Saturday, November 24, 2007

Friday, November 23, 2007

Success....cookies and jammie shirts

Leftovers, the girls took these home from my dads.

Finished shirts:

Sneak peek:

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

T-shirts and cookies

Argh. The shirts for the family jammies are not going as smoothly as I would have liked. I am frustrated by it, too. I searched for a design, found a cute one we liked, spent a bunch of time getting it set up in the machine. Struggled with hooping a small t-shirt on the biggest hoop. Lino was able to get that done.

Great. Start stitching. It is looking super cute, yay! The design gets to the outline part, and oh no, it is somehow shifted! Boo! There were some puckers, too, but I figured that I could work that out with one of the bigger shirts, as they would be easier to hoop. Try Lino's shirt the next morning....argh! The outline goes wonky on that one too! Got some advice from the sewing boards I visit, and make a trip to Joann's to stock up on stabilizer. Try again, using the messed up shirt. Still no luck. Try yet again. It came out ok. I could live with it, but, I have to try and get it to come out ok on 5 shirts. So, now I am trying to think of an alternatative. I wanted these to be done already....

Cookies. Thanksgiving is tomorrow. We are going to Lino's parents house for the meal. His mom is a great cook. We will go to my dads for dessert time.

In the past I have made cheesecakes to bring, and cannolis. This year I just don't have the energy to do cheesecake. (I put a lot of pressure on myself to get a 'perfect' one, without any cracks...) So, I am going to whip up some meringue cookies, using my aunt's recipe. These were my absolute favorite cookies when I was little. My mom never made them so I only got to have them at Thanksgiving and Christmas. (keep fingers crossed that these turn out nice and puffy!

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Jammie pants are finished!

Hooray! I finished the jammie pants with only a few snags. The girls pants wound up being really big. I was surprised by that but decided not to cut them down a size. I figured I could just double up on the cuff and then they could get an extra year from them. Sounds easy, but the extra fabric made it bulky and I kept getting wrinkles as I would sew.

I had thought ahead and was using a basting stitch (figuring it would be easier to let out next year), thankfully, because I had to redo the cuffs on Maggie's pants no less than 6 times! (I love my seamripper, lol) Cassie's weren't as bad.

Nate still wouldn't try his on, so I measured his from another pair of jammies. (Sneaky mama...)

So now I am just trying to figure out what kind of design to do on the shirts.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Nearly completed jammies! (with pictures)

Had a great sewing day yesterday, and the jammies are almost finished. I need to get more elastic and drawstring for the waistbands and once I have that, I can hem the legs and finish them! Everything went together smoothly (which is always nice) I did discover, though, that the childrens sizing on the pattern runs big. The pattern just had sizing, 2, 3/4, 5/6 so I went with 5/6. So, when I had the girls test try theirs on, they are long...very long. I opted not to take them apart and cut them down a size, I figure, it is an easy fix now and they will be able to wear them for a few years! I was a bit surprised that it ran that big. Most of my patterns size by measurements (chest, waist, etc)

Some pictures of Nate's pair:
Here is the fabric cut, with the pattern still on. I cut 2 pieces at the same time, being careful as the print on the fabric has a top and bottom! This is such a nice fabric to work with, it is a good weight.

Next, you fold and pin each leg, with the right side of the fabric facing in. I pinned both sections first, and then sewed next.

A close up of the seam allowance: (5/8th of an inch, in case any one is curious !) This picture doesn't show it, but I did another stitch (double seam), probably at 3/8ths in.

This next picture shows how easy making pants is! You turn one leg right side out, then put it inside the wrong side out leg. Line up your seams and pin together.

Here they are, sewn together in a double seam. The first is at 5/8th, the second is probably 3/8th.

Pull one leg out from the other:

Turn rightside out. All that is left is the casing on the waistband and hemming the legs. Nate wasn't in the mood to try them on and be measured, so I put the other 4 pairs together!

Fun, right? Lino even suggested that if I can get them done soon, we could have our picture taken in them for our Christmas cards! Can't wait!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Making progress

I hope to be able to post pictures of nearly completed jammies later today (I don't think I have enough drawstring for mama and papa's pants.) I should be able to completely finish the kids' pants though. I had hoped to be finished with these by now, but I had a horrible migraine the other day, it had me out of commission for pretty much the whole day. Thankfully, it was Lino's day off, and he was able to feed the kids! So, lost sewing time....sniff.

Friday, November 2, 2007


We had a great time on Halloween. Maggie and Cassie were super excited to be Tinkerbell and Sleeping Beauty 'in the long pink dress'. I was excited that Nate fit into the duck costumes that I had made for the girls!

This year:

And Halloween 2004: Maggie and Cassie with my dad:

The duck costumes were fun to make. The legs are actually a full body suit. I did them out of felt, with the sleeves the fuzzy loopy fleece. The fuzzy bodies are a 'bubble' (shoulder straps and elastic bottom) done in the fuzzy fleece, which when cut, left yellow fuzzies everywhere! The hats have both the fleece and felt, I hand stitched the eyes in black thread. The feet were a bit tricky and if I were to make them again, I would make them bigger. They are felt, with a bumpy bottom for traction. The bubble and hats were fully lined.

All in all, I am pleased with how they turned out, considering I was still a beginner sewer!

Gifties in Progress

An action shot of my Embroidery Machine. I am the very lucky owner of a Brother Innovis 4000D. It really is an amazing machine. I can use designs that are built in, download designs from the internet to a memory stick or use a design card. I am able to edit the pictures on the screen, press 3 buttons and sit back and watch. (One of those buttons automatically threads the needle!! Fabulous!) It is a sewing and embroidery machine, although I have yet to use it to just sew. I am a bit intimidated by it, and I love my first sewing machine, so I have been using both. That works out nicely sometimes, I can be sewing while embroidering.

The piece with the E directly in front of the machine: a mistake. It stitched out beautifully. Unfortunately, when I was cutting out all of the pieces, I somehow managed to cut 3 of my larger sections just a smidge short. And there isn't anyway to save it. I gave myself a headache trying to figure out the math. Luckily, I have more denim and am now calling that E a 'test stitch'.

I wound up switching the colors on the E. With the exception of the Cootie Bug, those piles of fabric will all become cute gifties for Christmas.
I have washed the jammie fabric. I was completely amazed at how long 8 yards of fabric really is, when I was trying to get it into the washing machine. It doesn't seem so long when it is folded nicely. I always prewash my fabrics in case they are going to shrink. I would hate to make an outfit for the girls and have it shrink after it is done.
The next part of the jammies is tracing out my patterns. That is usually fun, because I always have 'helpers'. Hopefully Nate will take a great nap today, and I can trace away.
(for some reason, I am having paragraph spacing issues right now, sorry....)