Sunday, October 27, 2019

Toddler Halloween Skirts

Walking up the garden path,
I spy a yummy sweet,
Halloween is here again,
Knock, knock - trick or treat?

Two years ago I made a couple of little bitty identical skirts for two little sweeties.  Rosalie was 1.5 years old and Avery was just over two.  The fabric was some I had left from other projects in my stash (probably from JoAnn).  Perfect with the orange lace for these two cuties!

Thursday, October 24, 2019

Fruit Slice Skirts

Back in 2012 Kristin at Skirt As Top posted a tutorial on how to make the most adorable little fruit stripe skirts.  I just loved the idea and tucked it away on my Pinterest Board.  You can find her tutorial HERE.  Last year I finally got around to making two of them for my friend Rachel's little girls.  I also made Harper and Rory pretty peasant blouses to wear with them.  Fun!

I made Harper an Orange Slice skirt.

Rory received the Lemon Slice Skirt.

The peasant blouses that I made were similar with the same fabric but with different trimming on the sleeves.  I used Simplicity #4206 for the blouse with added width and length to the sleeves to make them puffier.

I know that I will be making more of these little skirts in the future.  Perhaps a watermelon or a lime? 

Monday, October 21, 2019

A Smocked Bonnet for Vivian

"Booties and bonnets, ribbons, and lace
Little stuffed toys all over the place!"

One of my oldest and dearest friends, Sherri, had her first grandchild this year.  What a blessing sweet Vivian is to her family!  She is the child of Sherri's younger son.  Sherri and I met while in college and have been friends ever since.  She had her first son while still in her twenties and I didn't have any children until my forties!  However, she had been waiting quite a while to be a grandmother and spoiled my children silly!

This smocked bonnet was one of the shower gifts I sent to Texas.  Vivian has modern parents but I thought that they might enjoy a little bit of vintage charm.  

Smocking Plate:  'Strawberries & Flowers' by Ellen McCarn.

Adjustable drawstring crown to grow with baby!

 I am linking this post to Shabby Art Boutique at
Check out all the other lovely links!

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Zooey's VFT 'Cosette' Dress

Zooey's Third Birthday Dress

CHILDREN want the same things we want,
Dr. Suess

I do think Zooey was delighted!

Zooey is the charming youngest granddaughter of my dear friend Karen.  Karen is the data prep specialist at my school and we have been friends for at least 20 years!  I made the Christening Ensemble for her grandchildren when her oldest grandson was born and many other outfits for the girls since then.   (I can't believe that I never blogged about the Christening Ensemble!  I will have to do that soon!) I made many things for her oldest granddaughter Emma who was in my kindergarten class.  (See HERE and HERE and HERE for a couple of examples.)

Zooey loves the Disney movie 'Tolls' and her mama choose to 'entertain and delight' her with a Trolls themed birthday party.  She wanted a special Trolls dress for Zooey to wear but was dismayed by the cost of bespoke clothing on Etsy.  The two Karen's to the rescue!  Grandmother Karen purchased the Trolls fabric and I made the dress as my gift.  Everyone was happy!

Patterns:  Dress:  VFT (Violette Field Threads) 'Cosette'
 and AS&E # 53 for the bloomers.
Fabric:  Licensed Disney Trolls Fabric, raspberry pin dot from JoAnn,
 white satin batiste for the bodice panel
 and white Kona cotton for the skirt lining.

I lined the skirt of the dress to give the skirt more fullness and twirl factor.

All toddlers need bloomers with their dresses!

Back view of dress.  Love the flutters and the adjustable tie!

Isn't Zooey adorable?!

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Doll Clothes for Chloe's AG Doll

Chloe.  This child stole my heart long ago!  She is the third child of four of my friend Kaye and, I like to think, the one most like me in spirit.  If I had been raised by Kaye, I would have had a voice much earlier in life.  Chloe is nine now and is a compassionate, outgoing free thinker mermaid with the greatest imagination and so many creative talents.  I admire her so much!  But I admire her mother even more for the wonderful job she is doing raising this sweet young girl!  

