Spring is in the air and this lady is ready for some porch time. I love waking up, going outside, and enjoying my coffee on the back porch with the birds.
I'm a simple person. Ha!
Babies and weddings usually go hand in hand with Spring. Don't you agree? I've been to a few baby showers lately and thought I'd share some easy handmade gift ideas for you to make and take to your next shower.
As sewists, we always have extra fabric that we're dying to use up. This gives you an opportunity to use it up or go shopping for new fabric. Win-win!
Let's get making, we've got a shower to attend!
To make this baby gift set, you'll need:
Yay!! I finally made Gretchen Hersch's Popover dress from her book, Gertie Sews Jiffy Dresses.
Let me first start by telling you NOT to use a one-directional fabric. Holy moly, I learned that lesson the hard way. The book says you'll need 3 1/3 yards of fabric. I bought 3 1/2 yards to have extra to make a matching hair bow, purse, or accent on a bag, etc. As I cut into the fabric I thought, oh shoot, I'm going to need much more! A big face-palm moment there. Ugh!
I ran back to the store and bought another 1 1/2 yards- totaling 5 yards of fabric. OMG!! Thank the fabric gods I had a 50% off coupon to use for both shopping trips. Lesson learned! Next time and there will be a next time, I will buy a multi-directional, busy print fabric. Jebus! (If you get my Simpson's reference, I love you).
Aside from my fabric choice mistake, the dress pattern was crazy easy to transfer. It basically has 1 piece. I always use freezer paper when I trace patterns. It's a good-sized roll and you get a lot of bang for your buck.
The pattern has the main dress, an armhole facing, shoulder bow and ginormous pocket pieces to trace. Easy peasy! I opted out from using the pockets and shoulder bows for this particular dress, but I transferred the pattern pieces for future use.
After you wash, dry and iron your fabric, you'll cut it out. I usually like to trace the pattern while the fabric washes one day, and sew it the next day. But, this dress was so simple and quick, you could trace and sew it in an afternoon. It took me around 2 hours to sew- including making tea and a snack for myself and the kids. #momlife
I didn't let the dress hang for 24 hrs before sewing up the hem- I know, I apologize. But, it was going so smoothly I wanted to just get it done so I could try on the essential tent. And boy, is it a tent. Ha!
I stuck an elastic waist belt on and WOW! Transformation doesn't even describe it. When I put on my crinoline, it was a Wowsa moment! I was a 50's housewife goddess. Exactly what Gertie promised. Yep, I love the dress!!
I am planning on making a few of these dresses for the summer. Hawaiian print, polka dots, gingham, gimme all the carefree and flowy fabrics. I did buy 2 belts from Amazon- one black and one white. I figured they'd go with most everything because you do need an elastic cinch belt with this dress. She has an option in the book to make a shirred waist and I plan on trying that eventually.
Disclaimer: Many, many years ago I tried shirring a shirt and it was a huge disaster. Hoping to get the courage to try it again with the Popover dress.
I can see myself sewing up a few of these batch style in a day. So easy, so comfy and pretty darn cute too! Thanks for another great pattern, Gertie! You are amazing.
So, what do you think? Are you game for making the super simple Popover dress? What other dresses do you plan on making in her book? Let me know in the comments below.
Before I share all the fun I recently had, I want to give you a little back story.
Around 6 or 7 years ago a group of friends and I would get together to sew. We'd meet once a month and head to one hostess' house. Sometimes there would be 3, 4 or even 5 of us. We'd eat, snack, and sew for a few hours while chatting about our lives. You learn a lot about someone if you sew together, because all you do is talk.
Those days and nights were cherished. I would take a pattern I had cut out so I could do some actual sewing. Or, I'd take a pattern to lay on the floor for cutting/ tracing. Ahh, those were the days. Well, over time, one of the friends moved and those sewing nights ended. No reason in particular, but life shifted as it does from time to time.
Fast forward a couple of years.
Another friend of mine who sews, but lives one state over found a group of sewists. She told me about this sewing social she attended last year. She met wonderful people, discovered new pattern companies and fabric shops that were local to her. It sounded like an overall great time and I knew I wanted to go to the next one!
I patiently waited for the year to go by and once she shared the event info, I bought my ticket.
It was go time! Or, sew time! ;)
For the sewcial you can bring 1-2 unused patterns and a cut of fabric that measures 1/2 yard or more. I had a pattern and fabric and set them aside for the swap. Such a fun idea!!
I even sewed up a new dress (blog post coming soon) to wear for the evening. I packed my bag and everything I needed for a quick mini vacation. No kids. No husband. Just me.
I enjoyed the drive and listened to my own music and podcasts. It was glorious!!
Who's ready for Spring? I am! This winter has felt long and we still have a couple of months to go.
I've been busy sewing in my warm sewing studio. It's right next to my wood stove, so naturally, I've been hanging out there all winter.
My family and I are going on a cruise this spring and I remember from past cruises there's always a fancy dress night. I wanted to make my own fancy dress an I had an actual place to wear it. Win-Win! Cue the Butterick pattern that I've had in my arsenal for a while. I had yards and yards of fabric leftover from a Halloween project.
I decided to make the B5882 dress because I had nothing to lose. My fabric wasn't anything I had an attachment to, I just dove in! I did make a muslin first because I almost always have to do an FBA. But...no FBA was needed this time. Shock and awe!
2020 is here and in full swing! Can you believe January is almost over? Me neither. Sigh.
I got to thinking about all the things I planned on making last year that didn't happen. Boo! This year, I need to have a plan of attack! I decided that I need a deadline to kick my rear into gear. So, why not join a sewing challenge or 2, or 3...
There are tons of great sewing challenges happening this year in our community. You may have heard of some, and some might be completely new to you.
I've linked to a few I know about below:
Are you going to partake in any of these challenges? I know there are quite a few more that I didn't list. If you know of any, share in the comments below. I'm doing the make 9 and #sewtheprecious. I think these will be fun and a challenge for me.
Hi there, I'm Annette and I love eating and sewing. I usually have a cup of coffee or tea with me, but not next to my machine because I'd probably spill it. I am the reason we can't have nice things.