thing.  I think I am a lot nicer when I have the right amount of sleep.  Or at least way more tolerant of every ones craziness over here.

I really have been obsessing over Anna Maria Horner's fabrics.  Every collection that comes out I initially look and go ok thats nice.  But the more I look at it the more I start to fall in love with it.  She is brilliant.  Here colors are just perfect.  All of them.  So I started making some of her figure 8 scarves and I think they are just the perfect project to really show off some fabric.

This is the one I chose for myself to keep.  It is a little wide and long for me who is slightly more petite but it is really striking against a plain colored shirt and even though I usually dress very simply I love it and feel great when I wear it. 

This is the second one I made.  It is a gift for someone for Christmas .  These are more "my" colors but they are the recipients as well.  It is gorgeous.  I made a second of the one I am keeping to give to someone else and also have a fourth waiting to be finished that is another combo of colors.  It is a rather simple sew except the voile shifts a bit.  I think at some point I will have to invest in a walking foot.  For now I pin, pin, pin and go slow.  The hardest part of it is hand sewing the last seam with a blind stitch.  I am HORRIBLE at hand stitching but I am getting better with each scarf.

The next project was so much fun and again an easy sew.  I am really trying not to be intimidated by knits.  They really are very forgiving.   Especially in children's clothing. 

She was posing "nicely" so she could get back to watching her show.

The back.  I debated on the ruffly leg bottoms but I like it.

The leg doesn't sit weird like the picture.  They actually fit fantastically.

The pattern is from LilBlueBoo the Sienna Dress and it is so easy and has so many possibilities.  I am also obsessed with her blog.  I never took any art classes ever.  I never considered myself artistic.  I was the math and science kinda girl so I am learning all kinds of cool techniques that I would love to try.  I found this shirt at the thrift store quite awhile ago and I new the only way to get her to wear it was to add pink so I used some of this interlock I got at a great price when the local fabric boutique store went out of business.

Well there are a few more projects I completed but I think this is long enough.  Hopefully I can post some more soon. 


Friday, November 4, 2011


I have been making a lot of gifts lately and by the time I have them all done I am so anxious to get them wrapped up and off to the recipient that I have been forgetting to take photos.  This bums me out because I like to keep pictures of the things I have made.  I just made my brother a whole slew of stuff for their baby to be and I didn't take one darn picture of it.  Oh well.  I will just have to wait until the babe is born and I see her wearing the stuff I made.

One of my best friends daughter turned two not long ago so I made her a couple skirts.  The theme for her party was dogs so when I saw this fabric in my stash I knew this would be the choice.  Isn't she cute! 


Sunday, October 30, 2011

The balance beam

I often feel like a preschooler on a balance beam.  Wobbling from side to side.  Slowly one foot in front of the other.  Mind racing about what's coming next while focusing on not falling.  Sometimes the beam is low with no real consequences of falling.  Sometimes it's high and the consequences are lifelong.

The balance of self vs others.  As a wife and mother I am constantly faced with the choice between self and others.  It is precarious, the balance, some days my soul aches for freedom of choice of time, sleep, quiet.  With it no where in sight.  Other days it is a steady walk across and the day ends with a gratitude and peace.  There is always more that could be or should be done but there is ALWAYS more. 

The great balance beam.  How high was your beam today?  Did you make it?  Did you fall off and get back up or where you a show stopper?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Blogging frustrations and a close to KCWC

So I am finally on a roll with the whole blogging thing and what should happen...  My windows live writer "stops working".  I have gotten pretty behind the times technologically and I cannot figure it out.  I might have to take the computer some where to get it figured out and I am not thrilled.

This is the purple dress.  It is made out of corduroy outer, fully lined, and first timers piping.  She looks really great in purple.  Plus, she is comfortable in this style which means she wants to wear it.

She really is gorgeous.

