Sunday, February 24, 2013


A while ago I read a great tutorial on discharge printing from Mad Mim. Inspired by that tutorial and by the Trommpo Origami hoodie spotted on Pinterest, I created a triangle sweater for my little boy.
Trommpo Origami Hoodie
My knock off
I must say I'm pretty pleased with the result. To create the discharge print, I folded a piece of freezer paper into eight folds and cut out the diamond pattern. Then I ironed the freezer paper onto the front piece and the raglan sleeves, and used it as a stencil for applying the discharge paste. This is some kind of thick bleach paste, which is transparent when you apply it, and gets activated by steam ironing it (like magic, the pattern reveals itself!). The bleach effect depends on how thick you applied the paste and on the temperature of your iron. In this case, it resulted in a somewhat uneven pattern, but I like the effect. It looks like some kind of tribal print.
I used a standard raglan pattern (Ottobre) for the sweater. Based on the Trommpo sweater, I cut two triangles of the front piece and and added the triangular pockets.
The triangle theme was repeated in the collar as well.
The sweater is still a bit large for my boy. In addition, he was not very cooperative about putting it on for some photos. Fortunately, his big sister volunteered for a little photoshoot, and since their torsos are almost the same size (despite two years of difference in age and quite some difference in length), it fit her perfectly. So I might end up putting it in her closet, for the time being.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

A dress from daddy's jeans

I started this blog just recently, but I've been sewing for a few years now. So that gives me an enormous backlog of stuff that I've created over the past years. Whenever I feel that it's too quiet around here,  I'll share one of those oldies - including pictures of cute small kids...

Here's one of my very first creations. A small dress from her daddy's old pants, made three years ago. What a cute little toddler she was back then.

 To make the dress, I cut the pants open at the side seams, but left the inner (double) seams intact. Then I cut the front and back panel from the two legs, using an existing dress as a pattern. I sewed the panels together and finished the neckline and arm openings with bias band.

Two snaps at the shoulders to close the dress, and to finish it off, I sewed the original back pocket to the back of the dress, and a small pocket to the front.

If I would create such a dress again, I would probably use a more lightweight denim. This jeans fabric was a bit stiff and didn't drape all that well. But, looking back, not too bad for a beginning seamstress...

There's a panther in the woods...

My oldest is really into tigers and panthers lately and asked me to sew her a panther sweater. I was more than happy to oblige. However, a complete sweater in panther print was a bit too much, in my view. So I opted for a brown sweater with a panther-lined and panther-eared hood. 

Her first reaction was one of disappointment: "But mom, I don't like brown..."
However, I think she got used to it, because it quickly became her favorite hoodie. If she could, she would wear it daily and keep the hood on all the time.

I would too, with such a soft furry lining and cute spotted ears...

Apparently, animal prints are one of the trends of this year, so she's even fashionable in this hoodie...

Although this hoodie was not made originally as an entry for Project Run and Play, I've been thinking about how to describe my signature style. I came up with the following description:
I like to create clothes that are comfortable, playful, colorful, with basic shapes and fun details, and most of all, designed especially for my kids (Nothing so unsatisfying as spending hours on an item that your child refuses to wear, I've learned the hard way...).
This panther hoodie fullfills most of these criteria, just like the hoodies I created for boys' week. So there you have it, my signature style...
Showing her claws
Not looking so scary now...

Thursday, February 7, 2013

PR&P - Men's shirt challenge

This week of Project Run and Play, the Men's dress shirt challenge was indeed a real challenge for me. Not only to create something, but even more to photograph it. After several trips to the thrift store and considering various options, I finally decided upon this simple white shirt, with some fine stitched lines on the collar and sleeves. 

Sewing the shirt itself was not too difficult, since I could reuse the collar and sleeves completely. And after having been struggling with knits for my last projects, it was great to work with cotton again.

But then came the most difficult part: photographing the result. It turns out that a white shirt with fine details is hard to capture on photos. Moreover, I wasn't helped much by the grey drizzly weather, and an unwilling model who didn't want to wear her new shirt for more than five minutes.

O well, it's supposed to be a challenge, isn't it?

Sunday, February 3, 2013

VW campers

Our nephew celebrates his second birthday today, so I grabbed the chance to sew him one of my favorite hoodies.

The hoodie was inspired by another Van Ikke applique. I also found this great camper knit at the local market, which matched the applique perfectly.

I can't get enough of this pattern. It's so versatile! This time I added some green strips on the sleeves. I'll definitely do that more often, since it's an easy way to give the sweater a nice accent.

Together with a little toy camper, this should make a nice present for our 2-year old nephew!