Thursday, September 26, 2013

Operation Project $0: Day 19 with Max California

Can you believe we have been going strong with Operation Project $0 for 19 days now!?!?!?  I am so impressed by the amazing creations everyone has been coming up with - it is so encouraging to be reminded of how many different garments, how many different styles, and how many people CAN be a part of this idea.  Thank you for being apart of it!!!
Today I am sharing a pattern modification to create Pirate Shirts over at Pattern Revolution.  I of course had to make these $0 costumes for my own bemusement, so they are made from a queen sized sheet (with plenty left over for baby girl to get one too)... and those cool 'pirat-y' accessories - they are all belts of my mom's that she gave me to use for the hardware.  I'll take $0 costumes any day.  Check out the post to see all the adorable pictures ;o)

Now on to the really good stuff.... I have perhaps my favorite blogger in the world with us today ;o)  I would like to introduce you to Max of Max California (yes, I know her real name is Ari - but to me she is and will always be Max).  I started following the Max California blog very early in my discovery of sewing blog.  There was just something about this rocker Australian with an edgy style and so much creativity that hooked me.  We quickly hit it off and vowed to one day compete together on Project Run &Play... little did we know we would accomplish that feat AND both make it to the final three.  She is the most supportive person you can image, she constantly makes me laugh, and virtually anything she makes for her blog makes me want to be more creative, more innovative, and more adventurous in my own sewing.
Without further blubbering and ado.... here is Max!

Hello Winter Wonderers, Wanderers & Whatnots! I'm a massive fan of recycling clothing and fabrics and giving them new life. Today I'm going to show you a dress I made Edison for pretty much $0!
I'd seen these cute dresses for kids with double collars popping up every now and then, and I knew I wanted to give it a go for Edison. Using a basic bodice pattern I drafted myself in her size (pretty much every little dress pattern is base on a basic bodice pattern, but I found a great free one here you can use from Climbing the Willow), I slashed it across the middle of the armholes. The bodice of the dress is made in white cotton drill from my scrap bin, and the skirt part of the dress is made from blue silk with white polka dots on it. The silk I bought from the second hand shop for about $4 for around 2-3m of it.
I bound the armholes in white bias binding, also in my stash, and instead of hemming it I just serged the bottom of the skirt. I was in two minds about whether I should hem it or use white bias binding around the bottom, so it remains slightly wearably unfinished! What do you think I should do?
The back has a blue invisible zipper that I just sewed in like a regular zip. I have a shoebox full of zips that I have had for literally over 10 years, but really needs replenishing. I'm loathe to buy new zippers so I keep scouring the second hand stores for zips, but I also have thought about buying a bulk lot of eBay. I had issues with the zip, and so I added a hook and eye at the top to keep it closed. After a bit of fiddling I fixed the zip and the hook & eye isn't necessary anymore!
 I drafted a peter pan-like collar for the front of the bodice, I'm really into front-only-collars lately it seems! The collar was in one piece, instead of two, as I wanted it to have like a bow effect. Then I drafted a slightly smaller collar and made them both up with the silk for the outer pieces and white drill for the under pieces. I added a small tube of the silk over the front of the collar and then made two 'ties' and basted them underneath the collar before sewing it all together! It sounds confusing I know, and I have full intentions of writing a tutorial for this dress when I get some time!
It's a bit too hot here in Australia to be wearing silk dresses, so we will wait for a nice cool day to bust this dress out again! It's getting shorter as she gets taller, but I love that it can be worn as a little tunic over leggings or jeans (provided she doesn't get too much wider).
You can check out some of my other $0 projects over on my blog, such as the kids superhero Fancy Pants Leggings, Eddie's Green Lantern popover tunic, her Dreaming of Spring blazer, her Retro Red Romper, Vincent's Alpine Adventure Hoodie, Eddie's rainbow dress (omg she was so little!), Vincent's Freddy (Kreuger) Shirt, and Edison's Chromium Tunic. That's only a tiny little drip in the pond of projects I have made spending $0 or using recycled clothing/fabric! I hope Suzanne's series has inspired you to use what you have, or see new potential in things you might normally just throw away! It's not just about saving money, but being a little sustainable too! (for me it is anyway ^_^ ) PS. If you think this dress looks familiar, you're right. I used the same fabrics to make Edison's Ahoy! Sailor Dress a few weeks ago :)


  1. Oh my this post is filled with great looks. Those pirate outfits are soo cute!

    1. thanks Renee!!! And I am going to have to make a top like Max's for baby girl!!!

  2. Can I just say, Max, that your little girl is getting so big and cute! I love all those lovely locks. I love the dress too! And, we at Shaffer Sisters share your love, Suzanne, of Max. She is such a real person, with a totally rockin style. Thanks for sharing!
    with love,

    1. Thanks Jo! Her hair is just exploding lately ahaha. And thank you, I think you Shaffer Sisters are pretty rockin' also!!!

  3. Yeesh Suzanne, way to make me tear up a little! xx

  4. That polka dot dress is absolutely adorable! Not as adorable as the baby wearing it, but adorable nonetheless :)

  5. OMG... Suzanne, you and Max are absolutely on my fave bloggers too, and I just LOVED both your pirates and her polka dots pieces. =D