Tag Archive | blue

HaHaHaHa – Part 3 of Sew It Begins

With the husband’s latest shirt completed, it was finally time to sew a new shirt for myself.

I picked the design and fabric for my new shirt based on the embroidery design that I had picked out to use. I love this Snoopy design and I have always wanted to embroider it on a shirt for me. So, with the Snoopy design in mind I entered the stash room and picked a piece of blue cotton and a matching patterned cotton remnant for the fabric for this shirt.

After laundering the fabric, I laid it out on the cutting table and got started. I cut out the pieces from the blue cotton first, then I cut into the remnant only to find out that I was short on fabric. I must have measured incorrectly or the fabric had shrunk more than expected in the wash.

Regardless, this piece was too small to use now. Logically, I should have returned to the stash room and chosen another fabric but, oh no, not me. The challenge was on. My creative mind was churning. How could I get the needed pieces from this short piece of fabric?

I started by changing my idea of matching the pattern of the fabric at the side seams. I debated if not matching the pattern was a good idea, or if it would make me crazy after the shirt was sewn. Since the pattern on the fabric was a little crazy itself and it would be non matching at the seam under my arms, I decided to go for it and disregard matching the pattern.

Even with not matching the pattern at the side seams, I was still a little shy, about 2 inches, of having enough fabric for the sleeves. What could I do to get just 2 more inches? If I shortened the sleeves by an inch each, I would have my 2 inches, but I did not want my sleeves an inch shorter. So how could I cut the sleeves an inch shorter and still have them the same length?

Bias tape was the answer.

I cut the sleeves the inch shorter, but instead of hemming the sleeves, I made some 1/2 inch bias tape from the blue cotton and used the bias tape to finish the sleeves. The rest of the sewing of the shirt sewed smoothly and embroidering the Snoopy design was great fun.

I am very pleased with this shirt. It is fun to wear and I love having the Snoopy design on it. It was also a fun shirt to sew and it was exciting to let my creative mind work to solve a sewing problem.

With a new shirt done for both the husband and the me, it was time to pick a my next sewing project. Stay tuned to see what that will be.

Until then, Sew forth and Laugh on!

Doubling the Edge

dscn0498dscn0527On one of my journeys into the stash, I ran across two fleece blanket kits that I had purchased on clearance many years ago. “Why had I purchase these?” I wondered to myself. A John Deer Blanket? A Christmas Blanket? “What was I thinking?”

Well I will tell you what I was thinking, they were cheap and they were fleece and they were blankets and I needed them to live in the stash. But alas, their time had finally come. They would no longer just live in the stash. They were blankets and since it would soon be getting cold, they needed to be made into blankets and used as blankets. I would not be keeping these blankets once they were made. They needed to go to a good home and to live with someone who needed a blanket. And even though they would be leaving, I would still get the pleasure of transforming them from a kit in to a useable blanket, and that is the real reason of why I bought them.

dscn0506Prepping the fleece was the first step in this adventure. At first I thought about making 4 single layered blankets from the two kits, but then I decided to make the kits just as they came and to make two double layered blankets. Because I wanted to crochet around the blankets instead of just cutting and knotting the edges, I had to attach the two layers together before I could use the skip stitch blade to make my edges to crochet.

Sewing the wrong sides together and turning the blanket, like I would if I was using flannel, would have given me too bulky of a seam with the 4 layers of dscn0528fleece along the edge. And I did not want that bulky edge.

Because the fleece would not ravel like flannel would, I decided to skip the turning part. So, after squaring the fleece, I held the wrong sides together and sewed along the edge of the blanket, about 1/4 inch in. This made the edge of the blanket only two layers thick. Next, using the skip stitch blade, I cut 1/2 inch from the edge of the blanket to make the slits for crocheting. I did not cut off the dotted lines part of the top fleece. These dotted lines were the cutting guide to be used if you were knotting the edge of the blanket together. I did not think the lines looked bad around the design and it made the blanket just that much larger.

dscn0505With the skip stitch portion done, it was time to start crocheting. Since both blankets were in masculine colors, I decided to make a simple edge, with no scoops or scallops.

