my babies

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Gypsy skirt tutorial

Would you like to make this gypsy skirt? You can. It's so easy, it can be your very first sewing project. Ready? here we go.

The skirt consists of a waistband, made out of stretchy knit fabric. You only need a little bit of this so you can cut up an old t-shirt. This body of the skirt is made up of 6 panels, narrow at the top and wider at the bottom.

Gather your tools.

The first part of making this skirt involves...err...a bit of math. It is the most important and the hardest part of making the skirt, but I promise you once it's done the rest of the skirt will be a breeze.

There are 3 body measurements you will need to take - waist, hip (largest), and distance from hip bone to the skirt length required.

First let's do the calculation for the waistband. For the width, subtract 3.5" from the waist measurement, then divide by 2 (2 pieces front and back). For the length, use 10" for adults. Children you can reduce as you see fit. Mia's was 6" long.

For example if your waist measurement is 28.5" - 3.5" = 25". Then 25/2 = 12" will be the width.

Cut two pieces of the waistband using the width and length you have calculated. Make sure that the stretch of the fabric is along the width. It doesn't matter if the fabric doesn't have any stretch lengthwise.

Next calculate for the 6 panels of the skirt. For the narrow width of the panel, start with the hip measurement. Add 2 inches of ease (1.5" for children) and divide by 6 (panels). Then add the seam allowance of 0.25" times 2. The wider bottom panel width will be twice the narrow one.

for example with a largest hip measurement of 38.5" + 2" = 40.5". then 40.5" divide by 6 = 6.75". Add seams 6.75 + 0.25 + 0.25 = 7.25" is the narrow width. The wide bottom width is 7.25 x 2 = 14.5".

for the length of the panels, add a 0.5" seam allowance and hem allowance of 1" to the distance from hip bone to required length. For example if the required length is 31", 31" + 0.5 + 1" = 32.5" = length of panels.

Cut the body of the skirt as pictured, using the measurements that you have calculated. Narrow at the top and wide at the bottom, symmetrical.

Sew the sides of the waistband. I used a serger but it doesn't matter, knit doesn't fray.

Pin the side seams of the skirt panels.

Sew the seams. Again I used a serger but if you don't have one you can sew the seam and then zigzag sew the edges to secure it.

Sew all but one of the side seams. See picture above.

Press the seams to one side.

Topstitch next to the seams, catching the pressed edges on the wrong side.

Then sew the last seam, press and topstitch. Now it's already looking like a skirt.

Fold down the waistband halfway along it's length, with the rightside out.

I don't have a photo of this step - divide the waistband to six sections along the width. Turn the skirt inside out, put the waistband inside the skirt and pin the raw edges to the 6 seams of the skirt. It will make more sense in the next photos.

Sew the waistband to the skirt, using 1/2 inch seam allowance, stretching the waistband to fit. Depending on the fabric you use this step can be a bit tricky because the knit fabric might roll up onto itself making it difficult to sew this seam, but it's ok, just continue sewing.

The resulting seam could be a bit messy like this.

But you can serge the edges and then it's cleaner. Turn the skirt out and press this seam with the seam facing downwards towards the bottom of the skirt.

Press the bottom of the skirt inwards by 1/2 inch twice. Sew the hem.

Your skirt is ready!

Now off you go!

Monday, February 27, 2012

Lunchbag for him

Every morning, my husband takes homemade lunch to work in a plastic bag. Homemade food, but in a plastic bag? it didn't sit right with me. I liked the idea of using cute fabric to wrap up a bento lunch like the japanese does, but the sun would have to turn blue before my husband agrees to that :) I decided to make him a simple lunchbag.

The outer fabric is wool, in black. The bag is lined with waterproof laminated cotton. So any spills can be easily wiped clean.

The bag closes with a magnetic clasp. I didn't use any pattern for this bag. I just used that blue container to eye ball the size.

I hope he likes it :)

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Gypsy skirt

I am calling this skirt the gypsy skirt because that is what it is : light, flowy, cosy, comfortable, girly, free. As I made this i thought of Tanya, the music lady at the kids' old children center who played guitar and was always dressed like a gypsy, in some form of a flowy skirt or another, no matter what the weather.

The waistband is made made out of knit fabric, making it comfortable and easy to pull on by oneself. Mia is at the stage where she just refuses to let me put her clothes on for her; she wants to do everything by herself.

The fabric is lightweight japanese cotton, in a full flowery pattern that hides the wrinkles from play (because who wants to iron little children clothes)

Just one more picture because she's too cute :)

this is the third of this skirt I've made. The first two for myself. You can make this skirt in about a couple hours. Yes it is that easy to make both for big girls and little girls alike.

Skirt tutorial, anyone?

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Wool winding

I am winding beautiful pesto green Wollmeise wool on my winder tonight. Oh joy..

ready to be knitted. Full of possibilities.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Berry hats

I was in the mood for some baby hat knitting last week. Found this awesome free pattern for berry hats. Digged in my stash and found some yummy cotton/linen/viscose yarn. Perfect.

I love this pattern. Makes a cute berry hat in just a few hours. This grape one is going to one of my best friends, who is pregnant with her first baby. Congratulations Fizah!!

Unfortunately my girl loves the hat too. See her grubby little fingers trying to grab that hat?

So I told her I'll knit her one. She told me "Pink hat!!!"


It was impossible to take a photo of the hat on her because she kept hiding behind Adam :)

Strawberry hat for my cheeky girl. Love you!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Let's catch up

What have the kids been doing (while mom is busy NOT updating her blog ) ?

hiding, at Pantai Kemasik, Terengganu

They've been doing a LOT of playing, jumping, shouting, pretending, living.

Universal Studios Singapore with family

at KL Bird Park, for Mia's birthday trip

birthday girl

One of them turned two! ( and just can't stop telling everyone about it!)

KL Bird Park

I feel so blessed. 2 complete years of breastfeeding!!! Syukur alhamdulillah....

Though now I'm a bit uncertain how to wean her off...errkk...any suggestions are most welcome..

how can i resist that face? @ the beach Awana Kijal Terengganu

at my birthday trip - The Mines Wellness Hotel

making sandcastles @ Awana Kijal Terengganu

peace by the lake @ Mines Wellness Hotel

I turned errr.....30! that's it, no more zoomed up pictures of my wrinkling face on this blog!

So that's all from us. How about you?


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