Monday, May 28, 2012

almost done with my first commercial pattern dress

hey guys! i am super stoked right now that i have successfully constructed my first commercial pattern
i will get more deets and a photo shoot to you as soon as i am totally finished.
i still need to:
remove some basting stitches
add a hook and eye
hem the bottom

but the dress is looking real good!
well me and my teacher never could get to class at the same time and i dont have extra free time to be waiting in parking lots
so i just took to youtube and some of my favorite sewing blogs and decided to give it a go on my own.

today i told everyone i will be lost in my own world sewing.
i almost finished too and think i could but then id be a zombie at work tomorrow
so here are some picture collages i made along the way today
blogger would not upload my pics from when just the top was done, this was the only one:

then i had the lining all attached and only needed to prepare the skirt to be attached to the top
 and here is where i stopped tonight
i looooove everything about it and feel so proud

off i go to catch some much needed Zz's

Lily Bean

Saturday, May 26, 2012

i adore theadore

oh dear! it happened again... another trip to the emergency vet
in fact it has happened twice since that first terrifying night 2 months ago.

two weeks ago when i returned home from the fleamarket, i found thea with her muzzle swollen. i popped 50mg bendryl in her throat and threw her in the car.
the emergency vet is still sure it was a bug bite and said i have on my hands, a hypersensitive pup. it could even be an ant 
 when i took her for  a follow up at her vet they told me to keep all treats and see if she reacts to her food, then gradually reintroduce treats.
(here she is at her follow up)

 i have done what the vet recommended and no change.
i am positive it has nothing to do with food

and then about 630 today i woke to a sick and swollen little face again
again with the benadryl and a trip to the emergency
when i got to the vet there was 3 techs there who assured me she was breathing fine and the swelling was not obstructing her airway
they said i did best by giving her the benadryl and it was my decision to go home and keep an eye on her or see the vet for a steroid shot.
i trusted she was okay and the benadryl would kick in
so i came on home and stared at her until we both fell back to sleep
here she is about 4pm today, resting on my uncle's foot
you can still see her muzzle a bit swollen
 she looks almost 100% normal now and has been eating and drinking and going potty normal... she is just very tired
and even though i slept most of the day, i am tired too!

i never did explain how she got her name...
when she wandered into my front yard that morning, she was found a matted little ball of fur. she really looked like a bear
a teddy bear
teddy short for theodore
i love the song "i adore theodore" by the chubbies
he is really a she
THEODORA it is, thea for short
she is the dog that melted my fear of dogs away!

 now, just to figure out what she is allergic to
i am adding that to the top of my to do list
also, going to treat their potty area and yards for buggies

speaking of things to do...
i have 1 week left until school starts
then it is 5 weeks of school, work, eat, shower, sleep, repeat
followed by 5 more weeks of 2 internet courses
i will then have a short break before starting the fall semester and actually starting the program courses

i have been reviewing tons of youtube tutorial videos for properly marking and sewing from patterns. i been trying to squeeze my dress into my schedule but sleep has been calling out my name much stronger

right now my pillow is screaming for me to lie down again
alarm set for thea's benadryl dose at midnight
if anyone has any guesses i am open to hearing them
time to rest my head

Lily Bean
and a smiling thea-pup

Friday, May 25, 2012

Shopping finds brings inspiration to craft

hey! i scored some good deals and fun items while shopping around.

dont you hate when you are "just going to the store for 2 things... ONLY 2 THINGS!" and come back with bags of other stuff... i hate it too. but i can never pass up a great deal. and i happened to run into a few this week. for the first time ever (that i have seen at least) walmart had all red tag clearance items store wide for an additional 50% off!
so here i share with you my bounty:

I have been wanting to make the perfect doggie treat jar for some time now but have never found a jar that "feels right" for the job. all the ones i have seen were too small, too expensive, or didnt seal well. and whats the point of getting a food storage jar if it doesnt seal well. especially since the texan summer brings out buggies in full force!

Well as i was just killing some time browsing around big lots i found this jar which just SCREAMED doggie jar to me. it seals so good it is actually a bit hard to open. it is (as you can see) a good size. it is thick glass (anchor brand). and best of all:
it only cost $5
i grabbed it up real quick! im even debating of checking back for some more because i like it so much.
as soon as i took it out of the bag the pups inspected it... i sure they knew it was meant for their goodies

walmart had a bunch of ribbons and trims on clearance for $1. i filled my arms with cute ribbons and then realized i still have a TON of ribbon that i haven't used. so i only grabbed these trim and thin black rick rack.

at big lots i found 3 bottles of green and 1 bottle of pink fabric paint as well as 1 green puffy paint all 4oz and all for $1 each. i cant wait to start playing with fabric paint!

 i have been wanting to make a dry erase board from picture frames since i have seen it all over pinterest... but i dont have any good unused picture frames at home and all the ones for sale were too expensive for this project. i came by this one at walmart for $3 and thought id give it a go. i will be going back for 1 more now that i know i love it!
(i want to make one for the kitchen with: "wants, needs, and on sale" to help keep my grocery list updated and organized for my monetary availability.

i saw this courduroy print in colorful elephants and light paisley pattern for $2 a yard at walmart. i could already picture a cute vest! so i grabbed 1.5 yards because i just know i will want to make something else with it

as you may already know, i am a bit button obsessed. walmart had these bags on clearance for $1 each. i snagged up 2 princess themed, some minis, and some pretty colors

and i got these little individual buttons for dirt cheap! they will make adorable rings!