The first row was the foundation row into the skip stitch cuts. For the second row I changed to the complimentary color and did a chain 3, skipping every other stitch. Changing back to the foundation row color, the third row was a chain 3 and then slipstitched into each of the second dscn0530rows chain 3.

I have made this edge several times before on baby blankets and it is a quick crochet and I love the look of it when it is done.

One difference between these blankets and some other blankets I have made, was that I got quite warm under these larger fleece double blankets while I was crocheting the edges compared to a lighter flannel baby blanket. This was actually ok this time of year, but I will not be making any of these large double thick fleece blankets in July.

Now that they are completed, these blankets are ready to find a needed home.

Until next time, crochet forth and blanket on!

Another Bubble – Part 3, The Buttons

DSCN0544I was very unhappy with the serged seam that I got when attaching the bodice and skirt together on this bubble top. It is bulky and heavy and did not serge well. I think it is ugly. Even after top stitching it down to the bodice, it isn’t the result that I wanted. I had wasted my time and webbing worrying about the thread of the embroidery design under the lining being uncomfortable when this serged seam is far more of a problem that the threads would be.

One reason why this seam is so awful compared to the same seam on the first bubble top is the bulk of the bodice fabric. Rather than using a thin lining fabric for the bodice, I used the same fabric for both the top fabric and the lining of the DSCN0549bodice. This fabric is heavier than a lining fabric would have been. So by the time I was ready to serge this seam together, it was four pieces of fabric thick. Unlike on the last bubble top where all four of the fabrics were thin, three of the fabrics on this top were heavier fabrics, two of which were significantly heavier. It gave me food for thought on what not to do for the next bubble top. It also gave me another reason to make a third bubble top. If I am using a heavier fabric, I may want to do the stitch in the ditch type of seam rather than the serged seam to finish this part of the top.

DSCN0540Because I did not have the expected overlap for the buttons and buttonholes, I made the buttonholes vertical. But with the bulky serged seam attaching the bodice and skirt together, I could not make the first buttonhole as close to the seam as I would have liked. So this top only got two buttons instead of three and they were not stitched where I would have liked them to be. I don’t believe the button placement will affect the wearing of this top though. I think that part will be just fine. Even more food for thought on the next bubble top though. Perhaps I need to do the buttonholes before attaching the bodice and skirt, or solve the overlap problem first and then make horizontal buttonholes.

DSCN0533This bubble top was a huge learning experience for me, just like most of my sewing projects are. This top has convinced me that another bubble top is in my sewing future. I believe there are still things to learn from this pattern. Even with the issues that I will change on the next bubble top, this top is still very cute and I think will wear well.

I hope that some little girl will enjoy wearing it!

Until next time, sew forth and bubble on!

Another Bubble – Part 2, The Skirt

DSCN0543Sewing the skirt for this top was the next step. I remembered this time that I wanted to make sure and iron the hem before I stitched the skirt to the bodice. But after doing so I quickly learned that, no, I did not want to iron the hem before I stitched it to the bodice. Ironing the seam just smashed the gathers and flattened the bubble. So, after ironing the hem, I had to try to fluff the hem enough to get the bubble back.

One thing I wanted to do better on the next bubble top was to finish the ends of the serging on the seam attaching the bodice and skirt together. Because the serging is exposed and not hidden with a stitch in the ditch seam, I wanted a clean serged edge once I was done sewing it. After doing a little internet searching, I found two techniques for finishing off serging that I wanted to try on this top.

DSCN0157The first technique started with serging a chain of thread. Then the fabric is placed under the presser foot of the serger and the chain of thread is pulled around and laid on top of the fabric between where the needles will be stitching and where the blade will be cutting. As the serger stitched, the chain laid under the loop stitches, leaving a clean starting edge. This technique worked well for the start of the serging, but it would not work well for ending the serging so that is where the second technique came in.

DSCN0159For the second finishing technique, the fabric is serged right to the end, the presser foot lifted and the fabric pulled around, flipped over and placed back under the pressure foot. The next step is to serge down the already serged seam a couple of inches and then serge off the edge. This technique left a rough edge at the end of the serging, but not where the serging is exposed at the end of the seam. This technique worked well at the end of the serging but it would not work well when the serging starts.

