Fern's class had a fun time celebrating the week of the young child back in April with a different theme for each day of the week. On Wild West Wednesday they were encouraged to dress as cowboys and girls if they wished, or to at least wear some jeans. I love how young kids love to dress up; I hope mine always do and never feel self conscious about having a good time.
She usually won't wear jeans, but she does have a pair with a few sequins stitched down the front that she found acceptable enough for the occasion. She also has a great button down white shirt with some pretty details (both shirt and jeans are hand me downs) and a fun red hat that my folks bought her sister as a gift to wear on her rocking horse:
So she had the basics covered. But I couldn't help creating one piece to top off the outfit. My mom had these amazing buckskin hip hugging bell bottoms in the 70's that she had handed down to me in the 90's. I had recenetly found them and they weren't in the greatest shape. I regret not having a picture to share, these pants were truly amazing in their prime. They were beyond repair in their current state however, so I was looking for a fun leather project with which to repurpose them. This seemed like the perfect opportunity!
I used a pattern from another project that has yet to be blogged and made a quick vest. Leather is thrilling to me, because it seems like a regular sewing machine shouldn't be able to handle it, but it is actually no problem at all. (Just remember your leather needle) I love it. It demonstrates how many things are possible with a basic sturdy machine, like this Baby Lock that I am in love with. So here it is:
The seam down the middle of the back is the original side leg seam of the pants. I used a flat felled seam at the shoulders, then realized that was complete overkill on many levels. The leather doesn't fray, so it is unnecessary to hide the edge of the fabric; it just made extra work for my machine sewing through three layers of leather instead of two. So the side seams of the vest are just over lapped and the sewn with two rows of straight stitching in what I will call a mock flat felled seam.
No leather cowgirl garment would be complete without some fringe, either, so I added a couple rows of that across the chest on each side of the front. Fringe is so fun to make. Fabric with zero fray opens up so many possibilities, and sews up so quick! No hemming, no real finishing. Angled seams and rounded edges are a breeze. Did I mention how much I love sewing leather? One of the girls may need a full length fringe skirt at some point. That would be a warm item to wear on Halloween!
And here she is!
Stick em up!
I love this curly little ham.
We've got another good sport in our house: