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Kristi Morrow

KCW interview with Cherie from you&mie
summer

KCW interview: Cherie from you&mie

Hi, this is Kristi from SweetKM. Today’s KCW Interview is Cherie from You & Mie. You may know Cherie from her Japanese Sewing Book Series, and the recent Happy Homemade Sew-along. Before Kid’s Clothes Week I had been a casual reader of Cherie’s blog. When I saw her watercolor dress in the KCW pool, I went on a You & Mie binge and read every singe word of You & Mie! Not only does she have a ton of amazing finished garments, it is jam-packed with sewing tutorials and ideas for customizing fabric. Please welcome Cherie.

1. Please tell us about the kids you sew for.
I sew for my two daughters who are almost 4 years old and 10.5 months old.

Back Camera Processed with VSCOcam with t1 presetleft: Itty Bitty Dress, right: Jump Rope Dress

2. When did you start making clothes for your kids? Why?
I started making clothes shortly after my first daughter was born. We were going to a wedding when she was 6 weeks old so I made her a dress using Made By Rae’s (free) Itty Bitty Dress pattern. It was a success! And I was hooked. I’m not really sure why the idea of making clothes appealed to me so much, besides the fact that it’s fun to dress up your kids however you want! But seriously, I love the challenge of coming up with an idea for a garment or outfit and then figuring out how to make it happen. It was also far less intimidating and less costly than sewing for myself.

3. 
When was your first Kid’s Clothes Week? How did it go?

My first Kids Clothes Week was Spring 2012. I was super crazy ambitious and tried to make a bazillion projects. Well, actually it was only 4, but I remember staying up super late every night and letting the house get all messy, but I LOVED it. The best part was the community – I was constantly checking the photo pool for the newest projects and I loved giving and getting comments and encouragement and knowing that I was in it with hundred of others. I was hooked. In terms of the actual sewing, I made an awful pair of shorts, a skirt that was way too big, a decent top, and my biggest accomplishment that week was an Oliver + S Jump Rope Dress.

2b Doubleleft: Double Ruffle Top, middle: Orange Skinnies,  right: Burn Out Raglan Tee

4. How do your children influence your sewing?
My soon-to-be 4 year old, Yuki, is extremely picky when it comes to clothes, so when I make things for her, I really have to think about what she will actually wear. That includes type of fabric, type of clothing, fit, color, print, etc. She’s really into comfort so I sew a lot more with knits now. She’s also really into dresses, so I’ve been making a lot of those, whereas a year ago, she wouldn’t touch a dress. As she’s gotten more opinionated, I’ll ask for her input more as well. I’ll let her choose from a stack of fabrics or weigh in on certain details. I also sew based on what my kids need. Both of my girls need some new leggings/knit pants and Yuki needs some new pajamas and a birthday dress, so those are all on the to do list.

5. How do you balance your work/ family/sewing time?
Oh, I’m so bad at that “balancing” thing. Basically, I work during my work hours. When I’m at home and my family is awake, it’s family time. When everyone is asleep, it’s sewing/blogging time. When do I sleep? I kinda don’t. It’s not a very healthy schedule, but it’s the only way I know how to do things. Luckily, I have a very supportive partner that helps out by taking the morning shift with the kids or even on weekends if I have a big project to work on. But honestly, time management is my weakness, so I have no helpful advice here. Anyone have any for me!?

2 doubleleft: Sora and the Cloud bag, right: Painted Flutter Sleeve Dress from Stylo v.2

6. You do a lot of painting on fabric, which is your favorite technique? Why?
Ooh, yes, I do love painting on fabric! I like using fabric paint for freezer paper stenciling and stamping, but my favorite right now is to use these specific paints, Pebeo Setacolor Transparent Fabric Paints, to get a watercolor look that is permanent on fabric. I’m drawn to the organic images that are produced with watercolors as well as the uniqueness that comes with freehand painting and knowing that it is one-of-a-kind. I also love that these paints dry soft if you mix them with water first, so you can do all over washes of color without making the fabric stiff. I recently shared a post with a whole bunch of tips on how to use these paints. Experimenting with these paints are definitely my favorite type of fabric painting right now. One thing that I’d like to try more of, is combining the watercolor fabric paints with other techniques like stamping or stenciling. I did a little of that for this bag and for this dress, but I would love to continue playing with mixed media on fabric.

