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Wednesday, 30 July 2014

sunny day shorts

More sewing from Kids Clothes Week last week, and another free pattern from Oliver + S!


These are the Sunny Day Shorts and they really are a perfect little shorts pattern.  They were so quick to make and they look really nice on.  I think next time I might add some details like pockets or piping but I wanted to get these done quickly as the wee man was in serious need of some new shorts as we were down to one pair that fitted him properly - not enough in the hot weather we've been having!

I used the same organic blue cotton I used for his reversible bucket hat so they make a nice matching set.  The only thing I'm a bit disappointed about is that they won't fit him for long.  I cut the 6-9 month size as although he is almost 9 months I just thought they would fit him a bit longer.  However they're pretty snug on him.  Lesson learned - I need to use his measurements rather than the age guide just as I would if sewing for myself.

Sizing asides I love these shorts and can't wait to make up some more.  I had also been working on a t-shirt for Harris but I'm not happy with the way the bindings are attached.  I followed the instructions but don't like the results so I'm going to have to unpick rather than waste the jersey.  So that's it for KCW from me.  Not as productive as many people seem to have been but I'm really happy with 3 finished items in one week! I liked the motivation of sewing along, and sewing for an hour a day, and I'm really enjoying sewing children's clothes now.  Next up though - I'm hoping some me-sewing will resume shortly!

Friday, 25 July 2014

Kids Clothes Week July 2014

We're having a bit of a heatwave in London at the moment, in fact today we've got thunder and lightning which might mean the air is a bit fresher tomorrow hopefully.  I have been really enjoying the sunshine and love that I can get Harris out in the park everyday getting plenty of sunshine and fresh air.  However the heat has also meant not a lot of sleep in this household as it's just too hot for the wee man at night time.  As a result I'm pretty amazed by how much sewing I've done this week.  And it's all thanks to Kids Clothes Week.  If you haven't heard of it before (I hadn't until I was pregnant) KCW was started in 2008 by Meg Freeman. Like many new mums who are also obsessed with sewing she found herself thinking of so many sewing projects, then spending her evenings on the couch continuing to think about these projects. I know this feeling well! So she set herself a challenge of sewing for one hour every day for a week - KCW now runs four times a year, spring, summer, autumn and winter.


Having the focus of KCW has really helped my put aside a bit of time each day for sewing - some days this is nap time and other days it has been in the evening.  These are the first results of my sewing this week - 2 more Oliver + S reversible bucket hats.  Although I wouldn't mind if Harris had different hats to match his outfits I don't really have the time for that, instead I sewed up a hat for one of Harris's wee pals (the hat you see above with the apples on one side and below, the reverse in blue with orange top-stitching), and one for my nephew (the bottom 2 photos - he loves fire engines!)  You'll just have to take it from me - my nephew looks like one cool dude in his new hat!


I really enjoyed sewing these up as I knew what I was doing this time round and it was nice to be sewing up gifts.  I also just love sewing with this organic blue cotton from Ray Stitch.


The lovely red and white striped fabric was a gift from a friend - left-overs from a shirt she made. It goes so well with the blue and I knew my sister-in-law would like it too.


Don't worry though, Harris isn't being neglected, I have been sewing for him too! I've almost finished a pair of Oliver + S sunny day shorts and have a Brindille and Twig baby tee cut out which I'm hoping to get finished this week too.

Wednesday, 9 July 2014

Baby bucket hat

Well I have finally been doing some sewing, for me and for Harris.  I'll start with the make for Harris as I'm really pleased with it and have many more planned, not all for him as how many sun hats does a boy need really!  He does have a few but as we're always mislaying them so I thought it would be useful to have another.  I used the Oliver + S reversible bucket hat free pattern which was brilliant! You can see he looks pretty pleased with it too!



I cut the extra small which it states is for 6-12 months but I was worried it might be a bit small as he has quite a large head! So instead of using the recommended 1/2" seam allowance I just used a 1/4". This saved me some time as I didn't need to trim them, just pinked the edges with my pinking scissors (which are very blunt - does anyone know of anywhere in London that I could get them sharpened?).

The instructions are pretty easy to follow, the only bit that made me scratch my head a bit was attaching the crown to the side panels but I found some helpful photos on a tutorial by A Little Gray that helped me work it out.  Everything fitted together really well and it was much more straightforward to make it reversible than I thought it would be.  I'll definitely be making some more. In fact my husband has even asked if I can size the pattern up to make one for him too!

I'm really pleased with how neat my top-stitching on both sides of the hat is and I love the fabrics too.  The lovely blue, which I think might be a linen cotton blend but I can't remember, came from Ray Stitch. The geometric print is a fat quarter which I think came from M is for Make.  I've still got plenty left of both so I was thinking of making a wee pair of matching trousers in the blue with the printed fabric as a turn up - we'll see if I have time while summer is still here!

How is everyone else's summer sewing going?!





Friday, 25 April 2014

It's curtains! and Me Made May 2014 pledge

Four weeks ago I posted a photo on Instagram of me working on a pair of curtains for the nursery - well, they turned in to a bit of a saga but that's them finished and up now.  I used this tutorial which I found useful although I had real issues with the fabric not staying straight.  You can see it in the photo.  I used a blackout lining but it doesn't go right to the edge of the fabric due to the process of attaching the lining to the curtain fabric so there's a gap where the light comes through.  I tried using spray starch and even used my hair straighteners as a desperate measure once they were up - it didn't work! They do look very nice though we'll still need to get a blackout blind.


I just love the fabric! I got it from M is for Make, they don't have it anymore but they do have the same fabric with bears which is equally as cute.


I've decided to take the length of time it took me to get these curtains made as a sign for Me Made May - I need to rethink my pledge this year.  Last year my pledge was to wear something I had made or refashioned - clothes or jewellery - every day for the month of May.  I just don't have the time for much sewing at the moment and I know that I would be disappointed in myself if I set a pledge and didn't do it.  Instead I thought I'd do something more useful to me this year -

I, Kathryn Hannan of Kathryn's Busy Town, sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May '14.  I will wear or try on everything which I have made and anything which doesn't fit will go to the charity shop or the refashion pile.  I will also keep a note of what I do wear every day so as to give myself a sewing plan for the very limited sewing time I now have.


me-made-may'14

I really hope this will spur me on to do more sewing as I really need some smart but easy to wear clothes, that is things that are comfortable for playing with a baby, but also potential outfits for when I go back to work. A tall order I know but as I don't work in a particularly corporate environment I think it can be done.

And last but by no means least, I just realised that today is my 3 year blog anniversary!  I'm off to have a celebratory glass of wine, or two!