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11  PolyChrome Instant Family Happiness Gym Set! in Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects by Caine on: February 15, 2008 09:13:53 AM
Craftster.org Promotes Instant Family Happiness, in so many ways ... This morning we were able to solve a simmering dispute with a two pair of tights, a pair of pinking shears and one seam. 20 Minutes including the photo shoot. Kiddo is not taking these off for awhile -- she is currently singing in front the mirror, with harmony by her brother.

Oh my, this was fun.

The story!
My 4YO is taking gymnastics, like many, many girls. And like many, many girls, she wanted to dress like an Olympic Star while doing it. For some reason, among them cheapness, but something else I cannot name yet (or perhaps I do not wish to?), I did not want her to wear a schmancy shimmery costume. I don't mind that other kids do. I just don't want her to. Her Dad doesn't either. We cannot explain. Perhaps we do not want to know ourselves? Nevermind!

Recently she has become a persistent campaigner and I was becoming annoyed. Family harmony was fraying! Also recently she has frowned on wearing any of the tights I have been collecting for her. More fraying in the family harmony (I refrain from begging but I want to beg, it makes me tense and nervous. O Me O my!) Then, bingo, I recalled that in one of my many boring lectures on the subject of "Why our 4YO does not wear shiny costumes for gymnastics class" I told her to watch the teenagers and see what they were wearing -- bike shorts and legwarmers and shrugs and plain leotards or just t-shirts. Aha! Out came the shears, the tights and Voila!

THANK YOU CRAFTSTER! There is such freedom to be gained by pursuing mastery over the things around us ...

Edited to add:
A bit of "How To"

For the legwarmers and armwarmers -- I cut the toe and heel from the feet of the tights, plus a thumb hole and then cut the legs off the tights leaving the panty portion. It didn't fray, surprising and delighting me. Probably any shears would do.

The top is the two panty portions sewn together (with a zig zag, perhaps I will have to reinforce it -- this is my first time sewing on stretchy tights!) with the crotches cut out and arm holes cut about halfway down on the upper portion. (Tell me if this makes no sense)

The shorts are just plain old bike shorts.
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12  Flying Valentine Skirt Set for Princess of OZ - with Lotsa Action Shots in Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects by Caine on: February 15, 2008 06:55:26 AM
My little OZ nut wanted a special outfit for Valentine's Day and so we chose a 16 panel ("Because I am 4!") skirt and a Tshirt with applique -- the panels alternate conversation heart fabric ("Because we LOVE conversation hearts!") and colors representing the various lands of OZ. She wore it to school so the action shots are from there. Her first "business" at school was the Zip line a.k.a "The flying fox" so we call the skirt her flying skirt as well. The dog on the shirt is Toto!

 It is currently soaking upstairs to remove the debris of one most excellent Valentine's Day!

I need help tho: I didn't finish the bottom -- Whaddya think? A binding strip? In the blue from the shirt? She

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13  Hem or Bias Tape? Valentine of OZ Vertical Strip Skirt with Conversation Hearts in Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions by Caine on: February 14, 2008 01:11:33 AM
I am stuck -- I made this vertical strip skirt for my 4YO tonight but am not sure what to do about the hem. Make an edge with some homemade bias tape? Try a hem? I amy let her wear it to school with a raw edge since tomorrow is the day ... what do you think about the hem though? We chose the fabric together - conversation hearts alternating with fabrics roughly representing the colors of the different countries of OZ.

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14  Re: Boy's Shaggy Man Vest with Totoro hat ... with action shot! in Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects by Caine on: February 06, 2008 06:18:12 PM
Hmmm -- the vest itself I can measure right not, whereas the boy is moving too fast!

Shaggy Man Vest
I used fairly thin fleece -- perhaps the lighter end of medium weight? I think that makes the vest drape rather well, perhaps heavier fleece would be too bulky? T'was sale polar fleece from JoAnn's. The fleece is doubled.