3 doubleabove: Water Color Dress

7. 
What inspired the watercolor sundress you made for this KCW?
I was inspired by the KCW theme, Kid Art! Yuki loves painting, but I hadn’t ever thought to let her paint fabric, so the theme is really what encouraged me to try fabric painting with Yuki. And it just made so much sense – I love painting fabric, Yuki loves painting, she loves to be involved – why not!? I’m so glad that we had the push to do it! It was fun, though not perfect, but a good experience for both of us. We both love the finished result and can say it was a true collaboration. Yuki’s definitely proud to say that she painted her dress. I mean, how many kids can say that!?

4 doubleleft: Vintage All-Star Track Suit, right: Elsa Dress

8. What is your favorite thing you’ve ever sewn for one of your kids? And/or your favorite type of thing to sew for your kids?
Ooh, this is hard. While the Watercolor Sundress is up there, I think this Vintage All-star Track Suit I made a couple of years ago is something that I’m pretty proud of. I made it for one of the Project Run & Play sew-along challenges and was one of those things that I had envisioned and then worked really hard to bring it to life. I drafted my own patterns and didn’t really know what I was doing, but tried it anyways and I was pleasantly surprised with the finished outfit! It’s obviously not perfect, but I had so much fun making it and seeing it on my daughter and I think that’s the part that really matters in the end.

And now, what I really like to sew for my preschooler, is something that I know she’ll love. When she gets excited about something I’ve made and says, “Thank you, Mama! I love it!” and gives me a big hug, and then wants to wear it all the time . . . those are the things I love sewing for her. Most recently, it’s been this Elsa dress.

5 doubleleft: Fluttering Fields Sundress, right: Quilted Jacket

9. You have a ton of detailed sewing tutorials on your blog, which is your favorite?
I don’t really know, I tend to like whatever my latest tutorial is 🙂 Which right now, is the Fluttering Fields Dress. I made the first version with Rae Hoekstra’s Fluttering Fields fabric from her Lotus Pond line, which is where I got the name for the dress. The second version I made is the Watercolor Sundress I linked to above. My daughter loves both dresses, which is awesome and I feel like the design is original and fun. One of my most popular kids clothes tutorials is the Quilted Jacket.

Thanks Kristi for inviting me to be here today! As a huge fan of KCW, I’m so honored to be part of this interview series. And truly, one of the things that I’m inspired by most when it comes to sewing is all the people who sew for KCW and the people behind KCW, so thank you!!

*****

Thank you Cherie! I can’t wait to try out fabric stamping and those beautiful water color paints!

This is my last contribution to the KCW blog. I would like to thank Meg for inviting me, and YOU for reading along. As everyone has said before, the supportive community is the best part of Kid’s Clothes Week, and I really enjoyed being a part of it. Until next KCW you can find me at SweetKM.

summer

KID ART: outfits inspired by kid art

Hi, Kristi from SweetKM here with my own interpretation of the KCW Kid Art theme. Shelley focused on the Masters, I’m going to focus on abstract expressionists a little closer to home – my kids. Kid’s artwork is so full of color, imagination, and personal style – I thought it would make for some interesting sewing inspiration. I also have piles of it laying around, just waiting to be repurposed. Rather than taking the drawings at face value, I tried to find some abstract qualities that could be used to translate the works on paper into wearable works of art. Here is the process I used to get some ideas rolling. First, I photographed a few of the more interesting and colorful drawings my daughter has done lately. Having a digital copy allowed me to make a Pinterest board for each drawing where I could try fabrics and patterns out along side the drawing to see how they work together. Here are a few examples of how I am translating elements of a drawing into elements of an outfit.

OUTLINE

Outline Collage

 

1. dress pattern 1a. navy piping 1b. sash fabric 1c. dress fabric 2. headband 3. sandals

Outline. So many of the drawings my kids do are simple lines on paper. Sometimes they color them in, sometimes not. For this outfit I’m using the piping and sash of the spectacular Roma Dress from c’est dimanche to define areas of the dress in much the same way that my little one has defined areas of her drawing using crayon. The fabric body of the dress represents the scribble scrabble (as my guys call it) inside those lines. Just about any fabric would work for this illustration, and a custom fabric would be very cool. The pale pink strappy sandals and pencil thin red headband create even more layers of lines on the outfit.

