anxiety, baby and toddler, baby led weaning, bad week, baking, bird feeder, biscuits, blw, Bollywood, Book, camping, CPTSD, diy, diy books, mental illness, mindfulness, pants, pattern, pintrest, ptsd, Sewing, sewing novice, toddler activities, toys, trousers, upcycle, words

Week Thirteen- Apparently a list no matter what I do with formatting.

  1. Ridiculously short post here. Mainly because l’m kind of crazy busy in both mind and life with things to do before we go away next Monday. Camping. In Queensland. 
  2. Many of the things I am busy with are, at the very least, Pintrest inspired so there will be a huge stonking post full of things. But not while I’m still doing them.
  3. Here are just a couple of little things- plus I’ve added some photos to the previous post.

    This morning I made bub some pants to go with her good dress. I’d used this pin earlier in the week with polar fleece to make some PJ pants to take away and it was so quick and easy. I forgot I was using very light Indian cotton. It took a little longer than expected. 

    Look very closely on the bottom right- shirring.

    My favourite part? Spontaneous shirring of the cuffs (which I learnt from this pin) worked beautifully.

    I’ve also been coming across a lot of these

     pins of late. I adore them. I’m in love with language so finding new words is always a wondrous thing.

    Here are a few of my particular favourites.


    Because I am

    Wish me luck in my sewing/couriering/shopping/driving/train riding week.

    I may post while away- I aim to. If not there will be make up posts upon my return.  Meanwhile look for me in the interstice.

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    anxiety, anzacs, baby and toddler, baby led weaning, bad week, baking, biscuits, camping, cooking, CPTSD, diy, missy higgins, music, ptsd, reading, recipes, repurpose, Saree, Sari, sewing novice, Tim Minchin, toys, university, upcycle, winter, wrap top

    Week Eleven. Remembering.

    Right now I can’t for the life of me remember what I was going to write about… 

    This week has gone so quickly.

    We made Anzacs (as we always do) and danced in the kitchen to Missy Higgins 

    I adore the painting on the right but photo for recognitions sake.

    (Bub especially loves this song, and now sings the chorus – well part of it. Calls it the Anzac Song.  I especially love this  song- being a frustrated artist)

    Truth be told I love all of her music and have a particular soft spot for this . Its especially good after arguments with people you love.

    Which happens when they misplace things when you moved house in Febuary and still have no idea where they are. (Yes, I am looking at you, Big M) So that ate up some week.

    Then there was this STUPID AND IDIOTIC “postal survey” (plebiscite makes more sense- thought up by plebs. Anyone else do Latin at school? Anyone?) announced in Australia. It has made me rather upset. The amazing and brilliant Tim Minchin sums it up best here and quite simply I believe this :-

    Anyway. There was that.

     I also did a spot of sewing- we’re going to my cousins wedding in September up in QLD and I’m s-l-o-w-l-y making my way through a pages long to do list (mostly pin inspired).

    At the top is “Make E’s Wedding Dress” and yes, we all had a good laugh at that one.

    I wanted to make her something that reminded her of a Sari as she often asks to wear one (her passion for Bollywood undimmed)

    After looking at so, so, so many patterns for dresses for babies and toddlers. I found this one. For a reversible wrap top. 

     (Actually first I found this 

    but I really didn’t want to pay for a pattern and the handy image search corner thing found the top for me).

    So I printed out the pattern, then traced it onto baking paper and made it longer and cut it out of some beautiful but very thin Indian cotton I had bought on eBay and some equally beautiful broderie anglais. Also from eBay.

    After thinking about it overnight I realised two things. 1. That they would not work as a lining for each other and 2. That I’d cut out one too few front prices and that would have looked very wrong. (One shoulder wrap dress on toddler. Not good)

    So the next day I cut out another front piece from the cotton and some lining from Calico and tried to pin it all together. Discovery of the week- pins are like hair elastics- they vanish.

