Double Layer Pillowcase Dress

Double layer pillowcase dress

Double Layer Pillowcase Dress
Size | To fit Eva (108 cm in height; 14.3 kg in weight)
Pattern details | Double Layer Pillowcase Dress from Aesthetic Nest
Fabric details | 2 x one meter fabric from Kamdar

Recently, during one of my shopping trips at Kamdar (Mum wanted to buy some fabric so I took her there), I saw the prettiest fabric ever. I reckon the texture is similar to chiffon but what attracted me was the print – little princesses in pencil-like drawing! Of course the fact that it was in a soft shade of pink mattered as my gal LOVES pink. (Her pink and princess craze even extends to underwear, toys and books!) It was just too cute to NOT purchase.

Because the material was sheer, I decided to look around for a really soft shade of pink. I didn’t want to make a bubblegum pink dress…something sweet but not sickly sweet. After several rather long minutes, I was about to give up at the lining/cotton section when suddenly I saw this roll of pale pink hiding under all the blues and greys! What luck! The shade was just perfect – it wasn’t exactly Eva’s idea of pink but I reckon she would focus more on the whole “princess” fabric and ignore this little detail.

Double layer pillowcase dress

The basic idea is to have the princess fabric as the topmost layer with the pale pink on the bottom followed by a pale pink tie. It didn’t cross my mind to make bindings for the armholes until this morning when I was putting everything together so oops, I decided to whip up some pale pink binding instead. I figured that the fabric would be a better option compared to the sheer chiffon-like material.

Now, sewing this up didn’t take me long – just a night and about an hour the next day. It was the other stuff like figuring out the pattern (how long and how wide). I based my measurements on a dress we got as a gift from my in-laws and on hindsight, I should have realized that the armholes were a little tad too big (just like with the dress I used as my template).

Also, I must admit that I LOVE French seams. They really make an outfit look so much more “cleaner”. What I did not appreciate was having to seam bind the armholes. I hate sewing curves…especially when it came to topstitching the binding. Still, it makes for a pretty dress. It’s a little wide for her but that’s good because she can grow into it. I’m actually thinking of making a tiered version but I’ll see how that goes first – need to find the right combination of colours!

Double layer pillowcase dress

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A Simple Fitted Sheet

A Simple Fitted Sheet

A Simple Fitted Sheet
Size | To fit a 60 x 120 x 9 cm mattress
Pattern details | 100% cotton fabric from Kamdar

We brought back Eva’s crib from Singapore but didn’t realize that all our sheets were too big. Since IKEA is in PJ and we weren’t going to my parents’ place any time soon, I decided to sew a fitted sheet. Kamdar – a local fabric supplier – is just around the corner and Christmas came early (yay to the new sewing machine – more on this in another post!)!

I couldn’t really find the right fabric at Kamdar; initially wanted to use printed fabric but the prints they had were either too “noisy” (or suitable for things like sexy lingerie – hmm) or just not quite appropriate for a kid’s room. In the end, I settled for a plain cotton fabric in turquoise. The fabric is quite decent for the price (the cotton is around RM4-5 per metre) so I might go back and get some other colours like olive and khaki…

It is easy to sew up a fitted sheet. I folded the fabric into quarters, measured out the width & length and cut out a square for the edging before serging and sewing up everything. Instead of sewing on the elastic, I threaded it around the entire sheet. All in all, I spent less than two hours on this.

The result is as per the picture! This is an easy, quick and simple project for beginner sewers and can even be sewn up by hand (if you’re machine-less and have a lot of time to spare).

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WIP: Eva’s Random Molecule Quilt

Eva's Random Molecule Quilt

I finally picked up this project again and with Mum’s help, I managed to churn out enough hexagons for Eva’s quilt. I didn’t really have a particular pattern in mind when I set out to make an English Garden quilt (hexagon quilt). Some people would make flower patterns, some trees and such but me? I just plonked down on the floor and started placing hexagons as & how I liked to plot out a pattern.

The result is what you see above. My hubby was quick to say that this reminded him of chemistry and molecules and what-not. I thought of biology more when I saw this. The kids found it fun – at least Noah did (he tried to squash the hexagons, throw them and so forth). I had to clamour to keep them before he got his little chubby hands on them!

Eva liked the shades of pink and red (what else is new?)…I wonder how she’ll react to the finished quilt!

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Simple teething pads

Teething pads

Simple teething pads
Pattern details | None
Batting | PSR Quilt Bamboo batting (0.9 m x 1.25 m)
Fabric | 100% cotton fabric from www.fabric.com

Of lately, Noah has taken to gumming the straps of the Ergo carrier whenever I babywear him and I can’t exactly dump the entire carrier into the machine to wash it even though it’s okay to do so (not frequently tho – as per manufacturer’s recommendation). I was not very keen on spending around €20 for teething pads and decided to make a simple pair with the leftover batting I had from the quilt I made from him. To match the green of my carrier (Ergo Performance), I picked a paisley patterned fabric I purchased while I was in Singapore.