When I made mine I cut one front half that I liked from paper then used it to make the (4) front pieces and the (2) back pieces but where I curved the bottom of the front pieces I left the bottom of the back pieces squared off (straight edge).

Cut the front vest shapes from: (4) 13 tall x 8.25 wide rectangles
Cut the back of the vest shapes from: (2) 13 tall x 16.5 rectangle

The bottom of the armholes is 7 inches from the bottom of the vest. Armhole depth: From button-up edge of the right hand front piece to the start of the J shaped armhole is 5.5 inches.

I just made a sketch but my daughter is defacing, er, I mean, modifying it! I will post a picture after dinner as things are getting a little shaky around here! I think the sketch would help quite a bit, but didn't want to keep Aunty S waiting any longer if she was fired up to go!

(PS Who IS the Shaggy Man? A character from L Frank Baum's OZ stories ... http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Shaggy_Man
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15  Mongolian Princess Vest, with action shots! in Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects by Caine on: February 05, 2008 10:44:42 PM
We call it the Mongolian Princess Vest ... made of two layers of fleece and fastened with a frog clasp. I planned to add something silly around the bottom but she took it and wore it as is and we fell in love with it that way. We love the fleece and wish we had more. Am working on some Mongolian princess slippers as well ...

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16  Long-eared Fleece Hat, with Silly Action by Walk-ling Boy in Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects by Caine on: February 04, 2008 12:13:19 AM
I had to try making one of those silly long eared fleece hats vegbee posted a ways back. https://www.craftster.org/forum/index.php?topic=210210.0 Turns out the long ears are not quite long enough ... I'll try again. Meantimes, my little guy calls them trousers. They ees silly still. No applique on this one but when I try again, I will come up with something.

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17  Red and Green Fleece Slippers in Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects by Caine on: February 03, 2008 12:35:56 PM
Well, I had to try!

I made some fleece slippers for my big footed 20 month old. Inspired most recently by Scrappy Sue (it *me* a lot longer to make the slippers than it takes to upload even very many files!) and also inspired by many other lovely slippers from here. I used these instructions from stardust shoes http://stardustshoes.blogspot.com/2006/10/cloth-shoe-pattern.html but modified them as follows: fleece instead of cotton fabric, no interfacing, enlarged 150%, stuck elastic through the layers rather than making a folded casing since the things would have been too think and maybe too short ... um. plus the usual array of errors and misunderstandings!

My boy will not put them on just now so his doll (named G'neer for "Engineer", though suspiciously looking like Raggedy Andy) is wearing them.
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18  Boy's Shaggy Man Vest **Tutorial Added** My first one!!!! in Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects by Caine on: February 01, 2008 02:17:32 PM
I finally caught my son with his beloved shaggy man (from the OZ books) vest and (too big I know) Totoro hat. He loves 'em. My 4YO wants me to make a Totoro hood for the vest, I gotta look at those hoodies of vegbee with new serious and give it a go!

The vest is made from fleece and some covered hooks and eyes, hat some fleece scraps with appliqued eyes and nose. It's the cheapo fleece from Joann's so I doubled it and it is cozy enough for Northern California winters.

Added 2/9/08
Amended: December 2008 -- a posted a larger file of the pattern as a reader had trouble making out the measurements in the first version I posted.

HOW TO MAKE THE SHAGGY MAN VEST -- this one is size 2T or even bigger.
Exposed seams, double layered fleece vest with exposed covered hook & eye closure. The front panels are curved up, the back panel has a straight bottom. There is no bottom seam ... Shaggy, Shaggy little man! Use a small seam allowance and don't worry about the smoothness of the cuts -- the hackety way fleece often cuts helps to be more SHAGGY SHAGGY SHAGGY!!!

Materials -
lightweight to medium weight fleece
* Front 4 x (12.5 x 8.35)
* Back (12.5 x 16.5)
* Pockets 2x (5 x 3)
Thread -- it doesn't quite matter if it matches
2 covered hook & eye closures

Please forgive the color quality on the picture of the vest!

