Mar 2, 2015

Fur Vest

I am excited about a new series we are going to to run on the blog. We get so much inspiration and encouragement from tutorials that we find on blogs we love. So we thought it would be fun to swap a tutorials with our friends and share the results. Nothing crazy, just a fun old swap. If you want to join in the let us know so we all can play along together. It think it will be fun to get to know each other one tutorial at a time. So now that you know what we are up to, I can show you what I created for this month.
I followed create the Fur Vest over at Gracious Threads. It was a super easy tutorial that I was able to put together in just over 2 hours (with plenty of interruptions from my crew!) This will be a fun addition to my lady's Sunday dresses while our weather is still a bit chilly and as she informed me it is perfect when she plays dress up and gets to be Anna!
I stuck to the tutorial and use ribbon for the tie, but choose and extra thick satin ribbon, just to make it even more girly. I adore this little vest and sweet ribbon closure! My little lady feel like a million buck in it!
The faux fur is fun and flirtatious, perfect for this particular lady. I lined the inside with Galaxy's Quatrefoil in Light Pink, available in our SHOP of course
If you want to make your own, head over to Gracious Threads and you find this perfect little Fur Vest tutorial. She also had a shop filled with awesome patterns! While you are there you will have to see the Baby Bandanna Bib that she made following our tutorial HERE. Thanks for visiting us today and enjoy your weekend!

Feb 24, 2015

Lice Love Beautiful Healthy Hair

So today I am going to take a few minutes to tackle a nit-picky problem that has crept into our lives....LICE! Our family has been infiltrated for the first time. I know that there are a lot of social stigmas in the world today about LICE and I for one am not someone who lives her life dictated by such things and so the reactions of children took me by surprise. But let's start at the beginning.
Almost 11 days ago my little lady came home talking about a girl in her class who has lice. Now this conversation was taking place between my daughters but as soon as I hear that one little word, "LICE," my mommy ears went onto high alert and my reaction was auto pilot. 'Grab my phone' I demanded to one daughter. 'Go find a magnifying glass" I hollered to the other. "Sit here!" I snapped to the poor daughter with the loose tongue. I called the school and got the 411 on the lice situation. Yes, someone had it. No, they don't have to tell us anymore (WHAT!?!?!). Yes, we have someone check the kids but again they are only looking for live lice and do not notify you even if there are eggs (insert repeat WHAT!?!?!). At this point my older two girls we crying because if their friends found out they had lice they would never play with them again. It meant that our family was dirty and not healthy. It meant that they would be forever shunned - and seeing as the oldest is only in the 4th grade that is a lot of school shunning years left. They were hysterical!
And, so in my fury and their emotional devastation, I began the daily search for lice. The only one that was given a free pass is my very bald husband. Day 1 - nothing, day 2-nothing,  day 3, 4, 5 -nothing, Days 6-8, nothing. Then the Flu hit 3 of us, and a nasty cold took down 2 more, and for a moment I forgot about the lice. The weekend passed. Luckily we skipped our normal 3 hours of Church activities due to fevers and on Monday school started again. Tuesday when my littlest lady -the one with the loose tongue from earlier- walks through the door I laughed out loud.

"What did you do on the way home from school, baby, get in a fight with a squirrel? It looks like a bird nested on top of your head! You okay?"

"Yeah" she replies, "My head has just been really itchy today!"

