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Is that Really Me?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012
So, I guess it's Meet The Designers bio is up at Project Run & Play!  I'm still pinching myself!


Tuesday, August 28, 2012
Having a blast in BC...the weather's been perfect and we've already had an awesome beach day with my cousin and her perfect little family.

The boys are only three months apart, and are at the perfect age to completely enjoy each other's company.  They were unintentionally dressed more like twins than cousins! :)

"Look at the Mounty on his horse, boys!!"...nah, the rocks are more fun. :)

Wondering if Thomas the Train travels these tracks on his way to the Island of Sodor.

Tobias modelling his Clean Slate Pants.  
Probably the best boys pants pattern out there...looking forward to making more of these!

All Anja wanted to do was balance on the logs...and her Daddy was happy to oblige.

Enjoying all the much little time!!  

Going Home...

Thursday, August 23, 2012
Sorry things have been so quiet here at E& sewing machine pedal has been to the floor the past week in order to complete a certain project before we leave for our vacation to visit family back home on the west coast.  You'll see more of that certain project when a certain competition begins next month.  So, while I may not be posting much while we're away (I might share a few photos of our adventures), just know that things are going to be very busy next month as I really get working on the fall wardrobes for Tobias & Anja.  And of course, I'm super excited to share the Project Run & Play outfits I create (hopefully many!!!!) :)

My Very First Zip Fly

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Today is the day Melissa from Melly Sews has officially launched her new e-book Blank Slate Patterns.  I had the privilege of testing the Clean Slate Pants awhile back...and I'm so thrilled I did, because with Melissa's super instructions, I was able to sew my very first functional zip fly!  You should have seen me giddily opening and closing the zipper once it was done...seriously exciting stuff!  

It reminded me of how I used to be scared of attempting to sew a regular zipper, years ago.  I would only buy patterns with buttons because of the dreaded zipper, and then finally, one day, I said, "That's it!  I'm sewing a zipper!".  And sure enough, after I did, I felt so silly for not trying it sooner, because it was so easy!  I have to say, after completing the Clean Slate Pants, I thought pretty much the same thing...."Why didn't I try this sooner!?!".  So, if you have a boy or sew for boys, you must check out Blank Slate Patterns.  Plus there's a 20% off launch sale.  Melissa's mission to create stylish, functional boy patterns in a market heavily dominated by numerous options for girls, is truly commendable.  
Go check this out!! 

Adult Clothing...It's Been Awhile!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Today I completed an adult sized dress, something I haven't done in a very long time.  I've been racking my brain trying to remember the last dress I've made that wasn't for a baby or child, and I seriously think it was probably my wedding dress - nine years ago!

A couple months ago when my mom came to visit us, we went to the local fabric store, she picked out this pattern and I offered to make it for her.  Yes, it's taken awhile for me to finish it, but I knew that I wasn't going to give it to her until we see her again later this month.

I hope it doesn't take this long for me to make another dress.  I'm sure it won't, although, more little dresses are on my mind with Project Run & Play around the corner!

With Appreciation...

Monday, August 13, 2012

I'm so overwhelmed by the tremendous support I received over the weekend and am truly grateful to everyone who chose to vote for me to join the other designers for Project Run & Play.  I could hardly believe it when I saw my name in the announcement this morning (the polls closed well after I went to bed, so I had no idea what the votes were at)!  While I honestly feel a little intimidated knowing the greatness I've seen created by designers in the past, I welcome the challenge to step out of my comfort zone and try new techniques.  And of course, I look forward to sharing what I learn and create with you, my readers. 

Thanks again for your encouragement, kindness, and support!

Metric Pattern Cutting

Sunday, August 12, 2012

If you have ever wanted to create your own patterns/designs, but don't know where to start, I highly recommend you get a copy of this book.  It's amazing!  I have borrowed it from the library but plan to purchase my own copy, because it's simply that good.  It gives exact details on how to create pattern blocks or slopers which are perfectly measured to fit.  And if you have a wiggly little one like mine who won't sit still for measuring, it has standard charts which I found very accurate.

 Here are my blocks for a basic top.  

I have no idea why it took me long to learn do this and I'm super excited with the endless possibilities for future designs!

If you haven't had a chance to cast your vote for the open auditions at Project Run & Play, today is the last day!