    Anyway- I was being careful and taking my time so, yes, the next day I sewed it all together following the instructions – which are actually quite simplre I’d imagine especially so for a slightly more experienced seamstress.

    I ended up with a dress which looked okay on the Indian cotton side and lovely on the calico. I hung it up overnight as apparently this helps with hemming.

    That night I thought again and realised my mistakes. 

    The next day I fixed them (sew all edges except the bottom hem first, then seam the sides with the fabric you like least outwards).

    I even used a decorative stitch.

    Tried it on Bub, hemmed it. Done. One wedding dress that I don’t have a finished picture of. Although here is the next best thing- pre hemming and adding of ties:-

     I will have a “proper” picture though- when I finish the pants to go underneath it and make the front panel end in a curve not a point and I’ll put it here 

    And now, of course, I’ve remembered what we did do that was new….but we haven’t finished it yet, so that will have to wait for next week.

    anxiety, baby and toddler, bad week, baking, biscuits, blw, Bollywood, camping, cooking, CPTSD, diy, mental illness, nightdress, Nightie, onesie, pinafore, pintrest, post natal anxiety, pre natal anxiety, ptsd, reading, Saree, Sari, Sewing, sewing novice, toddler activities, university, winter

    Week 10 Toddler Pinafore 

    Keeping it simple this week. I’ve just spent a few days finishing a Uni assignment on a particularly difficult topic plus there has been loads going on at home, so, here is something I did outside of my head.

    It’s part of an idea I had for what to dress bub in overnight while we are camping as she WILL NOT stay under the covers and I have no idea what the weather will be on the East Coast in September.

    I wanted it to be layers and comfortable and warm without screaming “I’m pyjamas” and something she can keep wearing as she gets bigger.

    Quite a bit of thought and research went into this over the last few weeks.

    I started trying to find out the best kind of camp blanket for warmth. It’s woollen, of course. But I have not the time nor the money to knit her a completely woollen outfit. Plus the itch factor of most wool fabrics ruled that out.

    Next on the list was fleece (or as I know it polar fleece).

    This was kind of perfect.

    I think polar fleece is made out if recycled plastic- so that’s a bonus (And I’m not ready to be disabused of that notion yet, thank you, I can’t afford to be right now)

     In addition part of a bundle of second hand clothes we received recently was a fleece Kathmandu jacket for bub in a beautiful teal green.

    So with that in mind as a top layer, and a simple cheap cotton onesie and the bottom layer, the middle two are going to be this pinafore and a pair of loose pants.

    I ordered the fabric in a Lincraft sale two weeks ago and got beautiful microfleece for $4 a meter. 

    I was going to wait for all the fabric to arrive but the navy blue was sitting there all washed and ready and I really needed to do something other than uni work so here we are.

    I based it roughly on this pin, which is a so simple, pretty toddler/little girls dress.

    Click for link

    But my printer wouldn’t print the pattern so I traced one of her old pinafores on to baking paper 

    *NB making an actual pattern is highly recommend – the finished product is so much better plus I felt like I was doing it ‘properly’

    I hope you can see the pencil- one line was for front, the other for the back

    So, I traced and cut and pinned and even stay stay stitched, then zig zagged over the top so it all looked right.

    I also hemmed around the neck and arm holes and did a bit of notched cutting (look at fourth image from last to see what i mean)(Oh yes, I have all the lingo down now)

    I then used the buttonhole attachment on my sewing machine (which I adore). Every other buttonhole I’ve done has been by hand. Pah! say I to buttonholes taking an hour. Mine took about twenty minutes all up. 

    In addition I worked out this rather cool way of keeping buttons handy while you are sewing them on – 

    so they don’t wander off and disappear in your sewing table-which I’m sure looks just like mine…doesnt it?

    Anyway there you go. Part one of bub sleep system done.

    Not that she’d try it on for photos, so you’ll have to make do with regulation “on a white surface” ones.

