Mamma is Nesting: DIY Bibs and Wipes

Hey Peoples!!! As you know I will be embarking on a new journey, Motherhood. During these last months I’ve been prepping and readying Baby’s sleeping quarters, washing blankets, clothes, cloth diapers, etc. Yes I said cloth diapers. I may in the future do a post on my cloth diapering experience after getting my feel for it. While mentioning cloth diapering I decided to do like other cloth diapering Moms and make my own wipes. In addition to wipes I also decided to make Baby some bibs.

The wipes and bibs were super duper easy. There are plenty of DIY tutorials and videos online that offer great verbal and visual instructions so I won’t bother giving a tutorial. However I will explain how I went about how I created mine.

For my fabric I ended up going to Joann’s Fabric and purchased these cute flannel prints. I kept in mind to make sure the fabric I purchased was soft as this was going to be up against Baby’s skin. I ended up purchasing about 1 yd per print, 2 yd for my favorites. Also I purchased white chenille fabric (not pictured) for when I make my bibs. Flannel Fabric Flannel Fabric

So like any fabric I purchase I make sure to pretreat it, in this case launder it. After that process I made myself a template/pattern for my wipes. (it was roughly an 8 1/2 – 9in square). For the bib pattern I used Sew4Home.com Baby Bib Pattern.  Instead of using snaps as instructed by editor Liz Johnson, I decided to use sew on velcro to cut on time.

First I’d like to talk about the wipes.  I used my wipe pattern to cut out a heck of a lot of squares.  A tip to make this tedious process a breeze, have a rotary cutter and board on hand.  Trust me using scissors is a pain, I quit using them after cutting out the first two.  After cutting out my squares I paired them wrong sides together and fused them with my serger.  Easy Peezy!!! Diy Wipes DIY Baby Wipes

Now that the wipes were done I was now able to make my bibs. For this project I cut out both the chenille and flannel fabric. Again I used my rotary cutter. I did not feel like physically cutting out anything with my scissors. It be like that sometimes, lol.

For this project I sewed both the chenille and flannel right sides together leaving an opening to turn the bib right side out. Before turning the bib on the right side I trimmed around the sides to eliminate any bulk. DIY baby Bibs Now I turned the bib right side out and then pressed the bib flat. DIY Baby Bibs

Next I hand sewed the opening close, top stitched around the bib and last sewed on the velcro. Diy Baby Bibs DIY Baby Bibs Diy Baby Bibs This was also an easy sewing process, though not as easy as the wipes, but its beginner friendly.

Though I took short cuts, refused to use the scissors majority of the time nor attempted to add snaps to the bibs, I did enjoy making both the wipes and bibs. I’m actually excited to see whose going to be the next mamma to be in my circle of friends so I can make this again for a shower gift.

I’m not sure what my next sewing project project will be but I wouldn’t be surprised at all if it were baby related. Well my peoples until next time!!!

Coco

 

Dressing the Bump: What to Wear to Your Baby Shower

Hey Peoples, I am back!! Pregnancy has been good to me but my only complaint is that I am always tired and lethargic. I know, I know boo hoo for you other women go through worse. I guess what I mean is my enthusiasm for all things besides sleeping and eating has gone out the window. I haven’t been sewing like I should nor have I had a desire to go out. But eventually I had to snap out of that funk because my Baby Shower was around the corner and I had nothing to wear. So pretty much I had little to no time to pull together a look. I could have made it easier on myself by just going to a department store, however there is no better feeling than being able to wear something you’ve made (plus it doesn’t hurt to save a little bit of money).

With making a maternity dress there are a few challenges to run into, well more so if your not use to doing a lot of pattern work and major fitting. The first challenge was to find a pattern that compliments the baby bump. In my case I was carrying high and I naturally have a short torso so something that was close to empire waist or a dress with no waistband was something to consider. After a long extensive search I decided on these two patterns as my potential candidates, New Look 6322 and New Look 6341new look 6341 6322 New Look

The next challenge was figuring out the game plan on how to convert one of these regular patterns into a maternity. With New Look 6341 and 6322 I would have to shorten the torso and widen the waistline to match my current waist measurements as well as add length to the front of the skirt to balance the lift due to the baby bump. My final decision was based upon whether I wanted to deal with adjusting the waistline of New Look 6341 or the 6322. New Look 6322 ended up being my choice, in my mind the darts and pleats on the New Look 6322 pattern seemed more flattering to my bump than the princess seams on the 6341.