SHAPE

Form Collage

1. hair bow 2. dress pattern 2a. accent fabric 2b. dress fabric 3. shoes

Shape. My daughter was very annoyed when I stashed away this drawing, she has been calling it her shape board, and she insists she isn’t finished with it yet. The ameba form in the drawing is nearly a prefect match for the plunging back of the Figgy’s Eos Dress. The relatively plain khaki chambray body fabric picks up on the sparseness of this drawing, and allows the accent fabric used on the back bow to really pop. The forms in the abstract bow print are again drawing on the ovular theme. I’m reiterating that shape again with the big soft loops of the orange hair bow, and the iconic toe of the converse sneaker. Sounds like serious stuff, but there is nothing serious about this look. (Okay L, you may have your drawing back now!)

COLOR

Color Collage

1. tights 2. dress pattern 2a. bodice fabric 2b. skirt fabric 3. turban 4. boots

Color. When my kids paint with watercolor half of the fun is experimenting with how the paint goes on to the paper. Wet brush, dry brush, the whole cup of brush washing water sloshed across the page, each technique creates a different level of transparency and saturation. For this outfit I looked for fabrics that picked up on the layering and contrasting of colors in the painting. The skirt fabric has a similar monochrome blue color scheme, and similar variation in hard and soft edges to the drawing’s forms. The gray pin stripe of the bodice picks up on the contrast between the hard and soft edges of the different colors. The pale teal turban draws on the lighter blue tones. The black tights and fringed boots were inspired by the wispy black brush strokes across the top of the paper.

There you have it – three dresses from three different examples of kid art. I could go on and on with some of the zany things my kids make, but I would rather wait and see what you make. Where are you headed with the kid art theme?

 

summer color inspiration on KCW
summer

inspiration: summer colors

Hi, Kristi here, from SweetKM. Let’s kick off this season of Kid’s Clothes Week with a little chat about color. I make no secret of my love of color (on trend, or otherwise). Kid’s clothes only last a season or two, which frees sewists and designers to really embrace fun color trends. You may not want to invest in a neon orange button down for yourself, but your kid can wear one with no lasting damage to his/her closet space. Here are the hues that are on my mind for summer sewing:

YELLOW

Yellow All1. dress  2. shorts  3. dress  4. button down  

I love yellow. It goes with just about anything, making it deceptively versatile. Even the most yellow-phobic person can wear a  dab of it to brighten up their look. My kids wear a ton of blue, and yellow is our accent color of choice. It’s a great way to add a little pop to gray or navy.

Yellow Fabric All 21. abstract  2. stripe  3. floral

INDIGO

Indigo all1. dress  2. swim suit  3. pants  4. t-shirt

 Surely you’ve seen the Shibori dye trend around. The art of Japanese resistance dying is the sophisticated older sister of the tie dye t-shirt you made during spring week in college. I’m totally smitten and can’t wait to try it for myself. The end result looks primitive and modern all at the same time. The inherent color variation is a refreshing hint of handmade in a computer generated world.

Indigo Fabric All 21. waves  2. abstract  3. grid

PALE PASTELS

Pale Hues All1. dress  2. t-shirt  3. eyelet dress  4. ruffle dress

Pastels are nothing new. This season the trend is toward cool shades with gray undertones. The washed out finish of pale pastels create the look of being sun bleached or fresh from the beach. This is an easy trend for girls, but a boy in a fresh shade of pale lavender is just a tiny bit daring.

Pale Hues Fabric All 21. peach  2. teal  3. pink

 CHAMBRAY BLUE

Chambray All1. dress  2. pants  3. romper  4. shorts

Okay, okay, I know I’ve already used blue, but in my mind shibori’s bold indigo and the subtle hues of a classic chambray are totally different. For years I have been reaching for chambray when I wasn’t sure where to start with a sewing project. Its got great colors and subtle textures that make it work like a neutral. Chambray of any shade is still going strong for the summer wardrobe, while it isn’t technically a color, I think its popularity justifies including it here.

Chambray fabric all 21. dark blue  2. sky blue  3. dot

What colors are stuck in your head this summer season? Black? White? Acid green? Check out my first of many KCW Pinterest boards to see more summer color inspiration.