Then the pants.  I had so much hope for these but I am not so thrilled.

back side - original pockets - too big

They look much better in action.  I need to make the waist tighter and see how they look then.

front - made the waist band to small

So now I am glad that KCWC is coming to an end.  It was a busy week.  I am happy in what I accomplished and it is so fun to look through the flickr group to see all the inspiration.

Now for a bit of a sewing break.  At least a day or two. :-)


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

KCWC- babies


I have babies on the brain a bit.  Partly from the realization that I truly don’t want to have any more myself and partly because my baby brother is having his first soon and it’s a girl. I didn’t start sewing until my daughter was about 3 years old so I missed sewing little baby girl stuff.  So now I get to use my brother to try all sorts of stuff in the name of gifts.

Last week I made several things for her and I will share it here right before the baby shower.  Last night I added a couple things though and I love it. 

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I pretty much made the leggings this past weekend but added the little tag on the leg and added the embellishment to the onesie last night.  I had bought the trim a few months ago while visiting my mom in Bakersfield.  They have the most fabulous fabric store, Strawberry Patches.  (Most people drive through Bakersfield at least once in their lives, it would be worth it to stop at this store)  It looks so simple right.  Well it actually was not. There is this mesh stuff you have to sew through and try not to sew through the flowers.

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The leggings were super simple.  They are 3 month size, as is the onesie.  I used the inspiration from here to make the pattern.  Super easy.  I used the double needle for the first time.  Again, a suggestion from here.  I really like how it looks.  

Alright, time for the girl to go to bed and to get to sewing the dress I cut out last night.  Oh yeah I am using piping for the first time.  Wish me luck.



Tuesday, October 11, 2011

KCWC–thing 1 and thing 2


My kids really can act like these characters.  I think this is Robert Kaufman flannel.  It is so nice.  It is thick and smooth and my son has been oohing and ahhing over the fabric for a few weeks now.  I am happy to say this is the first matching outfit I have made them.  This is the third time I have used this pattern from the Scientific Seamstress.  I think it is cute on my daughter I am for sure not using it again on my son.  I just don’t love the wide legs on the boy.  It is a super simple flawless pattern but I just cant get into it.  Oh well.  I also finished up the leggings earlier.  It is the Lil Blue Boo leggings pattern.  I finally used it and I LOVE the pattern, how it fits, and it is easy to modify.  However, I have confirmed that no matter what the color polka dots aren't really for him.  He wore them out yesterday and was called a girl.  While I usually don’t really care about gender biases I still don’t really want my two year old boy to look like a girl.  Have a good day.  Cheers to another night of sewing!

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Monday, October 10, 2011

prep and peeking


2011-10-09 photos 10-11


Have you looked at what others have already made??  This is such a fun week and inspiring for so many other creations.  Cant wait to sew tonight! Don’t forget to look at her flickr group.


Sunday, October 9, 2011



When I first started reading blogs I would enter EVERY giveaway I came across.  In fact Sew Mama Sew’s giveaway days is how I found out about a lot of blogs.  In fact in the beginning I won a couple things and it was fun.  As I continue to read blogs and try to keep my time on the internet limited to within reason I now only enter giveaways for something that I might use or know someone who might use them.

I couple months one of my favorite blogs. The Cottage Home had a giveaway for a photography book.  Mamarazzi.  Knowing that I had learned so little about my camera and my photos were still a hit or miss I or very mediocre at best I knew this was not one to pass on.  And guess what?!

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I won!!  This is a great book with a lot of great practical advice.  I read the whole book with in the week that I got it.  It talks about the exposure triangle in a way that I am beginning to grasp.  I am still having hits or misses but a few less mediocre pictures.  I think I need to read this book a few more times.  It does focus on taking photos of kids which is what I do most of the time but I am still struggling a little with taking photos of my “creations.”  Maybe any one who reads this could give me some feedback on my photos!?  Thanks Lindsay for a great giveaway.

Come on back because soon I will have a little bit more to say about…WinningSmile


Wednesday, October 5, 2011

How my 4 year old convinced me to eat brussel sprouts.


