Completed: Wally’s Chair

Wally Chair

After I completed this chair, Wally walked into the room, saw it, and said “oh, wow, look! a chair!” Then he flopped all over it and stayed there for the better part of the evening. I guess that’s as good a review as I could have hoped for!

It’s made from a commercial pattern – McCall’s 9665. It was fairly easy to sew up, but the cover does not stay all tucked in there around the seat like it appears in the pattern envelope photos. The pattern envelope recommends purchasing the cushions needed for the chair, but the company that made the special-order cushions has gone out of business. Fortunately, the pattern also includes directions for making your own cushions.

The pattern recommends just stuffing the cushions with fiberfill, but I had leftover shredded foam from our giant beanbag, so I used that instead. It makes the cushions nice and sturdy. The other alteration I made was the zipper. Technically, the cover is supposed to have a massive zipper around three sides of the bottom so you can get the cushions in. Well, having just completed the giant beanbag covers and dealing with those massive zippers, I was not only all out of massive zippers, but I just plain didn’t want to be bothered. So I left one edge of the bottom piece open, inserted the cushions through that hole, and just sewed it up. If I need to wash the cover, I’ll just rip out the stitching. I can always replace with a zipper later if I need to.

I picked the fabric out a long time ago, and you can see my major design difficulty – I cannot mix patterns. One pattern, two solids for me! But I think it looks nice – kid-friendly without being kiddish. And, apparently, it’s quite comfortable.


Freezer paper stencil test

Inspired by this post at CRAFT, and wanting a way to make fun designs on the Roman shades I’m making for the studio, I decided to give Freezer Paper Stencils a try. I not only wanted to see if I could do it and if I was happy with how it looked, but I wanted to see how it would work on the linen shades, and also if it would work with regular wall paint instead of fabric paint. Happy to report, it is easy, and it worked fine with the regular paint on linen.

Go to the link above for a complete tutorial.

Freezer Paper Stencil Step 1 Freezer Paper Stencil Step 2 Freezer Paper Stencil Step 3 Freezer Paper Stencil Step 4 Freezer Paper Stencil Step 5

Tape design to waxy side of freezer paper, facing the waxy side.
Cut out design.
Iron on to fabric/Tshirt.
Dab on paint.
Let dry.
Peel off.

Wally's batman shirt Finished stencil test

Easy peasy!

Completed: Bathrobe

I picked up this pattern on sale for 99 cents a while back, thinking about the short sleeved robe. Plus, I’ve always liked pajamas, even though I don’t really wear them. (I mean, talk about impractical. I usually just go for flannel pants with a sweatshirt in the winter or a Tshirt in the summer.) I thought maybe I’d make myself a set of pretty jammies. I’ve talked myself out of it again, for the record.

But I did want to make a summer bathrobe. My only robe is fleece, and it’s great for winter, but altogether too bulky and hot for summer. I just want something to cover my shoulders on those mornings when it’s just a bit too chilly in the morning for just a Tshirt.

And I did own three yards of dark purple cotton knit, which was originally intended for a horrible maternity outfit that I never finished, but which would be perfect for a robe.

I actually decided to make the long sleeve robe, figuring that if it was warm enough to want a short sleeve robe, it was warm enough to not need a robe at all. I finished it up in one evening. Turning the tie right side out took a full half hour, and the rest of the robe took a half hour, also. (I’ll post a tutorial on how NOT to spend a half hour turning a tube right side out soon.)


It’s a little messy on the inside. They have you use ironed-flat bias tape as the facing all around the front of the robe. For whatever reason, I couldn’t get it to stop twisting funny while I was sewing it (possibly a combination of the stretch in the knit and the stretch in the bias tape? and I gave up trying, frankly. So it’s going to irritate me every time I put the thing on, but I guess I’ll get over it eventually.

Another project for the Use What You Have craftalong at Craftster.

Completed: Linen Dresses

Four sweet little dresses.

And here we have four sweet linen dresses. The plain linen is headed for Etsy, the others all have homes already.

Matchy Matchy Sundresses Linen Crabby Dress & Bloomers Linen Dress

The smaller of the two blue dresses is for my niece’s first birthday in June. The larger is for her little friend, Olivia. Olivia’s house was broken a few weeks ago, and Olivia is having a hard time adapting to all the change she’s suddenly experiencing. This little dress is woefully inadequate to make her feel better, but we all enjoy presents when we’re down, so I hope this will help in some small way. Both dresses have matching bucket hats, which are not pictured. (broken = a drunk driver drove through their house going 60 mph – he was going 80 before slamming on the brakes. He drove literally through the house, front to back, in the front, stopped on the deck, also took out a chunk of the second floor.)

The dress in the middle picture is also for my niece’s birthday. I thought the fun crabs were an interesting statement, and I had just enough left over for a pair of matching bloomers.

And, as I said, the plain one is headed for Etsy. These dresses were so fun to make, I couldn’t stop at just three!

PS, I joined the Use What You Have craftalong at Craftster, and this project fits well within that craftalong. All made with stuff I already owned. (I actually kind of had this dress in mind when I bought the crab fabric, though.)

Completed: 40s Pantsuit

I finished this last week, but have had a heckuva time getting pictures taken. I am so pleased with how this turned it, and will be wearing it to Jive Junction tonight.

40s pantsuit with jacket Pantsuit, 40s

OK, I swear I don’t normally have a double chin. And normally the pantsuit would be worn with not only vintage shoes but also a more appropriate shirt. Not a logo Tshirt. But the suit is awesome, eh?

The pattern says it is intended to adhere to WPB regulations. The jacket is unlined, the whole thing is very un-wasteful.

This is the pattern.

And this is why I love vintage patterns:

That’s the directions. Most notably, the parts about “make bound buttonholes as marked” or “attach collar and facings.” Seriously. No further direction. Just the assumption that you know how to do these things. My favorite part? “Step by Step, Simply Explained” at the top. Do you know that a similar pattern printed today would include at least four sheets of instructions?