Now I have oodles of Sewing reference books to refer to for instruction and technique but I am more of a visual learner. After searching online I ran into this video by Professor Pincushion that demonstrates an easy way to increase the waistline on a commercial pattern.

Pattern Work New Look 6322 (My work up for my bodice) For my skirt portion of my dress I ran across Rowena from Rostitchery.com I really appreciate Rowena’s simplistic take on pattern adjusting, it was easy and less cumbersome compared to other pattern adjusting instructions that resemble trigonometry math problems. New Look 6322

After finishing my pattern work it was time to make my muslin. New Look 6322 New Look 6322 In an effort to curb my spending I opted to go to a Goodwill to for used bedding for 83 cents vs muslin fabric for 2-3 dollars per yard. Not to shabby for a bed sheet. I actually like this dress in yellow, but for the shower I wanted to go with some floral fabric I scooped up in LA this past summer from LA’s Fabric District. IMG_8894 IMG_8957 New Look 6322 New Look 6322 (That was a coincidence I actually matched the shower decor, definitely not planned.)

The dress came out beautiful but that came with some additional fitting issues. One thing that is important to keep in mind is the ease of the pattern which I didn’t take into consideration when adding inches to the waistline. Also I ran into a snafu when little man slightly dropped days prior to the shower which totally through off the original fit of the dress. So in true fashion I was able to finish the dress (with my quick fix finish tricks) the night before the shower.

Overall I was elated by the fact that the dress turned out to be a winner and my shower was stellar thanks to my family and friends. From this experience I wouldn’t change a thing, I learned some pattern work techniques, I tackled on making a maternity dress with woven fabric and I was able to work calmly under immense pressure.

Until Next Time
Love Coco

Shower Pictures Courtesy of J. Perk Productions

Going Dutch: Mad about Mod Podge

Hey peoples!! I’m sure many of you have seen all of those wonderful Mod Podge projects floating around the internet. From photo to wood transfers to repurposed tables, this wonderful adhesive gives crafters endless options to decoupage the ordinary to extraordinary. For the longest I’ve been wanting to decoupage some shoes but I was not willing to sacrifice a pair of pumps and run the risk of messing up. Hmm…just thinking about it, I could go to Goodwill and snag a pair to practice on.

With my paint brushes and sponges on hand and mod podge on deck I was more than ready to get my project started. So since I didn’t make it to Goodwill nor cared to go through my shoe stash I decided to break out the wooden clogs. Your probably thinking what in the world your doing with wooden clogs. Well close to 20 years ago my older Brother had the wonderful opportunity to travel with a group of students to Ghana. He asked me what I wanted for a souvenir, since one of his stops was in Amsterdam I wanted authentic wooden clogs. Yeah, I could of asked for fabric, a dress, wood carving decor, etc, no for some reason the first thing on my mind was wooden clogs.

Fast forward to today, more like decades later, I finally have the time and opportunity to give these sad wooden shoes an upgrade.IMG_7643 To cover my shoes I chose to use the pages from one of my fashion magazines. I wanted my shoes to be colorful, vibrant and funky.IMG_7648 With the paint brush, I applied the Mod Podge on both sides of the cutouts making sure the paper adhered to the surface of the shoe. IMG_7650 After 2 1/2 hours of applying magazine cutouts and several finishing coats later my shoe was officially done. IMG_7659 One is done time to do the other. IMG_7660

Before IMG_7644

After IMG_7653IMG_7654IMG_7655IMG_7656IMG_7658

I am definitely ready to try this out on some fabric and upgrade my shoe game.

Till next time
Love Coco

Pumps n da Bumps

Hey Peoples!! If you’d recall from my last post Blogger Scene DC, I announced that I was expecting a little person.  Yes 2015 is going to be very exciting and very interesting being that this was a surprise package lol.  Pregnancy has been good to me so far, no morning sickness no nausea, just a bad case of sleep deprivation and lethargy.  But hey, I will not complain, I thank the Heavenly Father cause I’ve heard worse.

Due to my lack of energy and my never ending quest for a good night sleep sewing and photography has definitely taken a backseat. I have yet to make any maternity clothes with the exception of my Megan Nielsen pencil skirt and my Vogue 8825 dress from another previous post Modern Twist on Vintage.  The Vogue 8825 pattern though not maternity however can be worn as a maternity option if sewn with the right knit.

