Archive for the ‘Sewing’ Category

{image via Posie Gets Cozy}

Posie Gets Cozy just added this charming Winterwoods ABCs Cross Stitch Sampler to her online shop – and even though I’ve never done cross stitch – I immediately bought it. The little red mittens, the snowflake, the wellies and the coffee cup…the whole cabin in the woods theme will be perfect addition to the library/knitting room in the new house. Plus, it will be fun to try something new!

{image via Posie Gets Cozy}

Posie Gets Cozy is one of my favorite blogs in the whole entire world…written by Alicia Paulson, it is one the few blogs* that I check on a daily basis. Her writing style, her photography, her incredible talent with fiber and fabric, her studio, her insanely cozy home…it is all so inspirational!

{image via Posie Gets Cozy}

And for newbies such as myself, Alicia is kind enough to offer her favorite embroidery supplies for sale in her shop as well. Pick up a Winterwoods sampler of your very own here.  This weekend, be sure to pour yourself a hot cup of coffee and read Alicia’s blog here. Have a great weekend!

{*other daily reads: dona knits, garance doré, this is glamorous}

Read Full Post »

more sewing…

Jaime has been sneaking a little bit of sewing into her nights, which I’m glad about.  Anyone that works as hard as she does needs a creative outlet every now and then.  While she was out in Oregon, Mom Jodie taught her how to make a reusable coffee sleeve.  Together, they made hers (on the left),  and when she got home, she kindly made one for me (on the right).

She chose a chic gray floral print for the outside of hers, and paired it with a contrasting yellow for the inside.    For mine, she chose a grayish-black floral for the outside and a solid red for the inside.  She used a pretty wave stitch in a contrasting thread to sew each together – you can see it best on the lighter fabric:

She added snaps for closures, which involves lots of hammering.   And who doesn’t like a little bit of hammering after working a standard eleven-hour work day?

If hammering snaps is not your thing, you could also use Velcro, and then just sew a little button the the outside for decoration.  I used my sleeve for the first time on Thursday, when I went to the bookstore for a little coffee and magazine reading.  It felt good to leave the cardboard sleeves sitting in their little holder…

This is another great project for the little scraps of fabric in your stash.  Don’t you think these would make great last-minute stocking-stuffers or holiday gifts for teachers?  And they can be put together in under and hour.   I’ll see if Jaime can work up a template for you…

Hope your week is off to a good start! ~J

Read Full Post »

This weekend, my sister did a little crafting in the studio and whipped up a small batch of bookmarks for everyone.  She had a ton of little scraps tucked away in her stash, so she let the kids dig through them and chose which fabrics they wanted to use.

They ended up choosing two different fabrics for each bookmark – except for Dora.  Berry is serious about her Dora:

They came out so sweet!  Especially the frayed edges – it makes them look like they’ve seen the insides of lots of books.

If you’d like to make your own, you’ll need:

  • two 2.5″ x 6″ rectangles of fabric
  • one 2.5″ x 6″ rectangle of interfacing
  • a small length of ribbon

Sandwich the interfacing and the ribbon between the two rectangles of fabric (right sides facing out); pin.  Then, using your sewing machine, zigzag stitch around the edges (Jaime went twice around each bookmark).  Press with an iron, and voilà!  This is good if you are looking for something to do with leftover scraps from a loved project.

As you can see, mine is already being put to good use. ~J

Read Full Post »

Jaime and I are always looking for fast and cute baby projects around here – and this hooded baby towel featured over at The Purl Bee sure does fit the bill nicely!  The vintage looking Blue Posies fabric they used is totally sweet for a girl, and they paired it with Michael Miller’s soft Organic Terrycloth.  For a boy, I might back the terrycloth with this charming Three Little Pigs fabric:

A whole stack of these would be perfect for my adorable nephew, Jack, who is totally in love with his new pool.  Here is a picture of his very first swim, taken just last week:

