Category Archives: picture smocking

Just Some Fun Stitching!

Sometimes I have to take a break from designing, making kits, teaching, etc. and just want to slow down and stitch something fun.  I started one of these fun projects Wednesday evening and hope to have it finished in the next few days.  😃

My new and fun project is a bishop dress with a solid smocking band at the top.  I see these all the time on all the different websites that sell smocked children’s clothing and it’s been a long time since I’ve made one of these, so this was the time.

I chose this fun print for the project and am in the process of smocking an apple on the center front.  We’ll see how it goes!

In case you’re interested in how I do my smocking these days, I’ll show you my setup.  I am using the apple design that I created for the Fall issue of Classic Sewing magazine.  I’ll modify the file to fit the fabric design – hopefully!  LOL!  I pull up the file on my iPad, and then can enlarge it so that I can see it better with these “mature” eyes.  I also have my Dazor magnifying lamp to look through so that I can ensure that all the stitches are perfectly smooth.  Amazing all the technology that I need these days to continue to enjoy my smocking!

Once I finish up this dress, I plan to start another one with a slightly different method of color blocking the neckline.  Then I’ll decide which method I prefer.  I’m sure both will be acceptable, but I know that I will prefer one over the other!

So, that’s what I’m up to this morning – sitting in my living room enjoying the morning sun and smocking a spring dress.  I hope you’re enjoying some stitching time as well!

Some Tiny Gowns

This past Saturday our SAGA Dogwood guild had a Wee Care workshop.  As the chair of this committee, I typically don’t sew at the workshops, but make myself available for any help that is needed.  We had a fabulous turnout and I also had some beautiful gowns turned in!  What a lovely, caring group of ladies that give of their time and talent making these sweet gowns.  As always, I come away from the workshops inspired to work on some gowns as well.  It probably comes as no surprise that I always have several in different stages of completion.

Because I had several gowns that were nearly completed, I decided that this morning was the time to get those finished up.  I’m so pleased with how they turned out and now I have 3 more that are done and 1 more that only needs to be smocked.  I’ll do that one quiet evening.  They don’t take any time at all to smock!

I love this teeny, tiny size – it is for under 1 lb. babies and measures a mere 8-3/4″ long (including the lace).

Because our guild sends gowns to Camp LeJeune, I wanted to try one gown with a nautical design.  I would think it could be used for a boy or girl.  I liked the tiny sailboats (my own design).

There’s always a call for gender neutral gowns, so a white on white with no flowers, lace, etc. works well and is quite elegant looking – or so I think!

I smocked a simple design and used “dots” instead of flowers to keep this gown neutral.

So, that has been what I’ve been sewing lately.  Well, that as well as some things that I’ll have to show you later.  😛  I don’t want to spoil the surprise!

Enjoy some lovely stitching time – it’s such a great way to relax and ready yourself for a busy day/week ahead!

Kathy

A Sweet Little Dress

After all the preemie clothes, it was time for some different sewing.  I had big plans, however, as often happened, plans change.

Last week, in preparation for a class, I needed to retrieve a previously made outfit with a specific picture smocking design .  I was thrilled that I had a sample already made!!!  I only needed to retrieve it from the closet of clothes that the granddaughter’s have outgrown.  Easy, right?

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Of course, after looking it over, it needed a serious pressing, so I chose to wash it and press it.  I threw it in the wash with a load of whites – good choice since it was pastel pink.  However, also in the wash was an ORANGE top!  Yikes!!!  You know where this is going – and it’s not a good place!  The ONLY thing in the wash that took on some of the orange dye was the romper!!!

No amount of soaking, stain remover or anything else made a bit of difference, so the decision was made to remove the smocked insert, which suffered no damage, and put it into another garment.  So the un-stitching began….

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With the insert removed, it was time to find a pattern with the same chest width as the insert – that would be easiest.  I found that the Children’s Corner “Elliott” pattern (out of print) was perfect across the chest, and the armhole curve matched as well.  Score!  But, I wanted a dress, so some modifications were needed.  Easy.  I’ve done that many times before.

The sewing began. However, when all that was left to sew was the facings, I realized that things were amiss.  Ugh!

More un-sewing, and then I walked away for the evening.  Finally, I fixed the problem and finished the dress.  It’s cute, but it sure has been a problem right from the get go!

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I love the yellow rick rack with the gingham.  I did “see” that I ended up cutting off more of one side of the insert armhole curve than the other, but it’s going to stay that way!  LOL!  No more un-sewing of this dress!!!

I know we’ve all had days like this, so I know that there’s at least one person out there that can relate to my sewing woes.

For The Boys!!!

I love to sew  outfits for boys!  They are so quick and easy and the little guys look adorable in them!  I dress our own son in these all summer the summer he turned 2.  They are easy on, easy off for diaper changing.  I don’t do leg snaps because at that age, they are so busy that the snaps rarely stay snapped.  And, if they do stay snapped, little fingers like to pull them apart.  It’s just easier to leave them off and remove that temptation.  LOL!

Liam won’t be 2 until fall, so this summer is the perfect summer for these! He will stay cool as well as look cute all summer long if it’s up to grandma. 🙂  So, I did some stash diving – both into the stash of inserts and then into the fabric stash to find just the right combinations.

Edited to add that I use Children’s Corner “Johnny” for the jon-jons and “Lucy” for the dress.

This first outfit is poly/cotton chambray (aka: no wrinkle!!!).  The insert was purchased from Belles Et Beaux.

IMG_9860  This next outfit is a pima cotton gingham.  I probably should have done a better job of positioning it on the mannequin, but I was in a hurry and too lazy to retake the picture.  I smocked this insert several years ago and it was just waiting for a little guy to come along.  This is my favorite fire truck design.IMG_9862

This smocking design is from Junebug Designs, and available at many of the heirloom shops.  So, so cute!  I love the coiled hose – a very long bullion stitch!  She designed many plates to co-ordinate with Sew Many Designs appliqués.  The smocking designs are adorable and the appliqués stitch out so beautifully.  I only needed the smocking for this one.

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The next outfit is a poly/cotton seersucker – again, no iron, so it’s going to be a hit.  Liam will love the trucks – he’s all boy!!!  This insert is also from Belles Et Beaux.

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I had both the boy and the girl version of this insert, so I had to make brother/sister outfits.  I can’t wait to see them in these matching outfits!  The fabric is a dimity check.  I love this stuff!  Though it is 100% cotton, it really doesn’t wrinkle hardly at all and is very durable.  Again, the inserts are from Belles Et Beaux.

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I love when I can whip up some cute things so quickly because of inserts already on hand and my fabric stash = a small fabric store.  Hahaha!!!

Isn’t he a handsome little fellow!!!  Can’t wait to see him in all his new duds!

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And he’s always smiling – especially if there is food involved!  I stole this from my daughter’s Facebook page.  🙂

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Next up is some beach outfits for our trip in a couple weeks.  🙂

Keep on stitching……

Kathy