2011 October

Archive for October, 2011

30 Oct 2011

Halloween 2011, Part Two: The Jedi Master and the Butterfly

Comments Off In the Workroom

It was non-stop sewing in between trips to the post office at the end of last week. The costume deadline was Saturday afternoon for the school party and I just made it:

As most of you already figured out, the young Miss Nora is a monarch butterfly.

The monarch was not her choice, really, but mine. Here’s the very sophisticated inspiration for her costume:


In the end, she was thrilled with her costume and repeatedly told me so throughout the day.

Minus the black elastic holding on the wings, both costumes came together entirely from my own stash (though the spectacular orange silk dupioni was originally from Carla’s fabric collection) AND, even more remarkably, I sewed both without a pattern. This is practically unheard of around here, as you might have guessed.  (I plan to share some more details on the making of these costumes a little later.)

JR’s choice to be Obi Wan had me spending hours in front of the computer figuring out all the different layers to the Jedi Knight’s attire.  In the end, I think I got it pretty close.  Really, the costume was just his ploy to get permission to take his light saber out in public, but to his credit, JR handled his weapon responsibly.

Here’s Nora flying away to the party–I think her hair gives you a sense of the excitement.

First up, the Bat Cave,

Then Our Zoo to You, complete with angora rabbits, armadillos and baby groundhogs:

The Jedi and his groundhog

An American Gothic:

Some other Halloween antics,

and finally, the post-face painting, donut eating sugar crash:

Hope you have a nice All Hallow’s Eve!

Happy Sewing!


25 Oct 2011

Halloween 2011, Part One: Under the Sea

1 Comment In the Workroom

I don’t quite know why I signed myself up to make five Halloween costumes the same week that  we released our Autumn-Winter 2011 pattern collection, but after a few late nights, here’s what I wound up with for the girls:

Evie, being 3 3/4 yrs, knew clearly she wanted to be a mermaid for Halloween.  In fact, she told me this one sweltering summer day back in July.  I was secretly thrilled because, for the last 10 years, I have stored a small piece of iridescent pleated polyester fabric for the specific occasion when a daughter would request some aquatic-themed costume.  It was acquired during my brief stint working on the Haight Ashbury block in San Francisco in a now-defunct fabric shop.  I think I may have gotten this remnant for free.

Of course baby sister Wren would also need a sea creature costume.  One of my favorite movies growing up was Splash with Daryl Hannah and that scene when she eats the lobster is still etched in my memory.  So my crustacean choice was made.

All materials came from my considerable fabric stash. For the lobster I used a silk dupioni (what!? use silk on a costume for a 17-month old??!  But would you ever wear this violent shade of red out in public??)

What northern Atlantic lobster would be complete without a dash of seersucker…?

Stay tuned for the adult-sized Halloween creations that I hope to finish for my parties this weekend.

Happy Sewing!



24 Oct 2011

Sewing Pattern Giveaway Winners & an Update

5 Comments In the Workroom, Shop News

Good morning!  Firstly, thanks to everyone who has placed an order for the new patterns–it looks like this season is going to be a popular one! As promised, we are sharing the 3 winners of our Pre-Order Giveaway this morning. Each winner will receive a free Clever Charlotte pattern.

1. Karen of Victoria, Australia

2. Monica of San Jaun, Puerto Rico

3. Melissa of Frederick, Maryland

Congratulations to each of you–we’ll be contacting you by email to find out which pattern you’d like.

In other news, we are on track to begin shipping the new line by the end of the week, and even though the giveaway has ended, the shop is still accepting pre-orders.

We are behind on getting the fabric and notions for AW11 up for purchase, but we promise this week!!

Lastly, because no post is any fun without a picture, I thought I would preview what I worked on this weekend–Nora’s costume for Halloween (complete with smudged windows and a view of our very soggy backyard as backdrop). Can you tell what she’s going to be?? Carla and I will be sharing more photos of our recent Halloween sewing endeavors later this week.

Happy Sewing!


19 Oct 2011

Charlotte’s Pinteresting Finds – v3.12

Comments Off Charlotte's Pinteresting Finds

What’s Charlotte liking this week? Find out each Tuesday–or Wednesday when she’s running behind–as she spots trends and captures a little slice of goodness from Pinterest.


Hi again! This week’s theme: “American as Pumpkin Pie”–that’s because I consider the humble pumpkin the embodiment of all that is good and right in our country.  The pumpkin is perfect in just about every way.  First, it’s orange.  That fact alone should suffice, but for the sake of argument, I will continue:

  • In the kitchen, its ability to cross into both the sweet and savory realms is fluid and almost unparalelled. Click here for just a small peak at its extreme culinary adaptability.
  • Not just for the front porch anymore, the pumpkin is a critical go to component in holiday decor, both indoors and out.  Buy why stop there? Make matchy-matchy outfits for yourself and your fireplace mantel.
  • Lastly, but not leastly: comic relief.  Humor through pumpkins abounds this time of year.  Do a quick search of carved pumpkins on Pinterest and you’ll surely leave with a smile on your face.  I applaud you, American public, for pushing the creativity envelope each fall with a simple kitchen knife and, well, a pumpkin.

Sources: /one/Wreath found via/two/Toothy pumpkin found via/three/Chocolate pumpkin whoopie pies found via/four/Turducken-style pumpkin found via/five/Gingerbread Pumpkin Bars found via/six/Pumpkin fashion found via


Want to see even more of what Charlotte is looking at this week?

14 Oct 2011

Pre-Order Our New Patterns + Special Pre-Order Giveaway!

2 Comments Shop News

The day has arrived! We are happy to say that our four new A/W2011 patterns are now in the shop for pre-sale!

To celebrate this kick-off event, we are hosting a giveaway/drawing open to everyone who pre-orders the new patterns. Three lucky winners will be chosen at random from all eligible orders placed by next Friday, