Saturday, November 12, 2011
But here's hoping you'll forgive me for toe-ing the line once you see how stupidly cute this little craft turned out to be.
When I saw this (I'm sure on Pinterest, since that's where the good ideas live), it reminded me of the theme of our precious two years of Christmas cards: Lilah's painted bits and pieces.
Year one was her nearly 12-month-old foot turned into a Christmas tree, proclaiming the "Holidays are afoot!". (I know, I'm a freaking comic genius). Year two was Lilah's sweet little 23-month-old hand turned into Santas face and beard. I added in all the rest of the elements, cut by hand, of a hat - complete with trim - and googly eyes (just to make Walken happy) with a note saying we hoped Santa "handed" them everything they wished for that year.
I have no intention on stopping this tradition before Lilah is too big to fit body parts on card-sized paper or she is old enough to tell me to go to hell, so keep in touch to see what I've picked for this year's card. We'll start on them soon enough.
So this little craft can kind of be considered a warm-up; A good reminder of what it feels like to become a human stamp and have squishy acrylic paint in between your tiny bits and pieces. Plus, it gave me that ever one special piece of seasonal art that I can pull out every year to sob over when I realize my baby isn't a baby anymore which means I'm just old.
Or something like that. :-)
So without further adieu, I give thee "Foot Turkey with Hand Feathers" by Lilah Muldrow, age 34 months:
Wednesday, October 26, 2011
I used Simplicity 2563 and found it to be pretty easy to work with. There were very few pattern pieces and the directions for construction were fairly clear. I only had a few issues, which since this was just a Halloween costume I largely ignored, but if I were trying to make some sort of heirloom they would've been bothersome.
For one - like all patterns - this one seemed to be sized to some strange race of human that is 9 feet tall at the age of 3. While Lilah met the measurements perfectly for a size 3 dress, it ended up being quite large on her through the shoulders, causing me to need to take it in after it was finished lest she have her own tiny tot topless review. For the record, I did try it on her before finishing it, but thought the problem would be corrected once the zipper was in. And see how short the model dress is? Yeah, there is no way they cut that by the pattern. In the following pictures you'll see Lilah's ankle-length dress, which I came to after cutting about 4.5 inches off the suggested pattern length.
Another issue I found was that it seems - and this is most likely user error, because patterns are mathematical and we have well-established that I am special math needs - that the sleeves go in yet are not enclosed in the bodice lining, leaving an ugly hot mess that I ended up top-stitching over to keep the sleeve edges turned in.
Finally, it bothered me that the headband calls for a naked piece of elastic to stick out from the back of the finished piece. It took me an extra five minutes to cover the elastic and make the headband really pretty. Given that Cinderella is rocking an up-do, I'd think having that little secret elastic piece remain mostly a secret would be a priority.
The changes I made were to use super super cheap materials. The satin is costume satin that cost about $2.96 a yard. Instead of organza for the bustle puff and sleeves, I used two layers of sparkly net that ran me $1.17 a yard, and I think the effect is just as pretty if not more so than the intended organza. In photos and in person, it just seems more like a fantasy ballgown than if the materials had been ten bucks a yard.
Plus, it's not going to hurt my feelings for her to play hard in it as soon as Halloween is over.
Overall, the ease of constructing this dress and the happy face of my little princess made my few frustrations well worth the extra wrinkles in my brow this week. Plus, I like that Simplicity offers Disney-sanctioned versions of its princess dresses. Sure, you could rig up something to look a lot like Cinderella's dress, but when you can score the real deal pattern for a dollar on sale, why not?
And yes, I do know that there are a million pre-made versions of Cinderella's dress available in toy stores and big box retailers for low low prices like $14.95 which would keep me from having to sew them at all. However, they all have one, annoying similarity that totally keeps me from going the easy route: The plastic "cameo."
You know what I'm talking about - that stupid shiny plastic oval in the center of every freaking costume with the princess in question's picture on it, like you don't know what costume you're buying. Like your kid is going to be out trick-or-treating and someone will say, "Well, who are you supposed to be?" and your kid will go, "I don't know - wait! I have this handy crappy, plastic medallion to tell me!"
There's a part of me who wants to go around with scissors and cut all those things off. It would increase the validity of the costumes by a million percent as far as I'm concerned.
So. The lesson for today is that I am still differently math-abled and I have a seething hatred for plastic princess-face cameos on costumes.
What's your costume pet-peeve? Or would you rather deal with the peeve than a project?
