Saturday, August 27, 2016

The Teepee-Finally!

Yes it is true!  Today I am finally posting about Lyla's 1st birthday present, her teepee.  I think the idea of making a teepee first came to me from a random "you might like this" post on Pinterest and then I became obsessed with pinning play teepees and tents on Pinterest.  There are a ton of tutorials out there but I decided that it would be easiest to use a pattern and conveniently Butterick makes a pattern for teepee which you can find here.

I saw a few teepees on Pinterest that used vintage bed sheets and I loved that idea.  I found a lovely vintage floral bed sheet on Etsy and then bought white muslin for the rest of the teepee.  While I was buying the muslin I came across some lace and thought it would work great for the small panel above the door flaps.  

The pattern called for ribbon in two sizes so I purchased some gold, pink, and blue satin ribbon.  The beads that the pattern called for were a little hard to find and I had to order them online but I can't remember the place I ordered them from anymore, sorry! PVC pipe is used for the poles of the teepee.  I spray painted them gold but I was only mildly successful with that because some of the paint chipped off almost immediately.
The teepee was quite easy to make but marking the fabric was not very fun.  I used disappearing ink to mark since I was using white fabric and there were a lot of markings.  It was also difficult to work with so much fabric especially by the time I was adding the last panel.  One part of the pattern was a little unclear so I had to improvise.  I wasn't sure how to get rid of the raw edge when I connected the front panels to the lace piece and the directions didn't make much sense.  I end up just top stitching a piece of gold satin ribbon over the raw edge to cover it up.  It turned out to be a happy accident because I really like the look of the ribbon between the vintage sheet panels and the lace piece. I also learned how to sew button holes on my machine for this project.

Most of the pictures in this post are my iPhone snaps during Lyla's one year professional photo session.  The teepee made an awesome prop for the outdoor portion of her photos! And here are a few of the professional shots from exposures by j.linnea

Seriously amazing!  I love her work so much!

Oh and one side note, I just learned about clipping masks in Pixelmator and it is going to be my new favorite thing.  That is how I made the watercolor letters in the picture at the top of this post.  It is like having a new superpower haha.  I know, I'm kind of a nerd.  If you want to read about the romper that Lyla is wearing in the photos check out this post.  Next up on the blog will be another post about Lyla's digital baby book.  Have a wonderful day and thanks for reading!

Saturday, August 13, 2016

Digital Baby Book: Custom Calendar Page

Today's post is the first in a new series on the digital baby book that I have been working on for Lyla's first year.  This is a massive project so I thought I would break it up into a series of posts instead of writing a massive post.  The book is almost complete, I just need to add the photos from Lyla's professional 1st birthday photo session once we receive the gallery.  You can take a look at the almost completed book here.  

I chose to use Mixbook for this project because there seemed to be a lot more customizable features than other websites I've used in the past.  So now let me tell you about the first page that I am featuring in this series: a custom calendar page.  I created this page in Pixelmator but it would be easy to create it in any photo editing/graphic design software.
I started by opening up the program and then selected "create new image." I set the preset to "custom" and set the dimensions for 4429 by 4499 pixels with a resolution of 600 pixels/inch.  I can't remember how I came up with these particular dimensions since I did it so long ago but I am sure I looked up the best dimensions for making a custom page and somehow came up with those numbers.
Next I did a Google image search for herringbone background (you could search for any kind of background of course).  You will want to make sure that the image you use doesn't have any watermarks.  I saved the image to my desktop and then dragged the file onto my Pixelmator canvas.
Next I enlarged the image to the size I wanted and duplicated it as many times as I needed to fill the canvas (in this case, I needed 4 images to cover the canvas).  I carefully lined up the pieces so that it looked like one continuous background.
I then drew a square over the background.  
Then I turned down the opacity of the square so that I could see a bit of the background through the square.
I added a boarder to the square using the shape controls right about the canvas.
Then I drew lines until I had the square divided into enough small squares for a month. This was the trickiest step because it took awhile to get it lined up just right. It probably isn't perfect but it looks good enough to me.
I added numbers and the name of the month using the text tool.  You can use any font on your computer for these steps.  You can also change the color of the text using the text controls above the canvas that show up when you are using the text tool.
Then I duplicated the name of the month.
I changed the copy to navy.
My layer with the text copy was actually in front of the other text layer so I just dragged the copy layer down below the original layer in layer window to put it behind the original.  Then I offset it a little from the original text to make a shadowed look.  I saved the image and then exported it as jpeg file with maximum quality.