So, between the two techniques, I had much cleaner looking serged exposed edges when finished. I still need to practice with both techniques some more before I would say that I am proficient at using either one. And so that is yet another reason that I will be making another bubble top in the very near future.

Next up, part 3, the buttons.

Until next time, sew forth and bubble on!

 

Another Bubble – Part 1, The Bodice

DSCN0533I love fabric. I love it so much that I hate to throw away any scraps. I measure and debate way too long about my scraps before they hit the garbage can. What could I make from these scraps? Is it large enough for another project? Will I want to piece it together with another fabric later? As I contemplated the fate of the scraps from my blue shirt with white sleeves, I decided there was enough scraps of the blue print and white fabric left to make another bubble top. There was not enough for a size 6 like the last pink and white bubble top, but enough for a size 3, so I reprinted the pattern and got started.

Because it has not been so long since I made the last bubble top, I remembered the things I wanted to do differently on the next one I made. While cutting out the bodice I added 1 inch to the back pieces of the bodice so there was fabric to cross over for the buttons. I also cut a 1 inch strip of interfacing and ironed it to the back bodice pieces to give a little extra support for the buttons and buttonholes. The rest of the top was cut the same as the pattern called for.

DSCN0538Since the bodice was made from the white scraps of the sleeves of my shirt, it needed something embroidered on it. The picnic ant design from my last shirt would work great and match the red in the blue fabric. Embroidering the design became the first step in the sewing process, which was odd. Usually embroidering a design on something I make is one of the last steps in the sewing process. I did iron some webbing on the back of the design to help smooth the threads even though there is a lining for the bodice that would hide the threads. This design would be against the little girl’s chest, and I did not want bumpy thread to be uncomfortable when the top is worn.

The bodice stitched up fine. When I had finished sewing it, I laid it out on the cutting table. There was a good two inches of overlap at the buttons. What had happened? Had I mis-measured? Maybe adding a whole inch was too much? I flipped the bodice inside out and cut 1/2 inch off my added inch and restitched. Laying it out again, I now had a 1&1/2 inch overlay. What? At this point I decided that maybe I cut the first bubble top wrong and that was why there was no overlap for the buttons, or maybe the size 6 pattern line was off leaving no overlap. So, I flipped the bodice inside out again and cut off 1/2 inch more. Cutting off the extra inch also cut off my P1040331interfacing so I had to reapply more interfacing for the buttons and buttonholes. I restitched the seam and turn the bodice right side out again. Guess what! It now had no overlap. What? This was going to require more thought than I wanted to give at that moment. The bodice was the same as the first bubble top. The extra inch had been cut off. Since I wanted to keep sewing and not solve this problem at that time, I decided that another bubble top was in my future where I would address the back overlap issue. Since I could not add the cut off inch back to the bodice, I would just finish off this top the way it was. It would just have the side seam issue of the first bubble top that I had made.

Stay tuned for Part 2, the skirt.

Until next time, sew forth and bubble on!

Denver Broncos Number One Fan

Well not me personally, but most of my family seem to be big fans of the Denver Broncos. I don’t really have any particular sports teams that I root for and I’ve never been a big professional sports fan.broncos2

P1030923My dad though is a huge Denver Broncos fan, and he fights a constant battle during the summer trying to keep the squirrels from eating everything in his garden. And  because I just love to tease him about them doing it, I decided to make him this one of a kind, custom made in team colors of orange and blue, Number One Denver Broncos Fan Squirrel with a matching foam finger.

The squirrel pattern that I used for it is a free one that I got from the Red Heart yarn website. I used a 4mm G hook with Red Heart mocha, aran, orange and blue colors.P1030929

It crocheted up very nicely even though I was concerned that the arms and legs were going to be too small. But once I started to assemble the pieces it all looked the way the pattern showed it should. Also when I crocheted his tail according to the pattern it seemed to be too small to me, so I made it about 10 rows taller than the pattern showed and about 6 sc wider. I also used one of my large round sewing weights to go in the very bottom part of the squirrel to weight him down somewhat. I figured with his very large tail he would fall over or be wobbly without some extra weight to keep him upright. And I was correct. Once I attached the tail he would have fallen over very quickly without the extra weight. And I changed the design of the hat shown in the pattern from a santa or elf shaped pointy hat to a more rounded stocking cap design.