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Does anyone’s kids watch Olivia on Nick Jr.?  This is my daughter’s favorite show.  Probably because my daughter is very much like Olivia.  Well Olivia’s best friend is Francine and one day when Olivia has dinner with Francine's family they eat brussel sprouts.  So the other day we are shopping at Trader Joes and my daughter yells “BRUSSEL SPROUTS! Can we please get some?!”  Well let me tell you my first instinct is to say “um, honey you aren't gonna like them.”  Then the mom instinct kicked in and I said. “ Of course lets get some!!”  Well we got home and I thought ugh how am I going to cook these so I can eat them without gagging and how am I going to cook them so that my daughter might actually eat them!  I wasn’t too worried about her because she loves raw cauliflower and oo’s and aah’s over them like candy. It was me that was pretty nervous.  Cause come on.  Brussel Sprouts.  Well whenever I am in doubt of something what do I do… I “Google it”  And of course it didn’t let me down.  The number one result was for my culinary hero Ina Garten.  Duh!! of course.  So here's what she said.

Roast them.  Ahha!

And it was so easy.  Olive oil, salt and pepper, oven 350 for 35 minutes.  What can be easier.  I was starting to get hopeful.  Then, what Ina is so great at.  She said.  “when they come out of the oven salt them like french fries”.  Now I was actually getting excited!

They were delicious!  Crunchy and salty on the outside and just the right texture on the inside. 

Even my husband liked them.  The surprise really was my daughter didn’t love them because they didn’t look like Francine’s.  But she ate her whole serving and now I have another vegetable to add to the mix.

So, are you weary of brussel sprouts?  Give them a try you won’t be disappointed.


Tuesday, October 4, 2011

I better get a plan.




I really don’t want to miss this.  My son definitely needs some pants.  And, I have some baby gifts to make.  Who doesn’t like to see baby clothes!!

See ya soon,


Monday, August 8, 2011

Sew Along and Carina Gardner Playdate Outfit


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So in early June I decided to the sew along for this outfit on The Cottage Home.  I thought it would be a good addition to my pattern collection since it wasn’t a dress and I wanted to sew something that Sophia could choose her own fabric.

I think it turned out great.  But it took me forever!  There are a few minor errors on the pattern but they are kind of obvious and easy to fix.

There were certain steps like the lining and hidden seams and the ruffle sleeves that were not easy to understand but thankfully the sew along from Lindsey really made all the difference. 

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I realized I had cut a part of the pants pattern the wrong size but luckily caught it early in the construction and recut ( again lucky I had more fabric).  The waistband was put in a little funny.  I think there is an easier way to do it than the instructions.  The hardest part was sewing the darn buttons and that little flower.  I still need to move a button over and probably resew the flower.  You cant see in the picture but its kind of a mess under that cute button.  I think I was rushing and I got lazy.  So I think I will make it again cause it is a classic style and the pattern goes to size 8.  This was a 4/5 and fits perfect.  So thanks to Lindsey for doing the sew along.  I am adding photo to the Flickr group.  There are a lot of other cute playdate outfits.

My daughter was hilarious in that she wanted to hold a white rose just like the girl on the pattern package.

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and then of course she had to do the silly faces.

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Happy Sewing.



Friday, June 10, 2011

Thanks girls!

I have been featured on Rae and Dana's roundup!!  Thank you.  It motivates me to keep posting what I make.  I just finished this little bundle for a friends little boy born a few weeks ago.  The pants and shorts are Rae's baby pant pattern. It is fun to sew little baby stuff.   Oh and a picture of the shirt I made to go with the elephant pants.  Thanks for visiting!


Friday, May 20, 2011

For ME!

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So I had seen this dress a few times online and thought that it was pretty fashion forward and something I might like to wear.  It is  “The Mission Maxi” by Jamie Christina.  I have been so leary about sewing for myself because kids clothes are pretty forgiving and well, small.  Finally I saw a post HERE of these ladies wearing the dress and I thought ok, why not.

