Monday, February 6, 2012

"The Porch": Sarah from Compulsive Craftiness

 Hi everyone! How was your weekend?! Did you enjoy the weather like we did!? We got nice 70s all weekend and it was AMAZING! You can see a glimpse of our fun weekend right here, but before you go clicking away I'd like to introduce to you sweet Sarah from Compulsive Craftiness to "The Porch" today, a real sweet blog friend, as I like to think of her!

Sarah is one of those crafty bloggers that is hard to keep up with! She always has some new project that she is doing or a fun tutorial to offer! I love seeing her creativity pour out and I was so excited she wanted to come hang out with me today!

Lately, I loved seeing this dresser painted in this awesome turquoise:
And for Valentine's day she created this super fun heart necklace out of a plastic TAKE OUT CONTAINER....uh what!?
 But, maybe one thing I truly identify with Sarah is her thriftiness and her desire to use what she has, as you will see in a moment. I truly believe wholeheartedly that while it is so fun to sew with cute designer fabric, USE WHAT YOU'VE GOT first! Doing so makes you more creative and I think you are happier with what you turn out!

Anyways....
meet sarah
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Vanessa and I first met during the fall version of Kids Clothing Week Challenge (KCWC) that Elsie Marley hosts. Vanessa sewed some very cute clothes for her little boy Cai. I've since really enjoyed her blog, and I'm excited that she asked me to stop by "The Porch" today.

This weekend, I've been doing a lot of sewing. Four dresses so far! They're all summer dresses for my daughter. Even though the groundhog saw his shadow last week, it was warm enough here in Kentucky for my daughter to wear one of the short sleeved dresses with boots yesterday.
Though I really enjoy sewing, making these dresses is actually an effort to be frugal and make do with what we have. I have three shelves packed with fabric I've collected. And I have a crazy amount of Simplicity and McCalls patterns that I haven't even opened. They were all purchased for 99 cents apiece on sale at some time or another. The fabric, similarly, was all purchased because it was on sale for very cheap at some point (often $1.99 a yard). So if you put those costs together, a pattern plus 2 yards of fabric means each dress costs only $5. That's pretty hard to beat!

After staring at my fabric stash for forever, I've grown tired of a whole lot of the fabric. The prints that I purchased when I first began sewing are not what I would gravitate towards now at the fabric store. The dress patterns are also not as inspiring as they once were. But I am forcing myself to use them up! And it's always surprising and fun to see how a flat piece of fabric is completely transformed once it's made into a garment. Solids, in particular, aren't my first stop at the fabric store, but with the right trims they make for very nice clothing. It definitely doesn't take a designer quilting cotton to sew a cute dress.

I find that sewing from patterns is a lot of work. I'm referring to the store bought kind, with tissue paper pattern pieces. I began sewing using online tutorials from blogs, and also sewing books. Both of those were great beginner resources, because they very clearly show step-by-step instructions. And they generally are very simple patterns. Not all Simplicity, McCalls, etc. patterns are so simple. Even if they are a very basic pattern, that added step of dealing with all the tissue paper intimidates me a bit every time. I've been sick this weekend, with a sharp headache at times. So I'm putting part of the blame on that for the number of times I've had to pull out my seam ripper. Seriously, I've had to rip out a ton of stitches!

I wonder how many more years I'll be able to sew my daughter's clothing. She's five (almost six!), and for now she loves it. She's wearing one of the new dresses right now. She proudly tells her teachers and friends when she's wearing a handmade garment, and she even refers them to my blog. That makes me so happy! I hope that she continues to be proud of what I make. I'm already finding myself looking forward to prom and her wedding! Won't those dresses be amazingly fun to collaborate on together and sew?!

So four dresses down. There are two more cut out, and more fabric beyond that. The toughest part is resisting the urge to go buy notions to go with them, or just a few more patterns or coordinating fabrics. I really want to see how many dresses that I can create out of my piles of supplies.

My sewing machine is sitting on a foldable table in front of the couch, so I'm not holed away in my bedroom as I sew. I'm off to keep sewing.

Thanks for having me, Vanessa!
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Aw! Thanks for coming by! I enjoyed it Sarah! The dress turned out so cute, too! Great job! She is absolutely precious! Be sure to check out Sarah at Compulsive Craftiness!

Read inspiration for "The Porch" guest post series here. Would you like to come hang out? Email me for dates in March.