Monday, August 24, 2015

First Day of Preschool

So when I went to bed last night I had glamorous ideas about what our first day of preschool would look like. That they would help me create a fun back drop including Sister writing her name and drawing a picture of herself, several super adorable pictures to showcase their matching outfits, and a fun filled morning of activities in their new classroom that I finished decorating last night.

Yup, that didn't happen:

Our day didn't go as planned, but after a phone call to my mom to get reassurances that I am doing okay, both kids taking a nice long nap, and a nice cold can of Vanilla Pepsi, I am ready to show off these outfits!

All of their fabric is from Whimsical Fabric and the quality and feel of it is simply amazing! The knit holds up very well with toddler every day play and all of the fabric looks great even after going through the washer and dryer at least once a week.

Sister is wearing a dress that I made during the Izzy & Ivy Tallulah sew along. Although it is still 100+ degrees most days, it will be cooling down so I sized up slightly and did the long sleeves so it will fit through the fall and winter.

During the sew-along, directions and measurements were given to modify the tie to a side tie, and it just adds a little extra fun to this dress! Plus, Sister loves it because she can lean back in a chair or in her car seat and not have the knot irritating her back.

The leggings sticking out from under her dress were made using the Ruffle Capris Pattern found in the Sweet Polly Playclothes paper pattern. This pattern is great and is quickly becoming a staple pattern in our home. The ruffle capris are adorable! I did size down slightly on them because they are a little looser of a style than I wanted for under dresses. However, they are still loose enough to be worn with just a t-shirt. I have made quite a few of the options in this pattern book and love how quickly they go together!

The headband was made using the My Childhood Treasures Retro Headbands pattern. This is my second time using the pattern. The directions are very clear and easy, but I have had a hard time finding just the right fit. The end result is adorable though!

Now onto Brother's outfit!

I used the new Oliver + S Parachute Polo pattern. I loved how quickly it all went together and the end result is so adorable and professional. The pattern includes pattern pieces for a boy shirt or a girl shirt and both have short sleeve options. There is also a sweat pants option included in the pattern, but I haven't made those yet.

Want to know one of my favorite features of Oliver + S patterns? They have an option to take the pattern to a copy center ( I use Staples) and have all the pieces print out on one large sheet! That's right, no printing or taping! I love that feature. It costs a little extra, but to me it is well worth the time saved and I feel like they are so much easier to trace the size I need.

Oh and look at these details:

For Brother's shorts, I used E+M Pants No. 2. This is my third time making something using this pattern and I just love them! There are shorts and pants options, 3 back pocket options, and it can be used for boys or girls! Yeah!

Originally, the the grey fabric for these shorts were cut out in March to make shorts for Brother to match Sister's birthday dress, but life happened. So, I pulled them out and grabbed the fabric I was going to use to add detail to the pockets. It was adorable red and white mushroom fabric from Riley Blake Little Red Riding Hood line that is now out of print. I had saved a scrap that was the exact size to fit the two pattern pieces. Well, sometime between March and August, I cut a 2" circle out of one side. So, no cute mushroom fabric. However, I still had some fabric left from Sister's Tallulah dress and the dots just seemed too fun to not use.

I love the look of the flat front waistband on clothing. Thankfully, this does have an elastic back and I use button hole elastic, so these cuties will last quite a while. I chose to leave off the back pockets this time around, but the pocket options are darling.

Brother wasn't quite so cooperative with the picture taking process, but I did get a cute one of him after a major meltdown. You can even still see a tear under one eye.

Friday, August 14, 2015

My Sewing Area And My Stitching Goal

Since most of my posts will revolve around my sewing area, let me give you the grand tour! A few little fun facts: My husband and I closed escrow on this house on our first anniversary. He was 22, I was 23. We got it for a pretty great price when the market crashed and the size is great! The two downfalls to this house that we have found 7 years and 2 kids later are 1) it is two story with the highest bedroom ceilings I have ever seen so the a/c and heater don't really do much good and 2) the downstairs is super choppy so there are several nook spaces, but having birthday/Christmas/etc... parties here is a little tricky.

For the past 2 years my sewing room was actually in the formal living room with the fire place. The kids toy room is the formal dining room that attaches to the formal living room. The problem with this was there wasn't really a defined line of 'mine' and 'theirs' so curious little fingers messed with my machines and fabric almost daily. Also, it was the first room that you see when you walk into the house. I really felt like it made our house not so homey walking into a craft room/office. So, a few months ago we switched me to the informal living room that is leads to the back yard. This takes me away from the kids toys and away from the front door. Now you enter our house and see a room with a couch, tv, and shoes. It's so much more relaxing.

