American Girl Dolls; every little girl’s love. Well, maybe not every little girl’s love, but definitely mine! And! We have the “fortunate luck” to live within minutes of a giant American Girl Doll Store!
However, when Christmas came along with the the American Girl Doll catalog, I just knew that the whole thing would be full of circled items. I was not mistaken! With “the sky’s the limit” wishful thinking coupled with sky high pricing, it was hard to pair down the Christmas list.
This was a call grandpa and some DIY!
DIY American Girl Doll Wardrobe
On the top of the list (coming in at around $300) was the Isabelle Wardrobe. It did not come as a surprise to me as she had recently received Isabelle as a birthday gift (in October). However, at that price, it would be all she would receive for Christmas. So, I started my Pinterest hunt for the perfect DIY American Girl Doll Wardrobe. I didn’t have to search for long, because I found a cute design with plans and everything right here!
I enlisted my father (whom is lovingly called Baba) to help with the word-working, and I sanded, primed, and painted. With the suggested Target washer and dryer set (an additional cost), the wardrobe was complete! The finished product ended up costing less than $50 and was more than we could have dreamed.
It is now the last day of Kid’s Clothes Week, and I have accomplished 3 out of 4 intended projects. I’m going to take that as a win!
This last project includes my two girls: Cadence and Winifred Rose. Winnie is one of my kids too, right?! I couldn’t help including her in this wonderful theme: Upcycled!
After finishing a simple skirt for Cadence, from a Tory Burch Tank Top that no longer fit me, I had plenty of fabric left to make…..something! I thought about it, and decided to make a matching sweater for Winnie! How cute would that be!
How to Sew a Dog Sweater
1/4 yard fabric of choice (mine is knit)
1/4 yerd fleece (contrasting color)
4 inches of velcro
Neck Measurement (where the color would go plus 1 inch)
Chest Measurement (largest Part
Tip to Tail Measurement (from neck to bottom)
*Winnie’s measurements are: 10 X 12.5 X 10
From there, simply draw a rough oval with the given measurements (adding an inch on all sides for seam allowance), and leaving a small flap on the side for the Velcro. Cut out the neck (about 2 inches in a half circle shape (with enough room on either side for Velcro strips.
Sew right sides together, leaving a small opening to turn right side out. Once turned, sew shut and attach the Velcro. Wallah! And that is how to sew a dog sweater in its simplest form. I have a feeling I will be making many more!
The skirt turned out nicely too. For a simple skirt tutorial see here.
Kid’s Clothes Week Day 4: Floral Pants To finish up Kid’s Clothes Week: Wild Things, we decided to make a pair of skinny jeans: wild flower style. Floral pants have been all the rage lately showing up in magazines, in stores, on Pinterest, and in the streets! It was only a matter of time before […]
Kid’s Clothes Week: Wild Things I love Kid’s Clothes Week! This season’s theme: Wild Things sparked my attention early on. There are just so many possibilities! However, when my rapidly growing up almost 9 year old announced she was “too old for animal faces on her clothes”, I was stumped. I wanted something cutsie! She wanted something trendy. […]
This seasons theme: Upcycled, from Kid’s Clothes Week, is a pretty exciting theme. The process of going through my closet brought immense joy to Cadence, who found out that she can nearly fit my high heels! She was beside herself with glee upon the realization, and was in love with the idea of making something of mine into something for her.
The best part is, we were able to include not 2, but 3 generations in the mix! Cadence’s mimmi, my mother-in-law, gave me a beautiful, Juicy Couture chain link dress of hers a couple years ago. However, it was a little too short for comfort, so it was an obvious choice for our projects: a hand-me-down to a daughter-in-law to a granddaughter. With a few alterations, I created a much smaller version of the original. A very sophisticated dress for an 8 year old, I might add.
Juicy Couture Chain Link Dress
The original dress is shown below, and we decided to keep the same shape, just a smaller version.
The upcycled Juicy Couture Chain Link Dress was more than we hoped for! Cadence was in heaven being able to look and dress like her mimmie! We opted to sew the tag back in place to preserve the look. What a fun project!
The Garden Party Dress from Oliver + S is something I have been meaning to blog about for some time now. It was the dress that got me sewing again after a 5 year break during which I finished a Master’s Degree.
I came across Oliver + S by accident, searching for a dress to buy no less! I saw the adorable patterns and images, such as the one featured (and the Pinwheel Tunic, my next spring project), and decided to pull out the old Janome and make a dress.
Fall Garden Party Dress
My first attempt was from an unknown cotton fabric I had in my closet for some odd years. The dress ended up being the perfect nightgown as it was slightly see through and extremely soft.
My second attempt ended up being simply wonderful! I was so proud after all these years that I could still make a pretty dress on the second try! It was all thanks to the amazing tutorial included in the pattern and the easy to follow instructions provided by Oliver + S.
I used a Fall Floral Corduroy print from Hobby Lobby. It is currently out of stock, however, there is a dark blue version here. I used a Grey Corduroy for the contrasting waist band.
Now that it is colder, the dress still looks fantastic paired with leggings or tights and a long sleeved shirt. Such a versatile dress!
Fancy Garden Party Dress
Coming back to the Garden Party Dress last week in anticipation for the holidays, I attempted a more dressed up version. I chose a wired tulle from Joann’s from All That Glitters Fabric in coral with a simple nude stretch knit from Sew Classic Knits as a lining. I simply cut out each fabric in all pattern pieces expect for the facing and sleeve lining in which I only used the knit. Once cut out, I laid the tulle on top of the knit and sewed as directed.