What to do
Cut one panel of front vest, use that panel to make the lining panel. Use the panel flipped to make other front panel and lining. Use one each of the two front panels to make the back panel (but have a straight bottom rather than curved at the sides. If you want to make the vest reversible, put the pockets in before you sew the vest panels together.

Make Vest
Pin together lining and fabric of each panel and sew together. Then attach shoulder and side seams. Do not sew the bottom seams. Sew on the hook and eye closures on the outside (The non shaggy vest wearers hide them inside, for a discreet look -- but we are SHAGGY SHAGGY SHAGGY!)

Want pockets?
If you would like pockets grab a wee car or whatever your guy likes to put in pockets and make a rectangle larger than that and add 1.5 inches or more for a hem at the top of the pocket. Turn over the hem, top stitch. Top stitch pockets in place. (For my pockets I used a wee car -- hot wheel sized -- it ended up about 5 x 3 inches.

How to make the pattern piece
You could wing it like I did; wing it but use the measurements on the picture below or copy the picture to an image processing software and print it at the right size using the measurements shown on the picture.

Who is the shaggy man?
He is from the OZ books by L Frank Baum. He is wise, kind, quiet, merry and antimaterialistic -- you've met similar characters in all sorts of fiction! Here is a link to the wikipedia entry: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Shaggy_Man At our house the OZ books are the main "immersion theme" these days -- you know what I mean ... at some houses it is Thomas, or princesses, Batman, Spiderman or even the Tick. At ours just now Tin Tin has been alternating with the Land of Oz.
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19  THE PROHIBITOR GAME!!! -- Felt game set (pictures) in Toys, Dolls and Playthings: Completed Projects by Caine on: December 21, 2007 07:13:37 AM
My 4 YO and I suddenly needed a gift for our delightful and unusual friend who turned 5 last week. An ordinary present wouldn't do and, as the invitation to his party was stuck in my spam filter, we had only a few hours notice. The child in question does love signs of all kinds and is quite clear about rules. My own child loves to "prohibit" things and finds the red circle with a slash through it enchanting, giggle-making and empowering. I happen to have quite a bit of red wool/rayon felt about. Eh, voila! PROHIBITOR was born.

We made one frisbee sized (flies beautifully!) and several "pocket sized" that fit into the "prohibitor pouch" I made. I cut them from 4 layers of wool/rayon felt and sewed around and around them to make them less floppy. One could imagine a more energetic person than I getting up and switching to the spool and bobbin to red thread!

I included a bit of an explanation on a card -- though am planning to make more detailed instructions for the three games we thought of: PROHIBITOR MAN (A sort of super safety freak -- "Sorry ma'm, that is just not safe!" Of course my kids would prohibit vegetables!); PROHIBITOR FRISBEE (these things fly beautifully); and PROHIBIT THIS (kids can take turns prohibiting words, movements, stuff around them room) There are plenty of ways to use these silly little things -- I have an idea that if I made a couple dozen we could play with them at my kid's nursery school -- toss them all over the grass and "prohibit" stepping on wherever they land while trying to cross the grass. 

Edited to add: How could I forget the silliest use yet? My 4YO turns it sideways to make it a "no entry" sign and holds it over my 1 YO's nose! He obliges by sticking his finger in - isn't great that the older one teachers the younger?  Wink
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20  Hannukah Menorah, Wool Felt, Folding (with action shot) in Winter Holidays by Caine on: December 04, 2007 11:12:22 PM
I made a rather small tabletop (or windowsill!) Menorah from wool felt, cardboard, a bit of glue a button ... it folds up and buttons shut for the off season. Here is a picture close up and one "in action" (with my son pulling the candle flames off right to left ... almost right, my love!) I made a wee felt pouch to store the flames but we like to leave them all waiting in the white "glow" of the middle candle. The outside of the menorah, when it is folded, has a golden star of David like the one on the menorah. There is a wee bit of sewing but the candles are glued on with craft glue. Watcha think?

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