Thank you :)

French Seam Tutorial

Saturday, August 11, 2012

Since this little trench jacket is one of my favourite personal creations, I was pretty ecstatic to see it and the rest of the Toddler Sportswear Chic outfit among the final selections for the Project Run & Play Open Auditions.  And one of my favourite features of the Sportswear Trench Jacket is the fact that there are no exposed seams on the inside of it.  This technique is called a french seam, and while it's usually used on sheer or very delicate fabrics, I found it worked very well with this heavier cotton. 

Here are the steps I used to achieve this clean finish:

1.  Line up your two pieces of fabric
2.  With wrong sides together, stitch about a half inch from the edge
3.  Trim as much of the access fabric as possible
4.  Fold over and press with your stitching line on the fabric edge
5.  Stitch, encasing the raw edge inside
6.  Press flat
7.  Stitch a 3/8 seam allowance, sewing the fold down.

Voting continues until tomorrow night, to determine the final two designers for 
Project Run & Play Season 5 .  

Yes, I'd love to be one of them, but vote for your favourite! 

Project Run & Play Audition Finalist

Friday, August 10, 2012
Today is the first day of voting for the final two spots in the Project Run & Play childrenswear design competition and to my surprise & delight, my Toddler Sportswear Chic outfit was selected as one of the top five!  I had a tough time choosing which outfit to submit, but in the end, decided to go with the one that was recognized as judges' choice for the Sportswear challenge during Season 4.

The two ensembles that receive the most votes by Sunday evening will compete in Season 5 of PR & P.  Check out all the outfits here, and vote for your favourite.  Thank you in advance if you vote for mine! :)

Flutter Dress with Folded Sleeves

Friday, August 3, 2012

 Using Figgy's Flutter Circle Skirt Tutorial as a starting point, I recently completed this dress.  I wanted to create something interesting with the sleeves, so after experimenting a bit with three pieces of fabric, I created a folded, somewhat braided sleeve.  To be honest, I'm not really sure what to call it, but it worked! Here's how the dress was made...

1.  Starting with a t shirt, I traced the top of the dress.
2.  Stitched the front to the back.
3.  Finished the sleeve edges
4.  Followed the instructions on Figgy's Flutter Circle Skirt Tutorial for the skirt (except for the waistband).  Loved this tutorial by the way.  Such a great way to create customized pattern pieces, using yarn & a pencil!  You must check this out!
5.  Cut out sleeve pieces...3 for each side (one piece is about 1/2 inch wider than the other two).  I finished the edges and hemmed them lengthwise.
6.  Gather the wider piece.

 Place the wider, gathered sleeve piece centred on shoulder seam.  Add remaining sleeve pieces on top.
 Fold the gathered sleeve piece over.
 Flip sleeve piece over.
 Insert one side sleeve piece through the gathered sleeve piece.
 Repeat with the other side.  Flip sleeve back (over shoulder seam).  Fold edge of sleeve piece (under my thumb in pic).
 Place and pin remaining sleeve piece.
 Repeat on other side.

Stitch and admire your work!  

Fabric Toy House

Thursday, August 2, 2012
In case you missed it, this is what I guest posted awhile back at Paul et Paula.

Hello Paul & Paula Readers!  I am so ecstatic to be guest posting here on my favourite international design blog.

My name is Heidi, and I am a Canadian stay-at-home mom who blogs at Elegance & Elephants, a place where I share my handmade endeavours.  While I dabble in many homemade projects from cooking to crafting, my greatest passion lies in sewing garments and toys for my children Anja (1 1/2 years) & Tobias (4 years).

I recently came across this wonderful tutorial for a little fabric toy house, and I knew I just had to make for my little ones.  The instructions are very clear, and the project came together quite nicely once I got all my materials together.

Most importantly, both children love the final result, and have spent much time enjoying the new little home for their toys.

I have never done hand embroidery, but took this as an opportunity to give it a try.  
The pattern is by Sarah Jane Studios.

An added feature that my children adore, is the Little Einstein characters I painted on wooden doll pegs I bought at my local craft store.  

Thank you so much for having me here today.  
If you are interested in more DIY projects like this one, or tutorials 
and ideas for sewing children's clothing, 
I hope you will stop by Elegance & Elephants, and say hello!  

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