freezer paper stencil

Secret Squirrel Mission #7 Sew Along

A long long time ago…..

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a brave knight of the red realm set off to rescue a damsel

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It was a long and arduous mission, but he was brave and true.

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After his mission was complete, he decided it was far too hot to be wearing a hoodie…… and if he really thought about it, he much rather prefers Star Wars to knights, so..

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he opted for a more weather appropriate outfit and decided his new occupation would be to whack plums off the tree with a cricket stump.

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and they all lived happily ever after. The End.

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Wow, please excuse the length of this post – we had a bit of fun with this 🙂 This is my sew along for this months Secret Squirrel challenge which was set by Jenya back in early December. I not very eloquently explained Secret Squirrel in my last sew along post here, or you can read all about Secret Squirrel here. There are 5 ‘acorns’ of inspiration given that are to be incorporated into an outfit and this month’s acorns were:

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1. St. Basil’s Cathedral 2. snowflake 3. buttons 4.Harry Connick Jnr. 5. ‘A long time ago’

So, firstly to the knight hoodie – this is the new pattern just released by Elisa of Charming Doodle. I think it hands down wins the award for coolest pattern release of the year! I was lucky enough to test this pattern for Elisa and trust me when I say, this is the first of many of these that I will be sewing up. The hoodie accounts for two acorns, ‘A long time ago’ and ‘buttons’.

Next up, I was trying to think how to tackle the ‘snowflakes’ acorn on an outfit for a boy….. hmmmm….. I came up with the ice planet Hoth from Star Wars. This is represented by the white t-shirt. The silver figure painted on the tee is one of the AT-AT fighters found on the planet Hoth.

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This tee was a refashion – I changed it from long sleeve to short, changed the neckline and freezer-paper stencilled the figure.

Next I faced the Harry Connick Jnr acorn – this was quite a challenge!! As this outfit needed some pants/shorts or something to cover his bum – I took inspiration from the very cool suits that Harry is usually sporting. I wanted to recreate his slim suit pants but in a wearable form for a kid. So, I found some awesome grey-blue denim at Joy’s (no online store) and cut out the Nowhere Man pants from Shwin & Shwin. I slimmed the leg down as this pattern has a slight flare and I stuck with a size 4 to give a fitted look. I’m so happy with how these came out and I can see them getting a lot of wear.

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Phew, not done yet….. I originally thought that the red of the hoodie could count for the St.Basil’s Cathedral acorn (the flag of Russia is mostly red, the Cathedral is in Russia… done), but after laying awake thinking about it, I wasn’t at all happy with this. The Cathedral looks amazing in photos and I felt I could do a much better job of this acorn. So, here is my St. Basil’s Cathedral inspired dress:

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This is the Popover Sundress from Oliver & S sewn in knit. The colours of the yoke panel represent the colours of the cathedral spires. The idea for this dress came from an awesome version that I saw over on Hungie Gungie a while ago, so I can’t take the credit for it. Erin’s version is gorgeous and I’ve been wanting to make my version of it for ages.

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So there you go, 4 items of clothing for 5 acorns and a very long post. I’ve loved the challenge of Secret Squirrel yet again and I think there are some wearable pieces here – win and win!

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Secret Squirrel Mission #6 Sew Along

Have you been following the Secret Squirrel sewing series? It’s a really fun series where Secret Squirrel travels the world visiting sewing bloggers and giving ‘acorns’ of inspiration that are incorporated into a particular outfit. It’s being run by Sewpony and Straightgrain and you can read all about the series here. I finally got my act together to sew along for mission #6.

The inspiration for mission #6 came from Victoria of As It Seams, while Secret Squirrel visited her in the UK in November. The acorns of inspiration that Victoria has sent out are below:

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1. Where the wild things are 2. Blue 3. David Bowie 4. Pocket 5. Great Britain

What a challenge!! Victoria then sent Secret Squirrel to Jenya of While She Was Sleeping and you can see the beautiful outfit that she made her daughter using these 5 acorns of inspiration here. I’ve taken the challenge to join the sew along using these same 5 acorns. Confused? Suz explains the series really well here.

My first thought when I saw these acorns was that they could possibly be used to make an outfit for a boy. So far all the Secret Squirrel contributions I’ve seen have been girl’s outfits . This little guy doesn’t feature on this blog a whole lot so I decided to dedicate this sewing adventure to making something for him. So, less chatting, lets get to the outfit…

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Acorn 1 – Where the Wild Things Are. 

Hunting through my fabric stash, I found this striped knit and it immediately reminded me of a jumper that one of the Wild Things is wearing. It’s not a perfect colour match, but good enough I think. Just to make sure this symbolism was not too subtle, I freezer paper stenciled Max’s crown onto the t-shirt using gold fabric paint. I used Dana from MADE’s free Basic Tee pattern (it comes in one size only, 4-5).

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The slim fit of the t-shirt leads me into Acorn 3 – David Bowie (Acorn 2 – Blue and Acorn 4 – pocket are self-explainatory if you look at the shorts!!). When I googled images of David Bowie I took inspiration from his late 70s and early 80s style. There were lots of pastel colours and boxy silhouettes in these images. I immediately thought of the Banyan shorts pattern from Figgys Patterns that I have owned for quite a while but had not sewn before. The short shorts style and the pleats give an 80s feel, which is complemented by the skinny tee, which together are hopefully channeling a David Bowie vibe!?. I sewed a size 4-5 in the shorts, however a smaller size would have given more of the short shorts look I was after.

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Acorn 5 – Great Britain.

I had the outfit all planned out in my head, but I couldn’t figure how to add this acorn. I really wanted to do this acorn justice as I love the UK – I lived there for a while and might still be there if it wasn’t so damn far from my family. There was nearly a whole extra piece of clothing for this outfit, but in a last minute reprieve, I had an idea…..  I found a silk tie in Bruce tartan (my family’s tartan) which I had brought home from Scotland. It has languished in a box for a few years and I really can’t see who would ever wear it. So, I cut it up to make a pocket and I really like the contrast it gives.

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Victoria, I really hope I haven’t offended Scottish people everywhere by cutting a tartan up?!?

So, here is my outfit for Secret Squirrel’s Mission #6. There are many other Secret Squirrel inspired outfits in the Flikr group if you’re interested. Of course, the Great Britain acorn lends itself perfectly to photos of O playing cricket. This is no set up – this boy is cricket obsessed.

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Secret Squirrel’s Mission #7 acorns have already been set. I’m looking forward to seeing the great outfits that these new acorns will inspire.