"Ahhh CRAP!" I blurt out. That is my version of a bad word so all movement in my house came to screeching halt and every little eye was glued on me.
I found a shower cap and made her put it on, hiding all her hair in it. Then we gathered up all the hair brushes and started boiling them, we striped down all the bed, wrapped pillows in plastic garbage bags, started loads and loads of blankets and clothing. I found my hidden stash of chocolate to use as bribery for the hours of hair grooming that I saw in the future! This mama freaked out! But....the thing I did get right is the reason that I am sharing all this with you. Yes, I freaked out, but if you could see the amount of hair that I have, you would have freaked out for me too! BUT, I did not tell her she was dirty, or asked her when was the last time she showered? I did not tell her that lice were nasty disgusting little buggers that deserve to be wiped of the face of the earth -even though I was thinking all this. What I told is that she is beautiful. And as I wiped the tears off her sweet face I told that she had lice in her hair because it was the most beautiful thick, happy hair that the stupid lice could find and that kind of amazing hair on such a precious girl was a treat that they could just not resist!
Now lets talk dollar and cents for a few minutes. My DIY Lice Removal Project would have cost me a total of $162. I really feel like I should invoice the School District for my Lice Removal and maybe they will rethink their Cost vs. Privacy issues which influence the newest policy of Don't Tell. Not only is this method painful to my budget it is painful to all of us involved. Heads hurt, necks are sore, egos are diminished. We can't go anywhere public, dinner consists of cereal cause I had no time to cook, there is no hot water left in the house, everyone is cranky and tired- Okay I am being dramatic but you get the point. After two days of this and still finding nits and an occasionally wiggly breathing creature I decided this was not going to work. I Googled Lice Removal and found the most amazing lady I have met all year! She runs a Lice Removal Salon called Picky Picky.
I called and she offered to check everyone for head lice. If someone has it the treatment cost $80 per head. That treatment includes the washing with an all natural shampoo, lice and nit removal, and a follow up treatment 7 days later. The best part is she knows what she is doing, she is fast, and she is amazing to the kids. My little lady thought that she was the luckiest girl in the world because she got a morning of pampering. She did not feel like she had done something wrong by getting lice, she felt beautiful!  She did not feel dirty and unwanted, she felt clean and loved! Instead of teaching my children that they should be ashamed of getting lice, I taught them that lice are part of life and we are all on this journey together. I pampered them and made them feel as special as they are, lice and all. The total cost of  our Lice Spa Day was $120; $80 for treatment, $10 for a repellent spray I bought as a gift for our teacher, and $20 for a shampoo for at home treatments (it has enough for 16 applications!). And this was all done in just under the time it took my kids to watch a movie on the Netflix at the Salon.
I wish that every child felt this loved and beautiful when they have had to have lice removed. I also wish that every parent would not be humiliated by the fact that lice is part of life and might be part of their kids head for a few days. If we could end the stigmas that are as much of a nuisance as the actual problem, maybe we would not have school policies that will not inform parents when lice is found in a classroom. LICE are part of life and life happens to all people. That's it. Life comes with the good and bad, the pain and the joy. One of my favorite sayings is "Find joy in the journey." (Thomas. S. Monson) Lice have become part of our journey and we found joy on our Lice Spa Day.
So where is all of this going? To resources and hopefully so someone else will start talking about the fact that lice are lice and they are part of life, so just get over it! Or dare I say it...'Let it go!' I chose to keep my kids home from school for a few days to combat this assault and hopefully prevent the army of lice from moving their front line to another family. So we had a 'Lice Lesson' and then a 'Lice Party'. Following are the resources that I used to find joy in this part of our journey I hope they will be a benefit to you.

Picky Picky: All Natural & Pesticide Free Head Lice Removal

Happy Heads - Natural and Non-toxic Lice Removal Products

State of Washington: Infectious Disease Control Guide for School Staff
Head Lice (Pediculosis humanus capitis): pg. 75 / PDF pg. 82
School Staff/Nurse Responsibility
Immediate or long-term exclusion is no longer recommended. Students with live head lice can remain in class and go home at the end of the school day, be treated, and return to school after the appropriate treatment has begun. Students can return to school with nits following treatment. Nits may persist after initial treatment, therefore, students with nits should be allowed back in school the next day. Successful treatment should kill crawling lice.

*** I understand that people want privacy so that children are not bullied, but I would have LOVED a note from the school saying please be on the look out for lice for the next two weeks because a child in your child's class was found to have some! 

