Today was superhero spirit day at school. And, because I'm me, I found this out at around 10pm last night.
Reece had no problem rounding up an old Batman cape this morning and shoving it in his backpack until he assessed whether any other 4th graders were dressing up. (They were, so he did).
Taite, on the other hand, would have been better suited to a Disney princess spirit day, based on her costume inventory. What to do. I have a Wonder Woman costume (as you may know), but it's way too big for her. This was going to require some thinking on my feet.
Faster than a speeding bullet, I appropriated the Wonder Woman cape and an old white t-shirt from her closet, and ferreted through my fabric scraps.
I ironed some Wonder Under (aptly named for the occasion) onto a couple of scraps and cut out a 5" circle and a 4" letter T with my trusty Cricut (have I mentioned how much I LOVE this machine?? I have another recent ode to the crafty powers of the Cricut on the Ella blog, in case you haven't seen it yet.)
I stitched on a little star applique for fun, and Wham-o! Pow! Zap! Superhero cuteness, no phone booth required.
As she walked into the classroom, she definitely had that little spring in her step that only wearing a superhero cape can give you. Makes me wonder why I don't wear that cape around the house from time to time. Because, seriously? We all know who the REAL superhero was in this story. ;)
As much as I strive to simplify and ENJOY the weeks between Thanksgiving and Christmas, the cold truth is that there is way too much to do and keep track of. That's just how it is when you're the mommy. I love the holiday season more than any other, so to maximize my enjoyment and minimize my mommy meltdowns, I've gotta have a plan. And more importantly, a cute planner to jot it all down.
This year's version might just be my favorite yet. It wasn't exactly quick, but it was soooo much fun!
I tried out Claudine Hellmuth's Sticky-back Canvas for the cover. Such a cool product! I lightly painted it and then sewed on circles cut from fabric scraps. I added a couple pinches of batting to each before sewing them all the way shut, to give it some fun, puffy dimension. It was super easy to sew right through the canvas and then carefully peel the backing off and stick it to a Zutter chipboard cover.
The inside has the usual spots for wish lists, notes, receipts, ideas, shopping lists, etc.(including a fun fabric pocket sewn into a mini file folder, because I was on a roll with the sewing machine). The back was cut from a hot cocoa box.
When I saw that it said "Double Chocolate Meltdown", I just had to use it...because if you're gonna have a meltdown, that's the only kind to have.
This top hasn’t fit Taite for 2 years, but I couldn’t bear
to get rid of it because it’s so darn cute.
Yesterday, the creative light bulb went on over my head, and
I decided to repurpose the adorable design on a shirt that fits her.
Here’s what I did.
First, I cut off the front of the tank top. I will admit it
totally freaked me out. I think I have some sort of latent issues remaining
from the repercussions of cutting a hole in my stylin’ Jan Brady-ish plaid
pants when I was 4. Anyway, I held my breath and cut.
No one scolded me, so I continued on by cutting a piece of
Ultra Hold Heat N Bond to approximately the same size, and ironed them together
per the directions. And yes, that is a paper towel you see in between the
fabric and the ironing board. Dude, I am on my 3rd ironing board
cover this year. I have learned.
Next, I cut out the design more exactly. This is much easier
to do AFTER the Heat N Bond is on there because the paper gives it some extra
stability. Also, it gets rid of the edges that sometimes don’t bond as
I peeled off the paper backing and ironed the design onto
the front of a $5 Old Navy t-shirt, secretly wishing I had one with a nice, big
stain on the front that I could feel really pleased about hiding. Oh well,
maybe next time.
The Heat N Bond instructions say not to sew after adhering
because of the thickness of the adhesive, but I usually do anyway and haven’t
ever had a problem with it. Especially with this appliqué being particularly
thick and heavy, I wanted to make sure it wasn’t going to budge. I used a
regular straight stitch and went around all the edges.
Then I added one charming girl in an owl skirt (I made that
a couple of months ago), and bingo – recycled cuteness!
After making Taite a skirt out of some cute matrioshka fabric, I came across this adorable pattern from Sublime Stitching.
I know! So cute, right?
But I had never embroidered anything, EVER. Still, the pattern was only $5, a t-shirt from Old Navy is only $5, and embroidery floss and a hoop would be relatively inexpensive. I figured it was a small enough investment to make it worth a try. If it sucked, I could always throw it out.
Well, guess what? It doesn't suck, if I do say so myself. It's actually super cute!
(weird up-the-nose photo angle...sorry)
The most fun part was choosing my embroidery floss colors from the gargantuan display at the craft store. I was in color heaven! And the embroidery part wasn't hard at all. The instructions were very easy to understand, and Sublime Stitching offers a lot of really helpful info on their website, including a link called Total Beginner Instructions. I had to learn what stabilizer is, and go get some, but other than that, I just ironed on the design and basically traced it with the thread, using the simple stitch in the instructions. It took me about two hours to finish while watching TV, and I enjoyed having something busy to do with my hands so I didn't feel so much like a couch potato while catching up with the DVR.
I’ve joined the Pajama Party sew-along over at Sew Mama Sew this month. It’s my first time doing a sew-along – how fun!
The timing was perfect. Reece had been feeling a little left out with the back to school skirts I’ve been making for Taite, and he asked if I knew how to make anything for boys. I don’t – I’m totally a one-trick pony! But I picked up a pj pattern at JoAnn last weekend that claims to be “EASY”, and some sweatshirt-y fabric on sale that looked like it would make some comfy pj bottoms. I’m starting with the boxer style, since it’s still warm here. The margin for error really does look minimal, and it's not like he will be wearing them in public, so we’ll see how it goes.
Here are a couple
more of my recent sewing projects. Taite is wearing one of the outfits I made
over the summer. It was worth the hours I spent sewing all those strips
together…she barely takes it off. Also, check out her spontaneous pose. Think
she’s ready for America's Next Top Model yet? Haha.
This is a set I
made last week for a silent auction to benefit a local musical theatre group.
I also made a
really cute one in pink and green for the elementary school auction…but I forgot
to take a pic. Oops! Luckily a friend of mine was the highest bidder, so I
might get another chance at a photo op. Until then, you’ll just have to take my
word that it was completely adorable. ;)
On my “to sew”
list: my nieces’ Christmas presents – skirt sets in their favorite colors. I’m
already working on one in between scrapbooking projects.
ETA: All the cute skirts I have been making are fromPink Figpatterns (the Girly Skirt and Girly Stripwork Skirt), in case you're wondering. They really are easy enough for the "beginnerest" of beginners!