reiny days and mondays


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Valentines shirts

If you know me or have been a reader for any length of time, you’ll understand why I needed to make Liam a Valentines’ Day shirt. It’s because novelty cotton prints are my life.

We’ve been snowed out a bunch lately – yesterday was a snow day (I am able to do work from home though) and today I decided to leave a bit later to allow for the icy roads to melt some. Of course both days I woke up before 7am anyway. After nearly three years of being a mom, I am simply incapable of sleeping in.

So naturally, this morning I woke up and sewed up a shirt for Liam! I may have been feeling guilty because I made a shirt for myself yesterday (scroll down to see it!) instead of making valentines for his little friends at daycare. (Because of the snow day(s), they’re doing the party on Monday so SCORE, I get the weekend to make valentines!)

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I used the Oliver + S Sketchbook pattern that I’ve used a million times.

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The fabric is from (where else?) Jo-Ann’s and is probably on sale/will be on sale soon. I believe I paid around $3 a yard a few weeks ago.

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I decided to finish the hem and armholes with bias tape. I think it is especially helpful for the curved hem of the Sketchbook – I often have trouble making the hem lie perfectly flat by just folding twice and sewing the them down.

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I took a few shortcuts because (a) it’s a novelty shirt, and (b) I was short on time!

1. I didn’t use any interfacing. The shirt seems fine without it: the placket is stiff enough, and the collar is a bit floppy but suits the casual nature of the shirt.

2. I used pearl snaps instead of buttons. I’ve fallen a bit out of love with the snaps since I finally learned how to do button holes, mainly because my snaps pliers are pretty unreliable. I think I ruin 3 snaps for every one I actually get to attach properly. I will probably replace the snaps with real buttons.

3. I didn’t attach the pocket but may do so later!

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I cut a 3T and added an inch to the bottom because this boy is getting so tall! I just the let the hem out of those gray pants a couple of weeks ago and I think I have to do it again!

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Sorry, you’d think I’d clean up a bit for pictures… but no,  you’d be wrong. But THAT SMILE THO.

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Obviously I made myself a shirt with the same fabric. This is the Laurel top, except I redrew the side seams  for some extra ease and added another inch to the hem. Super comfy!

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For some reason Liam was happy to pose this morning! Success!

valentinelaurel3Happy Valentines’ Day, friends!

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Wedding suit for Liam

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Here is where I admit that I am a big fat cheater when it comes to Kids’ Clothes Week. I pretty much NEVER sew an hour a day for a week when it comes around. For example, this time I spent roughly 4-5 hours total on the Saturday and Sunday BEFORE Kids’ Clothes Week, and I am totally counting that as my participation for this round. I regret nothing.

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(In my defense, I have a full-time job that keeps me out of the house 50 hours a week.)

Anyway, because I’m a totally reasonable person, I decided to make L a suit for a wedding we went to this weekend. Kev was planning on wearing his brown suit soooooo… brown suit it is! I found this polyester suiting fabric at Jo-Ann’s. I know, polyester suit, UGH… but I am pretty sure I would never pay the premium for high quality fabric for toddler formal wear. I just don’t have it in me. This fabric, though, is super staticky and frays like mad. EVERY seam was either french seamed or serged, let me tell you that.

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I used the Basic Blazer pattern from Blank Slate Patterns (same as his corduroy blazer from Christmas) and I still love it. My welt pockets turned out MUCH better this time – still not perfect but definitely an improvement. I lined it with this fun poplin from the new Lisette collection for Jo-Ann’s. I feel like it makes the brown suit a little more… toddler-friendly.

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His pants were the usual Parsley Pants from Made by Rae. I left the pockets off and used flat fell seams on the inseam. I hemmed them with a blind hem by hand.

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I’m realized that I totally have enough fabric to make a vest for him too. I bought Simplicity 4762 a few months ago to sew a Christmas present (actually I have a few finishing touches to add to it, oops!) and it was actually really easy so I might make it! Although now that the wedding is done, I’m not sure if he’ll have occasion to wear a three-piece suit while this still fits him. Friends and family, please get married this year!

