Crafty sew and sew in Dorset

Welcome to my world of craft!

World Book Day Totoro

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I thought I got away with world book day this year, my son announced that he was going as a dinosaur from Tyrannosaurus drip. He has a crocodile costume in his wardrobe and was happy to wear this and my daughter was convinced that her middle school wouldn’t ‘do dress up’.

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Then we got an email on Friday last week stating that she would be joining in and immediately asked to go as Totoro.
Our daughter is obsessed with studio ghibli My Neighbour Totoro. At Christmas we bought her Totoro pens, Totoro hat, Totoro pencil case etc!!
It feels like a bit of a cheat as it’s a film rather than a book but she stands by the fact that a film that is almost 30 years old must have some accompanying books!!

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The hat and scarf was a Christmas present so I only had to sort the top and trousers….off to primark we went ( don’t judge me!!!! They had posted up directing you to look at ethical primark, but £2 for a pair of leggings does feel wrong!).
In case you don’t know who or what Totoro is, here’s a photo:

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There are lots of Totoro sweatshirts for sale so easy to get an idea on how to make one (mainly in adult sizes strangely!).

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I started by making a template for the white belly.

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Checked it looked big enough.

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Cut it out of white fleece on the fold to ensure they were the same size.

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Then I cut out seven little v shaped pieces out of grey fleece, splitting one between the two semi circles.

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I pinned these on and sewed around the edges on my machine for speed.

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Before sewing the semi circles on the front I pinned the pockets out of the way with safety pins so I didn’t catch them.

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Ta da finished!!

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With her little pencil case.

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Field trip top by Oliver and S

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My son really needed some new tops so rather than go shopping I started to search online for some pattern ideas.
I have seen lots of Oliver and S patterns in the past but thought they were for little kids and my two at age 8 & 10 were now too big. They actually go up to age 12 so I bought the field trip top as a pdf file for instant gratification and got a skirt pattern for my daughter which was offered at a special price.

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Just in case you are interested,  I store all my pdf’s printed in plastic wallets with the instructions and pattern pieces tucked in behind.
I have since downloaded the little sunny day shorts that are free on their website.

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I took my kids to my local fabricland and asked my son to choose some fabric.  He was not interested in the slightest and randomly pointed to the green and black! I cut a size 7 for him even though he is quite a tall but skinny 8 year old. I added a little length to the body but the arms fitted well.
When we were at fabricland my daughter insisted that I make her one as well and went straight for a jersey aztec design.

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As you can see she is very pleased with hers and happily modelled for me!

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So much so she told me that the top was worthy of a “dab”……whatever that means!!

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Originally we were going to have black arms but decided to put the pattern on the sleeves as they were different weights. She asked for cuffs that she could put her thumbs through,  so luckily I remembered that Emily posted on how to create this so had a quick recap.
This was made this morning ready for a birthday party at lunchtime so it’s a really quick make.

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Selfless Sunday – jeans hem

Not a very exciting one this Sunday but it is Sunday and a selfless sew so worthy of a short post.

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My husband struggles to find jeans with the correct leg length and ends up turning up the hems and wearing them like that. That looks great for the first few months but after a while the bottom edge starts to wear out from contact with the floor.  I guess normal jeans have the hemmed edge to give a bit of strength,  but not so when just folded up.

His favourite pair ended up worn almost completely through and he asked me to save them.

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My only option was to cut the turn up off and reattach close to the original hem. I straight stitched with my sewing machine and then trimmed and edged it with the overlocker.
I saw a blog post the other day with this technique and although I don’t think I would choose to do this to take a pair of jeans up (I’d rather hem them myself and topstitch etc) I think they look acceptable after a good press.

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Selfless Sunday- pinafore dress

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My daughter is growing up fast, she’s only 10 (11 in four months) and still plays with Barbie dolls but she’s on that cusp of being aware of fashion and peer pressure.
I have always made her little dresses which she proudly wears and tells people that I made them for her. However, the last few school discos and birthday parties have caused long debates on what was “cool” to wear.
I decided the best way to keep her interested in home sewn outfits was to get her to design her own clothes.
At Christmas we bought her some fashion design books and I downloaded some croquis to design some outfits.
She decided that she wanted a dungaree dress and drew the above design.
Chloe was clear that she wanted a gathered skirt and straps that started from the waist.

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I drafted a pattern after taking a few measurements. The skirt is made of two rectangles with tabs at the top that I hemmed and turn in for the side button plackets.

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Chloe chose a denim chambray with little white flowers on it and picked out plastic flower buttons. I added a pocket to the front and top stitched around the bib.

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I added buttons on the side to fasten it up and finished the inside with facing.

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She is very happy with the finished item and think I have managed to sneak another hand made item into her wardrobe.

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Sunday Selfless Sewing

The other week I visited a new sewing shop in town, Zebedees. This is by no means a new shop – it has been there for a very long time but last time i went it was to buy some felt to make a gingerbread man costume for the kids and it was very much an upholstery shop. They still have an upholstery section at the back but they have now revamped the front and filled it with beautiful fabric.

I walked around and around like some addict trying to work out what I could buy and for what purpose – I have learnt to only buy fabric with a project in mind to keep me on track…..in comes my Sew Awesome app on my mobile – all my patterns with fabric amounts and notions at the tip of my fingers.

I found some lovely red and green tweed that I almost bought to make a Simple Sew pencil skirt but as it was not machine washable i bravely walked away.

Instead I found some lovely floral cotton fabric that reminded me of Liberty print but at only £6.99 a metre a little more affordable. I matched it with some bright pink cotton fabric – so only £8 for the whole dress. i figure I need to keep making pretty little dresses while my daughter still wants them and is pleased to wear them.

I decided on pattern M7346 and my daughter decided on view D with the little ruffles on the sleeves, similar to the dress i made in April for her birthday (still unblogged but coming soon).

dress pattern

front yoke

front view

My daughter is 10 1/2 years old but she is a dainty little thing so she measures up as a size 6 and then I extended the length to a size 8. As it is mid October and the weather has suddenly dived in temperature she has taken to wearing this dress with her jeans and a chunky cardigan.

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I used my overlocker for the side seams and my machine for the rest of the dress. I am really pleased with the quality of the finish, inside and out. I made my own bias binding for the first time to neaten the armholes – I bought some bias binding makers years ago but they have sat in my desk unused. They worked so well, I will definitely make my own from now on.

 

 

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