Tuesday, January 28, 2014

So many reasons to sew.... along with Project Run and Play, the Kids Clothes Week sewing challenge began today. I missed last weeks entry day for PR&P, but I did sew something for it. The theme was "Let's go to the Movies." My immediate reaction (Heidi!) was not feasible due to time constraints; but we had recently watched a Care Bears movie and Fern and I both wanted to make Care Bear shirts.

Did you used to love the Care Bears too? It is fun to watch movies from my childhood with them. I had forgotten a few of the details of the Care Bears and it was fun to recall. They all "care" so much they wear their emotions on their tummies, and when they get together they can puff their tummies out and light shines out of them and they can make magic happen. She had decided we could make up our own emotion themes to put on the shirt instead of mimicking the characters already created.
So I asked each girl what she wanted on her shirt. Althea answered immediately "A horse!" Perfect. She is a crazy child, so she is the wild horsey care bear. Fern wanted a castle on hers. Hmm. Very princessy, not surprising, but what emotion is a castle? I asked her how castles make her feel and she answered, "beautiful, safe and brave". Done. I will definitely make her a shirt that makes her feel that way. She has named herself "Princess Magita Care Bear". This is her favorite princess name at the moment. She named her sister Princess Soweeta, and I get to be Queen Aleen. No creative names for Dad, though, he is King David.
I thought a raglan shirt with the front panel done in white and the rest of the shirt done in a solid color would be a simple casual way to present the care bear theme. Their designs on the tummies and a little heart on the lower right corner of the back of the shirt (remember those little hearts on the care bears' bums?) finish it off.
I used this tutorial for making them some raglan shirts. The fabric was all upcycled. Althea's horse shirt was made from an old maternity tshirt; I was actually wearing it when I gave birth to Fern-there we are!

Fern's pink fabric was from a hand-me-down size 6 girls shirt that she would have eventually grown into. I think this makes it much more personal and fun though. It has sparkly pink trim on the hems:

The lighter fabric on the tummies were both scraps from a tshirt blanket I made last summer (to be posted at a later date). I ended up using grey instead of white for the tummy on Fern's. I wanted to use the grey for Thea's as well, but didn't have enough so I ended up having to use a piece of white that has black lettering on the opposite side that shows through. A little nod to the fact that it is upcycled I suppose.
On Fern's I actually just straight up cut the sleeves off of the original shirt; I didn't cut them open at all because I didn't want to be too tight if I lost fabric by sewing them up again. I had to cut the top of the sleeve at a much steeper angle after I cut it off to fit with my raglan pattern. Her shirt therefore ended up basically shoulderless because of this, but while it looks a little funny lying down on the ground, it fits her fine.

I wanted to avoid hemming, so I used all the old hems on the bottom of Thea's sleeves and at the bottom of the shirts. The collar of Fern's shirt is reused from the original pink shirt. Althea's collar is the hem of one of the sleeves of the maternity shirt.

 At first I thought about trying the freezer paper stencil technique everyone is doing for the designs on the tummies, but I didn't want to go buy freezer paper. I did have some wonder under on hand though, so I used that to applique some knit fabric onto each shirt and top stitched it down for good measure. The horse is the same fabric as the rest of the shirt; Fern's castle was from an old shirt of mine that had a hole in it. This weeks theme for PR and P is upcycle, so that works out quite well!

 The castle was something I drew myself, but the horse I printed from this page and then traced it onto my wonder under. It's amazing what you can find when you google an image idea with the words clip art at the end.
 We are a bit under the weather here, so the shirts made great loungewear for today.

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