CDC Head Lice: Common Q&A

Tips & Tricks to Prevention and Cleaning

Baby Barbie Lice Attack: A really funny game that my girls played on the computer

Feb 21, 2015

Boys Can Wear Pink Blog Tour: Bandanna Love

We have been having such a blast on this tour! I hope that all the creations we have shared with your have been tickling you Pink! As the tour winds down I have another opportunity to share a handsome little man sporting some pink threads.
This Pink Heart Baby Bandanna Bib was available in our shop right before Valentines and looks just as amazing on a little man as it is on a little lady.  I love that this tour is opening the closet doors and showing everyone that pink can be found in a boys closet!
You can find more Baby Bandanna Bibs in our SHOP or you can make your own by following the tutorial in the blog post Bandanna Bibs. I found the original tutorial over at The Purl Bee, but in the end I enjoy the sizing of a 12"x12" square.
Have you challenged yourself to make something PINK for a man, big or little, in your life?If so we would love to see it! It's not to late to join in the fun and the contests. Here is a link to our first post in the tour where I added Pink Pipping to PABP Classic Oxford Button Up.
If you need more inspiration or are just starting to follow along on the tour head over to Handmade Boy for a Boys Can Wear Pink Blog Tour Roundup page. Thanks for stopping by today!

$25 gift certificate, plus a surprise fat quarter from Phat Quarter Shop
One yard of solid cotton/lycra & one yard of coordinating fabric from Purple Seamstress
One pattern of choice from Paisley Roots
$20 store credit from Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop
One pattern of choice from Patterns for Pirates
One pattern of choice from Mouse House Creations
One Pattern of choice from Titchy Threads

Feb 20, 2015

Extraordinary Girl Blog Tour

I am so thrilled to share with you the extraordinary shirt that I made for myself.  I rarely make clothing for myself. I am not sure why, but it just does not happen. When I have spare time it ends up being filled with pretty ordinary things or something special for my family. Very seldom will I put myself at the top of the list. So when I was able to participate in this Extraordinary Girl Blog Tour it should not come as a surprise that I planned to make matching shirts for my three ladies first and then IF I had time I would make on for me. Funny thing is that I have had a rough few weeks and so in a fit of frustration during a self-induced pity-party I decided that I would make this shirt for ME FIRST, and IF there was enough spare time in the next week I would make my ladies matching ones. Who wants to guess how many shirts I ended up with...ONE...MINE...and I could not be happier about it!

But then came the new problem; I am not as cute as my little ladies and I am NOT proficient at 'selfies' or at using the camera on my phone; so what you are stuck with today is a blog post about the great elements of  The Extraordinary Shirt by FillesaMaman and the ordinary things that I do all day. I hope you enjoy and I hope that in the end you will be inspired to make something special for you, your ordinary life, and extraordinary person that you are!

Element #1: Three-Quarter Length Sleeves
I LOVE three-quarter length sleeves. I think that they are such a flattering proportion on all people! I was so pleased with where the sleeve ended on this shirt. It is a perfect length for doing dishes without letting the edges get wet, changing diapers and not worrying about it brushing across something unmentionable, and it covered all the extra bits of my arms that a few push-ups every day would erase. These sleeves made my ordinary task and extraordinary breeze,

Element #2: An Adorable Little Pocket
I think that one of the more fun things about this shirt is that the front bodice is made of two pieces and a sweet little pocket. I love contrast in pretty much everything so this is a perfect fit for my personality. I used two fabrics for the front bodice and choose to make the pocket match the main fabric so that there is contrast but not too much. This sweet little pocket is too small for most things but absolutely perfect for the most important things; like treasures and flowers from the people who mean the most to me. It made our ordinary morning walk and extraordinary treasure hunt for the perfect flowers for mom!

Element #3: High-Low Hem Line
Who does not love a high-low hem line! Not only is it 'trendy' right now but from the front it shows the entire length of my legs (and I need every bit of visual height as I can get) and from the back it covers my derriere hiding the effects of gravity. It also works as a great hiding place for a 2 year old who will giggle until we have to find his inhaler when you spin in circles trying to find him. The High-Low on this shirt is not different. It hits beautifully just below the front waistband of my jeans, hides my husbands favorite pinching spot, and made an ordinary game of Hide & Seek extraordinary!