Along with this move, we also painted the walls a color other than white. I can't explain how much of a difference this makes! It is so calming and pleasant!

That is my sewing area/office. It is so fun and my husband calls it my "garage" because everything in there is a reflection of me and what I love. And yes, it is almost always that clean. Sometimes mid project it gets a little cluttered, but I mostly keep it clean. Especially because to take this picture I am standing in the dining room that we use daily. I don't want to stare at a mess during meal time.

This is one of my American Girl dolls from my childhood.
The shadow box is full of items that I found at an estate sale.

This china cabinet belonged to my husband's great grandma and he surprised me with it a few years ago.
For the past 4 years he has been stripping off the white paint and staining it back to a wood color.
I love unpainted wood so much! It also has two beautiful doors that are being worked on right now.

The tea cup from our wedding, Precious Moments from my childhood. Trinkets from women's retreat.
Snapshots from our life. Hand made gifts from family. I am truly blessed.

I won this image a while ago and found the perfect frame at Hobby Lobby.

My sister knows me too well! I love soda and have thought about giving it up,
but it's just not going to happen.

Now onto my stitching goal! I have only been sewing for about 4 years but have already acquired an amazing assortment of fabric. Most of it I buy with a plan in mind and then life happens. Well, here is my goal: My goal is to limit the "just because" fabric I purchase (unless I just can't live with out it!) until I use enough fabric to completely empty AT LEAST one of the cubes! I will be blogging the different projects as I go along. Any bets on how long it will take me to sew through some of my stash?

Here are just a few of my purchased with a plan in mind projects that haven't happened yet:

My plan was an Ellie Inspired Sugar Horses shirt, Ellie Inspired Sunrise shorts for Sister,
and a button up shirt for Brother.

I bought this with the plans of making an Ellie Inspired
Vintage Penny Dress for Sister 

This one is just a little embarrassing. I picked up the fabric in August 2014 while camping
in Big Bear with my husband's side of the family. My mother in law bought this pattern
and loaned it to me so I could make one for myself. I just found the pattern on my shelf. Sorry!

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Introducing: ME!

It seems only fitting that the first blog post introduces who I am and what I have planned for this blog. And what better way to do it than through a sewing project?

So here goes:

My name is Jona and even though I turn 30 in a little over two weeks, I am still a complete kid at heart! I love bright colors. While blue is my favorite color, I really love anything that is colorful and bright and happy. I am married to my friend from childhood and our he is still my best friend. He is also a kid at heart and it makes life with two (actual) kids that much more of an adventure. We love to go to the zoo, Knott's Berry Farm, hiking, camping, and our all time favorite tradition is family pizza movie night where we throw a blanket down on the living room floor and watch a movie while munching on pizza. I really felt like this new Curiosities fabric exemplified my love for childhood with the bright colors but let's me look like a grown up with the subtle background.

I am very excited that I am able to stay at home with our kids until our youngest is in first grade. He is currently two, so I have a few more years at home with our daughter, Sister, and our son, Brother. I love being on the floor playing with them and even more than playing, I love doing art projects with them (hence, the spills)! I used the Tie Dye Diva Chocolate Chip Skirt because it is long enough for hanging out with toddlers.

There is a lined option, so no dealing with slips during our busy days. For the lining, I used Imperial Broadcloth to line the skirt and oh is it comfy! I know this skirt will be perfect for teaching preschool on Sunday's at church, hanging out at home with my kids, and going out on date nights with my husband!

This skirt also has a pocket option. Here is a little known fact about me, I don't go anywhere without Chapstick. Anywhere. The Chapstick I use isn't anything fancy or amazing, just the Chapstick brand with the blue wrapper.

One last tidbit you should know about me. When it comes to sewing and art projects, I leap before I look. All the time. I love a challenge and I love pushing what I know and trying new skills! I feel like that is what keeps sewing and art fun. For this skirt, I challenged myself to learn how to do a blind hem. Thanks to Pinterest and YouTube, I looked at at least 15 tutorials on how to sew a blind hem, grabbed a scrap of fabric and started practicing. It's far from perfect, but I have done it and I know that it will get better with time.

So, that's a snapshot into my life through a skirt! I look forward to sharing with you more sewing projects and our art activities!

And one last picture. Sister (4 years old) took this picture and asked em to make a silly face after she was done taking my serious pictures. Of course, this is also the only modeled picture that turned out very good.