Friday, July 29, 2011

A Week of Projects

We are headed to our nephew's second birthday party tomorrow. Michael is only a little younger than him and loves dinosaurs (I've never met a little boy that doesn't) so I decided that maybe doing a dinosaur themed gift is good. I'd seen this tutorial for making really cute dinosaur/dragon tails awhile back and thought I'd make some of those for Michael and my nephew. I also planned on getting him some books.

So all I needed to do was sew a couple of quick tails this week.

With a week to sew these tails in I decided to procrastinate and make myself another bag. I'd been thinking about it for awhile now. I like my last bag, and I'm glad I finally have a big bag to contain EVERYTHING, but most of the time I don't really need to carry that much and I just want a very light bag. So I decided to sew the taller option of my market bag pattern. The inside is a pretty, inspiring print I found at Joann's and the outside is black pleather (oh yeah). I really love this size for everyday trips.

(I love my pretty blue zipper!)

I learned (the hard way) that you need to use a walking foot to sew pleather (pleather is 'gripy' and a regular foot will not slide over it). Luckily, I'd just bought one the week before. I also probably needed to increase the tension on my top-stiching and the backside of it is not so pretty in some places because of that. One of these days it's going to bother me enough to fix it or make another one.

With that out of the way I could make the dinosaur tails. I made an orange one for Michael first. I thought the straps sounded too big for even the rotund Michael's waist so I made 10" straps instead of 12". I should have stuck with the tutorial because Micahel's is a bit small (no room to grow). I made nephew's larger and green.

Michael wasn't sure about it when I first showed it to him but I got out one of his story books with dinosaurs and pointed out all the different tails and then he loved it. It's pretty cute on him too.

Then with that out of the way I decided to tackle another project that I'd been putting off. DH's grandma gave me a nice piece of green fleece awhile back. At first I thought, "What can I do with green fleece?" but then I thought, "DINOSAUR!" and happily accepted. So I'd been meaning to turn it into a dino anyhow and with the birthday thing I decided that I should go ahead and try. So I made up a little pattern and gave it a go. The first one (right) had really short and splayed legs, so it looks more like a Nessie than a dinosaur. So then I made a second one (left) and changed up a couple of things. They are both pretty mediocre, but I decided the first was the better of the two, so nephew gets it and Michael gets the one that looks like it giving me attitude.

Fun note, Michael is good at signing 'dinosaur' and saw the pattern as I was making it the other day and signed dinosaur. I <3 baby sign language.

Oh, and a walking foot makes sewing fleece 1000x easier too. I'm kicking myself for not knowing about this years ago.

So then I had this white t-shirt sitting around I got for ~$1 while ago too that I'd intended to cut up and make into a shirt for Michael (following this tutorial). I've made 5 or 6 of these for Michael already, so I can whip these out pretty quickly. So I got this shirt made and I was really happy with how it looked. I just love the crisp white against the bright green. I was in love. This is my favorite one so far, by far.

So then I decided that I had to make him some shorts to go with it. I'd been needing to make him some more short and putting it off for awhile. In my defense, EVERYTIME I make him new shorts I have to make a new pattern, which is kinda a PIA. He's big to begin with and his big cloth-diapered-inseam is hard to get right so I spend a lot of time thinking about this. I'd just made him some grey knit shorts the other day and did not get the pattern right (actually the shorts he's wearing the in the dinosaur tail photos. They look ok in the photo but they do not come up high enough in the back, and they are sewed like crap). But I was resolved to make him some shorts to go with his shirt.

So we drove to fabric store #1 and had no luck. There are so many cute girls prints... but good luck finding something with a hint of masculinity, grumble grumble. So we went to store #2 and I found a nice green plaid that I decided would do. So today I crossed myself and drew up a new pattern. I carefully matched up all pieces and sewed and, OMG, these are my best pants yet! I'm so proud of myself. They look like they came from the store. I'm going to have to make a couple more pairs with this pattern!

Ok. I'm pooped.


Celia said...

Dude. I am so impressed I don't even know what to do. You should think about opening an Etsy shop.

Kate said...

Wow, all the stuff you make looks great. Love the purse!
I really must get my sewing machine fixed.

Sophie said...

I love his outfit! You're doing a great job with these project. I love the little dinos too :) (and the tail is super cute!!!). I just broke the needle on my sewing machine (LOL), I could really use some lessons!! :D

Michelle said...

I think you are doing an awesome job! Seriously amazing job! Way to go!

Jessica White said...

That tail is AWESOME! So is your bag.

Life Happens said...

LOVE, LOVE, LOVE the dino tails!!