While measuring it, I thought I had enough fabric to go around the strap in order for me to utilize the KAM snaps I have in my stash. However, after topstitching the layers together, I discovered that I had forgotten all about seam allowances, resulting in a pad that didn’t lay on top of each other. I will have to make do with hook-and-eye closures instead so until I get my hands on them (tomorrow, I think), it’ll be held together with basting pins.

I didn’t use a pattern, just decided to layer the batting on top of the fabric (right sides facing in), sew and turn it inside out before topstiching around to reinforce, beautify and close off the opening. It’s a quick project (I did this while doing other things like checking out diet pills that work) and you can whip up a pair of these in under 30 minutes or less, depending on how fast you sew and cut/prep your fabric.

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Quilt #5: Noah’s Stripey Cuddly

Quilt #5: Noah's Stripey Cuddly (Front)

Quilt #5: Noah’s Stripey Cuddly
Width | Approx 75 cm
Length | Approx 84 cm
Pattern details | Inspired by A Quilt Is Nice’s stripe baby quilt here. Top made from cotton stripes from stash (Coton & Colour, Nil’s trip to India and www.fabric.com)
Batting | PSR Quilt Bamboo batting (0.9 m x 1.25 m)
Backing | 100% cotton fabric from www.inespatchwork.com
Binding | 100% cotton fabric from www.fabric.com

I had been thinking of sewing a nice warm blanket for Noah (since I made one for Eva – it’s not so warm but she likes it) but never found the time or inspiration. When it was decided that Eva was going to stay with my father-in-law for the week, I decided to dust off my sewing machine for good and get back to quilting. I dug out a few different fabrics I have in my stash and came up with a few combinations. What initially was to be a repetition of about five stripes turned out into a double repeat of 13 stripes of different fabrics. Nil insisted that I use the fabric he bought from India to add some colour while I insisted that I wanted something pleasing and co-ordinating. We settled for what is the end result – this stripe colour combo.

Quilt #5: Noah's Stripey Cuddly (Back)

Because it had so much going on for the top, I decided to stripe to a simple (but not too plain) backing with a stripe of the remnants of the top going across. I hunted the Internet for local fabric suppliers and came across this very lovely black-grey pinstripe pattern. So it was black for the back – I figured it would bring out the colours of the top piece.

For the batting (yes, it’s my first time using batting for quilts), I settled for bamboo batting but only because the cotton ones were out of stock. It is a first for me – basting and batting. Took me an afternoon just to bast the quilt and even then, I didn’t really do a great job as it showed on later when I machine-quilted the top. To make matters worse, my sewing machine doesn’t come with a walking feet so my top fabric ended up bunching. This also resulted in the back puckering – as you can see in the photo above. It took me 2.5 hours just to machine-quilt the top (about 30 minutes or so just to test out the sewing and get the right tension – GAH) and mind you, I was just doing stripe outlines. Towards the end, I cheated and skipped some stripes. It adds some variation to the pattern thought but I think I botched the stripe for the back portion.

The tag on Noah's quilt

And I haven’t even reached the part about the binding. It has been ages since I last sewn binding on anything so I did a couple of errors which resulted in me having to use a zigzag stitch instead of topstitching as I normally would. Well…I don’t think Noah would care if the errors were obvious or not – it’s a bit annoying though. I reckon in time, I’ll forget about it…just like how I forgot about those errors I made with Eva’s blanket!

And oh, those are the woven labels I had made originally for the store’s handsewn items. Since the store is in hibernation until further notice, I thought I would use them for my personal projects, namely sewing and weaving.

Y’know, I’m quite proud at having completely my first batted and quilted blanket. It’s a little on the small side – smaller in terms of length – compared to Eva’s blanket. Instead of getting a nice 116cm as I calculated, I lost a good 30 cm or so due to cutting and trimming. Still, it’s a nice size for Noah…for the first two years before it becomes a cover for his blanket (like what we do with Eva’s – mind you, she’s attached to hers and won’t even let us keep it!).

Mmmm, the sewing machine is now back in the cupboard. Time to focus on my other crafts – soaping and knitting namely. Am so itching to get back to designing lacework too!

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Simple Striped Blue Pillowcase

Simple Striped Blue Pillowcase

Simple Striped Blue Pillowcase
Size | 65 x 65 cm
Pattern details | Cotton fabric mix from my stash

I made this a while back but never got around to blogging about it. It was subsequently upload onto Facebook and I forgot all about it until today. Oops.

