Thursday, January 16, 2014

Lace Sewing Series with Sewing Mama RaeAnna

Several weeks ago during a lull in the dinner conversation, I started thinking about what to do with the lace that has been sitting patiently in my crap room.  Literally two hours after that conversation with myself, I received an email from Sewing Mama RaeAnna asking if I would want to be apart if a lace sewing series. She was reading my mind, right? Such a wild coincidence!
Without further ado, thank you Sewing Mama RaeAnna and Sew Very for the invitation! I am truly excited to be apart of this series!

You can also enter the Snowflakes and Lace linky party!

Today, I am sharing a simple yet exciting t-shirt dress and a free ballet slipper applique design. 

My goal for sewing for my children is to have them LOVE it. Ali Cat's style and my style typically
clash.  But it's not about me, it's about her and I want her to wear what I make.  Therefore, I tailor
my sewing to meet her criteria.

This t-shirt dress with ballet slipper applique couldn't be more perfect for her.
No, I take that back.  The only way this could have been better if the applique was a horse wearing ballet slippers. But that's just silly.

Ballet Slipper Applique 
Sewing Mama RaeAnna Cupcake Top
4 feet of Ribbon
Yard of Knit Fabric, possibly more if fabric is directional or for a large size
Small amount of Knit Fabric for applique
1/2 yard of cotton fabric
1/2 yard of lace fabric
Small piece of double sided fusible webbing

I cut out my fabric based on the Cupcake top for my size (size 5).
I quickly realized, I should have measured first to not waste fabric.
Do as I say, not as I do here.
1. Grab that extra dress and measure from shoulder to hem.  My number was 25"; this is our FINISHED dress length (DL).
I wanted the tutu part to hit at her waist.  Looking at your extra dress, or measuring your child, measure from shoulder to waist.  My number was 17" (SL-shirt length).
Add 1/2" for shirt to tutu seam allowance, so my SL is 17.5.
Get out your cupcake top pattern and make an indication for the SL.  
*Remember, the shirt pattern has a 3/8" SA in the shoulders, so when measuring the pattern for the SL, start measuring 3/8" below the top of the shoulder.*
Cut out your front and back based on the new shirt length. Also cut the sleeves and neck binding piece as indicated in the pattern.
If you would like sleeve ruffles, cut those pieces as well.

For me, it was about 4 inches shorter. Since I cut the pattern first, I had to cut my shirt down.

2.  Measure the bottom of your shirt. Mine is 14". Write that number down as SW-shirt width.

3.  Take your double sided fusible webbing, your small accent knit piece, and the ballet slipper applique pattern. Trace the slipper applique on the fusible webbing and cut it out. Take the paper off the top side and stick it to the wrong side of the knit piece. Cut the knit fabric out around your webbing.

4. Remove the paper on the other side of your webbing/knit piece and place in the center of your front shirt. Press the applique with warm iron to set it.

5.  With a wide (5) and short (0.5) zig zag stitch, stitch all the way around the applique pattern and down in between the two slippers.  The stitching between the two slippers is not necessary, but it helps distinguish between the shoes and makes the shoes more visible. 

6.  Cut your ribbon in to 4 - 12" pieces.
Take one piece of ribbon.  Fold under one side 1/4" and pin at the top of a slipper.
Arrange your ribbon as you would like.  Pin. You may need to cut some of the ribbon off if there is too much.
Repeat for the 3 other ribbons.

7.  You can tie the ends of each slipper ribbons in a bow, or you can fold the second over 1/4" towards the shirt to hid the raw ends.
Sew the ribbons in place.  If you tied bows, make sure you stitch over the middle of the bows to hold them in place.

8.  Your applique is done!
Sew the shirt together as instructed in the pattern.

9.  Ta-Da!
(I ALWAYS forget tags.  ALWAYS.  grr!)

10. Take your lace and your under skirt cotton fabric.
Subtract DL from FINISHED SL (remove the .5" SA) to get your FINISHED TTL (tutu length).
Mine was
25-17 = 8".
I want my FINISHED TTL to be 8.  Let's add seam allowances.
I like 1/2" SA.  Add 1/2" to the top to sew the tutu to the shirt and 1" to the bottom for hemming.
So, add 1.5" to your TTL.
Mine would be 9.5"
That is your length of the tutu.
For the width, double your SW.  Mine was 14. Times 2, my tutu width (TTW) is 28".

Cut 2 pieces of your cotton under fabric by the length and width we just determined.
Mine was 9.5" by 28".
I like to press my hem lines now.  On both cotton panels, press 1/2" twice for hemming.  
Don't sew it yet; it's just nice to have those creases in place for when we get to that step.

11.  Cut your lace.
The width of your lace will be the same as your TTW (mine was 28").
The length will be slightly longer than your cotton piece.  So add 1/2" to 1" to the TTL, if your lace will need to be hemmed.
My lace had a finished edge, so I cut the same length as my TTL.  
Since I was not hemming the lace, it would be 1" longer than my cotton after the cotton was hemmed.
Press 1/2" twice on bottom of both pieces for hemming, if needed, as we did with the cotton panels.

12.  Place cotton pieces right sides together (RST) and the lace pieces RST, pinning short ends.  
Sew both short sides of cotton and lace with 1/2" seam allowance.  Finish edges.

13.  You should have two loops.
Hem the loops using the creases pressed earlier.

14. Place lace loop on outside of cotton, matching side seams.
Wrong side of lace to right side of cotton.
Sew two rows of basting stitches at the top of the loops.  One at 1/4" and another at 1/2".
Don't gather the fabric yet!

15. Find front and back centers of the loops.
Fold loops in half, matching side seams. The fold will be your front and back centers.  Mark the front and back centers in some way-either with pins or with a fabric marker/chaulk.

16. Find the center front and back of the shirt using same process as above. Place pins or mark the centers.

17. Take the tutu, turn it wrong side out and slide it up the bottom of the shirt, matching raw edges.
Pin tutu and shirt together, matching side seams and front and back centers.

18. Pulling on the bobbin basting stitches (pull both basting stitches at the same time), begin to gather the tutu to the same size as the shirt bottom.  Having the pins and the front and back centers will ensure even gathering. Once you get the gathering done, sew the shirt and tutu together at 1/2" seam allowance and finish your edges.

Now you have a great t-shirt tutu for the lucky little girl in your life.

Thanks for stopping by today.  I hope you enjoyed the tutorial.  
If you have any questions, concerns, comments, please contact me at
alicatcompany (at) gmail (dot) com, leave a comment,
or find me on Facebook!

Too bad she was squinting; this would have been a great picture!

Prize pack 1 - Lindsay Conner of Lindsay Sews and Craft Buds recently published a quilt book, Modern Bee.  She will send the winner a sewing kit that includes fabric, thread, and notions!

Michelle of Handmade Martini will be sending 2.5 yards of vintage lace trim!  And Heidi of Elegance & Elephants will send the winner one pdf pattern of their choice from her shop.

Prize pack 2 - Brianne of Ali Cat & Co. has a license to sell the Buttercup bags and has an adorable finished bag to send to the winner!

Chelsea of Get Your Crap Together has a great bundle of organization patterns for school!  And RaeAnna from Sewing Mama RaeAnnawill send 1 yard of vintage lace trim and the winner's choice of either the Bumblebee Dress pdf pattern or the Cupcake Top pdf pattern!

Prize pack 3 - Karly of Paisley Roots will send the Saffron Twirl Dress Pattern!  And Hayley of Mouse House Creations will send a pattern of choice to the winner!

Please follow our wonderful blog contributors in some way for a chance to win one of these sewing bundles!

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