Never make the same thing …

Never make the same thing …

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… twice? Well, until recently I would have agreed without constraint. Then I found out, that there are things that just seemed to be designed to be made several times. After I’d made this shopping bag for my friend’s little boy I figured that something like this makes a nice gift for a child on any occasion. So I made two for kindergarden friends of my son’s who had a birthday party. We put a little picture book in one of them and a wooden domino game in the other one. Of course, the kids appreciated the insides more than the packaging! Anyway, their parents liked them and I hope that someday, the children will, too. The bags looked pretty much like the one I’ve made before:

Beutel2_3

There’s another pattern I decided to give a second shot – although I altered it a bit. I have to admit that I really like the classic  burberry check pattern, and I’ve looked for a fabric that looked a little like that to make a dress for a little girl. Then one day, I found a check patterned fabric in a fabric store I regularly visit. I decided to  use the pattern of the only girl’s dress I’d made so far. I added a little lace to the checks otherwise tending to look a little boring.

Kleid1And I opted for a dark blue cotton lining. Just then, it occured to me that I could make the dres reversible, which I did. Therefore it now looks on its other side like what my husband calls a typical Sunday School dress:

Kleid2

So, I do hope, this is different enough from what I’ve made before for my best friend’s little girl – who by now, of course, has grown out of it!

I have a couple of things „in store“ that I’m going to post sometime later this week, so check back!

Katrin

Another friend, another baby, another…

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… what? The baby was born in January, so I decided to make a hooded jacket. Can you guess where I found the pattern?

jacket_front

You are so right! Of course, this is from Ottobre design again. This time I didn’t change anything, except for adding a little star made from two layers of the lining fabric. (And yes, that’s the one on my title image!) I really like the way this little jacket turned out, this is what the back looks like:

jacket_back

By the way, I made this before my friend’s baby was born, and I didn’t know whether it was going to be a boy or girl. I hoped, however that the white-yellow-red colouring would work for either one. I leave you to answering the boy/girl question for yourself!

Have fun,

Katrin

Baby present – no clothes, no toys, what then?

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Einkaufsbeutel

I recently needed a little something for a friend’s boy, 11 months old. I didn’t want to buy a toy, but rather craft something that wasn’t clothes. Then I remembered, that my own little boy always wanted to carry the shopping basket once he’d started walking. Unfortunately those baskets don’t usually come in the right size for toddlers. That’s why I sometimes took a little bag for him – making grocery shopping a lot more fun because we don’t have to fight about the basket any longer! So I decided to make a shopping bag, something I’d never done before but figured that it should be rather easy. I wanted to apply the little boys name on it so it was genuinely his. Thanks to these instructions and Anette Truong’s alphabet pattern (which I had to scale down a bit) I came up with my very first craft made without a ready-to-start-pattern from some store or magazine. By the way, sewing this kind of bag is really easy – I’m sure going to make more!

That’s it for now,

Katrin

It is high time I wrote something again

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… and since I’m stuck with this Vintage Vogue pattern, I decided to post my – so far – favorite as a cheer-up. It is a dress I made for my best friend’s baby girl largely following an (who would have guessed?) Ottobre design pattern and looks like this:

Blumenkleid

Isn’t it sweet?

I didn’t follow the original pattern word by word but changed a few things. Firstly, I decided to go for Babycord (a corduroy fabric with very fine wales) instead of velvet. Secondly, I decided to make the bias bindings myself from the fabric I used as interfacing. I did this by simply cutting bands in a 45°-angle and folding them. Being done, I was sorry I hadn’t cut the interfacing itself the same way – I really like the way the squares look in the bindings. I also assembled the bow in a different way than Ottobre told me to: I made a ring from my bias band and then put just one longer band around it. I put it all together using my sewing machine’s button-fastening function. I do love that machine, really… The last change I owe to my natural lazyness (as my grandmother already observed when I was a little girl I’m using long threads, which makes me lazy according to a german saying: Kurze Fädchen, fleiß’ge Mädchen, lange Faden, faule Maden!) I didn’t want to have to sew the interfacing in place by hand, so I did this before I added the bias binding. This way, there’s three threads on the inside instead of just two – but I can live with that, especially since nobody’s ever gonna see it!

That’s all I changed, other than that I just went with the pattern, and I liked the outcome very much – I find it very girlish yet not too kitschy.

I’ll keep you posted about the Vintage Vogue pattern (once I get on with it)!

Katrin

The nice thing about buying fabric on line …

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… and terribly discomforting at the same time, is that you never really know what you’ll get until the shipment arrives. I wanted to make this sweater, also from ottobre design,

Sweater

but use different colors than those in the magazine. Therefore I kept browsing some of the many places to buy fabric on the net and found a really nice „Jersey“ – whatever one would call that in English. I thought it might go very well with deep blue and lighter cuffs but wasn’t really sure. You can never tell what those colours really are like.

It turned out to be a beautiful mix, however, and I really do like the pattern. It took me forever, though, to find out exactly how to put the borders around the pocket openings and the cuffs on the arms. The pocket openings were not that hard after all, just a lot of tiny work – that is actually a down side of making children’s clothes. The cuffs had to be put on the other fabric in a way to make all seem allowances invisible from in and outside. You do this by sewing twice their supposed length to a ring, then stitching one side right on right onto the arm. Then fold in the seem allowance on the other side, lay on the inner arm and sew through all fabric. The waistband is made just like that.

I had to play tricks, however, on the hood’s borders. I had measured the fabric a little bit to short and didn’t want to take it off again, so I seemed both ends together, while putting a little part of fabric on the inside. That way, my mistake doesn’t show AND the hood is rather tight – no need to put on a shawl when wearing it!

Well, as a second project, it turned out alright – and didn’t make me stop trying.

Check back again soon,

Katrin

Cleaning, Cooking, Baking, Washing, Ironing, Knitting…

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… Sewing! Just what makes anybody do all those things? For some of us I suppose they’re just musts. Things you’ve got to deal with. For some, they might be what a big part of life’s full of. For me, some of these are really fun (I do admit that neither cleaning nor ironing qualify!) But seriously, I like to make things. Put something together and get something new: a meal or a cake, a sweater or socks. Until last summer, though, sewing has never really been on my agenda except for quickly (and very amateurishly) shortening trousers or seeming a tablecloth. Well, come to think of it, I once did make a log-cabin beadspread for my sister (it was supposed to be a Christmas present, I think she got it for Easter!)

Anyway, last summer, I came across a copy of the Ottobre design-magazine at my local library and I happened to have a one-year-old going to the beach for summer holidays. So I decided to give it a try and made these trousers for him.

Sommerhose

That having worked out quite nicely, I figured that sewing was a much quicker way to make clothing than knitting and went on with it. Fortunately, I still have that (now older) one-year-old around, as well as many babies being born to friends of mine. I’ve also been lucky enough to get a new sewing-machine for my birthday so I don’t have to borrow my mothers each time. This blog is going to be about my progress in becoming a hobby-seamstress.

So, welcome to all visitors, I hope you’ll stop by again!

Katrin