Friday, November 30, 2012

Lalaloopsy birthday party

For Monkey Pants eighth birthday, I did a smallish party.  I'm not much for all out theme parties, but I like to have a general idea to motivate the cake design and colors.  I decided on Lalaoopsy

Keeping the cake simple is always a goal these days. I used a couple of ideas from Pintrest like the rainbow colored fruit ca bobs and I couldn't resist the milk bottle drinks with ridiculously expensive paper straws. I couldn't resist OK!

[Tip: Novelty milk bottles are ridiculously priced. I used a coupon and bought Starbucks coffee in these glass bottles for a lot cheaper. My husband didn't mind drinking all the coffee. I'm more of a tea person.  The labels came off easily.  I used these contact paper chalk board labels for names, which also come off with no residue].

For lunch, I made pigs in blanket with croissants (I don't know why they're not on that orange tray), sweet potato fries in individual containers, and some assorted sweets like microwave carmeled popcorn.  Strawberry flavored milk was a big treat for my kids, if not for the guests.

By the time I went to cut the cake, I thought my cake had started to fall apart. Come to find out, certain little monkey fingers had been picking fondant buttons, sugar pearls, and even stripes off the cake and eating them!  Fondant cake is her first knowledge of cakes.  I still have to explain to her that the candles are not edible.

Friday, November 9, 2012

Paperback Writer Pants

Fabric: Green Corduroy (less than a yard, JoAnn Fabrics 50% off)
Fabric Price: ~$4.00
Notions: 1 snap, 2 rivets, 1 recycled zipper
Size: 92cm with length of 98cm
Child's Age: 5
[Shirt: Tea Collection, Shoes: Simple]
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With the success of the Funky Boy Jeans, I was eager to make some more pants for my growing little boy's fall/winter wardrobe.  He's forgotten all about the existence of pants after wearing shorts all summer.  This one didn't go as smoothly as the jeans.  Not because they were harder. I guess, I was feeling over-confident and was only running my brain on partial power.  I sewed the zipper before the center back/front seams, then the fronts didn't line up with the zipper closed. But no matter, I fixed it all and they are darling!  I think this is the last year I can say that about his clothes.  I really love the green.  What a breath of fresh air. And finally he has something that goes with these darn shoes!  They went with nothing he had in his closet before.

I also decided to get some of this belt material while notions were on sale at JoAnn's to make him a belt. The home-made pants are a transition from the store-bought pants with the hidden, adjustable, elastic waist, and the faux leather belt I bought him is really bulky on his slender frame.  It was pretty easy to make, just two D-rings and finishing off the ends of the belt.

For some reason, the pockets I cut were bigger than the width shown by the pocket placement markings on the back side of the pants. I checked and couldn't find that I made a mistake.  Not sure if this was a pattern error. So, I did raise the position of the back pockets on these about a centimeter or two.  And I'm glad I did.

I added a rivet to either side of the front pockets.  Just a little detail to polish them off.

I originally bought this back issue because I loved and wanted to make the wool, boys' peacoat.  But I've been pleasantly surprised to find how many other things I want to make from the magazines now.  At the same time, I'm a little disappointed to see how many patterns seem to be repeated.  In the last issue, there is a pair of green cords almost identical to the ones I had just completed!  Albeit, I understand, sometimes there is a difference in fit.  The ones here from the 6/2010 issue are quite fitted.  I think the ones (#17) in the 6/2012 issue may be more roomy with a straight leg. 

[from 6/2012 #17]

Friday, November 2, 2012

Funky Boy Jeans

Pattern: Ottobre 4/20102 Funky Boy Jeans #21
Fabric:  Grey stretch denim (less than a yard)
Fabric Price: ~$6.40
Size: 92cm with length of 98cm
Child's Age: 5
[Shirt: Gap]
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I'm really loving these jeans! This is the second pair of pants I've made from Ottobre for my little boy.  I loved the spread in the magazine, even if I wasn't entirely convinced by the huge and low hanging back pockets. 


He's a skinny and little guy for his age, so the store-bought jeans he has, I have to cinch up the elastic-pulls on the inside of the waistband to the max. Then they are all gathered and puckered up at the waist and baggy throughout. Not very comfortable either. These fit perfect with only a litlle bit of slack in the waist.  And don't they look fabulous with these red sneackers his Tio Pedro gave him for his birthday.  It's almost like I did it on purpose.

For some reason, they were a cinch to sew.  I must have been following the instructions quite diligently.  Everything lined up.  There was no un-picking of seams.  I didn't line the pockets with cotton as the denim was pretty thin anyway and he's skinny enough that a bit of bulk is better than no bulk.  I did mess up a little: I pressed the inseams to the back instead of the front but not a big deal, and I forgot to top-stitch the front crotch. My bar tacking is a little skiwampus. I can't seem to get a grip for where it's going to start and where it's going to stop but still, I'm loving these pants.

Love the front pockets with the binding on the edges. Although, I did buy a double needle in anticipation of the double top-stitching, I didn't even use it.  It didn't occur to me I would need two spools of the same color thread. Duh.  But really, I was just too lazy at the thought of having to change the needle back and forth, so I just eye-balled it.

I would really like to make the jacket pictured above but the local fabric stores are not cooperating.  Really? Why can't they sell sweatshirt fleece and ribbing in the same colors?  Is that just too much to ask.  I'm going out on a more extensive search right now after a run to the library three cities away.  I better load up on some food and coffee or something to help me get through it.