Happy new year, readers! I managed to fit in a bit of sewing over the Christmas holiday. Emboldened by the success of the ribbon-tie pants (R has worn them a few times without complaint, undeterred by her brother calling them 'Aladdin pants') I thought I'd see if I could get R into some shorts. And since I'm working my way through my new Japanese pattern books, I tried out a new top to go with them.
The 'balloon-shaped' shorts are from Girls Style Book and the fabric is cotton seersucker. I love this fabric, but it might be just a little too similar to next year's checked school dress - so although I bought heaps, it may not get much use. Oh yes, and I managed to sew two left legs and couldn't be bothered to re-sew, so the shorts have an exposed seam on the inside left leg. But it's not all that noticeable - unlike the loose thread hanging down in the photo above right. Why is there always a thread I don't notice until after I've taken the photos?
The top is from Kids Clothes Sewing Lesson Book, and it's basically a peasant-style top with a ruffle around the neck. It's a lovely, roomy, comfortable style and R seems quite pleased with it. The fabric is cheesecloth - I love the colour but shudder to think what's going to happen when I wash it... I'm imagining a little shrunken dolly-version of the top that requires much stretching and ironing to return it to its intended dimensions.
Speaking of ironing, I have a confession to make. My ironing board, which I inherited from my late grandmother some years ago, was, until yesterday, in a disgraceful state. The stained cover had lost its elastic and had been savaged with scissors. It slipped around when I ironed on it, and to make matters worse, the padding underneath was not secured and was too small for the board. I don't know why my grandmother put up with this shocking state of affairs (except for the scissoring - that bit was my contribution) and I don't know why I put up with it for so long. Many times I considered buying a new board, ideally one with a holder for my iron, but didn't want to waste money on something so mundane. So after years of procrastination, I finally took action. Introducing... (drumroll)... my NEW IRONING BOARD COVER!
It's clean! It has elastic! And it hasn't (yet) been attacked by scissors! I even rearranged the padding so it almost fits. And under the many disgusting layers of stained and torn covers that I found beneath the top one (it was like being an archaeologist, uncovering my grandmother's ironing history through the strata of ancient fabrics) I even found a pull-out iron holder. It was hidden under the board, disguised by one of the older covers having been lashed onto it with some kind of nylon rope. Weird. And hard to untangle. But I'm very happy to have found it.
If you feel inspired to renovate your own board (which is not to suggest that anyone else's board is half as disgusting as mine was), there is a simple tutorial here - but I ditched the bias-tape bit and just folded the edges in to make a casing. Worked beautifully. Strangely, my husband and children have barely responded to my new board cover - perhaps they are speechless with admiration?