He needs something soft and cozy to dry off that little Buddha-belly of his! ~J

{Towel project page here, fabric can be bought here and terrycloth here.}

Read Full Post »

The talent over at Etsy continues to amaze me.  I recently stumbled across a little shop called Atelier de Soyun, which has the prettiest little needle and hook holders.  They are all handmade with natural linen and organic cotton.  This is the inside of the circular needle case shown above:

Right now, I am using my Grandmother’s old makeup bag to hold all of my circular, straight, double pointed knitting needles and gadgets, and it is officially too full to close!  These might help keep me a bit more organized.  They come in all sorts of pretty colors:

She has holders for your circulars, your dpns, straight, crochet hooks, and even an all-in-one holder!  I also love these Springtime coffee cup cozies:

I highly recommend a visit to her shop!  Prices run from $10-$69.  Happy shopping and have a wonderful weekend! ~J

Read Full Post »

…that February is National Embroidery Month?  I didn’t, until I read Anne’s post over at The City Sage.  A while back, I bought a hoop and some colorful embroidery thread so that I could try my hand at it.  Actually, the only thing that I embroidered was this heart on the inside of my hubby’s favorite jeans.  (A sweet Valentine’s Day gesture, no?)

If you are looking for fresh, young embroidery patterns, you have to check out Sublime Stitching – their stuff is really modern and fun!

I know that Jaime is planning on making her hubby some boxers for Valentine’s Day…he loves bacon and steak, so these might be cute embroidered on the bottom of a pair or two:

{meaty treats - $5}

I’ve got my eyes on this sexy-librarian set, which, when embroidered onto strips of fabric, would make darling bookmarks for my library books:

{sexy librarians + secretaries, $5}

This set, stitched onto some dishtowels, would make a great birthday gift for my camping-loving  best friend, Bethie:

{camp out! - $5}

And this would be perfect stitched onto a canvas tote-bag, for knitting projects on-the-go:

How about you, readers?  Do you plan on doing any embroidery this month?  We’d love to hear what you’re up to!

Read Full Post »


Seriously, Jenny and I have a problem.  A simple Friday evening conversation over dinner about needing to go shopping for a dress to wear to a sunrise beach wedding on Monday (that Jenny needed to attend) turns into project runway in the sorella household.  Instead of shopping for a dress, we shopped for fabric on Friday at 7:30pm.  And instead of using the dress pattern we purchased, we decided it would be easier (ha!) to just drape, pin and cut the fabric into the dress we envisioned.  

After pouring a couple glasses of wine, we took out some breezy white stretch cotton gauze we had purchased a few weeks ago (for nightgowns, of course) and started draping.  After about an hour, here’s what we had in mind:

long looked too much like the bride's dress ...

long looked too much like the bride's dress ...

And thirty minutes later we had …

short is chic!

short is chic!

cut 3
Using this as our “pattern”, we layed each piece out on the gorgeous mallard blue cotton we had purchased and cut!  About two hours later we had …
pieced together at about 1am ... was taken the following morning after some coffee!

pieced together at about 1am ... pic was taken the following morning after some coffee!

The back was tricky, considering we decided to do a portrait neck line and neither of us had ever done one before!
after a bit of fiddling, we got it right!

after a bit of fiddling, we got it right!

At about 2pm (we started sewing again on Saturday around 9am), we had finished.  However, after some sit tests, Jenny decided that the white lining was not going to work after all.  So we then took about 90 minutes and ripped it out.  SO FUN … 🙂  We love our reverse sewers!  (aka seam ripper)  Here’s the final product, and Jenny loves it!  (and she looks gorgeous in it as well)  Next time we’ll include some darts, and probably some seaming at the waist line.  But for our first non-pattern grown up dress, I think it’s pretty good!
finished 1
finished 3
finished 6
the back of the dress

the back of the dress

easy sash!

easy sash!

ready for departure

ready for departure

I can’t wait to see the pics from the sunrise wedding tomorrow!
~ Jaime

Read Full Post »

finished skirt

Yesterday morning, Mike and I were up with the girls at 7am.  After I pulled a couple shots of espresso for some extra-hot lattes, Mike and I decided it was time to do the fall clean-out of the girls’ closets and dressers.  We usually do this ‘purge’ two or three times a year.  It feel especially important (and necessary) to do, because all of the girls will be attending school this year (in just one week!) and sorting through drawers and closets full of clothes that are either too small or out of season will likely delay the getting ready for school process.

