December 30, 2010

I won!

Can I just say that I'm so excited I won a giveaway! It feels like another Christmas is coming in the mail!

I'm new to the blogging world and I'm learning about all types of promotions.  I found out that Sew Mama Sew hosts a Giveaway Day.  So I checked out a few new blogs and entered some, okay lots, of giveaways!  The list is still up of many, many crafty blogs!

I won a new camera strap from Broward Patch on Etsy.  I even got to pick it out from her cute selection in her shop!  I chose the CORAL patchwork camera strap and it's even more beautiful in person!  I must say that she stitches some of the straightest lines I've ever seen!  
It's so perfect because I just got a new camera (Canon Rebel XS) and while I haven't even had time to dislike the existing strap, this one is oh-so-much cuter!

It's actually a replacement strap, not a cover for your existing strap.  Strap covers might have a tendency to shift and get twisted, but this quilted camera strap is cozy as can be!

Thanks so much to Jennifer from Broward Patch!  I love it!

December 29, 2010

Easy Fabric Alphabet

Make room in your fabric stash for fresh, funky and new fabrics by using up all those pesky scraps.  I hate it when my scrap pile grows out of the bin and starts exploding onto the floor.  This was my latest solution.

This project was fun and easy to do, not to mention you get to do some "TV sewing" (ie - cutting out shapes and layering fabrics) while watching your favorite shows!

I made 2 complete alphabet sets and added the letters to spell "LUCY" in matching fabrics.  I thought that this might be a fun spelling and word game as she grows older.  It's sure been popular with the adult crowds hanging around the toy bin!

  • Print out the alphabet from Microsoft Word using the font Arial Black in size 300, Bold.  
  • Then cut out the letters with a scissors.
  •  Pick out your fabrics and sandwich some cotton batting (or fleece) between 2 layers of fabric with right sides out, wrong sides facing the batting
  • Taped the letters onto one side of the fabric sandwich (I used minimal amounts of scotch tape) and stitch around the edges of the letters and any other openings.  
  • Using a sharp pair of scissors trim the fabric 1/8" from the edge of the stitching line. 
The letters do shed a bit and so I threw them into the dryer.  I plan on trimming them as necessary.  I think next time I'll use pinking shears for the edges to reduce the amount of fraying.

December 24, 2010

Danger: Christmas Crafting Zone

If you've been making last minute handmade gifts

after vowing not to sew anything for the holidays

you are not alone

Merry Christmas!

A Merry Macy's Christmas Display

We recently visited the Macy's 8th Floor Display in Minneapolis.  It was a holiday tradition while we were younger and Lucy finally got to experience all of the moving statuettes, Chrismas lights, shiny displays, and a beautiful frosted cookie.  We didn't meet Santa, but Lucy scribbled him a little note.  
Here are some of the displays and sights:
Me (Becky), Lucy and Grandma

The North Pole Postmaster
Letters to Santa
I love the un-happy gingerbread man...
Reindeer Flight School display
Frosted Cookies!
Lucy writing a letter to Santa Claus
Lunch was questionable?  Thanks Aunt Vicky.
More treats!

Merry Christmas!

December 18, 2010

Unpractical Christmas Dresses

The Warhol Dress from MADE has long been on my "To Sew" list.  While ignoring other chores today (laundry, dishes, gift-wrapping, etc...) I whipped up a set of 3 dresses!  One dress is for Lucy, and one for each of her friends that we are visiting tonight)  I wasn't planning on sewing today, much less assembly line sewing...

The free pattern is available on the MADE website.

The dresses will last the 3 kidlets quite a while because of the adjustable side-tie.  So...hopefully they can still wear these in the summer.  I hope they're not too Christmas-y. 

They are completely unpractical because it's been about -25 to 20 degrees in Minnesota this week.  Our little toddlers will need long underwear underneath these adorable dresses.  Red long johns might be cute!

The dresses were made of recycled shirts from my closet or the thrift store.  Two of the shirts were maternity shirts and you can see the back of the dresses hang slightly lower and have a curved hem.  I decided to keep the curve to help cover up the diaper butt that usually peeks out from underneath the dresses.  

Wishing it were warmer...

December 15, 2010

FREE Printable: Child Measurement Chart

I've only got 10 days until Christmas and what better to do that make an overly elaborate measurement chart? 

I thought it would be lovely to have all of Lucy's measurements in one place.  I usually keep her measurements in my head (not reliable!) or scribbled on random scraps of paper in my sewing drawer.  She knows exactly where my measuring tape is and wanders around the basement draping it over herself. I hope to periodically reprint and update the chart as she grows and include the pages in her scrapbook as she gets older.

