A T-shirt and then some rambeling about taking pictures and then a tangent about blogging

I picked up this fabric at Threadfest with the intention of making a shirt for myself.   So.. I made a shirt for myself.

It’s just a simple t-shirt, but it fits me perfectly.  I used Butterick B5386 view A. I wanted to make it long sleeved, but I didn’t have enough fabric.  I will definitely be making more from this pattern.   I know some think it is crazy to make a simple t-shirt when you can just go out and buy a RTW for $10, but this shirt was so easy and cheap to put together.  It took me less than two hours including cutting out the pattern and fabric.  The fabric only cost a dollar  and the pattern was on sale for $.99, so even if you want to factor in the cost of things like thread and needles, it still cost less than $5.

And did I mention that it fits me perfectly?  I cut a size 8 for the shoulders and graded out to a size 12 for the torso.  This is what makes it worth it for me to make my own t-shirts.  If I buy a shirt in the store that fits me in the shoulders, it is tight across my stomach.   I’m not by any means fat, but shirts that fit tightly across my stomach don’t exactly do me any favors.

Now if I could only be as good at photography as I am at sewing.  The picture above was the best we got out of about 50 takes.  My patient husband usually gets roped into taking pictures of me.  I wish I knew more about lighting, focus and a whole bunch of other photography words that I don’t know yet, but for now, picture taking usually involves me taking pictures of my husband until I feel it looks right then we switch places and he takes pictures of me.

The lighting inside wasn’t working, so we decided to take it outside.   I’m not a photography expert, but I’m pretty sure that the lighting in this next photo is less than perfect.

Lil Blue Boo has lots of great info and tips for taking better photos.  I read about the rule of thirds the other day and was pleased to discover that the crop feature on my photo editing software has a built in 3 x 3 grid. Who knew?

Sometimes I wonder if I waste too much time reading other blogs, but then I come across information like this that I should probably already know, but don’t and I realize that this little (or not so little) online community is important.   This post came across my blog reader the other day and mentioned button thread.  Am I the only one who didn’t know about button thread? I guess it makes sense that you should use heavier thread to sew on buttons, but I didn’t know it was an actual thing that you could buy in the store.   So as long as I keep picking up these little nuggets of information here and there, I’ll keep reading and writing and hopefully someone somewhere will learn something from me one day.

New Skill

Last year I participated in a sewing class with our church and another church in the same neighborhood.  I did a lot of the teaching for that class and now it is my turn to be the student.  This year we are concentrating on crocheting.


I picked up a few of these (for a dollar each!  thanks Threadfest)……

I learned how to do this in the first class…

When I got home, I made these….

Then I got bored and started a project.

So far, I’m enjoying my new skill.

for Penny

Anna Maria Horner‘s Handmade Beginnings is quickly becoming my go-to source for baby gifts.  It is usually a toss-up between the Pretty as a Picture Dress andthis Baby in the Hood Jacket.

I typically don’t make clothes for babies under one year.  I just can’t bear the thought of putting a lot of time into something that is going to be spit up on and pooped on and outgrown in a matter of weeks.  This baby (Penny) will be born in late fall and when she turns one, she’ll have a hoodie waiting for her.

I knew Penny’s mom didn’t want a ton of pink in her daughter’s closet,  but I still wanted the jacket to be girly.

The solid is one of my favorite Kona colors (notice how it matches the background exactly – that’s a pillow cover I made for my living room a few years ago) and I love the way those buttons pop on that background.

The last jacket I made was for another member of my church and I got to see him wear it often.  It was a cute jacket, but it was made a thousand times cuter by the little boy who wore it.  I can’t wait to meet Penny and I can’t wait to see how much cuter she will make this jacket.



A few months ago, my husband tore one of his favorite shirts.  There wasn’t much I could do to save the shirt for him, but I was able to turn it into a dress for the girls. 

I know there are hundreds of tutorials out there for turning a men’s dress shirt into a dress, but I’m a pattern kind of girl.  I like precision in my sewing (most of the time), so I turned to my pattern stash and ended up in the pages of Carefee Clothes for Girls.

I love the details on this dress.  I left the lining and sleeve ruffles unhemmed for a more “carefree” look.  The pleat in the back is the original pleat from the shirt.  I had imagined that they would wear it with the buttons down the back and the pleat in the front, but Lila had other ideas and since Lila usually doesn’t wear dresses at all, I wasn’t going to be picky about how she was wearing it.

A Very Belated Birthday Present


I set out to make this tent from Growing Up Sew Liberated for my girls’ 4th birthday (February 29th).  I completed all of the sewing in plenty of time for the big day, but could not locate the bamboo poles.  So it got stuffed in a corner of my sewing area and forgotten about.  My girls always get so spoiled by the rest of the family that they hardly notice if mom and dad get them a gift.  Well, I ran across it the other day and decided to hunt down the poles.

Image I used a panel of Sarah Jane’s On Parade from her Children at Play fabric line for two of the tent sides.  I fell in love with that print as soon as I saw it and I could not be more pleased with how it looks on the tent.  Image
(It would probably look better if I would iron it, but the girls were a little anxious to get to play in it)


I wasn’t sure how they would use it, but soon after I set it up, I left the room for a few minutes.  When I came back, they were hunkered down inside and I could hear paper rattling and whispering.  I figured they were doing some kind of art, but later I found the map in there.  Turns out, they were planning a trip to Alabama.


shoes optional….

{this moment}

{this moment} – A Friday ritual. A single photo – no words – capturing a moment from the week. A simple, special, extraordinary moment. A moment I want to pause, savor and remember.

If you’re inspired to do the same, leave a link to your ‘moment’ in the comments for all to find and see.


Quiet Please

When my girls were babies (Why is that so hard to type? Could it be that it seems like they were just babies last week and they will be FOUR at the end of this month and next year they will be 5 and the year after that they will be 18, or so it seems), anyway when my girls were babies, we had an all too frequent nap time problem called LOUD KNOCK AT THE DOOR.  Normally, I don’t mind loud knocks at the door because it often means a friend or neighbor is stopping by to speak or that the mail man has come. But our nap time LOUD KNOCK AT THE DOOR seemed to always come from the same neighbor.  She seemed to have a 6th sense for knowing when my girls had been asleep for exactly 15 minutes.

You moms out there know what I’m talking about.   Fifteen minutes is the minimum amount of sleep needed to convince any child that they don’t need to sleep any more.  If a child is woken up after 7 or even 14 minutes of sleep, you can usually get her to go back to sleep, but if she’s had a good 15 minutes of sleep then you wake her up, she thinks she’s good to go until bedtime.  You, of course know this is not true and that a 15 minute nap means not only means that you lose one hour and 45 minutes of precious me-time/work time/time to clean the house, etc. but also, you’re going to have one cranky kid before bed time (or, in my case, two cranky kids).  The problem is that there is no chance that you’re going to convince the kid to go back to sleep.

 So, back to my neighbor, bless her heart. Needless to say, after performing the almost impossible task of getting two babies to sleep at the same time,I was not always pleased when she stopped in on me during nap time.  Subtle hints never seemed to work, neither did not-so-subtle hints for that matter and I was just not willing to be unkind.  I always dreamed to making a cute little sign that said “quiet please, baby is sleeping”, but seeing as how much of my crafting time was taken away by LOUD KNOCK AT THE DOOR, I never got around to it when my girls were babies (still hard to type).

However, my next door neighbors had a baby a few weeks ago and the same neighbor that often knocks on my door, knocks on their door often as well.  So naturally, I made her a sign.


The lamb and flowers are from Alicia Paulson’s Embroidery Companion, which reminds me, I am SO excited about this.