Tuesday, May 24, 2016

Roll Out The Barrel

If you've ever been to Milwaukee, you'll know that beer is a thing here. As the founding home of Pabst, Miller, Schlitz, and Blatz we have quite the German beer heritage. While 3 of those 4 are no longer headquartered and brewed in the city, something equally awesome has popped up in their place: biergartens.

With spring officially in our midst in Wisconsin, the local biregartens (and travelling biregartens!) are opening for the year. And this being Wisconsin, we have of course taken kidlet to a few of them with us.

Don't worry, he's now appropriately dressed for such outings with some baby leiderhosen:

This one's beer hall, of which Milwaukee also has a couple

I drafted this pattern for kiddo and then had to rework it because giant diaper butt is a real thing. The new version is made out of knit fabric and I'm hoping it will still fit him in the autumn for Oktoberfest. The waist elastic can be replaced and the straps are adjustable, so there is definitely some room for growth here.

My favorite part is the front piece on the straps where I got to play with some fun stitches on my sewing machine. Now all he needs is a little German-style hat and he'll be a true child of Wisconsin!

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Crazy Pants

One of the "fun" parts about being pregnant is how much your body changes. And then how long it takes for your body to get back to normal. In the meantime, it's a challenge to dress nicely. Thank goodness that I know how to sew!

Pants are particularly challenging at the moment, due to size changes in my waist and hips. This is doubly difficult because I need something nice to wear now that I'm back to work. Enter in the vintage pattern stash I recently received from my Grandmother and this stunning pattern from 1969, Simplicity 8550 [1]. I have loved palazzo pants since I first watched Miss Fisher's Murder Mysteries and thought they would be a good choice for my transitioning frame.

The fun part about this project was that the pattern was a size 12 (too small), was missing directions, and required reworking the waistband design to accommodate my current size issues (yay elastic!). Needless to say, I made a mock up. Thankfully, the pattern only involved 4 pieces and I have several nice reference sewing books to reference when issues popped up [2].

Now I am the proud owner of a pair of cotton-linen palazzo pants with an elastic waistband. I think they look crazy awesome and should fit me until I can get back into my normal pants (and even after). In the meantime, it's been an interesting foray into sewing pants - in that the pattern was simple but also required adjustments - but will give me confidence for the next time I sew pants.

[1]: Also cool is the fact that these pants were originally made, not by my grandmother, by my mother for herself.
[2]: My vintage Vogue sewing book had particularly helpful notes on fitting pants and how to sew a crotch seam.