Hot! The “Unexpected Gift” Shirt & The “Be a Doll and Have a Merry Christmas” Dresses

The Facts

  • Fabric: red cut-away jersey (gift!)
  • Pattern: Kirsten Kimono Tee from Maria Denmark
  • Year: 2012?
  • Notions: thread (stash)
  • First worn: December 24, 2012
  • Wear again?: Yes! I love it!
  • Total price: $0

I’m back! (Sort of.) I have not fallen off the face of the earth, but writing, editing, developing a writing conference session, Christmas parties madness, a few days of sickness, teaching sewing, and living the rest of real life have kept me too busy. I can tell you I am nearly done with my last project for the year, and I think it will be very special! Just waiting on some buckles to come in the mail.

I had thought that all I would have to post this week would be the little dresses I’ve made for my nieces for Christmas. But then on Sunday the 23rd I received one yard of an awesome cut-away red knit that I saw in the red tag area at Jo-Ann’s. I got it from my young friend Timia, whom I have been teaching to sew the past several weeks. Timia finished her first skirt on Saturday. It was when we were shopping for her fabric in November that I saw the red knit. I hid it below some hideous navy vinyl and hoped there would still be enough on the bolt in January when I could break my fabric-buying fast. Well, Timia remembered it and bought me a yard of it as a thank you/Christmas gift. What a sweetheart.

So here’s the shirt I whipped up in less than half an hour on Sunday afternoon, using the same pattern as I did for the white stripes tee.

And here’s what I had planned to post about originally…

The Facts

  • Fabric: cotton quilting scraps, scrap lace (stash)
  • Pattern: McCall’s 6006
  • Year: 2009
  • Notions: thread (stash)
  • First worn: Not sure!
  • Wear again?: Hope so. :)
  • Total price: $0

These little dresses are for my nieces’ dolls. Along with some little store-bought doll shoes, these will be one of their Christmas presents this year. I hope they like them!

Merry Christmas, everyone. I hope yours is full of great joy for the incredible gift that was given.


Erin Bartels

Erin is a copywriter by day, a novelist by night, and a wife, mother, dressmaker, quilter, zoo docent, painter, poet, and photographer in between. She only gets paid for the copywriting.


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  1. Yay, you’re back! That’s a great present and a great use for it; I’m going to have to look up that pattern because I have three pieces of jersey ~1m that I haven’t used yet. Will you be posting your sewing creations on your blog next year along with your writing?

  2. How nice of Timia to get that very cute fabric for you. I’d love to find something like that. Your shirt is so adorable too. You look so happy in your pictures, they make me smile. A year of sewing, can you believe it? What will you do for 2013? I’m cutting back some on the sewing and delving into another creative passtime, watercolor painting. Happy New Year! It’s been fun being in the sewing community with you.