Birthday dress in a Jiffy

I have a stash of patterns that my Grandma gave me, used by her in the 60's (for my dad's little sister)... some of them are SO awful it's funny, and some are just plain wonderful. this one was wonderful.

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it's the Jiffy Dress on the upper right side....

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I tried really hard to get her to hold still so I could photograph it, but this is the best I could get.

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and this is the shot of the back.... ;)

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Luckily, it really was pretty quick to make up, because her first time wearing it, we went to Busy Bee and then picnicked in the park with friends, and her dress was soon covered in meatball sub.

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but she loved it, so it was worth it.

KCWC finale: Vintage patterns....

C and I had a morning date to the antique flea market, and while he was busy inspecting and buying a vintage cash register (seriously, for work), I stumbled upon these gems. Priced at $2-3 each, I absolutely could not resist. image

none of them are the right size, but I can grade the size 1's up, and save the 6....

The Bean, of course, wants this dress with the doll first. sorry, not going to happen....

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I ADORE this sunsuit, and cannot WAIT (until after market) to make it. I'm thinking something polkadot....

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btw, does anyone know the dealio with sharing vintage patterns? B/c I'd be willing to scan/share, but I dunno if it's legal....

and isn't this the SWEETEST little dress? I think it'll be fun for her to wear this summer, though I can already foresee that C and I will not agree on hem lengths for his little princess... (if it weren't for the politics/religions involved, I think he'd like to dress her in a burka, or just lock her up in a tower)

the world's ugliest muslin

I know I've kvetched enough about how hideous this fabric is. and I should totally stop, since I'm the one who ASKED for it (my grandmother thought it was so ugly she was embarrased to offer it to me, but I said, no, ugly sheets make great muslins... but this is beyond ugly, isn't it?)

anyway, I made a muslin of these vintage pants for D.
As I was cutting and sewing, I realized that there was absolutely NO WAY I would ever let him wear these out of the house (or around the house for that matter!), I hate the fabric THAT MUCH.
therefore, I didn't worry about clipping threads, or making fancy pockets, or even putting the button/snap on the waistband.

I just wanted to see the fit, and make sure I understood the directions...
I graded the pattern up a bit, which was pointless, since the elastic back had plenty of room. all grading up really did was make the legs super baggy. oh well, luckily these were really ugly!
I didn't bother hemming, or even lining the pockets (patch pockets, after all, can look patch-like and be fine, so I just serged the edges).
So, not a waste, I'm glad I didn't use good fabric, as then I would have to take this apart and trim it down, and re sew it back together, whereas, with this piece of hideousness, it can go RIGHT INTO THE TRASHCAN! (after I take out the zipper).

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baby quilts!

I finished it!
here's the front...

and the back...

I decided to grade the saturation on the back (like we did for the 1/2 square triangles on the front), rather that just use white.
i LOVE it.
I quilted it with double diagonal lines, by drawing lines through the points, then lining up my quilting/1/4" foot on the line, and sewing on either side... so the lines wind up being 1/2" apart...
again, i LOVE it.

just to be pretty, I put my other baby quilts on the fence too....
D has been insisting on having "wankets" on him all the time, so they're both out, getting used constantly... which is good, that's why I made them, after all....
the blue and yellow one is from a book, and the other two I just made up as I went along...

here they are again, with my grapes below and the gorgeous blue sky above...
LOVE winter in Southern California....

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vintage boys pants...

My son is a very solid 3.5 year old. I'm told by the dr that I don't have to worry about his weight, but he's not a skinny minny. His shoulders are so wide, that if I buy a woven shirt, he needs a 7-8... (he's like his dad in that respect) His waist/hip (cause he wears his pants right about at his hip bones)measurement right now is almost exactly 22", which is an inch bigger than the measurement for this awesome pair of vintage boys pants...

plus, I'm not sure, when it says "size 4, waist 21" if that means the boys waist measurement, or the finished pant size...

granted there's elastic in the back, but I am planning on attempting my first resize to add an extra 2" to the width. I found this awesome looking explanation of how to do it here...

my gram gave me this old sheet, which maybe is the ugliest fabric I HAVE EVER SEEN (she didn't want to give it to me for precisely that reason, but it's free and totally fine for making boy pant muslins, right?

I guess my cat is color/pattern-blind, cause he thinks this is a great kitty bed...

AT LAST!

I dunno if anyone is holding their breath out there in blogworld, but here's the tute I made on how to make a skirt from a pair of men's trousers...

This skirt is inspired by this page in Blueprints of Fashion. There aren't any directions in the book (because it's just photos of the pattern envelopes), but the idea is just to take a pair of mens suit pants, turn them upside down, and make a skirt out of the fabric. One could do a suit coat too, as shown, but a) I'm a stay at home mom with no need for suit coats, and b) suit coats require patterns, not improvisation . I suppose one could just use a store-bought pattern to make this skirt, but I've been loving my A-line skirts from Sew What? Skirts lately, so I just improvised....

I put the instructions ON the photos (mostly because I just made a bag using a pattern that did NOT explain which picture went with which direction, so it a frustrating game of matching).
Here goes:
I started with really large mens trousers. I wanted fullness around the pant hips (so the bottom of my skirt would flare) and narrow-ish ankles (but not so small that they wouldn't fit my post-baby waist). To make sure pants work for you, read all the directions here, and make sure the proposed pants have measurements the right size or bigger. (ie, super skinny girls need skinny pants, larger girls need larger pants)



Do both legs the same way... i only show one, but do both. These directions make a 6-gored skirt with a side zipper, where the front and back pieces are cut identically (but the zipper belongs on the left, and you put the pockets on the front).

(I guess the picture here of the front/back should have tipped me off that the skirt wasn't going to fit properly without taking in the waist. your pieces should be trapezoidal, not rectangular.)


I know jeans-into-skirts are really popular, but I don't love that weird flat front crossover thing that happens when people rip open jeans and turn them into skirts... that's why I like this whole upside down thing... plus the goring... flattering and EASY!




Somehow this gray wool one (my first attempt) came out better... I think I just measured and tried it on more often as I went along, instead of finishing the whole thing, waiting for the big reveal, and then having it be so big it literally slid all the way down and off when I stood up.

PLEASE let me know if you have any questions or need clarification on anything!!!