IMG_0027I used the felting fuzzy brush technique that I recently learned to do on a previous blog post on his tail and it turned out great too! It looks very puffy and fuzzy just like a real squirrels does.

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In the end I think he turned out great and I hope my dad likes him!

Go Broncos!

And good luck in winning this year at Super Bowl XLVIII!

Four Wings and Two Prayers

Screen Shot 2013-11-24 at 11.55.09 AMA long time ago, I purchased the book Adorable Amigurumi by Erin Clark. I loved every design in the book and thought I could not wait to get started crocheting patterns from it, but I guess I could wait. After admiring the cute designs in the book, I placed this book on my book shelf with my other amigurumi books and I promptly forgot about its adorable designs until just a few days ago. While perusing the yarn section at Walmart recently, I found this turquoise blue skien of Red Heart Love yarn and I immediately thought of the adorable dragonfly pattern in this book. I bought the yarn and went right home to start crocheting this dragonfly.

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P1030525As I got started, I noticed that the patten did not state the number of stitches per round. This is not a big deal but it is nice to have this number to help keep count of the stitches and rounds as you go. So, I decided to add the stitch count to the pattern before I got started crocheting. As I started counting the stitches for each round in the pattern, I found that there was not a round 17 in the head. I figured that maybe this was just a typo in the book, so I kept on counting but I then noticed that the head went from 48 stitches in round 16 to 36 stitches in round 18. Now, I have made enough amigurumi’s to know that is quite a sudden drop in stitches, especially if you want a round head instead of the back of the head being flat. I decided at this point to stop counting and get start crocheting to see what I got. Sure enough, the head started out nice and round and then went flat after round 18. It looked funny and not at all like the pictures in the pattern had looked. So I undid my crocheting back to round 16 and started my own decrease in stitches and rounds to get a nice smooth decrease and a round head.

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P1030498After that, I continued on to the thorax portion of the body. The rounds and the stitch count seemed to crochet the shape that I had expected, but when I reached the abdomen portion of the body, something was wrong. I could not get the stitch count per round to match the number of rounds in the pattern. I was very flustered at this point with the whole thing. I felt like I had put too much work into this project to stop and call it a loss though so I continued on. I worked my way down the abdomen, counting and shaping it to something that looked like the picture as well as a shape I thought the dragonfly’s abdomen should look like.

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P1030497Upon completing the dragonfly’s body, I was so flustered with this pattern, I really did not want to finish it. Now, I’m not really a great amigurumi designer even though I have created a few of my own. That’s why I bought the book, so I could just make something someone else had already spent the time to create and test out. So, I was not happy that a published pattern in a book that I had paid for was not tested and edited better. Now, it might just have been me. Maybe I had missed something somewhere in the pattern, but if I did it was not obvious to me what I had missed and I did study this pattern very carefully to try and find what step I might have missed.

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P1030528The legs, eyes and antennas crocheted up much more smoothly and I was able to follow the pattern ok when making them. In fact, I like how the eyes turned out very much. They are nice and big and round and full of life. There were minimal instructions for stitching the dragonfly parts together, so I turned to the photos in the pattern to get an idea. I noticed right away that the designer had stitched the legs on both the thorax and abdomen of the dragonfly. In nature this would be incorrect. A dragonfly’s legs are only attached to the thorax. Now, I know this is a crocheted cartoon like dragonfly and it does not have to be scientifically correct, but I just didn’t want to stitch the legs down the dragonfly’s abdomen. What I did find out was that there was not enough room to put all three legs on each side of the thorax. And so to get evenly spaced legs, I ended up stitching the third leg where the thorax and the abdomen connect together. This is still incorrect but it looks better than the legs crowded and unevenly spaced on the thorax. I did learn a lot when attaching the chain legs to the body. It would have been a lot easier to have attached the legs as I crocheted the thorax, before it was stuffed. But, that is a lesson that could only be learned by experience. Now I know that if I make another dragonfly from this pattern, to make the legs first and then attach them to the thorax as I crochet before stuffing the thorax.

