And then they…

the things we do to live a better life.

Archive for the tag “dresses”

Easter Photos

It’s so much fun having a daughter who is old enough to understand Easter this year.  She is starting to get the whole Jesus thing, but she totally got the Easter Bunny.

We had a great day at church, and egg hunting, and eating with friends and family.

I was fun to start a new tradition of making the girls’ Easter dresses.  These got to serve double duty as dresses for Harriet’s Baptism.

And Then They - Easter TraditionsAnd Then They - Easter Chair and BasketsAnd Then They - PeepsAnd Then They - Walking to Rory's With PapaAnd Then They - RoryAnd Then They - EggAnd Then They - RunningAnd Then They - Going for a DriveAnd Then They - Harriet was there too


Sewing – How I Got Started, Part 2 (or a love letter to Oliver + S)

And Then They - Sewing - How I got started Part 2, or a love letter to Oliver + SAfter I tackled my first quilt, I felt like I was ready to try something a little more difficult.  I decided that I wanted to make a baptism dress for Alma, but I wanted to make something she could wear for more than just her baptism (ie not a traditional ‘gown’).  My mom and I were at a fabric store in Portland when we saw a sweet pattern for a sweet dress.  It was the Oliver + S Family Reunion Dress.  We picked out a fabric that was mostly white (to keep it somewhat traditional) and I was set.

But of course, I got scared.  I decided to sew a rough draft.  I read through the directions and got terrified.  It was so crazy and confusing to me!  There were button holes, pintucks, ruffles, interfacing, hems, collars, lots of scary stuff! I figured the best thing to do was to just jump right in and start sewing.

One of the first steps were doing the pintucks.  These ended up being fun, because I sort of felt like a professional-sewing-super-star after seeing how cute they were turning out!  The instructions were so clear and easy to follow.

I kept on sewing.  Whenever I got to something that seemed confusing, I would take a break (sometimes a few days…).  Once I finally got around to trying it, it was always way easier than I had expected.  Soon, I had a fully constructed dress and I felt silly for doing a rough draft.  The instructions were so great that I totally could have done the baptism dress on the first try!

And Then They - Olive + S Family Reunion Take OneI got started right away on the actual baptism dress.

And Then They - Oliver + S Family Reunion for baptismThen I decided to make three more for Alma and her cousins to wear to their aunt and uncle’s (my brother) wedding.  This time I had to make them in different sizes.  I also decided that since it was a summer wedding, I would make them sleeveless.

And Then They - Oliver + S Family Reunion without slevesI felt like I had learned enough tricks from Oliver + S to alter the pattern a little bit.  I ended up making my own bias tape and just finishing the bodice sleeve openings with it.  The girls looked so sweet in their cheerful dresses!

And Then They - Oliver + S Family Reunion for Three Little Cousins at their aunt and uncle's weddingNext up were winter hats from the Oliver + S Little Things to Sew book.  Again, I stretched my comfort zone a little bit and used new fabrics that can be hard to work with – velvet and wool shirting.  The instructions were amazing again, and I had two cute hats for my two little lambs to wear.

And Then They - Oliver + S HatHalloween was coming up, so I thought my freckled-faced-almost-redhead would make a cute Pippi.  The biased trim apron seemed like a perfect costume idea (that we could use as an apron after Halloween!).  This one taught me a lot more about how to use bias tape (and taught me what I had done wrong when I altered the dresses – ha!).  I also learned a cool way to make a pocket!

And Then They - Oliver + S ApronI was on a roll.  For Christmas, I decided Alma needed a doll carrier for the baby doll Harriet brought her from the hospital.  Another way to make a pocket, more practice with curved edges, and a couple button holes later, and Alma had a fun doll carrier!

And Then They - Oliver + S Baby CarrierNow it is time for Harriet’s baptism.  I wanted to try another Oliver + S pattern and finally decided on the Fairy Tale Dress.  Now this one was scary!  Fully lined, petal sleeves, invisible zipper, peter pan collar!  Oh my!

And Then They - Oliver + S Fairy Tale Sleeve Detail

Again, I just took it step by step and it all worked out.  Ohmygosh is it cute!

And Then They - Oliver + S Fairy TaleI love these patterns because they are great for a beginning seamstress.  The steps are clearly explained, with simple, yet complete illustrations.  I love the feeling I get after every step, when the dresses start to look like dresses.  I love that I go from being terrified of messing up, (to messing up), to doing it right, to having an amazing finished project!

I also love that I can use the skills I learned in the patterns for other projects.  I have so many skills in my back pocket now!  I even have enough confidence with the aspects in these projects that I am toying with designing my own dresses for the girls.

(I should note that Oliver + S has no idea that I’m writing this.  They don’t know who I am at all, though they did once comment on one of my instagram photos and made me feel like I had a brush with fame.)

(I also want to note that I got most of my fabrics from Piece by Piece and if you’re in Eugene, it’s my absolute favorite fabric store in town.)

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