Posts Tagged ‘clothing’

For a purpose

Friday, 25 March 2011
Cover of "A Book About The Four Seasons (...

Cover of A Book About The Four Seasons (blr)

I mightn’t have got to discussing this yet, but I think it might be of interest to one of my blog buddies, Hakea, so here goes.

41. Caps, Hats, Socks & Mittens: A Book About the Four Seasons by Louise Borden

Basically this is a book of drawings and statements of things that happen during the four seasons, from a mid to northern US perspective. (Winter is snowy, summer is hot, spring and autumnfall are distinguishable and the flags and cultural events are American.) For each season we get expected weather, activities, food and clothes, along with drawings of kids enjoying themselves appropriately.

Honestly, I think this book could be great for inspiring discussions about the different seasons and favoured activities etc. The downside is that I don’t find it to read all that comfortably as a single entity. I think I want it to be poetic, and it really isn’t (and doesn’t claim to be).

No sew baby panda costume

Sunday, 20 March 2011

panda baby 022Hm, I think this panda costume worked better in my head than so far in reality, but hopefully it’ll look good tomorrow, out and about on Shushan Purim day. For one thing, I hadn’t realised just how much too small DD’s white hat is these days…

Still, it meets my criteria for a baby costume of:

  1. Being as comfortable as her normal clothes to wear and put on/take off
  2. Not making anything in good condition unwearable other than as fancy dress
  3. Being cheap, quick and easy to make

So, just in case anyone out there thinks this is an idea they’d like to improve upon ;) here’s how I did it.

panda baby 001First, you’ll need a white hat and one-piece outfit that both fit the baby, and a pair of opaque black women’s tights. (These last are going to be cut up, so this is how to use up any with holes or runs that mean you can’t wear them any longer. If they’re in particularly bad shape you might need to choose parts from more than one pair.) You’ll also need a small sheet of card and some small safety pins. Tools needed are scissors, a glass and a pen/pencil.

panda baby 003The feet ends of the tights will go over baby’s legs, so measure generously and cut these off. (You can trim later if they’re really too long.) Cut another small piece from each tights leg for the ears, then the remainder will make the black part of the costume body. I forgot to take pictures of these parts but basically you need a large hole in the tights where the two legs join. This will go over baby’s head, with the legs as sleeves.

panda baby 024

panda baby 005To make the ears, cut two appropriately sized circles out of thin card (I found the base of a small glass was a good size), fold each in half and cover with the small pieces of tights leg you cut earlier.

panda baby 015Use the safety pins to carefully attach the ears to the hat at the seams, so that the metal doesn’t touch baby. This is where I’d really recommend sewing, especially since a hat with ears is cute even when not in fancy dress. In that case you wouldn’t want card stiffening, however, as it’s not washable. Still, this way certainly does work.

panda baby 019This is the longest stretch of metal I could find inside the hat, and I’m probably going to redo that pin.

And that’s it. Now just place it all on the baby. There’s enough friction in tights material that you probably don’t actually need to attach the legs to the main outfit, but if your baby’s already crawling and pulling them up is getting annoying a couple of carefully placed safety pins would probably work there too.

Some crafty purchases

Wednesday, 11 August 2010

NaBloPoMo August logoNow to show you some of what I bought today.
folded turquoise fabric, turquoise thread and jigsaw playmat squares
On top, lots and lots of turquoise jersey knit cotton (t-shirt material), for that skirt I mentioned yesterday, and a couple of other things I’ll show you if they work. It cost more than I thought, largely because it is more than I thought, since the fabric comes in getting on for twice the width I was expecting (170cm rather than 1m). I still needed the full length for one of those possible projects, but that gives me plenty of ‘practice’ fabric (my sewing experience is limited anyway, especially with stretchy fabric), and I have ideas for things to do with real leftovers anyhow. Even at more than I expected, and with buying matching thread, the total still comes in at less than buying either of the two main things I’m planning on making with it, plus I get the fun and fit (and frustration, which will still be better than clothes shopping) of doing it myself. Now I just have to get on with it!

