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1  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Attractive/clever/cool way to patch boy's pants? on: March 31, 2009 02:00:15 PM
My son has busted through the knees of EVERY pair of long pants he owns, and with summer (surely!) right around the corner and a growth spurt destined to hit before he needs long pants again ... I'm looking for an interesting way to patch 'em up.

Were it for my daughter, I could applique flowers or hearts or something like that. But for an almost 7 YO boy? I'm fresh out of ideas that would not look babyish or, well, like his mom just slapped some crappy patches on the knees of his pants.

Also, I find that by the time the knees rip, the surrounding fabric is often pretty fragile, so I'm open to suggestions for dealing with that, too.

I'm thinking I should just cut them off into shorts and sew the boy a few pair of pants, but thought maybe some of you craftsters might have some brilliant suggestions.

Thanks in advance,
2  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / Birthday Princess Ridiculousness - Photo Obese on: February 17, 2009 09:06:36 PM
My daughter turned 4 on Sunday. She dove headlong into her princess phase a few months ago, so, of course, she wanted a Princess Tea Party.

I decided to make her a princess dress out of an old lady nightgown I bought a few years ago for a Halloween costume. I wanted to make sure it was different than any of the Disney princess dresses my SIL gave her for Chanukkah. I also wanted it to be a surprise -- which meant I couldn't try it on her as I went. I had an idea in my head, created my own pattern, and it *sort of* turned out like I pictured it, but it has issues for sure. The top could use a little more coverage, for one, but she won't hear of my reworking it.

(A smooth bundt pan wold have worked better, but honestly, I just have no need for another cake pan! Oh well.)

So, my dress won't win any prizes, but it was great fun to make, she loves it, and I got to use my new serger all at one time! I made the crown and necklace, too. And the princess cake, though she was none too impressed as she was really hoping for "a flat cake with PICTURES of all the DISNEY princesses on it." We're doing a get together with my in-laws this weekend, so off to Shop Rite I go to order one of their bland-tasting photo cakes. (-:

thanks for looking!
3  SEWING IN GENERAL / Sewing Machines: Discussion and Questions / Serger threads snapping -- White 534 on: June 23, 2008 11:53:26 AM
OK, I have a used White 534 and am having trouble with the threads snapping. This is my first serger, so I don't have any experience to go on, but ...

I have checked to make sure I have threaded it in the proper order with all tensions set at 0, I've changed the needles (type suggested in manual for fabric I'm using) , it's new thread, the thread guide pole is fully extended ... it happens when the tensions are set at anything other than 0, so I don't think I've got the tension set to high.

It wasn't happening the other night. Only now, the second time I've used it. I spent 2 frustrating hours trying to get it to work this morning. grrrr.

It's the right needle thread and the upper looper thread that I seem to be having trouble with. The right needle thread seems to pop a few stitches in. And when I am successful getting that to work, the upper looper thread snaps, a few stitches in and sometimes right after I finished sewing a seam successfully and am trying to leave a three-inch chain as suggested in the manual.

Any thoughts/suggestions.

I bought it on eBay, so I don't have a shop I can turn to for help, though I am planning to take a serger class from one of the local shops as soon as it gets on their calendar again. Any thoughts/suggestions in the meantime?

Thanks in advance,
4  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / I made a Vegbee peasant top -- Now with action shots and Qs on: May 09, 2008 10:25:28 AM
My SIL is taking my 3 YO to a luncheon at some fancy-schmancy hotel in NYC tomorrow, and most of her clothing is stained with chocolate milk and/or paint.

So, I looked through my stash and found this hotpink linen left over from a ring sling I made about 5 years ago.

An hour later, she has a pretty top.

(Action shots will have to wait until she comes home from school.) And here she is ready to go to lunch:

Question re shape: Does it look so boxy because of the weight of the material, because I should have cut it a little wider ... or should I just make it a little more a-line? (I thought it was the shape of the skirt, but it looked similarly as boxy over a pair of leggings.)

I liked the fringed selvage so I decided to use that on the bottom and sleeves instead of hemming. It's been pre-washed, so I'm hoping it won't shrink unattractively as it gets washed, but it will certainly work for tomorrow.

And since I couldn't make a casing for the elastic in the sleeves, I attemtped zizzagging the elastic into place. It worked, but I had a very hard time keeping it straight. Is it easier to do this with clear elastic? The stuff I was using seemed like a little bit of overkill for what I was doing. Suggestions?

Thanks for any comments/suggestions.
5  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / My attempt at a Cheytown -- learned a few things! on: May 03, 2008 09:18:37 PM
OK, so this is the dress that brought me to Craftster, so I've been dying to try it.

I bought this ugly shirt at a thrift store for $2:

And now it looks like this:

Next time I will select my starter shirt more carefully: the seam attaching the yoke to the body of the shirt is puckered, so it was a little hard to shape the bodice and attach the front of the dress to the back without it going all wonky. Also, the shirt turned out to be a lot dingier than it seemed inside the store. Though, since my daughter is sure to stain it with chocolate milk and/or paint the first time she wears it, how much does that matter?

The fabric was surprisingly heavy considering it was obviously a summer shirt. It seems to stick straight out. It is my inclination to rip out the side seams and re-cut it, but my daughter said, "Thank you for making me this beautiful dress, Mommy,"  Smiley and then refused to take it off until bedtime. Chances of me wrestling it away from her to rework it anytime soon are slim-to-none.

I decided to forego the fluttery sleeves and trim on bodice and hem since the pattern was so busy, so I took Cheytown's suggestion of making little arm holes (do you call them that when the dress is sleeveless?). I cheesed out and made them straight instead of curvy, but I think it works.

Thoughts/suggestions on how to improve greatly appreciated, as this is only the second piece of clothing I've ever completed!

6  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / suggstions for recon project for 6 YO boy? on: March 15, 2008 11:11:04 AM
After I turned one of my husband's work shirts into a sundress for my 3YO daughter, my son asked me to make something for him.

Any suggestions?

7  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Discussion and Questions / Question: How do you organize your sewing area ... on: March 14, 2008 11:09:09 AM
... when you have no, um, area?

We have two grownups, three kids and a dog in a 1935 (read:no-closets-having) 3-bedroom colonial.

My sewing machine/table is currently crammed into the corner of my bedroom, and when I say crammed, I mean crammed.

Just to make a very basic sun dress the other day, I had to un-pile a bunch of stuff from next to the sewing machine so I could open up the table top. Since that stuff all went on my bed, I then had to go into my daughter's room next door to cut and layout my fabric. I did get a little portable ironing board so i didn't have to run all the way down to the basement every time I wanted to press something, but it's just crazy-making. And I can't leave stuff spread out if I get interrupted midstream.

I'm organization challenged on a good day, but add in the total lack of dedicated space and I'm a mess.

Thanks in advance for any suggestions you may have.
8  CLOTHING / Clothing for Kids: Completed Projects / Husband's stained shirt is now my daughter's sundress -- now w/ embedded pics. on: March 14, 2008 08:43:02 AM
Hi there, I'm new to the community, but have really enjoyed looking at all your projects. I will definitely be trying some for my own kiddos!

Here are the pics (sorry they are so big!); I'd love some feedback:

It's the first piece of clothing I've ever made, so while it's nothing fancy, I'm quite pleased with it. And I've caught the recon bug. I bought a hideous shirt at a thrift shop yesterday that I plan to turn into (something resembling) the Cheytown dress. And I've got designs on some old t-shirts...

Thanks for looking,
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