Tag Archives: KCW

kids clothes week – my attempt

Last week I participated in Kids Clothes Week where you are challenged to spend one hour a day sewing clothes for your children.  The idea is to find one hour in your day to do a little bit of sewing.  That might be cutting out a pattern, cutting fabric, ironing, or actually sewing a garment together.  And, if you stick with an hour a day for a week, you are likely to end up with at least one finished garment.  Last KCW challenge I did pretty well.  I won’t say I did not do well for this challenge, but I did only finish one garment.  I made Hythe a shirt.

He had been quietly longing for me to make something for him and I had him in a quilting store looking for some marking chalk about two weeks ago.  I found what I wanted and was at the checkout counter where a few bolts of a beautiful fabric with horses painted on it were leaning.  Hythe insisted I get some of the fabric for Anne and Evva.  Then, we turned around while they were cutting that fabric to find that just behind us was a bolt of the most fabulous fish print.  I knew right away this one was perfect for Hythe.  He has been asking to go fishing nearly everyday since spring has arrived (and fishing season has opened).  While we were looking at that fish fabric, Hythe said he would like me to make him something to wear from it because, “Then the fish won’t see me when I am fishing.  They will think I’m other fish and I can catch them.”

So, I made the Sketchbook Shirt from Oliver + S for him – a pattern I already had in my stash.  It turned our really well and he loves it.  He wore it as soon as I had finished it and was quite proud (just the reaction I hope for when I present a hand-made garment).  It also fit well and looked good (I was a little uncertain, thinking it might be too loud).

He has not gone fishing in it yet, but probably this weekend it will see some more use by a stream or a pond.




I think brother wants one next!



week behind






This past week flew by (or crept by as the situation went).  I did actually finish the Kids Clothes Week on day 6 with a cute pom-pom cowl for Anne.  Green being her favorite color and loving trim, she adored this cowl and has worn it everyday since.  Then, I came down with a nasty cold and tonsillitis (and no day 7 of KCW), and William left the same day to be out of town for three days.  I couldn’t stay in bed and nurse the illness since all the children had to be fed, clothed, and transported to school, etc. Not to mention, I had to work.  But, I did high myself to bed as soon as they were tucked in and the dishes done.  No other house work, crafting, or writing took place.  I was finally starting to feel better when I had to leave for a work conference for two days.  I got back to enjoy one warmish day, to admire the small lenten roses starting to bloom and the snow drops growing larger everyday.  Then this afternoon turned chilly, wind picked up, clouds blew in, and the forecast looks dire for spring.   I will have to look for the beauty of winter (maybe some snow!?) a little while longer.  And, Valentine’s Day!  Whew!  It can be very full with 3 children who not only have classes full of other children to give Valentine’s to, but who also come home with bags full of Valentine’s from their classmates.  Only one child came home with lots of junky candy to send him on sugar highs and lows for a full day (thank goodness the girls’ school asked for no-candy V-day treats!) – and a sweet Valentine from his teacher.

All this to say, I feel a week behind.   With the soap business, with my sewing projects (for me, now – a skirt and a pair of jeans!), and definitely with housekeeping.  So, I’ll take a deep breath, fold the laundry, ignore the mess in the living room, vacuum, ignore the train tracks scattered across the boys room – spend the evening sewing, go to work tomorrow afternoon (still ignoring messes).  Eventually it will get done, or picked up, I’ll find a chance to sit and sew, and there will be another mess to clean up.  It is a cycle for now, one that I do have to try and stay on top of – to balance, but that is never perfect.  But, since we don’t do perfection in this house, I’m ok with it!

Kids Clothes Week: day 4 and 5 review

On day 4, I made up a skirt for Evva from a simple little pattern from Maja’s Heirlooms (a company that may not exist anymore).  I found the pattern at a thrift store and think it was donated there by a wonderful local, independent fabric store that closed down last year.  I also made a skirt from this pattern for Anne a few months ago for her school uniform.

