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October 23, 2014

Alice in Wonderland Party Dress


The Plaid Baby's big birthday is coming up next month, and I'm so excited about the theme I couldn't wait any longer to make her dress! I've had it in my head for months, and was just dying to get it out of my head and into my hands :)

My husband and I are both huge, HUGE fans of Lewis Carroll (my husband especially loves the Jabberwocky poem), so we decided on an Alice in Wonderland theme because it's something we could both get behind and enjoy planning together - yay!



I stumbled across the Caroline Party Dress pattern by MouseHouseCreations on Etsy a while back, and knew as soon as I saw it that it was perfect for what I'd envisioned. The pattern is great and super easy to follow - it included detailed measuring charts, multiple design options, and step-by-step color photos to help along the way. So, so grateful I found this pattern because this was only my second attempt at making clothing, and I'd never done an invisible zipper either, but this pattern walked me through all of that!

On top of all that, I'd decided to use some of the solid Anna Maria Horner voile I'd been hoarding for years (color is Pond), knowing that gauzy fabrics like voile can be a bit tricky since they're so lightweight. After reading some nightmarish tales on the internet about attempting to serge voile I was more than a little terrified, but figured I'd give it the old Irish try before giving up. I can honestly say my fears were unfounded, because it only took me 5 minutes to find the proper tension/stitch settings and this stuff is an absolute DREAM to sew with. It's sooooo buttery soft, and the way the fabric hangs is just gorgeous. From here on out I'm going to make as many of her dresses out of my AMH voile stash as possible!




The only thing that wasn't included in the pattern is the apron. I actually didn't use a pattern for it at all - I just took a few simple measurements of the finished dress and winged it. The neck of the apron is a halter that snaps in the back, and I added the grosgrain ribbon hearts for a little pop of color. My local Joann's had some 2" red grosgrain ribbon by the yard, so I bought a short piece, cut the hearts from it, and burned the edges with a lighter to prevent fraying. After creasing them down the middle, I did a little straight stitch down the center to affix them to the apron, which gives them a cool 3D effect that I know the Plaid Baby will enjoy investigating ;) (not to mention the shimmer tulle peeking out the bottom - I'm sure she'll try to lift that up and cram it in her mouth the first chance she gets, lol!)




October 22, 2014

Frozen Olaf Halloween Costume


One of my friends messaged me a few weeks ago asking if I could make an Olaf costume for her 1 year old, since her 3 year old already had an Elsa dress from an earlier trip to Disney World. To be honest I had no idea how I was going to pull it off, but I couldn't resist the challenge since 1) I love Frozen, and 2) the results had the potential to be adorable. Who wouldn't love seeing a baby plodding around as Olaf with that cute, awkward little walk they have?

Naturally, I turned to Google since it holds the power to answer any and all questions (unless it's medical - then you should stay away at all costs because it will convince you you're as good as dead). After staring at about 50 million different pictures of Olaf, I decided the best way to go was a hat with a chin strap. I found a free tutorial (including printable templates - SCORE!) here, and the rest is history!



The exterior is white minky, and the interior is plain white Kona cotton. I made the appliqués from Kona solids as well (except for the "hair" sprouts, which is felt), and freehanded all of them except for the eyes. Those were traced from various round objects I scrounged up in my sewing room, which may or may not have included the end of a spool of thread, a bobbin, and an empty tube of washi tape. I kind of felt like MacGyver (although, I have to say I prefer Stargate SG-1 Richard Dean Anderson to the be-mulleted MacGyver version)


Originally I was going to finish off the chin straps with some velcro like the pattern suggests, but after my friend told me her daughter's head measures pretty big for her age, I sewed a little piece of elastic between the two straps to allow for more give.


And here's the onesie - pretty simple. Just three "coal" appliqués with some fusible knit interfacing on the back. If you're ever doing appliqué on knit, I highly recommend using some because it keeps the fabric from stretching out and getting all wonky (I used Pellon EK130 White Easy Knit).


Tomorrow I'll be posting pics of the Plaid Baby's Halloween costume / 1st Birthday outfit (which is coming up in November - eek! I'm in total denial!!!) Oh...and just for good measure, here's a pic of the Plaid Baby wearing the Olaf hat - couldn't resist a trial run before turning it over to the new owner ;)



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