I'd love to see your Halloween costumes! What are you (or your kidlets) going to be for "Hallowqueen"?
Wednesday, October 19, 2011
Friday, October 14, 2011
Fine. Count them if you want to, but I swear, it's up there.
Anyway, when one of my best girlfriends from college told me a few months ago that she was expecting, I could. not. wait. She is one of the most fashionable women I know, and she actually WORKS in the fashion industry, so I was fingers crossed for her that it would be a girl to inherit all her fashion savvy and fingers crossed for me that it would be a boy, so I could offer my little home-grown gifts and not get baby laughed out of the Big Apple.
So when she FINALLY decided on baby's name - just in time for her shower this past weekend - I was more than happy to get cracking on baby boy some personalized gifts!
First of all, she picked one of the cutest bedding sets I've seen. It's called Nantucket by Bananafish and features a solid navy paired with white, green, and gators.
Modern prep at its best! The only thing missing is the argyle!
One of the things she registered for was this precious little fuzzy gator pillow.
But I wanted to personalize it. It needed to belong to the baby and only the baby...but how could I do that? There was no way to monogram or personalize an already sewn together gator pillow.
So, I just had to make my own version.
With only the picture from Target's website to guide me, I freehanded a pattern out of two shades of green fleece - one of which I already had on hand! If you know me, you know that my math abilites register somewhere on the scale around those of a fetus, so actually being able to replicate a 3D pattern was a bit of a geometric victory for me! Then I used a great fun curly font to personalize the front of the gator with Baby Niles' name. Et voilá! Personalized baby pillow!
In addition to the great gator pillow, I also made some personalized onesies.
Keeping with the gator theme is this cute little brown-striped number.
And on this blue onesie I used a classic circle monogram that I think is great for boys due to its sleek appearance!
The other baby gift I have recently created was actually for a friend to gift to some other proud parents! I created a cute little purple fleece kitty hat for all the little girls I knew last year, and she had really liked the way it looked in the pics and thought about getting them for a family adding to their family this past summer. One child was already seven, and the other was on its way. Since she didn't know the sex of the new baby, we decided to pick a color that was bright but not too girly. And here is what I came up with:
These awesome turquoise felines will keep the kiddos nice and toasty this spring...that's right - as residents of Australia, I'm afraid these hats have already missed the coldest part of winter there and will be getting to them just in time to pull out the shorts for December! Crazy southern hemisphere, being all opposite seasons! Oh well - if we're lucky they'll fit next year? They certainly do look cute together, and I'd love to see the pair of these kitties - I mean, kiddies - sporting these hats!
EDITED TO ADD: These hats are actually going to JAPAN. So while they will still get to experience a full winter's wear, they are going to the land of EVERYTHING CUTE. I just hope they can keep up!
Stay tuned to the baby channel here at With Pin and Ink...I've got a burp cloth and bib set in the works and if the trend holds, I'll hear about 4 new pregnancies by the end of the year, so you could be watching my small person gift inspiration chug along for a good, long while!
Wednesday, October 12, 2011
Gray, red, and white tri-check for my Tide...
Gold, purple and white tri-check - Geaux Tigers!
Black, white and red will do for either NC State or the Georgia Bulldogs - OR - you could take it local and that would totally represent a couple of the high schools here. I even found one for a high school in my hometown area:
For the Oxford High Yellow Jackets...or Georgia Tech!
The SECOND birthday gift I got to work on has been one of my favorite projects in awhile. Lilah's cousin was turning 4, and I realized I had only ever made her a crazy long tutu before, and it was high time she got another Aunt Original. I know that having an older brother, she's not super crazy like Lilah is about all things pink and frilly, but she does like dresses and princesses, so I thought I'd strike a happy middle and create something a little bit of both worlds. I came up with this:
Drawing my inspiration from PBS's "Dinosaur Train," I decided to give her a frilly dino outfit! I started by picking fabric - both patterned and solid, in the colors of the dinos - Green for Tiny and Don, Blue for Shiny, and Orange for Buddy.
I found a pattern for a Pteranadon and decided to make her blue like Shiny. I did the birthday girl's name in bright green.
The skirt was the most fun. I had a skirt for Lilah that was covered top to bottom in raw-edged ruffles. While I liked the look, I also liked the idea of leaving a solid band at the top for a border. Thus, this ruffle skirt was born! I simply alternated the ruffles in color from top to bottom. And I just aboslutely loved the result. Frilly but not too...blush or bashful, you know?