There was slight puckering on the waist band, which I am confident would have not been there had I been in less of a hurry, but despite everything, the dress is still gorgeous!
The pictures are finally here! The School Days Jacket I have been waiting all summer long to sew (from Oliver + S) is now complete. While it is already November, it is still too warm to wear this lovely jacket in Texas. Not to worry though! We will patiently await the chilly January and February days to come.
I decided to go ahead and start the jacket during the Oliver + S School Days Jacket Sew Along that started November 3. It was a perfect sew along that outlined the complete process. While 16 pieces seems daunting, I was able to finish the coat in 4 days! Getting the perfect picture almost took as much time! I decided to go with the size 8, even though I was warned that it was large, and I am glad I did! It is such a beautiful jacket, that the overall size ensures that she will be able to wear it for another year at least.
For the School Days Jacket, I used a semi-thick wool in a beautiful aqua shade from a local fabric shop in Dallas. The lining is Summer Grove in Day from Leah Duncan‘s Meadow Collection. The dress Cadence is wearing is the Garden Party Dress from Oliver + S (see more here) and the bow is Ava from Violette Fields Threads.
The buttons were extra special to me. Not because they were heirlooms or anything like that, but because I am not too big on the idea of toggles. So, a last minute attempt at locating an interesting button at Joann’s (where I almost never find what I need), I saw these! They are 30mm /1 3/16 inch coconut Belle Buttons by Dritz that resemble these. They are not located on the Joann’s website, however, I wanted to share as I couldn’t be more happy about my find!
Just a few more pictures to showcase this beautiful coat and all the love that was put into it:
What is the best part of Fall? Leggings! The most comfy thing a girl (or boy) can wear!
As part of Kids Clothes Week, I am making a pair of leggings. The great thing about leggings is that they are incredibly easy to make.
This tutorial will walk you through how to make a pair of leggings by using a pair you already have as a guide. However, you can check out this other fantastic tutorial here, if you need to make them from scratch using your own measurements.
Let the DIY Leggings Tutorial begin!
DIY Leggings Tutorial
1/2 yard knit fabric (for tiny ones!)
1 inch elastic band for waist (about 1/2 yard)
1/4 inch elastic band for rushing (about 1/8 yard)
poof of tulle for accent (optional)
matching polyester thread
marker or pen
ballpoint or stretch needle
double needle (optional)
Fold your pair of leggings in half length-wise to use as a guide. Trace around the leggings onto a sheet of paper (or many sheets taped together) with a pencil or marker. Once the outline is created, we are going to adjust. Because the elastic band has made the waist slightly smaller, we are going to draw lines straight up to meet the top as shown in the picture below.
Add 1/4 inch seam allowance to the side that is not straight up and down. The side that is straight up and down will be placed on the fold.
Add a one inch seam line to the bottom of the leggings as shown below.
Add 1 1/4 inch seam allowance to the top to allow for a 1 inch elastic waist band. If you prefer a smaller waist band, use that size plus 1/4 inch.
Cut out fabric carefully. Knits are prone to stretching, so they should be laid out on a flat surface. Try not to stretch the fabric as you cut.
Since 2 legs are needed, you will need to cut out two pieces on the fold. If the fabric has stripes, make sure the stripes are lined up by using one piece of cut out fabric as the pattern for the second as shown below.
Using your walking foot, double or twin needles if you have them, and polyester thread (for maximum stretch): Hem the bottom of both legs by folding the fabric in 1 inch. #5 on my machine provides a good amount of stretch, however, a straight stitch can work if you slightly stretch the fabric while sewing.
Note: If you want to do the ruched sides, now is the time! Iron the fold seam, open fabric, and sew the elastic to the wrong side of the material at the bottom of the pant leg.
One the bottom hems are complete (and side ruched detail), with a single ballpoint needle, and the zigzag stitch of your choice: sew the leg seam together until you reach the curved point (crotch). I like the zigzag with the straight line best: #10 on my machine. However, anything that give stretch to the fabric will work.
Once both legs are complete, sew the seams up the front and back (all in one go) making a U shape.
Add the elastic band to the top by encasing it in the excess 1 1/4 inch fabric. Now the product is done and any decorations (such as the tulle poof can be added)!
Figgy’s Scirocco dress pattern has been one of my all-time fav0rite patterns to sew. This dress is a playtime, summer favorite that is easy to make with a designer quality look. I fell in love with the pattern as soon as I saw it. I loved the design, the grey and white Polka Dot Dress Fabric by Moda, and the red boots to match featured on Figgy’s website here. As it had been awhile since I had sewn a dress, I did some research and found that I was not the only one who loves Figgy’s Scirocco Dress! So many pictures and blogs dedicated to the Scirocco Dress!
During my research for Figgy’s Scirocco, I found an incredible tutorial here. If it were not for this tutorial, I may never have made the twisted back on the first try! I also found a trend: the gaping side back! I had to study many pictures to determine why so many of the finished dresses had gaping sides. At first glance, I assumed the dresses were too large for the subject, however, after second thought, I determined that there was too much fabric on the sides of the dress back for the size of the waist.
In order to overcome this minor detail, I decided to adjust the pattern to fit each measurment of my little girl. In addition, I tapered the bottom side diagonal line to 1 inch so that with a 1/2 inch seam, the finished side back would measure 1/2 inch before the side seam at the bottom.
In the end, I think Figgy’s Scirocco dress turned out wonderfully. After all, it was the dress that got me sewing again. The dress that would eventually enspired me to blog about my sewing and DIY projects, and create Lark + Wren. You can see more images of this dress here.