Now that Paul is doodling daily we have a nice habit in the evening of spending time on our projects. It has been the kick I needed to get started on a bunch of sewing projects. Since I most dislike cutting out pattern pieces I cut out pieces for a few different things the other night. I thought I could easily whip up another top for Tabby same style as her red and white polka dot one. As with most things I think are simple I did run in to a few problems. Notably that the fabric was getting weird pulls in it and my machine sounded awful. I had to wait to finish it and bring it to my mother’s. When I showed her what the fabric looked like she suggested that my needle might have a “burr” on it-a sharp tiny bit of the metal needle sticking out that you can get if your needle strikes metal. As soon as she said that I remembered not setting my width to five when I was doing a zipper last month and accidentally hitting the metal plate with it. I came home and put on a new needle and it worked beautifully.
So, this owl top is made from a mere 1/2 yd of fabric that Tabby had to have. I had just enough to make the basic top (no pocket), which was fine because I embellished it with baby rick rack in pink and green and I love the way it looks. Unfortunately I don’t have a great picture of her wearing it.
While flipping through my sewing machine’s manual I came across something I had not realized before. My machine can do smocking! I have always wanted to try this so I followed their instructions on a bit of material and check it out:
This is not the sort of stretchy smocking, such as a tube top (!) might have, but rather made with regular, not elastic thread. I can’t wait to try this on a dress for her.
As for other projects I made this pillow over the past two nights. It is a gift for one of Clark’s friends. Paul questioned whether or not a little girl would enjoy a pillow, but I know that my kids love their special pillows and things and I think she might too. I decided I wanted it to be removable so it could be washed and thought I’d put a zipper in at the seam. Word to the wise-don’t make this your last step like I did. It was nearly impossible to sew a zipper in to the fourth seam of a closed item. I waited until the end because I just wasn’t even sure if the pillow form could be shoved through the zipper opening. Anyway, I’m very pleased with how this came out.
I bought a package of coordinated fat quarters and cut out one of the princessy fairy girls for the center (I picked the princess with the hair most like the recipient.) From there I just kept building frames around it until it was big enough for the pillow. I wanted to make it super girly (as if all the pink, hearts, princesses, butterflies, flowers, and crowns were not enough) but since I wanted it soft to rest a head on I didn’t want to sew on any buttons, sequins, or things like that. So…a ruffle! I made a coordinating ruffle out of one of the fabrics and it turned out beautifully. Making a ruffle is not difficult-it’s really just the longest length of gathering ever-but it is time consuming to keep pulling the fabric along your threads. Overall I think this is very sweet and I’m v. pleased. (I used a shiny pink polished cotton for the back.) and I hope she likes it!