A pair of Pierrots

The latest additions to M and C’s wardrobe – a pair of Pierrot tunics, courtesy of Made by Rae’s speedy little gem of a pattern.  No joke, I churned these out in record time, and the girls (and their mama) just love them.

The pattern can be cut on the bias or on grain, and I chose on grain because this fabric is a bit on the heavier side and I wasn’t sure how a fuller, more swingy bias cut would work with the fabric weight.  I excluded the neckline ruffle (ruffles aren’t really our thing) and added a casing with 1/4″ elastic at the bottom of the sleeves.  I adore these two quilting cottons that I found at Joann – coordinating for the girls, but not too matchy-matchy.

Very easy and well-designed pattern, that I will most definitely go to again for M and C.  And the fact that they’ve requested to wear these at least once a week, well that makes this mama super-proud.


The second-most wonderful time of my year

I love Halloween.  I haven’t always such a huge fan, but since the chickadees have been around I absolutely adore making their costumes.  I get all giddy like it’s Christmas and the more challenging the costume, the better!  I really like playing off of the twin thing too, but I  think that my years are numbered there… M and C are most definitely starting to voice their opinions and after a few weeks of back and forth (and mama influence… ahem) we settled on this:

And to think that it all started with a simple stack of felt, on sale at Joann’s of course.

Fleece was also added to the mix later because what was originally supposed to be an Oreo cookie eventually became a chocolate chip cookie.  Again, the mama influence here.  No friggin’ clue how I was going to get the Oreo detail done (because again, I just don’t half-a** it when it comes to my kiddos) so we opted for a chocolate chip cookie instead.  Easy peasy!

For the milk “carton” I sketched out my felt dimensions based on measurement of M’s shoulder width and height and side width.  I downloaded a jpeg image from the Horizon website to get the front carton details, most of which I included or simplified a bit, and then just started eyeballing the cuts and piecing it together.  The larger base layer pieces were machine stitched onto the white felt.

All of the lettering and smaller details (the cow, earth, milk glass, etc) were traced from enlarged printouts of the jpeg image, cut from felt as well and hand stitched together.  Yep – HAND stitched.  Man, I really forgot how much I enjoy handwork with a a simple needle and thread.  It really didn’t take very long at all and was quite relaxing.

Once the outer carton was complete, I cut a rectangle for the top, machine-stitched it onto the four carton “walls”, then cut a skinny rectangle out of the top for M’s adorable but rather large noggin. I also reinforced this opening by hand-stitching another piece of felt on top around the edge (a rectangle shape with the center cut out) and cut circle openings out of the sides for her arms.

The straw was an afterthought honestly, but worked out pretty well.  I used an empty toilet paper roll for the width, and made a fabric tube of red and white striped cotton cut on the bias and backed with white felt for support.  I left the non-stitched edges raw and just tucked them inside.  To attach the tube to the top of the carton I cut two layers of felt and hand-stitched them onto the top in a circle shape equal to the width of the tube, then folded in the excess, did a quick running stitch to keep it all together and shimmied the fabric tube around it.  Make sense?  To finish it off I tacked the tube down to the carton top, catching the felt straw base as well, and slipped the cardboard tube down inside to keep it upright.  Very random process here, but hey, it worked.

Last but not least, I wanted to make the carton top sturdier so that it wouldn’t bend when M wore it, so I cut a couple pieces of plastic canvas (the kind used for needlepoint projects with the little grid/holes throughout) to match the shape of the carton top and hand stitched them on the underside of the top, covering the rough edges with another layer of felt.  Sounds like a lot of work overall, but it actually came together quickly.

For C’s chocolate chip cookie, I cut four 21″ circles from beige fleece.

The chips were made starting with 3″ x 3″ squares of dark brown felt that I trimmed and rounded the edges to looks more like melted chocolate chips/chunks.

The chips were hand-stitched down – again, very relaxing, and not just for me, judging by Miss Sleepypants who decided to cuddle up with her bear (that is covering her face) on the floor while I was sewing.

Poor C doesn’t want to nap anymore but she definitely still needs the rest.  M, on the other hand, runs like me – all day, little sleep, just keeps on going.  I digress…

On the non-chip side of one cookie I made straps from the fleece (triple folded and edge stitched along each long side) that were attached at the top – to go over C’s shoulders – and on each side – to fit around her.

No photos here unfortunately, but I sewed the first cookie back (with the straps attached) to the cookie front, right sides together, clipped the seam allowances them flipped it right side out.  Then I stitched the straps to the back side of the other cookie, sandwiched it all together to put the front on the second cookie, stitched RST, clipped and flipped and voila!  Two cookies attached by the straps!  I stuffed them each with polyfil, ladder stitched the openings closed, them pulled a few stitches through each (like tufting) to give the cookies some texture.  When all was said and done I did have to fiddle a bit with the straps to fit C, and ended up cutting the side straps into two and then in half again (to fit my skinny girl) and added velcro to attach them together.

To wear underneath their costumes we already had a long-sleeve white shirt for M but nothing in dark brown, so I went to my stash of repurpose knits and pulled together a quick Flashback Skinny Tee from an old knit swingy top of mine.  Perfect – and FREE!  The girls went to a local Halloween event the weekend prior and then also got to wear their costumes at preschool the morning of and of course for trick-or-treating that night.  A few good wears and some seriously proud little cookies and milk!