The wonderful fabric came from a dress that I had put in the quilt-making pile, but I pulled it out because the fabric is so wonderful and there was enough there to make something else wearable.  The dress was made by a local seamstress, but I did not like the construction.  It looked like a coat, but was not lined.  It was a cold dress to wear in winter and the buttons popped open all the time.  I could have sewed all the button holes shut, but one of the buttons popped off and was lost – and since it was an impractical dress, I thought I might make it over.  I decided on the skirt because it is a quick sew, looks great, and I knew there would be enough fabric.

It came together very quickly.  When I made the skirt for Anne, I put in an invisible zipper (per instructions), but she never needed it because the little bit of elastic in the waist made it easy to slip on and off.  So I did not put in a zipper, nor did I have to hem it.  It looks great and Evva loves it.

On day 5, I took a pair of Anne’s leggings with a hole in the knee, cut them off and made a cuff, so they are like yoga or running pants.  She loved them and wore them all day today.  I also started making a cowl for Anne, but I was too tired to sew today.  The beautiful weather here (and my coming down with a cold) found me sitting in the sunshine, resting during my free time today.  I hope to finish tomorrow and will post about it (only missing one day of KCW this time).







Kids Clothes Week: day 2 – 3 review






Tuesday night I cut out and sewed up a pair of pajama shorts for Evva (to match those I’d made for Anne).  She was very happy, and the girls danced together in the hall tonight before bed while I took pictures.

Did I mention this KCW’s theme was upcycled clothes?  Meaning, if possible, try to make clothes from fabric that is already made into something (thrifted, worn out, bad fit, etc.)  So, I on Tuesday night I also cut up a hand-me-down knit dress with a truly terrible fit for young girls, and made the skirt part into a t-shirt for Evva.  I drafted the pattern myself and experimented with no sleeves, just a little cap.  I’ve seen this style around but I don’t know what it is called – a t-shirt with a front panel and back panel sewed together with sleeves as part of the panel, not separate sections.  Anyway, I made the sleeves very short in case it did not work out well, but it seems to fit her.

I wanted to make the very plain t-shirt more interesting and debated how to do it.  I’ve wanted to try to applique some designs onto knits and thought this was a perfect opportunity to try it out.  So, on Wednesday, I interfaced some pink knit fabric scraps I had and cut them into flower petals.  I appliqued by hand with embroidery floss – a shiny pink that was part of a friendship bracelet pack of Anne’s – using a backstitch.  So, on Wednesday, I spent a little more than an hour wrestling the metallic thread through fabric to make a flower.  I had plans to make another smaller one, but that thread was difficult and once I’d finished one flower, I’d had enough.  Evva likes the shirt – and loves the flower.  Anne and Evva both loved the flower, which makes me think I will start doing some applique on plain t-shirts.  I love how it looks also.  I was inspired by Alabama Chanin (which is far above anything I’ve done, but the idea of layering shapes in knit cloth) and Synergy.  I love the clothes from both of these designers.

Next up?  I am cutting up a beautiful dress of gorgeous fabric that just never worked for my girls (and the construction was a little shoddy in places).  Planning on making a  skirt.  Tonight.  I’m off.

Kids Clothes Week: day one review

I will be one day late in revealing what I sewed, or cut, or drafted for Kids Clothes Week (a one week challenge to spend one hour each day making clothes for your children) since I usually do my sewing at night after the children are in bed.  After sewing, I go to bed!

Yesterday, we had a beautiful snow flurry that blew about so much that the mountain was nearly whited out.  The wind howled and the trees roared on the mountain and the ground got a slight dusting.  Steven had to go out to see.


The bitter cold wind kept everyone inside in the afternoon, playing happily with that wonderful classic toy, Lincoln Logs – and their imaginations.


But, I did finally get around to sewing and made Anne a pair of sleeping shorts she has been wanting.  I made them from the never-seems-to-be-gone knit cotton fabric.  Luckily, all the children think the fabric is cool so I can make lots of things from it.  The pattern is Oliver+S Nature Walk pants (modified to shorts).