Chloe has an American Girl doll that she enjoys.  I believe that she has the 1930's Kit with the shorter blonde hair.  The window for playing with these dolls is very short so I was in a hurry to make these togs for her doll.  I adapted patterns from for all the clothes. I wanted the first set to match some things I had made for Chloe herself.  You can find a post on Chloe's set HERE.

Outfits modeled by my daughter's Samantha doll.

Cute little reversible skirt with the same peasant blouse.

Now the next little set has a back story.  I made the sweet little hand embroidered Oliver + S 'Class Picnic Blouse' for Chloe a couple of years ago.  Kaye had some 'help' with the laundry and much of the shirt was stained with whatever red article it had been washed with and no amount of soaking (even in a Biz bucket) would get the stains out.  She gave it to me to see what I could do.  Well, removing the stain was impossible so I cut it up and made it into a three piece outfit for Chloe's doll.  

Chloe in the original shirt.  See post HERE for details on the
 multiple mix and match outfit HERE.

I was happy that the hand embroidered sections of the blouse were the least stained!  I cut up and discarded the material that was too stained to work with and designed a halter top, skirt, and capris with what was left.  That beautiful heirloom lace really shines on the doll clothes!  I love how these came out!  It reminds of me a book I have in my classroom Something From Nothing by Phoebe Gilman.  It is the story of a Jewish tailor who turns his grandson's baby blanket into a series of special things for the child as he gets older.  The blanket turns into a coat, a tie, a handkerchief, and lastly a button for the boy.  Very tender and full of love and creativity.

Have you ever refashioned/recycled 
something treasured into something new?

Sunday, September 8, 2019

Summer PJ's for Chloe & Hudson

Sister and Brother
by Raphaella Vaisseau

Believe and admire
Protect and show
Watch and listen
Love and know

A brother's love 
is a sister's 
greatest treasure

A sister's happiness
is a brother's
deepest desire

Know that you are loved

Chloe and Hudson 
Chloe and Hudson are the Birthday Twins belonging to my dear friend Kaye.  They were born five years apart to the day!  When Kaye took the 'littles', as she calls them, on a trip to the Northeast two summers ago she asked me to make Chloe another pair of baby doll pajamas.  (See this POST for the first set I made that she wore on stage for a school show.)  This time I was able to take my time and construct something I think was more comfortable to wear.  I used an old favorite sundress pattern and went up a size for sleeping comfort and decided to make straps that buttoned in the back (flat buttons) instead of shoulder ties.  I made shorts this time instead of bloomers and trimmed them with the same lace that is on the bodice of the top.  I used another old favorite pantaloon pattern for the shorts that I shortened for a looser fit.

There was a bit of extra seahorse fabric so I made Hudson a pair of sleeping shorts using another favorite pattern and sewed in the creases in the front so that they would always look ironed.  The littles loved their matching jammies!

There was still a bit of fabric left and I still had some time so I made Chloe's American Girl doll a matching set of baby dolls, too.  More fun for me!  I didn't have any more of the Nemo ribbon for the doll's outfit so I used an anchor stitch on my Janome to mimic the look.  

Patterns:  Baby Doll Top:  'Medora's Sundress & Jumper'
 by Beaucoup
Baby Doll Bottoms:  'Christy' by Kay Guiles
Hudson's Shorts:  Australian Smocking & Embroidery #78
 'Busy Beez'
Doll Pattern:  Adaptation of some old pattern drawn on a paper bag!
  No clue to the original pattern's name.
 Fabric & Notions:  All from my stash

So Sweet!
May they be blessed with
this loving relationship forever!

I am also so glad that 
my daughter and son have each other.

Thursday, September 5, 2019

Black & White Capsule & Some Halloween Looks

A Capsule School Wardrobe for Chloe

Capsule wardrobes became a big topic of conversation a few years ago.  Many blog posts and articles were devoted to ways to shop/sew to create more versatile wardrobes for both children and adults.  The idea was to choose items like pants/skirts/shorts that would go with many tops.  It was like the Mix and Match doll clothing that we (of a certain age) could purchase for our Barbie and Midge dolls!  

