Friday, June 24, 2011

Knot Dress Tutorial

After seeing so many adorable dresses for little girls, I decided to make up a simple summer dress for Elsie. I love this knot top dress because the colors are a funky mix, it'll fit her for a while (first as a dress, then as a top), and there are no difficult zippers. Trust me, you can do this one! As for me, I'm new at writing directions, so be patient with me, and feel free to ask questions as I'm sure I left a few holes!

Here are the basic measurements:

Yoke: There's no exact measurement for this one. I just measured E's chest, and kept cutting out patterns and holding them up to her till I got a shape and size I liked. I made it to cover her chest, coming down to about her sternum. ** Just remember that it'll end up being about 1/4" smaller all the way around after you sew it.

(Cut out 2 for outside, 2 for lining, 2 from fusible interfacing)

Straps: L= Back of the shoulder to belly button, W= 1 3/4"
(Cut 2 for outside, 2 for lining)

Skirt: L= Sternum to however long you want it, minus 1 1/2" (That's for the coordinating trim at the bottom) W= Waist circumference times 2 1/2, divided by 2 (Cut 2)

Bottom strip: W = same as skirt, L= 4 1/2" (Cut 2)

Center band: L= 2", W= Same as yoke piece (Cut 2)

1. Sew bottom trim to bottoms of skirt pieces. Sew sides of skirt (right sides together).Then iron bottom trim in half lengthwise, folding it underneath. Then topstich near the seam of the skirt and trim fabric, being sure to catch the side folded underneath. (This makes a nice finished bottom.)

2. Sew along both long sides and one short side of strap, outsides and linings right sides together, then turn right side out, iron, and topstitch.

3. Next, assemble the yoke. Iron fusible interfacing to the wrong side of the outside yoke pieces. Sew center band pieces to bottoms of outside yoke pieces. Next, make a strap sandwich, putting back yoke outside and lining pieces right sides together, with the straps in the middle. (I chose to put my straps at an angle, but you could just sew them straight. BTW- the straps should be angled in, not out like in the picture)

Sew the curved and top sides of the outside fabric and lining, leaving the short sides untouched. Do this again for the front outside and lining fabrics, just without the straps.
4. Take one short, open side of the back yoke, and one short side of the front yoke, and sew, right sides together, the repeat with the other short sides. Now when you flip it right side out, you should have the whole top yoke piece. Iron and top stitch around edges.

5. Gather top edge of skirt, then evenly pin skirt to yoke (right sides together), and sew. I also added on simple pockets after.

6. Then, just cut small slits in the front of the yoke where the straps will be going through. Finish the slits with a buttonhole stitch.
The bright flowers add a touch of fab and fun. I made them using the pattern found HERE. Doesn't this red one with pearls just look so sweet in her blonde locks? So... what are you waiting for now?! In total I probably spent only 2-3 hours, and no money. And I'm sure there's some sweet little girl you know who would just love one!

Currently making....

Currently making a few of these adorable gathered clutches. Find the easy tutorial HERE.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Yum! Don't these look delightfully delicious?!

Don't these cake jars look amazing?! (Just forget about the amount of sugar and food coloring) Get the recipe and FREE printable label HERE. Gotta love TomKat Studio!

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Patriotic Star Door Hanger

The fourth of July is one of my favorite holidays. I love the fireworks, BBQs, and the beautiful colors of red, white, and blue. One of my neighbors had a star like this hanging for Halloween, and I loved the idea. Perfect for creating a one-of-a-kind door decoration! So here's my version. You can find these metal stars at Joanns, Hobby Lobby, Taipan, etc.

All you need are scissors, scrapbooking cardstock, and Mod Podge. I just made a stencil of the shape of the facet, and cut out as many pieces as I needed. The paper didn't fit perfectly, so I just sandpapered off the edges, and-- ta dah! And doesn't it just accent my pumpkin orange door so well? Ah, the joys of renting. I really do love it-- it's perfect for a festive first impression. The door? Not so much a good first impression.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

The Joy of Giveaways

I have won hundreds of dollars in free stuff from giveaways. I only spend a few minutes here and there, choosing sites where not many people enter. I especially love The Fashionable Gal. Not only does the site have style tips and deals, but they also have AMAZING giveaways. There is one going on right now for a shabby apple dress! You can enter HERE!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Fear Conquered

A couple months ago, I thought I had scarred our baby for life. While she was in the tub, I let Elsie slip under the water and take a nice big gulp. She came up screaming, and has had the same reaction to water ever since.

Well... last week we decided to try out our town's premier pool/ fun center. I crossed my fingers and hoped E. would enjoy (or at least tolerate) the water. Tons of kids were splashing in the shallow, toddler area. Elsie's eyes always light up around kids, so this was a good start.

I stuck her into the water, which was about 6" deep, and she instantly freaked. I picked her up, and let her watch all the kids laughing and playing. This example was just what she needed, and her reaction changed from night to day. She loved to run through the water and stick her face into the fountains. Her favorite thing was a small slide, with a waterfall to go through at the end. What an excellent day it turned out to be! And if you're wondering, this positive association has transferred over to the bathtub. She loves it there too.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Handmade Gift Exchange...

Linda @ Craftaholics Anonymous has graciously put together another handmade gift exchange. If you sign up, you'll send a crafty thing you've created, and get something in return. I don't know about you, but I love recieving packages in the mail! You can sign up HERE.
I know you may be skeptical, wondering if you'll really get something awesome. I can't promise anything, but looking at the pictures from the last one, the items looked pretty great. There is no minimum value limit, so if you sign up, just keep in mind that whatever you get was made with love by someone. *** Please read her directions before signing up, and I hope you enjoy participating!

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Blush Envy Sale!

Doesn't this picture just make you want to drool?! These incredible flowers are actually rings!

I'm all for spicing up a look with some serious accessory bling! I recently found the amazing jewelry at Blush Envy, and have been waiting for a sale to get me some yummy finger/ear/ neck candy. Even better, Brandy handmakes each piece and they are amazingly detailed. There is a HUGE sale going on tomorrow on some barely less-than-perfect rings. (She says the flowers may come off the ring bases, but that's an easy fix!) Check out her BLOG for more info.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Officially a Colorado Girl!

Please excuse the absence-- moving out-of-state takes a lot of work!
Well folks, I'm WAY out of my comfort zone, now living out of Utah and all that it entails. I've always liked living close to family and familiarity but hubby decided that Colorado State University was his school of choice, so after prayers and much consideration, we headed to the Centennial State. Ok, ok, we didn't take a complete leap of faith. Hubs found a good job in a small town fairly close to CSU.
I surely picked a winner when it comes to apartments. Our cute little townhome is perfect-- 3 bedrooms, 2 baths, a little fenced backyard, and a winding staircase that refuses to allow our queen-size box springs to live in our upstairs bedroom. Instead, the box springs are being used as a barricade to keep little E. confined to the living room, and we... are sleeping with a mattress on the floor. High class for sure.
BUT.... the good news is that thee fanciest thing we own has now gone from my wedding ring to our new washer and dryer! Thanks to my dear mom and dad, Elsie will have fresh-smelling clothes everyday.