Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Anyone remember these guys???

Whilst looking for a small piece of cotton remnant for a Quilt Club project, I found the remnants from something (I cannot remember what) I had made for my son, Daniel, when he was in Middle School and loves all things Animaniacs - but especially, Pinky & the Brain.  [Anyone remember them???]  Given his age then (12 - 15) and that we lived in San Antonio, Daniel's standard outfit was knee-length denim jeans, and a character T-shirt.  I cannot imagine what I made for him of this printed muslin.  Sleep pants?  Shorts?  A sports shirt??  Seriously:  I got nothin'.   Nonetheless, when I found this, I knew it had to be made for something for his daughter, Emma Rose to wear.  But, what??  The largest piece was 24 in X 16in, and there were 2 6in X 4in pieces.  Hardly limitless options, here.
Then I remembered an adorable skirt that my daughter, Katie, had made for her daughter, Myra.  That will work!
Using the very same pattern (McCall's 5696), and totally stealing her idea for matching bound edge on the pockets, I used the Pinky & the Brain print for godets and binding, and used remnants from a skirt of mine for the rest.  The purchase of a zipper, and several pleasant hours it all this little number cost me.

The coordinating top was more of an adventure.
I found this fabric and could not resist buying it.  Can you blame me?  Hot pink with silver sparkles.  So girly!!
I hadn't picked a pattern when I bought the fabric, so I used the SWAG method (Scientific Wild-Ass Guess), and wound up with quite a bit more fabric than I needed. This caused me to think that a bodysuit would be a good idea.  It was not.
All went well until I attempted to attach snaps to the ribbing at the crotch, and destroyed, repaired, and re-destroyed the fabric.  Snaps were not going to happen, so I cut off the crotch extensions, applied ribbing to the now-straight bottom, and stitched down the side flap.
Oh, well.  The appliqued, and ribbon-edged fabric swatch is a cute touch, don't you think???

It went into the mail with the dress of previous post.
When I get pictures of adorable Emma wearing it, I shall post them, post-haste!


Sunday, April 8, 2012

Ta da!!!!

Go ahead.
Extend praise for the extreme adorableness of this dress.
I can take it.

Previous dilemma is solved (both embroidery AND pleats were used in the faux cummerbund section of the sash.  Results are here.

This little dress is for my Grand, Emma R.W. Jones, who is attending a family wedding next month, and wanted new duds for it.  I am only too happy to comply.
The bride's chosen colours are purple, light green and pink (s). When I saw this purple-flower printed eyelet, everything else just fell into place.

I used Butterick 3762 for the dress, which is the same pattern I used for Emma, and her cousin Myra's Christmas dresses, but with very different results. [I can't believe that between Facebook, and blogs, I cannot find ANY pictures of the girls' Christmas dresses to show you!!  Trust me:  they were adorable!!!  Cute dresses, too.]
Since the eyelet is much lighter weight than the velvet I had previously used, I felt the skirt could be fuller.  I also wanted it longer.  Easily done.   Intending to have a very deep hem incorporated into the pleats, I added 8in. to the length, and increased the width of the skirt pieces by 70%. 
I think I got the fullness I wanted.

I cut the skirt's lining (a Swiss batiste) to the same width as the skirt.   This gives the dress' skirt plenty of fullness, but I didn't want excessive bulk around such a tiny, delicate waist.  So, while I gathered the eyelet for the skirt, the lining was taken in with knife pleats all around, to reduce overall bulk.

I am very happy with the results, and can't wait to share pictures of Emma Rose wearing it with you!!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Bit of a Dilemma

I am almost done making a dress for Emma Rose to wear to an upcoming wedding.  All that is left is the cummerbund/sash to finish it off.
And therein squats the toad.

Oh!  This sash has entailed more time and energy than the entire rest of the dress.

First, the original green fabric [wedding colours are purple, green and pink(s)] that I chose was hideous.  Really.  Bright, bilious, too yellow  --  just awful.  That was rectified with a quick trip to our local quilt shop, The Whistling Chicken.  I found a lovely greyed-green by Moda that really works with the lilac eyelet of the dress. (Pictures of which I shall post when it is done.  Be patient.)

My original thought was to construct deep pleats for the front section of the sash, mirroring the pleats in the hem; and then, embroider some pink flowers on top of the pleats.

That did not work.

Doubtless, someone with more experience with machine embroidery than I would have known the problem.  Not I.  I had to ruin 2 pleated sections before realizing that when the embroidery hoop moves the fabric in the opposite direction of the pleats, it will catch them up, turn them in strange and unpredictable directions, and be unable to disentangle itself in the next move, thus jamming the machine, and tearing fabric.   Good thing I bought plenty!

So, then I thought that I would embroider a flat piece of fabric, cut around it, and applique it to the pleated section.  Alas, the design that I love the best for this has too many tiny edges to be trimmed, and stitched well.

Now for the dilemma:
I have 2 front pieces. 

One is pleated, and pressed nicely,

The other is embroidered - oh(!) so pretty.

Which to use?????

Your opinions on this matter are greatly appreciated.
BTW: the wedding is in May, and I need to get this in the mail, so  .  .  .