I loved creating this skirt so much that I can't wait to make another one. They are a little time consuming, but seeing that whole outfit together tells me it's totally worth it. I mean, I'd want to wear it if I were four.
Hopefully the birthday girls enjoyed their gifts! I know I had a fun time creating them!
Monday, October 10, 2011
What I love about children's clothes today is that they take a lot of the elements of "dress-up" and put them squarely out for every day wear. I think that the holidays - especially Halloween - are a great time to kind of push the boundaries between "dress-up" and "dressed." So, playing on a little pillowcase dress I made for Lilah last Halloween, I present to you: Jack-o-Dress.
<insert sob story of how my tiny baby is now a full-grown woman here>
The best thing about this is that I have enough of the orange fabric to make at least two more of these super awesome jack-o-dresses. What a great option to wear to school on Monday, October 31!
The listing is on Etsy, so get yours today!
PS - Want a ghost instead? That's available, too!
Sunday, October 2, 2011
No offense, Land's End, but I like making them myself - the color and pattern possibilities are endless! Plus, I have three, and I didn't have to spend $29.50 on a single one.
PS: is it REALLY October already?! I owe you guys some posts...
Sunday, September 18, 2011
I'm just going to have to focus and study hard and keep myself away from Pinterest...
Sent from my iPhone
Monday, September 5, 2011
I don't wear a lot of belts; I have an unfortunate condition called Longium Waisticus, and wearing shirts tucked in with belts just amplifies the problem. What it usually means is that my shirt is coming untucked all day long, every time I move my arms, since a regular shirt for normal, non-afflicted people usually juuuuuuuuust covers my belly-button on any given day anyway. It would be awesome if I were a belly-button model, but I'm not, so it's annoying. The only time this condition has worked in my favor is while I was pregnant. Longium Wasiticus actually helps pregnant women avoid the dreaded "Rib Monkey Bars" syndrome, as well as being able to keep their full ability to breathe for the entire pregnancy (at least for babies approximately 7.5 lbs).
Anyway, I liked how simple this belt looked, but didn't like the very limited palette or the nearly $30 price tag. And the closer I looked at it, the more I realized I could MOST definitely make that myself.
|Perez Hilton would have a field day snarking on my hand veins.|
Friday, September 2, 2011
I kind of love it.
Anyway, I wanted to make something for myself and got super excited (and lucky as the dickens) when I stumble over the above pattern. It's got three pieces, and one sheet of directions.
Let me repeat that: it's got three pieces, and one sheet of directions.
Even the most sewing-challenged amongst us can manage three pieces and one sheet of directions, right?
We shall see. I have big plans for being cute with the results of my three-piece pattern.
Are you working on a craft this long weekend? Show and tell, y'all: it's the reason we loved 1st grade. So raise your hand an share with the class!
Have a great weekend, everyone!!
Thursday, September 1, 2011
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Roll Tide, y'all!
Saturday, August 20, 2011
Saturday, August 6, 2011
What could have me so offended, you wonder?
The exposed zipper.
Just look for yourselves at this abomination of fashion.
Wednesday, August 3, 2011
Even tailgating - which one would assume I would be a master at given my propensity to plan parties, bake too many baked goods and drink - is only fun for me in small doses...those doses being between October 1st and November 14 - so that I neither have to be too hot or too cold - and only if I'm close by to a really for real potty - because I really, really, really hate port-a-potties.
But I do love the idea of football.
I think for me the big problem was that my love of high school football games - the socializing, the cheese nachos, knowing people on the team in real life - didn't translate when I went to college. I mean, when I went to college, I knew a couple of people in the band and I knew everyone was very excited about football games, but I just never...got into it. I tried. But I didn't understand. I never really learned the rules or nuances of the sport. The crowds were intimidating...I could go on, but I'll spare you. Plus, I didn't grow up in a sports-watching household. I mean, not sports that use balls as the main form of entertainment. There was plenty of Roland Martin's Outdoors on Saturdays, but that was about it for sporting.
I think I'm more excited about football now because I have a daughter, and I want her to be well-rounded. Her dad loves college football and I want her to share that with him. I want her to learn to make awesome tailgate foods and dress in team-appropriate colors and know far more about what's going on in the game than I ever have. *Not that it's too late to learn my own self, I just have to find someone who is willing to field my endless questions about the action on the field.* But mostly I think having a child changes things because I can dress her in game day appropriate clothing and it's cute, not cliche.