    Parts I’m most proud of? The strap ends and buttons. Also the idea of the drawstring so it won’t ride up. I’m going to put them in the pant cuffs too. That way they can be loose comfy daywear or snuggly nightwear that keeps out cold air.

    There will definately be more pictures when I do the pants. 

    In the meantime I’m just proud I made something properly- I even changed the bobbin thread.

    NB Please excuse the slightly formal academic language- think I’m still in assignment mode.

    Just quickly, because I took about forty five minuites to get right-ish, I also wore my first Sari this week thanks to this pin. What do you think?

    anxiety, baby and toddler, bad week, Nightie, pintrest, ptsd, repurpose, Sewing, sewing novice, sock monkey, toys, upcycle, winter

     Fourth Week – hmmm

    Wow. Okay. I’ve made it to my fourth week.

    I’m quietly a little bit happy with myself.

    So, life has been a bit, well un-brilliant since my last post. Very messy and torrid and stressful and tortured with past issues like my ED creeping back (in a totally nasty ‘it’s behind you’ kind of way). As well as this there’s been parent-y stuff going on and I mean, god, you’d think by thirty – mumph I’d be over parent issues but nup…still doing the same old routine .
    Anyway- 

    one thing I have learnt so far with this experiment is that I quite like sewing. 

    Especially for bub. 

    Although I miss the time with her.

    I’m still very much a beginner so each project takes probably at least twice as long as it should and I make mistakes. 

    Loads of them. 

    That is why I wrote about not one but two pin activities this week. 

    Because if anyone else out there is like me I want them to know the mistakes are ok. It works out….or maybe just don’t make the same ones I did.

     I’m going to call this ‘The Bedtime Set’ Because it feels like it needs some tenuous connection other than ‘I sewed them both’

    My middlest child wanted a sock monkey for  years and we could never find one or when we did we couldnt afford one (at the time Frank was really the only brand in Australia making them) so when I  found about twenty pins for DIY sock monkeys I knew I had to make one (there are also so many other sock animals- after middlest saw the monkey I now owe him a sloth. Or a dachund. Or an elephant).

    I went with this pin because it seemed easy and beginner friendly. It probably would have been if this beginner had actual fabric scissors and a pencil or chopstick for the turning-narrow-things-in-the-right-way bit. A bamboo skewer just doesn’t cut it. Nor do the kids old school scissors  (ba-doom-ch?).

    So I marked, and sewed, and hacked and then realised I didn’t have to cut both layers of sock together- so that helped.

    Then I spent twenty minutes trying to turn it’s arm in the right way. I gave up. Turned everything except that arm and the far too thin tail inside in and then just unpicked the disobliging limbs and sewed them up on the outside. Bub isn’t two yet. She doesn’t care.

    Then I used the template from the tutorial to cut a monkey face and eyes from some left over tshirt fabric. Stuffed and sewed and stuffed and sewed as bub bedtime hurtled at me until we had a monkey. 

    A bit Frankensteins monstery but definitely a monkey. 

    Handstitched his mouth (thank you years of embroidery and especially my grade 6 teacher Mrs Scott).

    Bub loves him and he hasn’t fallen apart yet. I’m impressed and he is wonky in a loveable and totally fits in with the rest of us way.

    I’d wanted to make bub a flanelette nightie for weeks. It’s been freezing in Geelong (-2 last night) & a thin onesie just isn’t enough for my little blanket kicker off-er-er. 

     I finally asked eldest to pick up some flanelette and elastic from Lincraft,  and bub was happy playing in the clean washing mountain so I thought I’d give it a go.

     

    This pinned tutorial is easy. Really. Just if you haven’t sewn clothes before- be careful.

    Something went a bit awry and I cut out the pattern backwards I think…either way I had to cut the front and back pieces in half and sew them up the middle.

    NB with sewing always look at the shape of things in photos instead of assuming a curve means neckline.

    After that it came together well. There was an instruction about sewing elastic onto the sleeves that I couldn’t work out- so I just made a pocket and threaded some through.