I laid the shorts on the table so she would see them when she got up this morning.  She was excited.


My plan for today is to make a pair for Evva (and maybe Hythe).  I hope to get them cut out sometime today and sew them up tonight.  It only takes about 30-40 minutes to sew these up.


week in review and sewing projects








The first two pictures show our poor girls when they were suffering from the stomach bug this week.  I am glad they could use their quilts (the only ones I’ve ever made) for comfort and warmth.  William hung a hammock chair in our living room last week and it has been a spot everyone has wanted to sit – and Evva took her sick nap there.

Luckily, everyone was feeling better by William’s birthday this week.  I made a chocolate pound cake for him.  I had plans to make a s’mores cake from Smitten Kitchen cookbook, made with graham crackers, chocolate, and a frosting that needed to be toasted with a blow torch.  But, I gave up on the idea when I realized I really did not have time (or energy) for making a semi-complicated cake.  I would have had to go to the grocery store – and figure out how to use a blow torch.  So I went with a cake that I had the ingredients, time, and skills to make.  And, that chocolate pound cake was delicious, even if I did go on a short walk to have a moment to myself and forget to take the cake out of the oven beforehand.  It did not really burn, just got a little crisp on the outside.

Then, I settled down to do some sewing at the end of the week.  But, first I had to open up my machine and stick a magnet down in there to get all the pins that Steven has been sneaking into the tiny holes on the top of the machine.  He loves to do it and I’ve caught him at it a few times.  I’ve told him not to put the pins down the holes, but he told me that was where they go.  And, to be fair, there doesn’t seem to be a point to those two tiny holes and pins fit through them perfectly.

The girls both had birthday parties to go to this weekend and they were up for gifting homemade presents.  So, we made a pair of pajama shorts for one friend from a soft cotton jersey.  I bought the end of a bolt of this fabric from Hancock Fabrics many months ago.  I did not realize how much I was getting until it was measured – 8 yards!

I also made a circle skirt for another friend.  Evva picked out the fabric from my stash.  I debated if I should put my tag in these garments.  A tag gives the garment a more professional, slightly less handmade, look.  But, is it too silly or pretentious?  I finally decided to put a tag in, figuring I should be proud of my work and my children like to have the tags in their handmade garments.

This week I also finished up an outfit for myself.  I am trying to make some core clothes or outfits for my wardrobe.  I sewed up a black cardigan a few weeks ago, and made a pair of leggings last week. I love the leggings.  They are very comfortable and have a cute petal cuff.  They are also very simple and easy to sew up.  I made them from a black French terry of cotton and bamboo with Spandex.  They hold their shape well and are very warm.  Finally, I finished a mini-skirt I made from some plaid wool with tiny silver strips running through it.  You can see the outfit above sans cardigan (I was actually too warm to put it on – it may have also been in the washing machine).  I am pretty happy with it!

Thanks to Seamwork Magazine for the cardigan and leggings patterns!

This coming week is Kids Clothes Week and I am planning on participating.  The theme is upcycling.  I am not sure what I will do with the theme yet, but I have some ideas – and some projects to work on.


Kids Clothes Week: Day 5



I made this little skirt for Evva on Day 5 of Kids Clothes Week (yesterday). It is a circle skirt by Dana of the blog MADE. It is an easy pattern (or process) and Anne and a friend of hers each made one at sewing camp this week from the fabric they painted. Evva wanted one too, but made from this rayon challis (I think that’s what it is) that I got from my grandmother’s stash when I was back “home” the other week. It was pretty silky, but strong, and very bright. Evva did the sewing for the elastic band and the edging  for the skirt waist herself.

It made a great little skirt. I did a narrow hem at the bottom, but thought later that I could have tried to do a rolled hem (and used the rolled hem foot that I have never used) since the fabric was so fine.

Evva is very pleased with the skirt and wore it all day today.