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P1030530Even with all the issues with the round and stitch count, this dragonfly did turn out super cute. I have not named this dragonfly or found him a home yet. I have, though, decided to keep this book. Because the end results of this dragonfly are so cute, I have decided to try another pattern from this book. When I do, I hope that the bad dragonfly pattern in this book is an exception for the patterns in this book and not the norm. I will have to try out making another pattern from this book to find that out. Once I do, I will let everyone know what I have found.

But It’s My Favorite or A (Life) Altering Story

P1030748“My Buzz shirt does not fit anymore.” announced the husband the other day. And, its true. With his weight loss, his buzz shirt does not fit him well at all anymore. This shirt was always overly large on him because it’s fabric stretched so much when I was making it, that now it is really just too big for him to wear. I explained to the husband that I don’t unpick so therefore I could not fix his Buzz shirt but that I could start again and make him a smaller Buzz shirt. “But, its my favorite. Can’t you just make it smaller?” replied the husband. After rolling my eyes, I decided that yes, I can fix his Buzz shirt. It was time for me to get over my issues with unpicking, bite the bullet and try altering a few of our older larger shirts.

To start this journey, I examined the Buzz shirt closely. I was not going to go spend time altering a shirt that was already wearing out, but the Buzz shirt seemed to be in pretty good shape still, so I got started. I noticed quickly that the same alterations that I had made to the husband’s shirt pattern were the same alterations that the Buzz shirt needed. This made perfectly good sense since I was dealing with the same pattern. So, just like on his shirt pattern, I needed to take some out of the shoulder seams to bring the neck line up more around the the husband’s neck. This meant the the collar was going to need to be removed so I could get to the shoulder seams. With that, the unpicking began.

P1030466I started the unpicking process by removing the twill tape from the collar, then I unpicked the facings from the shoulder seams. Next came the actual unpicking of the collar from the shirt. I wish I had not been so careful in the construction of the collar in the first place, like backing stitch and double stitching where I felt it needed reinforcement. Not doing those things would have made the unpicking easier. But I also knew full well that when I sewed the collar back on I would be following my same techniques so that I had made a good sturdy shirt. I decided that I did not need to remove the collar completely from the shirt. Because the alteration was in the shoulder seams and not the tab front, I only needed to unpick to just past the shoulder seams. On the husbands shirt pattern I had raised the front of the neck 1/2 inch but I did not know how to add that 1/2 inch to the already made shirt so I took a little more off the shoulder seams than I did on the pattern to help draw the front of the neck up a little more.

P1030467After removing the desired amount from the shoulder seams, it was time to sew the collar back on. I noticed right away that now the collar was too big. I thought about trying to find the scraps from the Buzz shirt and make a whole new collar but then decided to just remove the excess and then put a seam up the center back of the collar. I often put a seam in the center back of the husband’s collars. When I am making the husband a new shirt and don’t quite have enough fabric, I can put a center seam in the collar and it can be made with much less fabric. So, I saw no problem in adding a center seam to the Buzz shirt collar to make it smaller. The collar sewed back on smoothly. Because of the easing slits that had been cut when the collar was first stitched on, I had a larger seam allowance when I reattached the collar but not enough that I think it made any difference.

After completing the collar, I had the husband try the shirt on. The alternations seemed to be good, the neck line was smaller and closer to the neck and taking the extra out of the shoulders seem to lift the front up more. I would have liked the front up even more but it was still acceptable.

P1030746Next I planned to take the 1/2 inch out of the sides seams like I did on the husband’s pattern, but the husband said no. He wanted the roominess of the shirt left in but he did want the hems shorter. This was an easy fix. Because I was leaving the roominess in the sides of the shirt, I did not fuss about lifting the side slits up with the shortening of the hem. The husband would still be able to easily sit even if the side slit were lower and smaller. So, I cut 1 inch off the hem and gave the shirt a new 1 inch hem. Because of the stretch, the Buzz shirt had always been longer than the husband’s other shirts. With the new hem, the Buzz shirt is now the same length as the husband’s other shirts so it could be a little shorter, but not enough that I was willing to redo the hems.