Element #4: Boat Neck Collar
I rarely am able to wear boat neck Collars because they open so far to the edges of my shoulders that my bra straps are exposed or they slip off a shoulder which is something I am not okay with. So this was the one thing that I worried about as I was making the shirt. BUT, I love the way they look and I love how on a onesie you can use the extra width of the collar to roll down the shirt over your babies body capturing any oozing liquids and NOT spreading them all over that precious baby skin and hair as you pull the shirt up and over the head. Sadly I was able to try this on my new shirt when jelly hands attacked me out of no where. Guess what it worked! I rolled the shirt down over itself and threw it into the laundry only having to wash the shirt and NOT myself afterward! Also the overlap on the collar of this shirt came off the shoulders enough that my bra straps were still an element of mystery to the world and no shoulders were exposed when lifting children from the floor. It made an ordinary lunch catastrophe extraordinarily easy to overcome!

Element #5: Easy Construction
As a wife, mom of 5, CEO of a busting home, and all the other titles that I can place on myself, time is a very limited and coveted thing. I was able to piece my pattern, cut my fabrics, and construct the shirt during bonding time with my husband which lasted for the length of a Blazer Game (NBA Basketball team); or about 2.5 hours!

Element #6: Finished Fit
I feel extraordinary in it! It is NOT a box but it is NOT skin tight. It fits me as I stand, stays on when I am cleaning up clothes off my ladies floor, and does not show off my goods when I bend over to tie shoe laces. The bodice has the fun lines that hit at the right spots, it has contrast, and it is a comfy shirt that makes me feel like I actually thought about my appearance before walking my kids to school!

This shirt makes me feel like an Extraordinary person living an Ordinarily Wonderful life! I hope that I have inspired you to take a little time out of your ordinary life to make yourself feel Extraordinary. If you need more inspiration check out what everyone else has created with this pattern by stopping by all the other extraordinary blogs participating! And don't forget to enter the giveaway for some extraordinary prizes.

Monday Feb. 16th

Tuesday Feb. 17th

Wednesday Feb. 18th

Thursday Feb. 19th

Friday Feb, 20th

Feb 13, 2015

Boys Can Wear Pink Blog Tour: PABP Oxford Button Up

I am thrilled to be part of the 'Boys Can Wear Pink Too!" tour! I am having so much fun making clothes for my two little men. My husband is a 'big dude' and while amazing, he is pretty much a 'typical boy.' I am not sure what is more fun about this tour; telling him that I am making matching all pink Miami Vice Suits for 'his sons' and watching the horror dance across his face or seeing all the amazing pink creations that we have seen so far on the tour! Either way I am having a blast and I hope you are too. Here is a link to the RoundUp Page for the Boys Can Wear Pink Tour! Today I am going to share with you my pink creation.
I wanted to use this opportunity to get prepared for Easter and make my boy's new dress shirts for Church. I also wanted to highlight the color pink without making the shirt all pink. I choose to do this by adding pink pipping to  the Classic Oxford Button Up Shirt, by Peek-a-Boo Patterns. This is a pattern that I am familiar with and so felt comfortable making adjustments to it. You can purchase the pattern by clicking on the affiliate link in the sidebar or make adjustment to a pattern you already have following the basic guidelines that follow.
Pattern: PABP Classic Oxford Button Up Shirt
Fabric: Illusion Dust in Grey by  Art Gallery & JoAnns Basic Solids in Pink
Trim: Pink Pipping