So, THREE HOURS LATER we had pared their closets and dressers back significantly.  Erin and Meghan are sooooo tiny that at one point this morning Meghan was running around in her size 24M skirt (she’s 5) and I debated on whether or not to let her keep it or donate it.  (we wound up donating it – too short!)  As I was sorting through and deciding what to keep and what to donate, I realized that I was reluctant to give up many of the items that didn’t fit Erin and Meghan anymore because I loved the fabric so much.  That’s when I decided I would put Bernito to work!

size 3t dress

This particular dress was a gift from my cousin Samantha for Erin and Meghan’s third birthday.  We have two – one with pink flowers and one with purple.  Both are just absolutely adorable, but are just too short for their long legs.  After taking a long hard look at it, I realized if I just took the rotary cutter to the dress right above the velvet ribbons, we just might have a very cute skirt on our hands.

chalking the line

I had nothing to lose (because I was going to give it away anyway, right?) so I chalked a yellow line straight across the top of the dress where I’d want the waist of the skirt.  I broke out the rotary cutter and off it came.

I pinned it on Meghan to take it in just a bit, and decided to use the button on the back of the dress as a button on the top back of the skirt.  I mimicked the pleats on the front of the dress (now skirt) on the back in the places I took it in to fit Meghan.  I also left on the sash from the dress because it makes a cute bow on the back of the skirt.

pinning to fit

faking my way through a pleat

Last thing to do was to finish the raw edge on the top. Folded it over a couple of times, pressed, top stitched and voilà!  A new skirt for school.

the skirt!

the back




Total cutting and sewing time – about 30 minutes.  Now I just need to figure out what to do with the pink dress …

~ Jaime

Read Full Post »

{my first dress}

{my first dress}

You may have seen this dress before, most recently on Katie.   This is the  fifth habitual dress that has been made in the studio – the third in this exact fabric combination, but it’s the first time I’ve ever sewn a dress all by myself!  That’s right – I decided to cut, press, pin and sew (with french seams, of course) this dress all without Jaime – on the day I needed to give it as a gift, no less.

{the beautiful neckline}

{the beautiful neckline}

Four hours after I read through the pattern, the dress was completely finished.  Surprisingly, the french seams were not as difficult as I thought they would be, and I just love the elegant way they finish the garment:

{neat, tidy seams}

{the raw edges are completely enclosed}

The soft, dusty colors and the 1930’s feel of both of these fabrics are quite charming.   The orange thread was chosen because that is what the machine happened to be threaded with – thankfully, it matched the fabric, because I have no idea how to thread a sewing machine.  Or a bobbin…

{the sweet butterfly sash}

{the sweet butterfly sash}

Overall, I am just so pleased with how this turned out!  I can’t wait to try sewing something else…


Read Full Post »

After a long day of working, I sometimes like to just take a few moments and browse fabric to get some inspiration.  (which is also why I have so many projects yet to be started …)  Tonight, while browsing PurlSoho.com, I came across this amazing, beautiful, perfect-for-princess Meghan fabric by Heather Ross.  It’s her fairly new (April, I believe) line called Far, Far Away.  I just KNOW I need to get some of this fabric – the blue would look gorgeous against Meghan’s alabaster skin and shiny chestnut hair.  She would LOVE LOVE LOVE the unicorns.  But what to make?  A dress?  A top?  Hmmm … let the brainstorming begin!

maybe purple unicorns …


Well … maybe I should think about a couple yards of the mermaids as well …

decisions, decisions ...

decisions, decisions ...

~ Jaime

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »