25 Jan

The Thing About Yellow

Not long after we got to Hawaii I bought this tie dye skirt — it was cute AND on super sale! But, I had nothing to wear with it. I envisioned a mostly white blouse with a big Hawaiian print in the browns and yellows of the skirt. But yellow is hard to match. It’s very sensitive to warm and cool and purity and tones.

The closest fabric I found was too beige, but I made a cute top anyway that I wear with other bottoms. Then I found a nice big print, and I had hoped the brown and white would force the blue to coordinate better, but it doesn’t.

Then I saw yellow fabric with flying birds on it and thought that would be pretty. But when it arrived, it was far too yellow.

So, inspired by the modern aesthetic, I turned to Amy Butler and bought “Martini” in yellow. The yellow was acceptable, but the pink looked out in left field.

Tia had a blog giveaway, which I surprisingly won, and one of the Kaffe Fasset fabrics from her had potential with a rich brown to match the skirt.

With piles of other fabrics and a variety of patterns, I started organizing what I’d make with what. Digging around in my stash for fabric I had set aside for a skirt a few years ago  — what did I find? A big floral in browns and yellows, with white! The perfect fabric was in my house the whole time!

Yellow Blouse

I’ve since tired of the first two blouses. The bird fabric did get used — as a skirt for my daughter. And I don’t remember what I did with the Kaffe Fasset fabric, though I made pajama pants with another fabric in the bundle.

And finally, two years later, I got around to finishing the yellow blouse! It’s based on a cowboy style blouse and I added the ruffles. I had JUST enough fabric, so I know it was meant to be.

18 Sep

Octobunny and Lil’ Mermaid Share a Dance

Magical things happen under the sea. It’s a place where cute little mermaids can cavort with octopii with rabbit ears and no one batts an eye. Especially not when it’s happening on a twirly skirt for an imaginative eight year old and in hopes of winning some artwork from an admired blogger. I made this skirt for Bad Bird’s Stitched by Hand competition. My project is obviously not stitched by hand, so I’m submitting it in the Machine Stitched category.

Competition: Octobunny & Lil' Mermaid Share a Dance

I chose Andrea’s Octobunny embroidery pattern because his goofy look appealed to me. When paired with her Lil’ Mermaid, they looked like they were dancing. As long as they were dancing, I figured my project should be a skirt for dancing in, and to stick with the theme, I used Heather Ross Mendocino fabric which has octopii swimming on it (I wanted the mermaid fabric, but it appears that I am the last one on the Heather Ross bandwagon and it all sold out at least a year ago). I went straight to the interwebs for a basic skirt pattern. I wanted something danceable, naturally, so a full or ruffly skirt fit the bill and there is no shortage of tutorials online. From several options, Katja chose the Twirly Skirt tutorial from House on Hill Road.

Competition: Octobunny & Lil' Mermaid Share a Dance

Once I made the skirt, I then enlarged the embroidery patterns and traced them onto the skirt and the fabrics I used for the figures. I cut out and glued the fabrics in place with wash-out basting glue and backed the whole area with water soluble stabilizer. Into the hoop it went and I free-motion stitched the designs with my sewing machine (using a darning foot and dropping the feed dogs). My daughter (who gets to wear it) and I think it looks awesome. Thank you Andrea (Bad Bird) for the great excuse to make cute clothes.