Monthly Archives: May 2014

Cause and Effect

I have officially announced my next novel, Cause and Effect, on my website: The By Kids for Kids Series! It is in the beginning stages of writing.

Here’s a little history on the story. I first had the idea for Cause and Effect about five years ago, while on vacation. After writing thirty pages, and drafting many ideas about the life in Melena’s school, the manuscript lay aside as I waited for a plot breakthrough idea to come to me. Meanwhile I wrote California Girl, Only 7 and Next Stop. In the beginning of 2014, after much thought, I was struck with a brand new back story idea for Cause and Effect. Since then, I have been writing and writing getting my new idea together!

Here is the (current) official summary of Cause and Effect which I published on my website:

At the age of eight, Melena is taken to an isolated school. She struggles with friends, loss, and bullying. Her life is changed one night, and she realizes she has more potential than she ever could have imagined. She and her friends are faced with a tough decision that could have big consequences.

The ozone layer has been polluted dangerously. Death has occurred in many areas, and scientists decide to investigate. Surviving children, who suffer from mysterious amnesia, are placed in isolated schools to be observed. Could the observations lead to one of the greatest scientific discoveries of mankind?

My sixth novel, Cause and Effect, can be expected to be published in eBook format on Amazon and Barnes and Noble in 2015. In the meantime, check out my other books here!

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Leavenworth Theater The Sound of Music Cast Announced

The cast for Leavenworth Summer Theater‘s 20th annual production of The Sound of Music has been announced!

Leading the show as Maria is Marissa Ryder, recently seen as Meg in ArtsWest production of Little Women: The Broadway Musical.  Captain Von Trapp will be played by Ernest Palmer, seen in many Leavenworth Summer Theater shows.  He has also appeared onstage in Anything Goes at The 5th Avenue Theater.  Susan Gubsch is returning for her nineteenth summer as Mother Abbess!

The children are double cast, with Kaylene Jackson and Lexi Jason as Liesl, Josh Preston and Grayson J. Smith as Friedrich, Andrea Sorenson and Morgan Van Vleck as Louisa, Chloe Forsyth and Kaitlin Hess as Brigitta, Carter Hagopian and Landon Davies as Kurt, Dayna Dickson and Lydia Cameron as Marta, and Kiley Moore and Piper Lodato as Gretl!

Kaylene Jackson, Grayson J. Smith, and Landon Davies are all returning from last summer for their second year in their respective roles.  This is Chloe Forsyth’s second time playing Brigitta, after portraying the role with LST in 2012.

The role of Rolf Gruber is also double cast, and will be played alternately by Dennis Peters and Trevor Williams.

With an ensemble of nuns, nazis, and party guests, the show will be strong and beautiful!  Tickets can be purchased here.

To read more about the unique experience of Leavenworth Summer Theater, see my blog post: Leavenworth Summer Theater 2014 Season.

Also see, Leavenworth Summer Theater Casts Announced! for the other shows’ casts.

Comment or like if you are mentioned above in the cast, or if you plan on coming to see the show this summer!

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American Girl Doll Summer Sundress

summer dressI don’t know the name of the fabric this dress is made of, but it is very light and soft (like flannel). It’s the kind of fabric would be good to make a pair of summer pajamas out of.

I didn’t use a pattern for this dress.  The shirring on the top was already done, which gave me the idea for this dress.  I measured her front from armpit to armpit, straight across, because I knew the fabric was stretchable.  I also measure the back the same way.  I added a little extra in the back, so I could put Velcro on.  In the end, the front was 6 inches, and the back was 8 inches.  If I were to do it again, I would do the back 7 1/2 inches or even 7 inches, since the back isn’t tight fitting.

I cut the back piece down the middle, then stitched it back together almost all the way to the top, but left enough so I would have room for adding Velcro.

I attached the front and the back, and hemmed the bottom.

The straps I attached on the front, and the stitches aren’t hidden.  I thought it looked better with a little V.

The dress was very simple to make.  To do the shirring/smocking yourself, all you would need to do is hook up your sewing machine with elastic thread and stitch!  I, however, do not have a sewing machine so I must take advantage of pre-sewn fancies.

