Tag Archives: thrifted fabric

Dream of the 90s

2 May

I don’t spend a lot of time looking for patterns at thrift stores because it drives me a little bit crazy. I think it’s something I could have done once in my lifetime, but as the mom of a young child, I just don’t have any time or patience for it. That said, somehow I came across this wonderful vintage (circa 1996) pattern at an enormous thrift shop on Whidbey Island early this year.


I adored the big pockets, the cut out in the back and the sweet inset that looks so great with stripes. It was 50% off, so I paid 25 cents for this mint condition pattern in sizes 3 to 8. I was a little bit excited.

Simplicity 7154(Simplicity 7154)

After digging through my fabric stash, I quickly settled on a purple shirting with thin white stripes. Purple is my daughter’s favorite color, and I’ve needed some sewing wins with her after a few “mehs” and a couple of “no ways”.


This dress is adorable in so many ways. I sewed up the size 4, but my newly 4 year old is on the wee side, so I could certainly have done with the size 3. She’s not particularly slim, but the 4 was quite roomy in the bodice just the same. I’d rather have that than something too small, and with a 4 inch hem, I could even lengthen it if she ever shoots up in height.



Very dance-able. Best quality in a dress ever.

Pattern: Simplicity 7154

Size: 4


An old pattern and getting over a sewing block!

22 May

This is admittedly not my favorite outfit. However, it came together pretty quickly using things I had on hand, so that feels good. 

ImageThe top is the Sailboat Top by Oliver + S, using the thrifted fabric that I used to make the full skirt from my last post. I used this pattern only once before to make the pants in the 18 month size, which incidentally, still fit my 3 year old. Anyway, back to the shirt: I went ahead and sewed up the 3T size, and while the fit of the shirt is otherwise great, the sleeves are too long. Instead of rehemming, I’m just going save this shirt for a longer armed version of my kid (that should take a few months).Image

I also made a mistake with the placement of the buttonholes. They seemed a bit close to the seam after I sewed them, so I was going to account for that with a smaller seam allowance when I attached my sleeves; I forgot but just went with it since they still work.Image

I do like this pattern, especially the top stitching that is used to tack down the facings. 

The shorts, though simple, are very exciting for me as they represent moving into a new realm as far as sewing goes! I made them using a Japanese pattern from this book! Yay me! Image

I’ve been inspired by bloggers like Sanae and Cherie to delve into Japanese patterns since the styles are adorable and unique. I did look for pattern books during our late winter trip to Japan, but didn’t have luck (maybe I was distracted by a short time frame and 4 stories of fabric….). I purchased this book in late March at Kinokuniya Bookstore

The shorts came together very easily, and even taught me a new waistband technique using an opening in the casing’s seam through which to feed my elastic. The size 90 fits my kid perfectly. I did wish I had a serger with this project, however, because the fabric I used frays a lot! Not sure what they are going to do in the wash, even though I finished the raw edges with pinking shears and/or a zigzag stitch. 

ImageThe fabric from the shorts was cut from an old pair of trousers that my husband bought at Celio in Paris back in 2006. It took him a long time to admit they were looking shabby, but he is quite tickled that they can live on with our little squirt.


Next up….hard to say, but I’m looking forward to sewing my way through more Japanese patterns!


A Little Summer Skirt

20 May

I thrifted this pink and brown woven fabric years ago but have struggled to find inspiration for it. The other night, I was itching to complete an easy and brainless project, so I decided it should be a skirt for the little.IMG_0065

The fabric is about 48″ wide, and I cut approximately 15 inches of length times 2 to make a very full skirt. If you do the math,  accounting for the French seam allowance (I love to use that type of seam for this project as it keeps things so nice and finished, and eliminates any need to trim threads after the garment is washed), that’s 95 inches of twirl for a 3 footer. Not bad.IMG_0050

These pictures were taken after a morning of playing at school and an afternoon nap followed by a bike ride and gardening, so I think it’s going to hold up just fine.


I have another project for the kid in the works using this fabric. I’m tempted to make myself a long full skirt as well for the summer, and though I do have enough of this fabric to make myself a match, I’m going to show some restraint!

Kids Clothing Week! Blog Start! The Michelle Jacket

25 Apr

I’m using Kids Cloths Week as a reason to start documenting my crafty endeavors by blog. Yea! This is the first time I’ve participated in the brainchild of Meg, though I’ve been tempted for the last couple of years. I put together a haphazard plan attempting to use as many things (fabric, patterns, etc) as I had on hand and started tracing and cutting last week, managing to prepare 5 whole items by Sunday evening! On Monday, I had a free morning, and was able to work on 3 different items, though didn’t complete any of them for various reasons. Sigh. On Tuesday, I finished The Michelle Jacket, a pattern by Shwin & Shwin that I purchased during a pre-holiday sale a few months ago. I used a thrifted canvas-y floral print that I thought my daughter would love – it is pink and purple after all. I did buy the floral print and the orange piping at Pacific Fabrics (Cuzco by Kate Spain for Moda). Love this! Image This pattern came together pretty easily, but does require a lot of pieces. I didn’t love that the instructions didn’t include layout directions, and some of the directions were not as detailed as some patterns are, but the results are adorable! My kid loves her new coat! Image Pattern: The Michelle Jacket by Shwin Designs Size: 4t for my size 3 gal; rolled up sleeves will make this one last awhile Fabric: Thrifted Floral Canvas and Cuzco (Embroidery Indigo by Kate Spain for Moda) New Skills: I covered the buttons! ImageImage