With that the Buzz shirt was altered and ready for the wear test. Upon first trying the newly altered Buzz shirt on, the husband said the fit was fine. After wearing the shirt, he still says the fit is fine but I have noticed that I could have taken just a little bit more out, probably due to the stretch in the fabric, but not so much that I would be willing to P1030747unpick the collar again. What I did learn was that the altering of the shirt was not that big of a deal and that I did not die from having to do some unpicking. Although the unpicking was not fun, it was not the problem I was making it out to be. I thought the altering of the shirt would take weeks to finish but it really only took a couple of hours. I was very pleased with the short amount of time required and with the end results. So I will say that I will no longer be afraid to alter any of the other shirts that the husband may want fixed, even though I would still rather start from scratch and make a new shirt.

Monkey See! Monkey Do!

IMG_7123So, I did! I fell in love with this monkey pattern the minute I saw the e-book on Amazon. I could not press the purchase button fast enough. It took forever for the e-book to load. I could not wait to start crocheting this adorable monkey with the big eyes.

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This is a great pattern. It is well written and easy to follow. Most of the parts of the monkey were fun to crochet. The feet were a little tricky but easy enough to figure out but the pupils of the eyes were the real challenge. The pattern called for the black pupils to be made from embroidery floss or crochet thread and crocheted with a small hook. I tried this but didn’t like the results. So, I went back to regular 4 ply yarn and an F hook, a step down from the G hook I crocheted the other parts of the eyes with. Because of the heavy yarn and the larger hook, after I crocheted the 1st round of the pupil, it looked to be the right size so I did not crochet the 2nd round.

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P1030136The arms and legs had to be stuffed as I crocheted them up. The more amigurumi’s I make the more I like to stuff things as I crochet. I dislike the stuffing part of the process so stuffing as I go helps break the task up for me. Sometimes you have to stuff as you crochet the rounds because of the size of the parts, but even when I don’t have to stuff as I crochet, I am finding that I am going ahead and stuffing as I crochet any way. As you know, the stitching together of the parts in my next least favorite part of the process and I always learn something from the stitching parts together as I did with this monkey.

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IMG_7132After learning what I did from the stitching together of the parts of this monkey, I wanted to make a second monkey from this pattern, but I wanted to change it up a little, so I decided to try something I read in the Complete Idiots Guide to Amigurumi book and give this second monkey a skirt and make it a girl. So, on the first round of the shirt, I crocheted in the back loop only, leaving the front loop for the skirt. The book really did not give instructions for making a skirt so I followed the pattern from the Bride of Frankenstein I made several years ago. I did two single crochets in each front loop for the first round of the skirt. Then just single crocheting in each crochet, I did 5 rounds which looked IMG_7131like a good length for the skirt. At this point the skirt was kind of boring, so I crocheted a scalloped edge around the skirt like I do on the fleece blankets that I make for some variety. This added just the right touch to complete the skirt and I am pleased with the way it looks. Another option I found for crocheting the skirt was to add single crochets to each round as I crocheted. This would make the skirt wavy. I could also add the single crochets at the end of the skirt to make a ruffle on the bottom of the skirt. I may try these ideas on another amigurumi project, perhaps another monkey.

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IMG_7135I crocheted each of the monkey’s tail exactly the same but they turned out so differently. I am not really sure why. At first, I was upset and started to make another tail to see if I could get it to match one of the other two that I had made. Then I decided that every monkey is different and that differing tails were actually ok. Differing tails gave each monkey a unique personality.  

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I just love these monkeys and I just love this pattern. And I do want to make more monkeys. Maybe the next time I will use different colors and make a blue or a pink or a yellow monkey. That would be fun. The ideas for more monkeys are abounding so it’s time to start crocheting again!

But It’s Too Hot

Because we had such a cold winter this past year, the husband has wore his heavy fleece robot bathrobe all winter long, and has been nice and toasty in it. As the seasons are starting to change and the weather is starting to warm back up, I am starting to hear murmuring about how hot and heavy the robot bathrobe is. When I found the husband looking for his old worn out bathrobe for the coming summer months, I knew it was time to make him another lighter and cooler bathrobe for the summer months.

