Monthly Archives: October 2013

Have crazy fun making Halloween baby clothes

What is cuter than an adorable little one in custom-made Halloween outfit? Not a costume, mind you, but an actual outfit that can be worn more than once!


I will likely whip out a Halloween costume this weekend, but I won’t spend too much time on it. If we can wrangle the no-is-my-favorite-word toddler into wearing a costume at all it will be a small miracle, so I am not spending much of my sewing time on that chore. But a cute Halloween jumper that I can embellish? I’m all over it.


My DD loved a dress on Pinterest that featured a candy corn appliqué, so that element became the design focus. How did I manage to have some candy corn print cotton in my stash? That became a ruffle at the hem edge. I wrapped the seam allowance in orange bias binding so there are no raw edges. I know. Overkill for a child’s dress.

I bought some yellow and orange rick rack, and decided that looked best sandwiched in the seam allowance. Of course. I couldn’t just slap it on top, right?


McCall’s 6193 was the base for this outfit, and I didn’t want to use contrast fabric for the pockets, but liked the touch of rick rack along the edge. My DGD LOVES pockets right now, and really, who doesn’t? 😉


Just to top off the craziness, I added 3 candy corn appliqués to the front of the jumper. Which of course means a multiple thread changes  to accomplish white, yellow and orange stitching in the appropriate places on each applique. Just shows how far you will really go for a grand-daughter.

McCall’s 6193 is a very simple pattern, and the perfect foil for an embellished garment like this Halloween jumper. I have no idea if the instructions are any good, since I never opened them. If you are not a nut like me, I would imagine you could whip one of these out in a few hours. But if anyone knows how to complicate a simple sewing task, I am a top candidate for that honor!

I REALLLLLLLY hope my DGD deigns to wear this outfit. More than once. For the rest of you, you still have a few days left. Get on it and whip out some cute Halloween baby clothes, and then share a picture of your creations!

Happy sewing!


Style Arc Claudia Stretch Woven Pant

Pants! Is there anything harder to fit than pants? Easy to sew, hard to fit properly.

Style Arc CLAUDIA PANT patern





Dear readers, I am in heaven. I stitched up a pair of Style Arc Claudia pants last week before heading to my annual fall sewing retreat. I decided I would throw caution to the wind and cut them out exactly as drafted. I know how to live life on the edge, right? 😉

I did lengthen the legs by 2 inches, because my legs-that-really-belong-to-a-six-footer ALWAYS require that I add a few inches to my skirts and pants. Always. Oh, and I also added about 1/4 inch to the back crotch point length, because you cannot add that alteration after-the-fact, and my ever-so-slightly-chunky-thighs often need a touch more room than most pants patterns allow. So shoot me, I did make a couple of eensy-weensy pattern changes.

For my test pair I used a beefy stretch knit – think heavy Ponte weight fabric. Despite the fact that the pattern name says stretch woven, the fabric sample Style Arc attaches to their patterns is clearly a stretch knit. I used this fabric because I am in stash-bustin’ mode, and I wasn’t going to cry if they didn’t work out. Low bar, eh?

These pants stitched up in a flash. They really are a project that can be completed in an afternoon. A seam down the center front for a little visual interest, a dart up the bottom of the back leg for shaping, a few darts at the waist, an invisible zip and a facing and DONE!

After a quick try-on I determined that all women in Australia are clearly over six feet tall, since the extra 2 inches I had added were totally unnecessary. First clue that this pattern was drafted entirely differently than U.S. counterparts (or is that counterPANTS? hehe). Waist fit was good, the front looked perfect, so I checked the dreaded rearview in the mirror last. Amazingly, a few smiles under the seat were the only thing off in the fit. A quick scoop of the back crotch fixed that problem, and my pants FIT! This was confirmed by my ASG sewing buddies at the retreat last weekend, and trust me, they are a tough crowd to please.

Beefy Ponte Claudia pant








So there you have it. A smidge more length added to the back crotch point and a small scoop of the back crotch, and voilà – PANTS THAT FIT. Those designers down under know how to rock the pants patterns!

Happy sewing!


Take a sewing class for 30% off

Sewing is not a cheap hobby. Anyone who thinks they will save money sewing, ummm, hasn’t actually started sewing yet.

That’s why I am thrilled to offer you a brand-spankin’-new Craftsy sewing class, Garment Basics, for nearly 1/3 off! I will be taking this online video class too, and posting my review later this month. I am always on the lookout for interesting things to share with my sewing students, and I am hoping to pick up some new ways to describe a technique or present information that can be confusing to new sewists. Or maybe I will find out I have been forgetting to tell them all kinds of important stuff about sewing! 😉 Anyway – enough about my interest in this class – the important point is the class is for YOU. Watch it, tell your friends about it, and be sure to let me know what you think. And full disclosure, in case you hadn’t heard, I do some blogging over at now too. (Because I don’t have enough to do!)

Nominate me for Craftsy's blogger awards!

Oh, one more thing. Craftsy is also sponsoring their first ever blogger awards! I am such a joiner I totally want in! So, dear readers, if you would consider nominating my blog for “Best Tutorials” over at I would REALLY, REALLY appreciate it. Thanks much!

Happy sewing!