My personal live little doll at the time of the big capsule conversation was my sweet friend Kaye's daughter Chloe.  She has been the recipient of many of the things I make.  Alas, she is now a big fourth grader with her very own sense of style and I make less for her these days.  I did make several items for a black/white capsule for her when she was in kindergarten.  Many of the items were worn into first grade getting more 'bang' for the time spent creating them.

Chloe in a Lazy Days Skirt and a Class Picnic Blouse.
Both patterns from Oliver + S.

Patterns:  Halloween Skirts:  Oliver + S Lazy Days Skirt
Dress:  Oliver + S Croquet Dress
White Blouse:  Oliver + S Ice Cream Dress & Top
Shorts:  An old McCall's pattern (?)
White/Black Floral Skirt:  Oliver + S Butterfly Skirt
Spider T-Shirt:  Made by Chloe in kindergarten
Blouse with Gingham Bodice:  Oliver + S Class Picnic Blouse
Black Gingham Peasant Blouse:  Simplicity #4206

Sunday, September 1, 2019

Scalloped Aprons for BFFs

Aprons:  Essentials for the Kitchen!
Victoria-Rose is modeling the apron made for her dear friend Jessica.
It has the daisy print on one side and a white/black print
 of little chickens on the other.  She broke her ankle in two places
roller skating this summer!  The cast is off now.

Mother's Apron
Mother wore an ample apron
to cover her clean dress.
She'd tell you that's what it was for,
if you asked her, I would guess.

But that apron had more uses than
I could even count.
It brought in eggs and vegetables
and could hold a large amount.

I've seen her use that apron
to wipe her dripping brow
as she labored over the big range
that' s just an antique now.

Her apron could bring giggles
in a game of peek-a-boo
with her newest, sweet grandbaby
as she hid her face from view.

When the kids were hurt or crying
we'd run to find her lap.
She'd wipe the falling tears away
with a bit of apron flap.

That apron dusted tables
and chased away the flies.
It did just fine as oven mitts 
to take out bubbling pies.

But the greatest of the treasures
that old apron could hold,
was the endless love from Mother
abiding in each fold.
Author Unknown

I love aprons.  I wear them at home in the kitchen and when cleaning and I wear them at school in my kindergarten classroom.  I come from an apron wearing family.  My grandmother wore very serviceable aprons and my mother had both 'working' aprons and 'company' aprons.  I feel in charge and ready for anything when I tie one on!

I made a couple of aprons recently as gifts for my daughter and two of her friends.  All three were reversible.  Unfortunately, I neglected to take photos of the one I made for Victoria-Rose's friend Wes.  I adapted a simple butcher's pattern for him to include the adjustable straps and ties of the pattern I used for the girls' aprons.  The fabrics used for Wes were as 'manly' as I could find in my stash:  a dark mottled blue for one side and a constellations print for the other.

This is the apron for my Victoria-Rose.  She chose the old
fashioned floral prints for her apron.

Pattern:  Bake Sale Apron by the Cabbage Rose
Fabrics:  Florals quilting cottons and mini gingham from stash
Chicken print: "Country Touch" Wilmington Prints

Sweetheart Pocket!
Love the feminine details of the scalloped hem
 and sweetheart neckline and pocket!
This was a fun and easy sewing experience.  
I see a few new aprons in MY future!

Are you an apron wearer?

Saturday, August 10, 2019

Harper's Unicorn Oliver + S Swingset Skirt & Peasant Blouse.

Now We Are Six

When I was One,
I had just begun.
When I was Two,
I was nearly new.
When I was Three
I was hardly me.
When I was Four,
I was not much more.
When I was Five,
I was just alive.
But now I am Six,
I'm as clever as clever,
So I think I'll be six now for ever and ever.