The fabric flower is currently sewn to a regular human sized hair tie, which is stretchy enough to go over the doll’s head.  When I have a hair clip available, I’m going to take the flower off the hair tie and hot glue it to the clip.  I think that would be much better then a headband, especially one that is turquoise and doesn’t match the dress!

Anyway, the fabric flower I found here and I did it exactly the way the directions said, except I had to size it down.  Any smaller, and it would be difficult – not impossible, though – to sew together.

If this style of flower doesn’t match your outfit, you may find a flower for you here.

Next is a Disney Frozen outfit!

topflowerfront

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Our Generation Boy Doll

IMG_1196This is me and my brother’s Our Generation boy doll.  We got him (originally ‘her’) on sale at Target.

He was, when we bought him, Sadie.  I cut his hair off (I’m not quite finished with cutting it).  We also lightened his lip color with non-acetone finger nail polish remover, and trimmed his eyelashes.

I made the shorts for my American Girl Doll at first, but they were so small I couldn’t get them on.  Luckily, OG dolls are skinnier (although the same height), and the shorts fit nicely on this guy.  Because he is skinnier then an American Girl Doll, I think I will be able to use the girl patterns on him, because they will turn out looser.

The t-shirt is my favorite shirt pattern, because it’s easy and has sleeves.  The pattern is from SimplySweetByb.com here.  I use it in a lot of outfits.  I printed and cut out Perry the Platypus from Phineas and Ferb on iron-on transfer paper.  The printer decided to print Perry’s hat green, but it didn’t bother us.

I plan on making him a wardrobe of clothes and posting them!

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American Girl Doll Laura Ingalls Outfit

IMG_1115This dress is modeled after the Little House on the Prairie dresses that the Ingalls girls wear.  I made my own pattern for the top of the dress (and used it again for the apron).  I sewed gathered rectangles of cloth and sleeves to the dress top to make it.  I did the same with the apron, but without the sleeves.

The bonnet I found a human pattern for here, and printed it doll size.  I also made a full sized one for myself for fun!

The back of the bonnet that covers the neck is a bit long on the doll, so eventually I’m going to shorten it.

IMG_1114IMG_1117

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Next Up…

My brother and I have made an Our Generation boy doll, and I’m going to make a post on how we did it!  Probably some clothing for him too!

And some swim clothes!

 

 

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American Girl The Sound of Music T-Shirt Outfit

 

front wholetop  front

Well, it’s the weekend again so I’ve got another American Girl outfit made!  This one as you can see in the pictures includes: a Chevron pattern bracelet, a Sound of Music Broadway logo t-shirt, a turquoise circle skirt, and turquoise duct tape Toms style shoes.

The Chevron friendship bracelet is made of 3 strings, each a different color, folded in half.  I have made a lot of friendship bracelets in my time, for myself and for others, so I sized the lengths of the strings down.  I’ve made so many of these bracelets, I didn’t need to measure the strings or anything, I could just tell if they were long enough from experience.  Here’s a tutorial on how to make a Chevron bracelet: Instructables.

The t-shirt pattern is from SimplySweetByb.com here.  I also used it in the Purple and Black Skirt outfit.  It’s the easiest one to make that I’ve seen so far.  I bought Avery Iron-On Transfer paper at Wal Mart.  I found a photograph that I could use to put on the shirt.  I looked around on Google Images and decided on the Broadway The Sound of Music logo for this shirt.  I really like the way it turned out.

Using the iron on transfers was very simple and easy.  All you need is an iron, tissue paper, a regular printer (preferably a color printer), and iron on transfer paper.  Iron on transfer paper is about $7-$10 for five sheets.  Since the pictures I print for the t-shirts are small enough to fit onto the shirt, I can probably do three pictures separately onto one sheet, or more if I printed them all at once.

I will be making more t-shirts with other designs on them soon!  I’ve got some ideas such as Frozen, Tangled, some other Disney themes, and Broadway musical logos.

I mostly followed the directions here for the circle skirt.  Next time I make one I will make it a little longer then this turquoise one, so I can hem the bottom!  Instead of using a cloth waistband, like the tutorial I used said to do, I used elastic and pinned it.  I didn’t do it quite right, but when experimenting, one rarely gets it right the first time.  Luckily, what isn’t quite right is underneath the shirt so you can’t even see it when she’s wearing it!