Next I opened up Mixbook and uploaded my calendar files into my photo library for the project.  
I selected a full page picture layout (it had text but I just deleted the text box) from the layout tab.  I then dragged the month that I needed onto the page from my photo library.
Finally I added text to the days that included milestones, trips, and other special events from her first year.  I added stickers from the sticker menu or that I uploaded myself to decorate the page and make it a little more fun.

I hope you gained some inspiration on how you can create your own calendar page for your digital book project.  I am so excited to share more posts in this series in the future because I am pretty proud of how her baby book looks so far.  Next up on the blog: I will finally post about the teepee that I made for her 1st birthday!  

Monday, August 8, 2016

Sewing for Baby: Haven Romper

I am super excited to share this project with you today!  I love this pattern!  The pattern is from Violette Fields Threads and is called the Haven Dress and Romper.  The first thing that I love about this pattern is the versatility of it.  There are three main options: bubble shorts romper (what I chose for this project), pantaloons romper, and dress.  The sizes included are 6-12 months to 10 years. There are two different bodice options: a sun-suit bodice and a full coverage bodice.  The bodice can also include a lace (or any fabric really) inset piece.  For the shorts romper there is an option to add snaps which I chose for quick diaper changes.

I chose to make the bubble shorts version with the full coverage bodice without an inset.  For the fabrics I used a navy cotton fabric for the shorts and fabric from a vintage sheet for the bodice.  I used pre-made bias tape for the trim of the bodice and lace eyelet for the back straps.  I used pink KAM snaps for the snap panels.

The instructions of the pattern were very easy to follow and the pictures in the tutorial were great.  I love the vintage look of the pattern and I will be using it again and again.  I can't wait to make the dress version!

I was so excited to finish this project in time for Lyla's one year professional photos.  Notice that I used the same vintage sheet fabric in her teepee (don't worry, I will write a post on that project soon, I promise).  Isn't it just a darling romper!

Here is a look at the other posts in the Sewing for Baby series:

Monday, August 1, 2016

Felt Flower Crown

Happy Monday!  I know, I know, who says that besides a teacher on summer break?  Don't worry, in a few weeks I probably won't be so happy about Mondays either.  Today I have a post about a felt flower crown that I made for my daughter to wear with one of her outfits for her 1 year photo session. I love making flowers out of paper as evidenced by these two fun projects:
Watercolor Paper Flowers
Atlas Roses

The process for making flowers out of felt is pretty much the same.  For both of the paper projects I used my Silhouette Portrait to cut out the petals which made the process a lot quicker but for the felt roses I didn't need as many petals so I just made my own pattern and cut them out by hand. The pattern was kind of 4-leaf clover shaped.  
I cut two pieces for each flower. Then I put a dot of hot glue on one of the pieces and laid the other piece on top so the the petals of the top piece lined up in between the petals of the bottom piece.
I curled one of the petals of the top piece and secured it with hot glue.  I then curled the opposite petal around the center petal using a dap of hot glue to secure it.  I continued this process with all of the petals of the top piece and then the bottom piece until my rose was finished.
I bought a simple black headband at Hobby Lobby and glued the roses on the top of the headband.  I made 8 total, 2 of each color.

Finally I cut out leaf shapes from green felt and glued them between each rose to fill the headband out a little.

I chose these colors because of the colors of the embroidery of a dress from Gap that I chose for one of her outfits for pictures.  The purple wasn't actually a color in the embroidery but I thought it would go well with everything anyway.
Don't you just love that dress?  It is so lovely.  I just love baby and kids clothes from Gap.  All of the clothes I have for Lyla from there are my favorites.  Oh and here are a few pictures of Lyla in the finished outfit.

She looks like a little angel!  The look I was going for was a look reminiscent of Frida Kahlo who is one of my favorite artists.  I am so excited about my next post which will be the next installment of the Sewing for Baby series.  I am in love with the pattern that I am reviewing for that post and I can't wait to share it with you!
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