In a third shop (why would a fabric store sell thread, after all?!) I found some of those jigsaw style playmats (underneath the fabric and thread in the photo above) I’ve seen recommended so many times on Ravelry and elsewhere for blocking with, so we got those too. They’re printed on one side, which I’ll probably try to leave pristine, and use the yellow side for sticking pins in!

The place where we got the thread (and were horrified by the price of the sewing machines – if/when I get one it won’t be that fancy) is a couple of doors from one of our favourite second-hand bookshops, and in there I found a beginner’s guide to patchwork (Take Up Patchwork by Ionne Hammond), which looked like it had clear instructions, good information and helpful pictures, as well as templates and some plausible (for me) patterns, so I got it, of course! (Sorry about the glare on the picture.)
Take Up Patchwork book
I’ve started reading the introduction, and it’s well enough written that I might go straight through and put it on the booklist.

Thinking of sewing

Tuesday, 10 August 2010

NaBloPoMo August logoI still have a few metre squares of (woven, printed, cotton) fabric I bought for making headscarves, that I haven’t done anything with as yet. I suppose I should get to that before I start on other projects (and I’m still at the handsewing stage), but I want to make myself a skirt I browsed my way to online, which may be rather a challenge, especially considering I haven’t so much as made myself the pincushion I think I really need to get on with any other sewing.

I spent a fair amount of time on Youtube this evening, looking at sewing projects for babies. (Hey, they’re small and easy and the recipient isn’t going to complain about my sewing ability or colour choices!) As I discovered long ago for crochet stitches, Youtube is one of the best tutorial sources (on just about anything) out there, if you’re a visual learner who’s willing to pick and choose.

Now if I could stop thinking about what to make, and just get on with doing it! (With my crochet too.)

Expanding Wardrobes

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

I’ve done rows 1-9 of a second Mystery Shawl, as I have most available time for it at the moment while commuting, and the threads for the one I began on Friday (which I’ve only done the first row of) are not conducive to taking about with me. I amn’t convinced I’ve got enough of the turquoise for the pattern, or that I’d ever wear the colour, but if need be that will go to a child. I’m intending to do the thread one for myself, still. I’d hoped for some pictures for you, but haven’t been able to get them onto any computer yet.

My own wearable clothes in are still in a jumble, in bags, boxes, and even wardrobes, occasionally. I amn’t looking forward to all the ironing this move is going to entail…

149. Mrs Tinne’s Wardrobe: A Liverpool Lady’s Clothes 1900-1940 by Pauline Rushton

This is actually a fascinating book, showing much of the extensive wardrobe of the eponymous Mrs Tinne, a Liverpool doctor’s wife of the first half of the twentieth century, whose husband’s private income allowed her to buy many more outfits and accessories than most of her peers, although she seems to have largely retained her tastes to those normal in such circles. Her youngest daughter has donated most of the wardrobe to the National Museums Liverpool, and this selected catalogue of the collection is beautifully produced, with a very readable introduction to Liverpool, the Tinne family and the major clothes retailers of the period contained within it.

My new handwriting

Wednesday, 30 April 2008

Day 11 of the Omer

RNIB Braille Primer Supplementary Exercise 2
Which is what it is, so far, seeing as I won’t be getting my loan Perkins machine for a couple of weeks to actually produce proper braille. Knowing myself, however, I wanted to get started learning straight away (which I did yesterday, as when I put things off it’s hard to get them going), and the point here is really for me to be able to sight-read braille, so I can check that what comes out of the embosser is correct.

Anyway, don’t bother struggling to work out what this says, as it’s just an assortment of words and phrases using letters A-T (I’m on lesson 2). If you’ve followed a touch-typing course you’ll know the kind of thing. (If you are a fluent braille sight-reader and can quickly tell me have I made any obvious mistakes I’d really appreciate it, however.) I’m using graph paper to try to get the spacing consistent, and I think it does look better than the first exercise, that I did on scraps of paper.

109. Children’s Fashions 1860-1912: 1,065 Costume Designs from “La Mode Illustree” ed. by JoAnne Olian

This book has a good introduction explaining what it provides, including an overview of the changing styles of children’s clothing. The illustrations are beautifully reproduced, and were obviously of a very high standard in the first place.


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