Since I've spent so much time lovingly making this cute chart, I thought I would share it with fellow seamstresses/sewers who might find it handy.

The PDF file will print at full size (8.5" x 11").  For personal use only.
Copyright 2010 OwlyBaby.  All rights reserved.

If you'd like to share this file with your friends and family, kindly link back to this page and give credit to Owly Baby.  Thank you!

December 14, 2010

FREE PATTERN: Garden Party Dress

I'm so excited to share the pattern I've made for the Garden Party Dress.  


It is partially lined and features a curved yoke, back button placket, gathered skirt and cap sleeves.  I've also included the pattern pieces for a peter pan collar or long sleeves.  It's a one-of-a-kind dress, so I only have the pattern pieces I drafted for a size 18 months dress.  

If you would like to share this pattern please link to this page and kindly give credit to Owly Baby.  Please do NOT use photos of my family.  Thanks!  

Garden Party Dress - Size 18 months ONLY

You will need:
1 yard of fabric for the skirt (I recommend lightweight fabrics)
1/2 yard of fabric for the bodice, lining and cap sleeves
2-3 buttons
scraps of interfacing

I've included minimal sewing directions and pattern assembly instructions on the pattern pieces.  

Share photos of your finished Garden Party Dresses in the Owly Baby Flickr pool!  I'd love to see what you've made!

NOTE:  This pattern is for personal use only.  Please do not redistribute, copy or make items to sell from this pattern.  If you have questions about the terms of use, please email me at 

December 13, 2010

Easy French Press Cozy

Spoiler alert.  Kristin Ruud do not read any further.  I realize the title has already done some damage to the surprise.

When my sister in law asked for a french press for Christmas I was more than happy for a reason to shop and browse at Crate and Barrel.  They have such beautiful displays!

The press on it's own was nice - but I thought all the stainless steel and glass could use something a little more "homey".  



Much more cozy!

This is the back/inside.

Can you see me taking the photo?

It's not a totally original idea, but it's fast and easy.  I wish I would have seen this blog post over at craftsylish before I started!  I did essentially the exact same thing - using 2 buttons and narrow elastic instead of ribbon closures.  I also didn't quilt the cozy.  

I made the cozy 6.25" x 11.5" and I think it fits perfectly!  The french press is a BODUM Original (made of glass) and is available at Crate and Barrel.

December 12, 2010

Taffeta Mess Christmas Dress

The first attempt was a fail (see photos later in post).  

But - I kept on and now I'm finished with Lucy's Christmas dress!  
The yoke and sleeves are chiffon and the bottom is a sheer silk blend. 

Of course I made room for branding.

I love the oval buttons - it makes the dress feel vintage-y.  The green buttons are from a local shop - Digs.

The green fabric was a little too sheer.  
For modesty's sake I had to whip up a little white slip to wear underneath the dress.

This dress was definitely a process.  It started out innocently enough - I was inspired by this dress we found at Macy's.
I loved the curved yoke, velvet and taffeta and the tasteful ruffles.

So...I picked up some flocked taffeta for 60% off at Joann Fabric.  It was my first experience sewing with taffeta.  I'm not very eager to try again!
The fabric was very stiff and though it's easy to work with - it doesn't drape AT ALL!
Here's the first attempt (IE: Taffeta Mess)
Yikes - I don't like showing my screw ups!  The stripes are wacky and the collar had a mind of it's own!  I showed it to my husband in a fit of exasperation and he said "Is that for Lucy?  It's 3 times her size?"  The skirt stuck out at a 45 degree angle all the way around!

So - out with the collar and in with the chiffon.  It was my first time sewing with chiffon and I LOVE IT!  It drapes so beautifully.  It frays and it's a pain to cut and sew because it's so slippery - but it's worth it.  

I love the end result.  One last parting shot:

I'm working on a not-quite-matching maternity top for me.  It uses the very last scraps of the same fabric.  I literally have nothing left of either fabric after these two creations.  My 3/4 sleeves were even cut on the cross grain - just so I could have enough fabric!

NOTE:  If anyone is interested I can post the pattern for the dress.  I think I'm going to call it GARDEN PARTY Yoke Dress.  It feels like it could work for any season.  

I only have the pattern for the size I made - 18 months.  
I haven't decided yet if I'll grade the pattern for larger/smaller sizes.  
The dress was very easy to make after the first disaster.  
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