I bought tan Sperry’s for him to wear but they were too small! When did we discover this? Why, at the hotel fifteen minutes before ceremony, of course. (What respectable mother doesn’t have her child try something on – especially shoes – ahead of time? Just me, probably.)

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He ended up wearing his red Converse which, in my opinion, turned out way cuter. He got compliments all day long.

Below is the only shot I got of him standing up in the suit and it is, forgive me, a cell phone shot AND in an elevator.

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In case you’re wondering, the bow tie stayed on the entire time. How much longer can I expect this to continue? This is a magical time.


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Star Wars pajamas

Happy Snow Day, friends! We’re stuck at home with 5 inches of snow. I’m trying to do some work-from-home, Kev is building Liam’s big boy bed (sob), and Liam is mainly trying (and succeeding at) distracting me from work.

I always want to sew something for Liam for special occasions, and I feel like PJs are a perfect Christmas present. (I know I love getting PJs at Christmas, and somehow my family never fails me in that regard. Every year!) So I made Star Wars flannel pajamas for Liam!

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This fabric is from Jo-Ann’s. I’ve been eyeing it for years and finally bought two yards!

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I didn’t make any changes to my Oliver + S School Days shirt hack except for lengthening the bodice, and I cut a 3T using Rae’s Parsley Pants pattern – boy is getting too tall for his own good!

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Not much else to say about these PJs except Kevin said they look like prison pajamas, but he’s evil and mean, so what does he know? Ok, they totally do. But I still love them and I hope Liam does too!

This picture makes me laugh… he’s making the pirate nutcracker ride the reindeer. I think the French nutcracker is helping him up too.

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Corduroy blazer

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Christmas outfits are pretty much done chez Waterman! I made L a corduroy blazer using Blank Slate Pattern’s Basic Blazer.

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The corduroy is 16W corduroy from Jo-Ann’s – Biking Red like my uncut corduroy Kelly skirt.

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Silver shot cotton lining! I think it makes it look extra festive.

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I tried to get a good picture of how shimmery this shot cotton is. It’s nice and light which I think pairs well with the heavier corduroy.

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These beautiful little buttons are Jo-Ann’s (what else) – not sure why they’re called tortoise buttons but they’re cute and remind me of Bilbo Baggins. I bet he’d be proud of these buttons.

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These are my first welt pockets. They could definitely use more work but my second turned out much better than the first! I’m sorry to say that this one pictured is my second one… but I’m sure I’ll get better with practice! Plus, come on, it’s not like it’s going to fit Liam next year…

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Parsley Parsley Pants

As soon as I saw Rae’s Parsley Pants, I knew I needed to make them in green for Liam. What kid doesn’t want green pants?

I found a bright green bull denim at Jo-Ann’s. First of all, let me just advise against using this fabric. It starts out very stiff, eventually softening up after several washings… but only after turning absolutely everything light-colored in your laundry GREEN. I mean, they’ve gone through the wash at least 5 times now and they’re still turning things green.

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It ain’t easy being green. Kermit would know.

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I tried out the pintucks and I love them!

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The bull denim fades a lot too, which is kind of nice looking, but makes the pants much more casual.

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I wanted to add patch pockets but UGH the bull denim! *shakes fist* It was way too thick for my machine to handle all the layers after the pockets had been assembled.

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But green pants!

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Even better when you’ve got fruit snacks!

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And yes, he totally ate that.


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Oliver + S School Days Coat

I probably use the term “labor of love” way too often when I talk about some of my sewing projects. However, this WAS a labor of love. Ok, probably still overdoing it, but this is definitely the most complicated thing I’ve ever sewn.

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Behold, the Oliver + S School Days coat.

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I knew I needed to make L a jacket because his coat from last year is ridiculously small. And it couldn’t just be a store bought coat because, come on. That would be too reasonable. And I am no reasonable lady.

