Arrrrr, Matey!

9 03 2011

I asked BB at the start of my sewing spree, “If you could have anything on a shirt, what would it be?”  And he said “A Pirate!”  So I started work on this shirt.  It’s been in progress for a while; first I made the shirt, then he saw it and wanted to wear it, so it went into the laundry and out of circulation for a while.  Then I got back on task, drew a little pirate for it, and did a freezer paper stencil onto some matching interlock.  It was finished last night and I didn’t even get a picture of it before he saw it and wanted to wear it!  I wasn’t going to argue.  He went through a phase where he wouldn’t wear things I made him, so it was incredibly rewarding to hear “Wow, a pirate!  Thanks for this cool shirt, mom!”  (Hug).  OK, OK, twist my arm, you can wear it right now. 


The fabric is this $5/bolt stuff I got at Wal-Mart (used to make LB’s baby prisoner outfit) and in retrospect it’s pretty awful.  Why, why, why, did I buy this?  It reminds me of the joke about how the food at this place is awful but the portions are huge.  Well, this fabric makes me nuts now but I still have a ton of it left.  But, I feel like it manages to pull off the pirate look pretty well. 

The pirate fascination is kind of a funny thing.  He has asked me what wicked pirates are, and what scurvy pirates are, and why pirates have swords, and what the cannonballs are for.  These are hard questions!  (Although today he asked, out of the blue, if Santa is real or pretend, and that was harder.)  And it’s hilarious because most of what he knows about pirates comes from The Last Saskatchewan Pirate, and he goes around singing about stealing wheat and barley, and just in general has a very, very skewed idea of what pirates are.  It’s a very cute song, though, and we listen to it many times a day.  Maybe a matching shirt for LB should be next?  Coincidentally, there was a great pirate shirt on MADE today too!  Popular theme!

Refashioned Raglans

24 02 2011

Nothing fancy today, just a few shirts I have finished up this week for Celebrate the Boy!  I’m continuing to raid the giant box of old t-shirts I have retired. The pattern is the Patrick Raglan, which at first I thought was too complicated but now I can crank out in no time, and I really like the look.  Before:


LB gets plain white and grey (left), BB gets an old favorite of mine (and his), my “Free Cookies” shirt I got for donating blood ages ago.  LB’s shirt was sort of plain so I decided to try some decorative serging on the outside, and did a freezer paper stencil of a car, his favorite thing in the world:


I think he likes it!


Here is BB’s shirt:


Arrrgh, the neckline got puckered when I was sewing on the collar!  I didn’t see any good way to fix it so I just figured (1) BB would never notice and (2) it would probably be less noticeable when worn, which I think is sort of true.  A modeling shot:


I got these pictures first thing in the morning; I was so excited to try them on the kids.  Wouldn’t you know, by lunchtime they had both managed to stain them.  BB with blood (aack!) and LB with jam and poo (ugh! ick!).  As much as I loved the ideas for dressing up your little man on Made today, looking them over the outfits are $50-$100 apiece and it’s hard to justify that, no matter how adorable it is, when you know the outfit will be dirty (and possibly ruined) by midday.  Maybe my kids are messier than most?  Or maybe they’re just BOYS!  Anyway, it’s a nice feeling to make them an outfit that looks OK and that they like, and it was made of FREE materials, so when they bleed on it (*sigh*) you don’t have to panic about it!  (Well, maybe panic about the bleeding, but at least you don’t have to worry about the shirt.)