I have nothing bad to say nor any mixed feelings when it came to sewing with the Megan Nielsen Pencil Skirt. The instructions were easy to follow, contained a few good tips on knits and stretch and would be deemed a beginner friendly pattern.  I’m all for beginner friendly patterns especially when you are like myself a serious procrastinator and tight on time. MN1008-ruched-maternity-skirt-01_1024x1024 IMG_7623
This is how my version turned out.  Being that is was still in the dead of winter I wanted to use a fabric that had pop but yet was subtle.  For this I used a black floral knit print and paired it with my wrap top.  Unfortunately I wouldn’t know where or how to obtain this fabric being that I purchased it from a family friend who was cleaning house. That’s the thing with buying fabrics, you better decide on something now or you my risk never seeing it again. IMG_7625 IMG_7630 Hmmmm….I wonder how big this baby is going to be.

Oh before I forget. I have to show a quick view on how my Vogue 8825 dress served me well with dressing my bump. IMG_2160 Before the Bump 20150305_081504 After

Now for the next challenge what to wear/make for the baby shower…

Until next time

Love Coco

Blogger Scene DC: Winter Cocktail Party 2015

Hey Peoples I am super-duper late with this post. I promise if you read along with me it will be worth the wait. So as you know from a previous post before Blogger Scene: Winter 2015.  I was planning on an outfit to wear to the Blogger Scene event  (as I always do),  well not to just plan an outfit but sew it. Going out whether it be a social, cocktail party or fashion event is always a good excuse to clutter up my house with thread, cutting boards, fabric, a serger and sewing machine.

Unlike other times where I am always working down to the wire to come up with something (Don’t know why but I always get a procastinators rush when I am near a deadline), I decided to pace myself and span my whole sewing process out a weeks time.  So this is how my process would work,  one day would be for pattern prepping.  This is where I would get my commercial pattern that I plan to use, trace it on a separate paper and cut out my pattern pieces.  I would also wash my fabric to pre shrink any fibers to ensure I don’t have any fit issues later when I do decide to launder my garment.  The next day would be just for cutting my fabric with my pattern pieces.  The remaining days after would be just dedicated to sewing my garment.  Sounds easy right, I did too lol.  However my executed outfit choice didn’t go as planned.  I will get back to that a little later, but for before I do lets discuss Blogger Scene…

For those who haven’t read my past post Blogger Scene DC or never heard of a Blogger Scene Event I’ll brief you on the details.  Blogger Scene is a series of Cocktail Parties hosted by DMV Bloggers Ashley of Ashley In DC and Sisters Natalie and Erika of The Fashionably Broke.  The purpose of these parties are to provide a venue for other local DMV bloggers to network, socialize and learn the ins and outs of blogging through a panel of seasoned bloggers.  This event took place this past January at the Gryphon in DC.IMG_7619
IMG_7587 IMG_7602

Now its not all just talking and sipping cocktails there is also a fun aspect to these events…the giveaways.  I guarantee you my main drive for going is not for the hopes of winning something.  As a matter of fact I feel like I am winning when I am getting out the house lol. IMG_7613 IMG_7612 IMG_7605

Well at least the people I roll with are winners. Both of my girls Tanya and my Sis Sommar of Do it With Sass  were the few of the lucky winners that night. IMG_7632

My Oh So Fab Crew!!! Lt to rt Sommar, Tanya and Ye.  But wait a second do you see my girl Ye’s Jacket though.  We will save that for another post being that I don’t want to be all over the place lol.

Alright so now your wondering ok Coco, well where are you and what did you wear to Blogger Scene.  Oh yes, right my outfit.  Ok so back to my sewing-in-pace process.  Though it was very effective with regards to me keeping time and not rushing another sewing project, the original outfit just didn’t work out.  I know all that planning, cutting and sewing.  I didn’t anticipate the fitting process. Booooooo.  My plans were to wear a pencil skirt and a funky sweatshirt I had made. Its ok though, I kept my composure and just did what I do best, go back to the drawing board and improvise. I keep forgetting I’m sewing for a different body type and I’m not built like I’m use to. Yeah your girl is carrying a little extra weight. Lets just say #LeggoMyPreggo. IMG_7627MN1008-ruched-maternity-skirt-01_1024x1024IMG_7624