The shoes are duct tape Tom style shoes from this YouTube video.  The shoes in the photo are the third pair of shoes I’ve made this way, the first pair was a trial run with Minnie Mouse duct tape (maybe they’ll be in a future outfit), and the second a patterned pair that will be in a future outfit.  After I made my first pair I went to the store and bought two roles of duct tape.  I think I need to make a couple more pairs to alter the tutorial to perfection, but they are super easy and quick to make.  The way I see it these shoes are nice and way better then no shoes at all (which is what my doll had before).  Since I never buy anything for my American Girl Doll, she only has the shoes which she came in and a pair of ice skates I got for my birthday once.

 

shoesbracelet

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American Girl Doll Ballet Outfit

ballet outfit2

This ballet outfit is made of black tights, a black leotard, a white glitter tutu and a white headband.

I found the pattern for the leotard on www.myagdollcraft.blogspot.com.  The leotard is rather tight, therefore difficult to get on.  I think this is because the pattern didn’t have an allowance for Velcro in the back (I found it almost impossible to get on without Velcro in the back).  In other respects, this pattern is great.

The tights are quite simple.  They are just a human knee high or long sock with the foot cut off, cut and sewn up the middle to make two legs.  It’s very easy to find a tutorial for this on the internet by just searching for it.  The sock I used for these black tights was kind of small and not overly stretching, so the tights are, well, tight.  But that’s okay.

The tutu is just 49 glitter tulle strips 11 inches long folded in half and L knotted onto a 10 inch piece of elastic.  The knots make a nice waistband.

And to incorporate the white into the outfit more, I took an extra strip of tulle and tied it into a circle.  Since tulle is kind of stretchy, it worked well as a headband.

black leotardblack tights tutu waistband tutu above

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American Girl Leavenworth Summer Theater Logo T-Shirt Outfit

front lst I used a t-shirt pattern to create this blue t-shirt, then added a white block of cloth to put on the Leavenworth Summer Theater logo to make an LST American Girl Doll T-shirt!  The t-shirt pattern link can be found in my Purple/Black Skirt Outfit Post.

The logo is just white and black for now, but once I get fabric pens or Sharpies, I’m going to color it like the logo below.lst logo

The skirt I made about 2 years ago and didn’t use a pattern for, I simply cut 26 identical triangles and sewed them all together.  I hemmed the bottom and added little golden bells, since the skirt was originally a St. Patrick’s Day skirt.  I folded over the top of the triangles and sewed on a waistband (not shown in the picture to the left).  The waist band attaches with a snap in the back.

And, of course, the blue tights.  This was the first pair of tights I attempted to make for my doll, and I was pleased with how simple it was!  All I had to do was cut off the top part of a knee high, cut it in half up the middle, leaving about 3 inches together at the top, and sewed the inside of the legs and tip of the toes.  They are a little difficult to get on, but that is probably just because the sock was kind of narrow to begin with.  Now I know that a wider, stretchier sock would be even more perfect for tights.

I’m currently working on tights and a leotard!

side top lstlst shirtbell skirttights

 

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American Girl Disney Frozen T-shirt Outfit

outfitThe t-shirt is the pattern I use all the time.  The pattern is from SimplySweetByb.com here.  I used stretchable iron-on transfers for the logo and Olaf.  I put the pictures I used in this post as well.  The frozen logo is animated but when you save it as a picture, it will be a regular picture.  My printer decided to print Olaf and parts of the logo green…  Oh well.

The skirt I made using this tutorial.  My American Girl Doll must have different measurements then the doll used in the tutorial. This skirt, when finished, was way too small for my doll.  Disappointing.  I had to squeeze it on for the pictures.  If you decide to use this tutorial, make the waistband bigger than 12 inches.

I have also made a dress out of the fabric I made this skirt from.

The shoes are duct tape Tom style shoes from this YouTube video.  These same shoes are also in my American Girl The Sound of Music T-Shirt Outfit.

Someday, I want to make a blue silk Elsa dress for my doll and attempt to make it as authentic as possible…  It will take a lot of studying and research to find net fabric with AG scale snowflakes on it…
shirtfrozen Olaf-Frozen-olaf-36917838-321-440

 

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