I am sure that we would all love for Harper to stay six 
for more than a year!  
She is one of the most delightful six year old children
 I have had the pleasure to know!

Harper is the oldest daughter of my friend and teammate, Rachel.  She is kind-hearted, generous, and very smart.  She is a wonderful reader and an amazingly prolific writer.  I do believe that she writes multiple page stories nearly every day!  Harper is a lover of all nature but she has especially loved the mythical unicorns since she was just a tiny thing.  I made her an aqua VFT 'Clara (Violette Fields Threads Pattern) a couple of years ago and blogged about that dress in this post.  Although Harper is now a big girl of six, her love for this magical creature hasn't dimmed. 

Last September I made her this little skirt with fabric I found online at Hawthorne Supply Company.  I knew that she would like it!  I used a pattern that I have loved for a long time:  The Swingset Skirt by Oliver + S.  I have lost count of how many of these skirts I have made!  The little peasant blouse was made with machine embroidered fabric purchased several years ago at JoAnn.

I switched the lining and outer skirt pieces of the pattern so that the gray patterned under layer would peek out of the bottom of the skirt.  I added cotton lace edging to that bottom skirt and narrow hemmed the top skirt. I also used only one piece of .75 inch elastic in the waist.

The blouse pattern is Simplicty #4206 with added length and width to the sleeves to achieve the little ruffled puffed sleeve.  The narrow elastic was inserted under the ribbon trim.

The Unicorn
by Shel Silverstein

A long time ago, when the earth was green
and there were more kinds of animals then you've ever seen,
and they run around free while the earth was bein' born,
and the loveliest of all was the unicorn.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

Sister & Brother Set for Chloe & Hudson

Holding Hands
by Suzie Huitt

Brother and sister,
together as friends,
ready to face,
whatever life sends.

Joy or laughter
or tears or strife,
holding hands tightly
as we dance through life.

This sweet duo share a birthday five years apart.  They are Chloe and Hudson, the two 'littles' in a family with four children spread over twenty-five years of marriage.  Their mama, Kaye, is my dear friend.  My son Logan and Kaye's oldest son Hunter have been friends since the primary years of elementary school. Kaye is an amazing mother who I have watched 'parent' over the years with admiration, awe, and I must confess, jealousy.  Kaye will get to be a hands-on involved mama for 40 years!  Her nest will not be empty for a long time!  Unlike a lot of women my age, I think that is just wonderful!  

Chloe is a wonderful big sister to Hudson.  She and he are truly closer than many siblings born closer together.  They play with each other and comfort one another, always looking out for the other's best interests.  That is not to say that they don't 'fuss' a bit, because they do.  They are real children after all!

As I have said in past posts (Mermaid dress & shorts outfit:  HERE and HERE) Chloe considers herself a mermaid.  That isn't really surprising because Kaye's favorite place in all the world is the beach.  Chloe has been swimming since she was just a tiny thing and actually can swim amazingly well with a mermaid swim fin.

When I saw this sea-life fabric collection more than a year ago,  I knew I had to get it to create some things for Chloe.  I used a halter dress pattern from an old Australian Smocking & Embroidery Magazine and omitted the smocking to make these dresses.  Each one is trimmed a little differently.  The predominately blue dress has darker blue piping around the bodice and a narrow band of the bottom ruffle fabric around the waist.  The other dress uses companion fabrics of seaweed and shells with blue ribbons of different hues decorating the bodice. 

Pattern:  'Hula Girl' by Kathy Dykstra in 
Australian Smocking & Embroidery #84, size 7 
Fabrics:  'Serenity' collection by Cheri Strole for Northcott
 (# 4760, #4761, #4765, and 'Serenty Dots')

Hudson's Shorts were made using the 'Busy Beez' pattern from Australian Smocking & Embroidery Magazine #78 to match Chloe's blue dress.  The days of matching clothing will be a thing of the past soon but these two will always have a special connection.  What a blessing!

Thank you for visiting!  May your day be 
filled with Blessings!

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