Anyway, this is my first time sewing something other than quilts for the house. It was a simple patchwork-styled pillowcase for the sofabed in my office. My hubby wanted something that would contrast with the red cover – he always wants something contrasting and bright. Me? I like things to go together, fit well. Needless to say, he thinks he has a better colour palate than I do. Bah.

Going back to the pillowcase, well, for the fabrics, I dipped into my stash. These colours and design were originally planned for my handsewn booties, which didn’t kick start due to a lot of issues with the sizing and pattern. They ended up sitting in the cupboard for a while and didn’t fit in any of the quilt colour schemes that I had. Since the hubby wanted something blue, I decided to destash.

I wouldn’t say it looks awful but I don’t think it looks that fantastic either. Will probably relook at the technical aspects of the design before I attempt another pillowcase. Talk about complicating something as simple as this! Heh.

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My new storage kit

My new sewing storage kit

Nil’s grandmother was a crafter – sewing, knitting, crocheting, embroidery (I suspect), a bit of painting – so when she passed away, Nil together with his dad and uncle had the task of sorting through a lot of things. Coupled the crafter’s natural “ability” to stash, Grandmama was also a hoarder of some sorts. She was never one for wasting or throwing away things, something I find to be common with people her age (she was 94 or 96 years old at the time of her passing). When she first passed away, Nil passed me her nearly new 70s sewing machine which is still in use today. (I should have serviced it in Singapore but forgot due to the rush with the packing, etc.)

When we moved to Dole, we took a lot of the furniture that she left behind – dining table with chairs, armoire styled bookshelf, buffet or dresser (something similar to this but bigger and with more drawers) and a work table. Nil surprised me with her sewing storage kit – “I figured you might want to use this since it’s just sitting in the garage and no one else has a need for it.” So I adopted it.

This little kit opens up just like your toolkit and at first glance, contained a whole boatload of things. I never got around to examining its contents until recently. The bags you see behind it are actually trash – Grandmama had A LOT of things. From four pairs of the same scissors (she has a total of 10 over scissors), to bobbins and spools of threads, cross-stitch bundles, buttons (I need to sort through this), accessories for bra repair, reclaimed zips (basically zips from clothing that you don’t need), FIVE measuring tapes, tons and tons of sewing needles (enough to last me this lifetime and the next), timbles, and what-not. She used very old metal contains to keep some of her things so I hung on to those – they are very cute and no one uses such tins these days.

As you can see, I’ve reorganized it to fit some of my sewing material – I can’t say that I’m any better than her as I have bobbins and spools of thread in another storage container, buttons, felt, scissors, and other things. And oh, Nil even found my sock blockers when he assembled my spinning wheel earlier and they fit in this kit! Another thing I love about this is that when it folds up, it doesn’t take a lot of space and doubles as stand for my pot of aloe vera!

So yay to my new storage kit!

Opens up just like a toolbox

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Quilt #4: Log Cabin

Quilt #4: Fresh from the oven

Quilt #4: Log Cabin
Width | Approx 200 cm
Length | Approx 150 cm
Pattern details | Cotton strips from fabric from Cotton & Colour & Spotlight
Batting | None
Backing | 100% broadwidth cotton fabric from Spotlight
Binding | None

My project from when I was pregnant with Eva is finally done and as predicted, it is a lovely single sized quilt. Yes, they are definitely getting bigger although I might go back to making baby or children-sized blankets for Noah and Eva (she loves her Red & Pink Cuddly and will roll around on it, in it, etc) since we’re heading back to Europe and just in time for winter too!

Initially, I had planned for the quilt to have a “lighter” look to it with a pale border instead of the royal blue which Nil insisted that we try. He also pointed out that white or anything pale wasn’t exactly great since it would get dirty more easily that dark colours. So I decided to go for blue…again. (I will definitely opt for a green-blue-white blanket next time around – am getting tired of the whole dark-colourful combo!) For the back, I chose a printed fabric instead of plain because I wanted to give it some variety; a big plain piece on its own, I figured, didn’t really look nice at all.

Quilt #4: A close-up look of the backing fabric and the topstitching

For the finishing, I decided to do a pillow-case styled edge by sewing both right sides facing each other and turning it inside out before topstitching around the edge for reinforcement. Initially I toyed with the idea of a zigzag around the edge but after inspecting my machine, I thought I’d play around with some of the untested stitch designs. It turned out to be quite pretty but ate up a lot of thread and I ran out halfway around the edge only to find myself carefully positioning my needle in order to start on the right spot. It took about 30 minutes to finish the topstitching.

The result is a simple, not-too-fancy quilt which we’ll probably use as a sofa cover-blanket. I’m still not very convinced about the colour combination and would have preferred to see it in something other than blue like cream-beige or a very pale latte colour. O’well…next time, *I* must have dibs on the colours for the border and backing! In the meantime, it’s back to more packing and trucker gps software assignments.

Quilt #4: Doubling as a sofa cover

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