Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Making Merry

Even though it feels too early to me to be thinking about Christmas, I feel like this year (because of baby) I have kind of had to.  I've done a little Christmas shopping, which feels really wrong since I've always been so adamant about not starting until after Thanksgiving.  The past couple of years I have made Christmas presents, and I loved it.  It's fun for me to make them, and fun to give people handmade, one of a kind items as well.  I didn't feel like I could commit to that this year though--what if baby comes and I don't get it all done?!?!  So, I am doing store bought presents, but in order to keep up the craftiness, I have done a couple small Christmas sewing projects.

My family has the tradition of filling eat other's stockings (you get a big present and a stocking stuffer from each person).  So, when I was in high school, my mom made pretty, quilted stockings for our family.  Then, as we've added more family members with me and my sister's husbands, we've made stockings for them as well.  This year, we'll have two little babies for Christmas, so it felt right to make them stockings as well.  They really are a quick and easy project.  I drew my own pattern and then used this tutorial to figure out how to put it together.  They really only took me about 45 minutes each. 

The one on the left is for my nephew and the one on the right is for Baby B.  I just did a little big of quilting on each one, and you really only have to do it on the front of the stocking.  I did both sides on Baby B's and it actually makes the stocking a little thick and hard to get things in and out of with all the fabric layers.  Oh, well.

I also had picked up a piece of flannel after the Christmas season last year.  I don't know what I thought I'd make out of it at the time since I bought about 4 yards of fabric, but it was cheap and I tucked it away.  As I was looking through my fabric bin last Friday, I decided that the flannel with it's cheery holly and red-striped print would make really cute flannel lounge pants.  So, I made a pair for myself.   Then, because there was still fabric left over, I decided to make a little pair for Baby B as well.  I used a basic unisex pattern from Simplicity for my pants (Lounge Pant Pattern--except not the plus size pattern, since this pattern runs HUGE!  I didn't see the regular one on their website though.)  For baby's pants, I used this adorable pattern from Jackie Clark called Britches and Bloomers.  Both patterns are super easy and only took about an hour each to make (if that.)  Check 'em out:

Here's a better picture of baby's pants.  I am thinking that I may be able to make a little embellished onesie to go with them. This is the backside with it's cute pockets.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

At Home Photo Shoot

It's kind of amazing what you can accomplish with a friend who has a nice camera and a little pretty scenery around your house.  I wanted to create a photo shoot to record the last days of my pregnant belly--we did our shoot at 36 weeks.  Our original plan had been to go our to an apple orchard and take advantage of the scenery there, but with limited time we decided to just make use of the area around our house. 

Putting together the photo shoot wasn't difficult.  If you have a decent eye for spacial reasoning, color and design (which most crafty types do) you can come up with some clever shots on your own--or simply search the Internet for "maternity images" and you can see all kinds of ideas.

Here are the props that we used:
  • Our countdown chalk board (which usually hangs in our dining room)
  • A pumpkin
  • A antique quilt
  • A mum
That's it.  Then, of course we had a couple of different clothing options, because it makes you feel like a model.  I think it felt a lot like our engagement photo shoot, except with a lot more focus on my belly.  We wanted to look comfortable, happy, and excited.  I think that comes through in the photos.  Check out the results:

This one was taken on our front porch. 

I had found the inspiration for this photo online.  In the photo I found the couple was using a soccer ball, but I thought that being the day before Halloween and that our baby is a fall baby, the pumpkin was cute.

You'd never guess, but many of these shots are taken in a tiny corner of what would be considered our back yard.  Our house actually backs up to a parking lot, and so we have only a 20'x20' space that borders a marsh that would be considered our 'yard', however, with the trees, leaves, and tall grasses, it make a great background.

I had my sister do just a little bit of photo editing on the first shot in the blog...Our day was very cloudy and we didn't really have great light for the shoot, but after she did a little color correcting and added some more shadows, it almost looks like it was sunny!