Things like this:
Now, these little dresses are to celebrate some tigers around these parts, but I have ideas for so many other schools with which I am locally and personally affiliated! Imagine a purple gingham with purple border, monogram or name on the chest and this guy on the hem for Furman:
Or how about a black gingham dress with garnet border and "Go Cocks!" embroidered on the hem for Carolina fans?
Or, my personal favorite (which Lilah will soon enough be sporting): Black and white houndstooth with crimson border and an elephant on the hem for my own alma mater, The University of Alabama!!!
The best thing about this style of dress is that you order one for your little one now and she can wear it for YEARS. She can wear it as is in the heat of the first games and over a long-sleeve turtleneck or t-shirt with a cute pair of leggings, it's perfect when the autumn chill sets in.
And some of these ideas can be translated into little boy's wear, too!
How about a football alphabet t-shirt for your pint-sized quarterback?
The possibilities are endless.
So get ready for kick-off by visiting the etsy shop for your football fashions! Got a special request, or want something for yourself? Shoot me an email and let's make something fun happen!
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Who am I kidding, that is still true.
Plus, "back to school" meant shopping for new clothes (whether you actually needed them or not) and so it was always nice to get a few new, "special" pieces to wear when the school year started. Now, these were almost always Fall or Winter items, because as you know, "back to school" traditionally started after Labor Day and they didn't really ever change that when "back to school" started happening earlier and earlier, seeing children bounce off in the un-airconditioned yellow school busses when it was still hitting 100 most days of the week.
Did that stop me from wearing my new, "special" pieces to school?
I was the damn fool walking around in a SUPERCUTE sweater and jeans when it was still heatstroke degrees outside.
So imagine my glee when my favorite applique shop put up some of their new "back to school" designs this week and I saw things like this:
You can WEAR your dang school supplies!!!!
I know school starts soon for most of y'all, but if you're looking for something cute for your little ones to start the year, let me know! We can even do short sleeves so that your kids don't have to suffer the heatstroke that I did when I was
Lilah's not in school proper, but I think she NEEDS a crayon shirt with matching ruffly skirt.
Monday, July 25, 2011
K.I.S.S. = Keep It Simple, Stupid.
We all laughed...because our teacher said the word "stupid," but she wasn't joking. It really is nothing but grand stupidity to overcomplicate things in life.
If only I could have figured this out before living a third of my life!
Since I believe that it's never too late to learn something - especially a life lesson - I am sharing with you a little something that I think is one of the best baby gifts you can give, because it is just so simple: A personalized blanket.
I have made many, many blankets for my friends and their babies over the years because my reasoning is that there is always something you can do with a blanket. It's always nice to have one to cover the baby carrier when you go out in the cold or the rain. It's always nice to have one handy when you are visiting a friend so you can throw the baby on the floor to play with the dog. It's always nice to have one in your car so you can have impromptu picnics (or cover up tee-tee soaked car seats 'til you can get home and start the de-urination process - not that I'd know anything about that).
Blankets could possibly be - after love - what make the world go 'round.
That's why I was super excited to stumble upon a few of these the other day in my random browsing:
How much do you love the prints from Dwell Studios? It makes me wish I were abstract enough to design fabric, or rich enough to own a bolt of everything that pleases my eye. This cotton jersey is so soft, and I just love how modern but still simple and pretty the floral medallions are. And that fushia binding really takes the pale pinks to the next level. It reminds me of the color of blueberries when you cook them down and make a jam of them...just juicy and sweet and delicious.
I think adding a beautiful monogram or name, possibly with a birthdate below, would be a great gift for any new parent of a precious little girl! And it's 100% cotton so it's easy to toss it in to wash and dry to get it ready for the next outing.
If you're looking for a baby shower gift, you might consider the old multi-purpose blanket. Because it's not handmade, I can't sell it in the Etsy shop, so if you'd like to give one of these a home, you can pick it up now!
Sunday, July 24, 2011
Friday, July 22, 2011
I thought of all those things today as I made this little pillowcase dress for Lilah.
It's perfect for now to wear alone, but paired with a long-sleeved golden shirt in the fall, she's all set to get her burnt marshmallow on.
And if daydreaming of Fall sounds pretty good to you right now as you swelter in the 90+ degrees at 9:30PM weather, you're in luck: I've got just enough of this awesome butterfly print left for one. more. dress.
Cost is $30 and includes a monogram or name of your choice.
Congratulations, Emily, on scoring the butterfly dress :-D