So I headed up to my favorite place to go. Maisonnette in Oceanside and got my supplies.  Plus, a ton of advice.  These ladies are so fun to visit.  They are helpful, nice and their shop is fantastic. 

This was the first time I had ever used an old fashioned tissue paper pattern. It was actually pretty easy to trace but cutting out the fabric was another story.  This was also one of the first times I made a whole garment out of jersey knit. So lining up the stripes and pinning the pattern was a bit tedious for me but fun. 

I sewed it up today at nap time and am thrilled.  It fits fantastic and the colors are perfect.  The neckline topstitching is a little wonky and I am not sure I can totally pull off the horizontal stripe thing but it is still fun.  I am gonna make this again soon.  They had a fabric that was a melon type color that I want.

thanks for visiting.


Friday, May 13, 2011

It’s a Funny Thing

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Most of the time when I sew it is my relaxing and reflection time of the day.  However there are always moments through a project when I start to get stressed and anxious over the final outcome. 

Let me start by saying I am completely obsessed with this sewing thing.  More than I should be probably.  But through every project I always ask myself is this really worth it.   The time, the lack of sleep, the moments of anxiety, Using the seam ripper.  It’s not like I can’t afford to by my kids clothes.  And lets face it most of us are not saving money sewing our kids clothes considering all the fabric we buy.

Any way I always think I am doing something wrong or its not going to look that good. But I am almost always pretty stoked with the outcome. 

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These are a combination of all of Dana’s at MADE pants tutorials.  These are using her pattern, flat front, lined, front pockets.  They fit like a dream on my 21 month old.  This is also a legit KCWC project.  I started it yesterday and finished them up during nap time.


However, as my first picture shows I chose the worst lining fabric I could have.  It is a white knit turtleneck from Old Navy.  It is not your standard interlock. Um it has modal and some poly or something.  It is sooooo soft and very stretchy. Like very very stretchy. But hey what the heck right.  I cut the lining a bit smaller and used a bigger seam allowance.  I even cut down the waist and the length of the legs so they just fit inside the waistband and the hem.  And I couldn’t be happier. 


Does anyone else ever second guess themselves while they are sewing?

- clover

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Music Class Blouse and Skirt

first oliver and s 001

Last winter during some online sales I finally ordered a few Oliver and S patterns.  Everyone gushes over them.  They have such classic but modern patterns.  I had never sewn from a paper pattern before.  I had only used PDF patterns.  Either free or bought off of Etsy.  It is A LOT of work; tracing the pattern, cutting the pattern, etc.  It really made me appreciated the PDF format.  However it was really cool to have the final product.  I usually wouldn’t put my girl in a button down shirt.  Heck we live in Southern CA and well she is 4.  But I definitely wanted to make the skirt and in the vain of learning how to make a button down shirt I went for it.
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It is a little red riding hood fabric. (Yes I am a sucker for white on my kids).  I made very few mistakes on it so I am pretty happy.  However, it took me days to finish.  I was very methodical and did not rush. I guess that paid off.
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The skirt I love and will definitely make again.  You can’t tell but it has a pocket on the side panel.  And I just love the ruffles.  I did make a little mistake on the side panel and had to add some fabric at the top to make it long enough but it totally worked out.
So, no, I did not sew these during the KSWC but I promise I am sewing and will post at the end what I did make this week.


Monday, May 9, 2011

KCWC 2011

So I am sorta unofficially doing Elsie Marley’s Kids Clothes Week.  You are suppose to sew an hour a day for seven days and see what happens.  Well spring comes early in Southern California so I have made a few things already that I am putting on her flickr page.  But I am also going to work on some beach shorts that are a Boden kids knockoff.  We will see how that works out.  I hope you enjoy my creations.  Oh another goal for this week is to finally order some labels for my clothes.