    One thing I am going to add is a couple of press studs above the hem in the middle so that bub doesn’t end up with that ‘nightie twisted around you, is trying to strangle you and has exposed 80% of your body’ thing. If they don’t work I might use press studs on a pair of leggings and the nightie…or I could make flannel pants…hmmm.

    (Also, always double fold hems. I washed the nightie pre wear and I had to re hem it due to fraying. Lesson learned. )

    Bub tried it on this morning and didn’t want to take it off. 

    Yay.

    Happy Mum.

    Also it is huge so -longer life- Yay!

    There. A cuddly toy and a nighty. Bedtime set.

    The practice with these meant that I felt confident enough to take last winters pjs – two size 0 thick weight onesies by pumpkin patch and sew them into one bigger bub sized onesie- it’s actually kind of cute. Plus warm and comfy. Bonus- it was my idea. Not a Pin in sight. (If you wanted to pin it though that’d be kind of cool :))

     

    Have a happy and warm week everyone.

    P.S. I’ve got a couple of pin based long term projects coming along- one for next week that might be especially good for parents of little ones, one for bigger kids. Nothing to do with sewing. Or cooking. Well not much.

    anxiety, baby and toddler, cheesecake, cooking, muffins, pintrest, ptsd, recipes, repurpose, Sewing, upcycle

    Second Week

    Almost perfectly on time 🙂

    So.

     I decided (after a week in which I hunted EBay for tshirts to turn into dresses and nighties, got trapped in Spotlight looking for a reasonably priced pillowcase then spent a day cooking mini cheesecakes for Michael’s birthday, (see here), realising they take as long as big ones, freaking out, Making a mug brownie as a cake replacement (actually really good- not a mug cake fan- but this was yum),  then eating really good mini cheesecake the next day. ) That I need some rules around this.

    Or I’ll just keep cooking and sewing with occasional garden forays. 

    And this isn’t a cooking blog. 

    Or a sewing blog. 

    This week I’m going to let it slide though because I made bub these : (yup- sweggings)(Or maybe swants )(nup sweggings is better)

    And she loves them. And I love them.

    I learnt from prior experience and followed the tutorial.

     Then I managed to stitch my hem over where the elastic needed to get through. The empty tube-y bit. About 4 cm before the end of the hem.

    By this point I was fed up with my machine and bub was grizzly so I part machine stitched & hand stitched (I’m a hand stitching deamon)  a yoga waistband onto them- idea from here :(baby yoga waistband pjs upcycle- making them next :))

    She chooses to wear them as much as a 1 1/2 year old can, they are comfy & it makes me so happy to see her in them.

    Most importantly they made it through the washing machine.

    Yay!

    So if you have a bub and old jumpers go for it (be sensible- no cable knit) but they are really so good for Melbourne-ian Geelong-ian winter.
     (On another note my sewing machine keeps getting really loud and buzzy and thread from bobbin clumps in the stitches- how do I stop it? Any ideas? Sort of grrrrrthunkythunkythunkybzzzzz)

    On top of that bub tasted her first baked cheesecake (see above) and loved it, we has left over Philly and I’d promised bub a garden picnic with cake.

    I’m a bit careful with bub and sugar but I found these :

    (how do you make an image a link? must read how-to bit of site)

    Apple: she loves 

    Cheesecake: she really really loves

    So we cooked these. Bub helped. She woke up this morning asking for “cooking”

    They were really easy – used a couple of bowls but very simple, especially as I used tinned Apple  (brilliant for bub & pie & crumble & cheap).



     So happy& warm bub. I did my Pintrest activity. We had yummy muffins (Or parts of) as we crawled around and then stomped around in our new boots. And all was good.
    UPDATE : I made this today: 

    (See Week 1 “Easy DIY nightgown upcycle”) works so well if you follow the tutorial – now a t shirt that was my cousins then my eldest that bub had loved because of the sewn on colour bits is now hers -so yes- follow the directions 🙂 (Oh – yes- they’re armwarmers – she insisted💜😊)