Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Happy Halloween... It was "sew" great!

Halloween was really wonderful this year.  I'm not going to be making my own Christmas cards this year (sadly) because of our new baby's impending arrival, so I've used this fall as an outlet for my creativity.  I felt that Halloween was the perfect excuse to craft something.

One craft I've never really tried before is sewing.  I remember sewing a simple shirt for a Girl Scout badge back in the day, using a friend's sewing machine, but that was about the extent of my sewing experience.  I always wrote it off as a craft that was just not something I did.

We decided to dress Evelyn up as a cowgirl this year for Halloween, and Joe and I would also dress the part.  Evelyn had the denim skirt (ended up being a little too chilly out to wear it), the authentic cowgirl boots from Texas (thank you, Uncle Jared), and a cowgirl hat from her 2nd birthday.  It just seemed like an easy costume, since we had most of the pieces already.  I decided that the costume could use a few extra accessories to "bring it home."  A cowgirl vest and horse to carry around would be the perfect compliments to her adorable ensemble.  Much to my disappointment, there were no cowgirl vests available for purchase (as a single garment) days before Halloween.  If Evelyn was to wear a vest, I would have to make one.  I called a friend with a sewing machine, found a vest pattern online and set a date to meet at her place to sew the project.

I didn't anticipate this plan not working out.  As it so happens, Joe (who was supposed to stay at home with Evelyn during nap time so that I could meet my friend for our sewing date) was unavailable.  Just days before Halloween, and anxious to check things off the to-do list (pregnancy will always motivate me), I decided to take on the vest myself and hand-sew the pieces.  After consulting my friend with the sewing machine, I felt confident enough to take on this project alone.

I was pleasantly surprised at how the vest came together.  After the basic vest was configured, I started to warm up to sewing and felt the need to press on and hand sew all the embellishments.  In fact, I was having "sew" much fun with my newfound craft that I created my own pattern for a horse shaped candy tote that Evelyn could carry for Halloween!  I realized that having her carry a bag for candy and a horse on a stick might be too cumbersome, so I saved some money and just sewed her a horse she could carry and put candy in.  All these crafts came together in a matter of days (I finished the horse purse the night before Halloween).

Sewing Evelyn's costume accessories occupied my time for a few days and I almost ran out of time to create a costume for myself.  I really struggled with my costume this year because even though we were doing the "Western Theme," as a family, my pregnant belly was calling for a special costume of its own.  I decided it wasn't enough to dress up as a pregnant cowgirl.  Joe and I tossed ideas around for a few weeks.  I wanted something that was easy enough to make, not too difficult to carry around (I'm already carrying my belly) and that followed our theme.  Not exactly a simple task.  Finally, I came up with this idea, and I was very pleased with the end result.

I wanted to make a star around my whole belly, but I didn't have time to make individual points and figured that wouldn't be too comfortable to wear around (or to carry Evelyn), so I chose the subtle route and whipped this design up in Microsoft Word.  I printed the design on iron-on paper and affixed it to an old maternity shirt during nap time (on Halloween).  It didn't take too long, but I now aspire to take a few lessons in digital imaging... I had a pretty awful time trying to execute my idea on the computer!
Probably should have added a mane... 
Evelyn the cowgirl... wearing the vest I made her 
Cowgirl getting an escort from Daddy Cowboy
Texas Pride
Baby was happy to be in costume too
Every girl needs fringe
The trick-or-treating gang