Adding Piping to a Dress Shirt

The first thing that you need to do is make a copy of the Shirt's FRONT pattern piece. To do this you will need a marking pen, paper (I used craft paper), a quilting ruler, scissors, and your pattern piece. 
First trace your pattern piece onto the paper leaving at least 2 inches between the edge of the paper and the center line of your pattern piece. Now set trace any additional pattern markings onto your new pattern piece, like the pocket placement. Also you are going to want to mark this as the LEFT FRONT Shirt Piece. We are going to extend the left piece because that it the side that traditionally has the button holes for men's clothing. Then you can set your original pattern piece aside, we will not be using it again.  **Please remember that I am using PABP Classic Oxford Button Up Shirt. So- I am basing my measurements off of the directions in this pattern. If you are using a different pattern you will need to figure out your measurements based off of your directions. For example, Amy, has us fold the button placket over 1/4 of an inch  first then another 1" . These numbers are the base of my adjustments. If your directions use different widths you will need to adjust my numbers accordingly.
I am going to add the piping to the Left Button Placket so we will be creating a new piece to our pattern. This is how I did it; Using your quilting ruler place it 1/4 of an inch to the right of your center line. Now mark dots at each 'inch' interval from the top of your pattern piece all the way down to the bottom.

Next mark a straight line (from top to bottom) 1" to the right of the dotted line you just created. This is placement on the shirt where you would have originally had the fold for button placket. This is were we need to add the first seam allowance.
Place your ruler 1/4" to the left of this solid line and mark a dashed line from top to bottom. This will be the new Cut Line for the the Left Front Shirt Piece.
Now line your ruler up  1/4" to the left of the dashed line and mark a solid line from top to bottom. This will be the marking for the placement of your interfacing on the new pattern piece we are creating. Your interfacing is 1" wide so you will need to make a second solid line 1" to the left of the solid line you just marked. Shade in this rectangle. Hang in there cause we are almost done.
 Lastly mark a solid line 1/4" to the left of the last line (the outer edge of the interfacing rectangle). This is the new center edge of the pattern.
Once you have all your lines marked you can cut the new pattern piece, the Button Placket, off of the Left Front Shirt Piece by cutting on your DASHED line. Now use these two pieces to cut out your fabric for the LEFT Shirt Front only! Use your original pattern piece for the Right Shirt Front.
Now that we have our new pattern piece we can add the pipping to the button placket. Take your pipping and pin it to the center edge of you Left Front Shirt Piece, right sides together, so that the two raw edges match. Stitch the pipping to the shirt front. If you have a 'narrow foot' I would suggest you use it for this step.
Now take your new pattern piece, the button placket, and bond the interfacing to it, in the shaded rectangle as marked on the pattern piece. Then fold and press the left edge over 1/4 of an inch, so that the wrong sides are together.
Then take the button placket and place it on top of of your pipped left front shirt piece, right sides together. You should have the pipping in-between your two fabric pieces at this point. Pin and stitch with a 1/4" seam allowance joining these two pieces.
Press the seam toward the sleeve-side and then press the button placket toward the sleeve-side so that when you are looking at the front of your shirt the pipping is the center edge and the right side of the button placket is visible on the inside of the the shirt.
Now you will top stitch against the pipping and along the inner edge of the button placket.
You are done! You have made a new pattern piece and added pipping to the button placket on the front of your new shirt. Tada! You are awesome! Now to finish the shirt, just keep following the pattern directions and before you know it you will be done. I also added pipping to the back yoke and the cuffs. I think that this really allowed the pink to pop but not overwhelm the shirt. I used a solid pink for the sleeve plackets, inner yoke, and the collar. I have to say that I am tickled pink about how perfect it turned out!
My husband calls it the 'rich guy shirt' because apparently having a collar that is a different color than the suit is a trend among owners of sports teams.  Whatever his reasons, he approves, pink collar and all. My little ladies even told their little brother that he looks very handsome in pink.

Don't forget to visit the other blogs on the tour and to enter the contest. There are wonderful prizes, even a $25 Gift Certificate to our shop, Phat Quarters, and a fat quarter of the fabric that I used, Illusion Dust in Grey by Art Gallery. Thanks for stopping by today!

$25 gift certificate, plus a surprise fat quarter from Phat Quarter Shop
One yard of solid cotton/lycra & one yard of coordinating fabric from Purple Seamstress
One pattern of choice from Paisley Roots
$20 store credit from Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop
One pattern of choice from Patterns for Pirates
One pattern of choice from Mouse House Creations
One Pattern of choice from Titchy Threads
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