It's been three weeks now since I re-entered the living hell that is a newborn. Except this time it's not hellish at all, it's actually quite pleasant. Toby is still a good sleeper and a calm baby, not bothered at all by his big sister's constant hugs and kisses. Of course I still have to get up several times a night to feed him, but he feeds, burps and then goes back to sleep unlike Anna who would scream for hours on end, day and night. I know he's only three weeks old and all this could change for the worse in a moment, but for now it's lovely and I've even made it back into my sewing room for a little bit of sewing which has made me feel normal again.
After I made this tiered ruffled dress that knocked the Dora dress off its perch as Anna's favourite dress, I bought a ruffler foot for my Brother sewing machine because gathering those layers drove me nutso. I finally got a chance to use it on a tiered, ruffled skirt from Ottobre magazine Spring 1/2011, skirt #15:
The directions with the foot do say to use it on thin fabrics, so I made a skirt from a thin knit fabric I had in the stash. Either my fabric was too thick or I wasn't using it properly, but the foot hardly gathered the fabric at all, in fact it didn't gather any more than using a normal presser foot with a really long stitch. Then I tried using my overlocker to gather the fabric by changing the stitch length and differential feed according to the manual and even that gave me the same unimpressive results. I guess I need to practice more since little girls have a natural love for ruffles!
So I ended up increasing the gathers to the required amount in the old fashioned method by pulling up the thread. I also used the overlocker to do a lettuce edge finish to the layers to give it a bit more flippiness. Anna loves the finished product anyway, so I call that a success.
In fact she loved it so much that I made a second version while I still had the pattern pieces out. This skirt is so simple it barely needs a pattern though - it's literally 3 rectangles of various widths and lengths. This version I used a funky printed corduroy I had in the stash:
I wasn't sure what would go with a purple corduroy skirt with green trees on it, but it turns out that a yellow t-shirt with a giraffe on it paired with some red patent high heels is the perfect choice according to a three year old! Accessorised with a Wiggles band aid on the forehead, covering up a mosquito bite:
So now to start sewing something for the boy - he could use some clothes that are a little less pink!