For this outfit I used the Megan Nielsen Maternity Ruched Pencil Skirt Pattern.  Thankfully this skirt is easy and quick to sew since I found myself again in a procrastinating position.  I simply paired the skirt with a black wrap top I already had in my wardrobe, and complimented my outfit with some simple jewelry and metallic heels. The fabric I used came from one of my Mom’s friends who was selling all of her fabric.  I lucked out with this floral knit.  All in all I am satisfied on how it turned out.  Guess I will be doing less with wovens and more with knits now I have a bump as an accessory.
IMG_7633

This is going to be an interesting sewing journey for me as I’ve never had to sew anybody’s maternity anything.  I’m sure I will have some hiccups along the way, but I accept the challenge.  Besides with a little faith and prayer all things are possible.

 

Til Next Time

Coco

 

Vogue 8825: Modern Twist on Vintage

Hey Peoples!!!! Oh my Goodness. Let me tell you guys I’ve been a lazy somebody. I’ll be perfectly honest I have had many days where I would come home from work, bypass my sewing machine and head straight to bed. I confess, I love sewing but I am not in love with it at the same time, please don’t judge me lol. Thank goodness I was able to pull a project together. I hate making promises to others as well as myself and fail to fall through.

For this sew project I decided on Vogue 8825. My inspiration for choosing this look was Amy Adams wardrobe in American Hustle. A prime example on how 70s fashion was chic, feminine and bold without the stereotypical cliche tackiness of peace signs and overly exaggerated bellbottoms. american-hustle-amy-adams-1 I love this dress for several reasons, it was easy to sew, its figure flattering and the silhouette is reminiscent of a vintage 1970s dress. V8825-1V8825

 

 

I even found this vintage pattern, also by Vogue, which offers a similar silhouette. I would imagine for an experienced sewer it wouldn’t take much difficulty to alter Vogue 8825 to mirror this vintage pattern. 70s-empire-maxi-dress

For this pattern I used knit fabric. I must say I tend to favor woven fabric over knits, probably because I like being able to manipulate it. Thankfully the sewing instructions were pretty straight forward resulting in a lower probability for error. The only alterations I made was to add more length so I can achieve below knee length. IMG_2158 IMG_2092 IMG_2170 IMG_2160 IMG_2226 Oh just in case I get any inquires about the faux fur jacket, this gem was purchased over 10 years ago.

Oh before I forget. You may also notice the obvious…my images. I don’t mind doing my own photos but I decided for my blog I’ll switch it up from time to time.  Yeah, for this post I wanted to step my game up. I would normally shot with my own camera, but this time I wanted to get a professional. For this task I enlisted my photog buddy Jeffrey Perkins of J. Perk Productions.  Please if your in the DMV (DC-Maryland-Virginia) area, check him out and book your shoot.

 

Until Next Time…….

P.S.  Hold dear to that garment or accessory that can always stand the test of time.

The 180 Skirt

Hey Peoples, its your girl Coco with another Sew Post. While summer is coming close an end and with fall approaching its time to start sewing my autumn wardrobe. I do need some solid pieces but if you know one thing about me fashion wise is that I love prints.  The most lovely of prints in my opinion are Ankara fabric.  Its in a nutshell a 6 yard 45 inch wide bolt of boldness, color and excitement.389762_10200784017016466_1109773403_n1053402_10200907396060865_592650367_o So these two outfits were from my early sewing days. My first pair of pants using McCalls M6514 and My first Pretty Girls Sew sew along project using Vogue Pattern V8788. This project I wanted something simplistic, comfortable and that doesn’t take all day to make.  For those days when I don’t want to do any extreme projects I tend to go for simplistic patterns that contain 6 or less pattern pieces.  For this project I decided I wanted to make a circle skirt using my Ankara fabric. Because of width of the fabric I wasn’t able to pull off a full circle skirt but I managed to do half circle skirt instead. For calculations and drafting I referred to my ever growing sewing reference library. A good online resource for doing a self drafted circle skirt is this cool circle skirt app. IMG_6999IMG_6991IMG_6990 Making this skirt was fairly easy, beginner friendly and quick which makes this a perfect project for days I really don’t feel like spending hours upon hours sewing and pressing. IMG_6981

Until Next time.  (Looking at that Pink and Green at the bottom right corner, definitely will be doing a post once I figure out what to do with it)

Coco