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I went to Goodwill with my fingers crossed – I just had the feeling I would be able to find a 100% wool coat that I could slice and dice. Spoiler alert, I was successful! I was too excited to take a picture of it but it was a gigantic wool coat for women – calf-length and few darts or other shaping seams so I knew it’d be great. Best part? It was $20!

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I ran it through the dryer with a wet blanket for 1 hour, then I took my seam ripper to it and took it apart as much as I could, leaving the back intact. I discarded the arm lining and the shoulder pads (lol). OBV I kept the buttons, because! I did keep the main body lining which was this lovely herringbone wool – forgot to take a picture! But I will be reusing it for sure. Anyway after I ripped up the coat it went back into the dryer for another hour – this sucker had a lot of gross lint in all the seams.

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The back had these two vertical seams that I couldn’t get around so they stayed – I think they look quite nice there! It looks intentional.

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The lining fabric is the best part though. It’s Michael Miller Little Elephants Toss and I got it from Fabric.com when they had one of their MM 15% off sales. I’ve had this fabric since March and I’ve been saving it for something special… why not a coat he’ll wear everyday for several months? L does a little trumpeting noise every time he sees a picture of an elephant and it is pretty much the most adorable thing ever.

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The toggles were from Jo-Ann’s – goodness, I didn’t know toggles were $5+! Good thing this pattern only called for 3 of them. My topstitching on these is pretty atrocious but… it’s not like I can rip them out and redo them since the leather would show the holes. It’s really bulky at that spot!

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I really like the way the hood turned out! I purposely did not topstitch the hood to keep the lining in place because… I kind of want the lining to peek out!

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I think the lining looks really lovely after blindstitching the hem by hand but my gosh, my finger was hurting after that! Note to self, need to buy thimble.

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Also, this was all done in one day – I went to Goodwill just after they opened at 11am, ran a few errands, got home and started work on the lining while the coat was in the dryer (also quickly sewed up a Christmas throw pillow + table runner*), then sat down and worked on the coat until I finished around midnight. Hence, the horrendous lighting on these pictures.

*Yes, Christmas! I am all about Christmas once the -ber months start.

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Also, two days after I finished this coat, Colette Patterns revealed their Albion coat which to me looks like the grown-up version of this School Days Jacket. WANT! I may need to make myself a matching jacket after Christmas…


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Flannel PJs for L

Well, I’ve gone and outed myself to friends & family. I finally let them all know that I blog about my sewing adventures here. I guess I have to stop using swear words. Not that I do much. One time I accidentally dropped the F-bomb when my mom was in the room and she yelled at me to go to my room. This was last year. In my home.

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Anyway it’s been getting cold here so I decided to make some flannel pajamas for L. I hacked the Oliver + S Sketchbook shirt pattern that I just used for Fix-It Felix, Jr. and finally got around to using Rae’s Parsley Pants pattern for pajama pants.

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I found this flannel at Jo-Ann’s – can’t find it online but keep an eye out for sales on flannel! I used two yards.

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Weirdly enough, I’ve never made L pajama pants so it was really refreshing to sew these up so quickly! I also hemmed them by machine while I normally do a blind hem by hand on most of his pants.

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I drafted a new back pattern piece for these pajamas as I didn’t think the yoke and back pleat were necessary, and I just thought it might be a little more comfortable for L. It was a pretty easy pattern hack: I just overlapped the yoke and back pieces 1 inch to remove the seam allowance and followed the pattern edge so they matched up. I cut it with a straight hem all around. I traced it on to freezer paper so I can make this up again quickly! I’m tempted to shove everything off my queue and just make these PJs over and over again.

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I don’t know why PJs always have a little breast pocket. Who would put something there?

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I went with the hexagon snaps again… I can’t help it. Sometimes L is a struggle to get PJs on so I thought snaps would shave off a couple of seconds.

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Oh my God these moose are just killing me.

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This boy cracks me up too.

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I made this the background on my phone, because how could I not smile when I look at this fantastic smile?

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Blurry but MELTS MY HEART.

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These PJs are perfect for snuggling with Daddy.