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IMGI got out the pattern that I had used when I constructed the robot bathrobe, but with our recent change in body size, I decided to try a newly purchased pattern, Simplicity 5314 instead. I purchased this pattern awhile back on one of Jo-Ann’s 5 for $5 pattern sales. I started by taking some quick measurements of the husband, but decided that since he would want a roomy big bathrobe, I would just make the XXXL size. Next came what fabric to use? I showed the husband the terry cloth I had picked up at Walmart for $1 per yard, but he cringed at the sight of the baby blue color of it. So, the next time we were at Joann’s, he spotted some nice flannel with monsters on it and I picked that for his next bathrobe. At the cutting table, I told the lady helping us that I needed 5 yards. There was 8 yards left on the bolt. Since I refuse to pay Jo-Ann’s regular prices for fabric and I would be use my coupon, I told the lady to give me the whole bolt, and I am glad I did. After putting the fabric through the washer and dryer, it shrank several inches. It was now only 40 inches wide, not 45. and at least 1/2 yard shorter. Wow. I was sure glad I had gotten the extra fabric.

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P1020777 - Version 2Too scared to cut into the expensive monster flannel, I decided I could use a new bathrobe too. This would give me the chance to muslin the pattern before cutting into the husband’s fabric. So, I dug out the baby blue terry cloth from the stash. I decided since I would be making the XXXL size for the husband, I would make the XXL size for me. I traced both sizes of the pattern and cut my size out of the terry cloth and proceeded to start sewing. Sewing with the stretch of terry cloth is alway interesting but things were going along just fine until it was time to try the bathrobe on. When I pulled the bathrobe on, it was HUGE. The shoulder seams went to my elbows, and the bottom of the armscye was at my waist, and it was longer than I am tall. It was way, way too big! And I decided that it was going to take major reconstruction to fit me. I asked the husband to try it on and, of course, it fit him much better. Begrudgingly, he agreed that with a little bit of altering, this blue terry cloth bathrobe could be his summer robe. That was very sweet of him, but I had not yet given up hope of this thing being my bathrobe.

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IMG_0022Because this bathrobe was just big all the way around, I started my alterations by tracing the size XL pattern and placing its pieces on the bathrobe. With my sliver of soap, I traced the XL size on to the fabric. I then stitched on my soap lines. It was not an exact match. I had to fudge where some seams were already sewn together (I was not in the mood to unpick terry cloth), but it worked out fine in the end. After sewing it, I cut off the extra and tried the bathrobe on again. Wow, it so much better fitting already! The armscye was still very low, so I stitched the side seams up higher into the sleeve to solve that issue. I now had a bathrobe that fit quite well. It was still big and oversized, but it was the right amount of oversized this time around. Even more importantly, I knew what size and alterations like raising the armscye to make on the husband’s bathrobe, so I was now ready to cut into the monster flannel without fear of flubbing it up.

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P1020779The flannel was a dream to work with after working with the stretch of the terry cloth. It cut and sewed up great. It was not long before I had something for the husband to try on. Because of all I had learned while fitting my bathrobe, there were only a few tweaks needed to his before the fit was just what he wanted. I am anxious for the husband to wear his new flannel bathrobe and give it a proper tryout. He has always previously had knit bathrobes and I wonder if he will miss the stretch of the knit that the flannel does not have. If he does not mind the loss of the stretch, I think I will make me a flannel bathrobe next time too.

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As I looked at the fun monster design on the husband’s bathrobe, I became jealous that mine was just a boring old baby blue one, so I decided to add some embroidery to my bathrobe to spice it up a little. It was not hard for me to pick a design. I chose a Peanuts design that I had always wanted to try out, but I had just never found the right item to put it on. My bathrobe was the perfect choice to try it out on. One problem that arose was that I did not place the design very well. I placed it where I would have placed it on a shirt. I did not take into account IMG_0018that the robe is so oversized, or the cross over of the fabric when the robe is closed, or the fact that I will wear the bathrobe without a bra on. Anyway, the design is stitched where it is and I can’t change that now, but I did learn another valuable lesson regarding embroidery design placement on bathrobes. Besides that, no one but the husband is ever going to see me in my bathrobe. And he is happy that he does not have to wear the baby blue terry cloth, and I love having a Snoopy and Charlie Brown on my bathrobe.