here is my super cute upcycled picture frame dry erase board. it is hanging conveniently over my desk. i hope it helps me keep organized because my work and school life is about to kick into super high gear!

and here are some pics of the 4 individual sides of my doggie treat jar:
my pups react to the word "snack". i have always used that instead of treat. you should hear them come running from all ends of the house when i say the "S" word

the left side belongs to thea. it has a sun because she has always been my sunshine (i do sing "you are my sunshine" to her often).

the back side says PAWS OFF... im sure i do not need to explain lol

and the right side belongs to penny. she has a bat because she has always been my "fatty batty". when i had barely brought her home she was a roly poly! (just like roly form 101 dalmations) and when her ears go up and fangs come out she looks like a bat lol...

still trying to picture penelope the bat??
here you go
my fatty batty

now to get ready for a new fleamarket adventure tomorrow...
sunkissed lily bean

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

coctail hostess apron... oh baby!

hello! while i was making my special order aprons last week i snapped up pics to make you an apron tut...
i know, i know... i promised it quite some time ago
so i will  not keep you waiting any longer

measurements will vary, naturally, with body type and age. since i seem to be built like a child it fits twenty-five year old me as well as little kids haha.
to make the band i cut 3 pieces at 4"x20". of course if your fabric is long enough you can cut just 1 continuous piece.
for the center i cut 1 piece 7"x20"
and for the ruffle cute 1 piece 7"x40"
(if you are adjusting the pattern to fit larger or smaller, the most important thing is that the ruffle is double that of the center piece)
for the pockets cut 4 pieces at 5 1/2"x5 1/2"

 preparing the band
(i use a french seam... learn it and love it because it is all over this apron)
connect the edges, wrong sides together and pin in place
 stitch a straight line across
 trim the edge about halfway between the free-edge and sewn line. you want to get as close to the stitching as you can without losing the integrity of it
 fold and iron so that now the pieces are right sides together and pin in place.
 sew a straight line across, making sure that the free edge from the previous stitch is tucked away inside. it should look like the one on the left side and when you open it, like on the right. the seam will be strong and hidden nicely in the fold behind the last stitched line
pat yourself on the back! you just made a french seam <3
 prepping the pockets:
take 2 pieces and pin them straight one on the other. if you are using a print for this, make sure the pieces are right sides together

 next you will be stitching around the pockets in straight lines leaving a 2" opening (to flip them) when you get to the corners, stop with your needle in the lowered position when you are about 1/4" from the edge. raise the presser foot and turn the fabric to start stitching down the next side. i like to back stitch at the beginning and end so when i go to turn the pocket, the opening doesn't grow and unravel.
 next trim the excess edge from your pocket. do not trim near the opening, only around the rest of it and trim off the corners just next to the stitching
you will then flip each pocket and iron them flat
 prepping the ruffle: hem the bottom and sides
fold about 1/4" over and iron flat
 then go back over and fold another 1/4" and iron flat
 sew a straight line across the bottom
 then do the same to hem each side. backstitch at the corner where the side and bottom hems meet
 you will the hem each side of the center piece as well
next match up the sides of the center piece and the ruffle, wrong sides together, and pin in place
 find the center point of the ruffle and bring it to the center of the center piece. pin in place
 continue finding the center between 2 pins and pinning. the more pins you have the more it will be "ruffly" the less pins it will be more pleats. i prefer to pin until theres about 1" between each pin
 next you are going to stitch straight across, stopping between each pin to build your ruffle
do remove your pins as they approach the needle.... never sew over a pin
 you will bring the fabric together at the middle then squish as symmetrical as you can.
 be sure to have on some music to pass the time, then building a ruffle without a gathering foot feels much less tedious
 next trim just the same as when using a french seam to make the band piece
 turn to the backside and iron just over the seam. i find this easiest to do while tugging gently on the ruffle so it takes proper shape while ironing.
 then fold right sides together and pin in place as best you can to keep the ruffled folds in place
 sew a straight line across the edge, backstitching at the beginning...
 ...and end of the line
 next iron across again. let the seam on the back stay flipped up, as this is usually the way my lies comfortably. tug again at the ruffles while ironing
 next you will be attaching the band to the center piece. lay them wrong sides together with the centers matched up. pin down. sew a straight line ONLY ACROSS THE PART OF THE BAND WHERE THE CENTER PIECE TOUCHES, not all the way across. then trim only the area above whats sewn
 iron and fold so the right sides are together and pin down.
sew across only sewing the part of the band that touches the center pieces again.
 almost done... are you still with me?? tedious, i know
but super cute results, yes please!

so you will hem the top and sides of the band just the same as the simple hem on the ruffle.
i like to do the sides last so i can backstitch each end and it secures the top and bottom hems as well.
when you are hemming the bottom part of the band, you will come to then joint by the center piece. when you fold and iron twice the hem should line up perfect with the french seam of the joined area
 sew straight across the whole bottom hem now, including over the seam from the joined area so that the whole bottom hem of the band matches up and is secure
 last step... attach pockets
use a hem gage to be sure they are lined up as straight as you can.
pin both pockets in place
 using a zig-zag stitch sew all artound the right, left and bottom of the pockets staying close to the edge.
start and end each pocket with backstitching
 trim all excess thread (since you backstitched you won't need to worry about tying knots)
put that awsome apron on and go host a coctail party!

phew! that was some lengthy tutorial
these aprons may be a bit tedious but i LOOOOOVE the results and wouldn't change the time it takes for that
these look so cute when worn, most people think they're skirts until you turn around
i'd love to see your versions! feel free to post linking to them

Lily Bean