Back to reality (+ shirt showcase)

17 01 2011

Hi all!  (To all 2 people who might be reading this.)  I’ve been gone again from the blogosphere, on vacation again, and then sick with a stomach bug.  But now things are getting back to normal and I thought I’d share a few pics.  They are all taken with my iPod (a Christmas gift) because on vacation I didn’t carry a purse, so I didn’t carry my camera, but I found I could carry the iPod in my pocket.  I am completely in love with it, and may have gone a little hipstamatic-crazy (much to my husband’s annoyance; he likes pictures SOOC, but I think the iPod photos are so sub-par it doesn’t hurt to make them more interesting).  Here are some of my favorite pictures:


(There is a gecko in the lower right-hand picture).  Oh, these are from the Dominican Republic, which is where we had our big family-reunion-type vacation.  I have it in mind to print these 4 pictures and make a real collage like this to hang up…

Anyway, I made the boys matching shirts, but unfortunately BB refused to wear his.  That’s gratitude for you!  Here’s LB sporting his:


Here he is wandering off in his beach shirt while I have a beer:


Yeah, it was nice to be on vacation. 

The shirt is another raglan.  Now that I’m familiar with the pattern, they go together super quick and I really like the look.  The fabric was this jersey I got ages ago in a red-tag clearance at Joann, it has a print of palm trees and waves, and some tiki-looking things, very tropical.  I was so bummed that I couldn’t get both boys in them together.  Oh well!  Gotta pick your battles.  I also have some pictures of LB in his birthday shirts that I made a while ago (for his birthday obviously, which was in November). 


This one says “all-star birthday” on the front and has his name and the “01” on the back like a sports jersey.  I did the same thing for BB’s 1st birthday so I didn’t want LB to be left out.  I also made a shirt that said “Look who’s 1!”  What can I say?  I got motivated, he got shirts!


We had a great time, but it is nice to be back at home!

Wardrobe refashion–Stain removal the easy way?

2 04 2010

Do you have kids?  If you answered yes to that, then you have clothing with stains that will never come out.  Give up now and save yourself the trouble!  I found this great idea ages ago for salvaging those hopelessly stained clothes: paint over the stain!  So simple, and yet so brilliant.  I haven’t had time to sew much lately, so this was a quick little project that gave all the satisfaction of creating a new shirt.

The shirt in question?  This nice, simple shirt that fits and matches most of the pants BB has in his wardrobe.  I was heartbroken to learn that the GRANOLA BAR he drooled all over it was apparently something that does not come out in the wash.  (Bangs head in frustration.)

Before: see the granola-drool track?

So, what should have been a super quick project became sort of involved when I couldn’t find my freezer paper.  It’s a giant box, which tells you how out of control my sewing area had become.  After 2 days of organizing, I located the sneaky box of freezer paper and set to work.  I asked BB what animal he would like on his shirt, and he said enthusiastically, “A lobster!”  He loves lobsters and I think it will be a sad day when he learns the fate of the lobsters at Wegmans, who he loves to visit.  Anyway, I was aiming for “giraffe” because a long thin stain needs a long, thin animal to cover it, so this is an example of why you shouldn’t ask questions you already know the answer to.  I printed out a picture of a giraffe, scaled to cover the stain, cut it out, and set to painting.  And voila!

After: Stain? What stain?

Bits of the stain still peek out a little, but it’s not nearly as noticable as it was before.  As the temperatures start to go up here at last, I’m happy to put this shirt back into rotation!  There you have it, stain removal the easy way not-so-easy-but-still-pretty-quick-and-more-fun-than-scrubbing-with-Shout way!

Freezer paper stencils

9 02 2010

I saw this tutorial a while back on painting shirts using freezer paper stencils, and it sounded like a great idea.  But I never had any blank shirts, so the idea laid dormant in my mind for a long time.  Then I found this tutorial over at MADE, a blog that is having all boy ideas this month… yay!  (Do you get the feeling I spend too much time browsing online tutorials?)  I have lots and lots of t-shirts that are ready to retire, so 2 white shirts and a green one became these:

Blank shirts, fresh off the serger

Then I drew some little robots onto freezer paper, and cut them out.  I wanted something that said “Big brother” and “Little brother”, without using those exact words.  Here’s the final product:

Big robot, little robot

Because, really, what’s the point of having 2 kids if you can’t dress them in matching outfits?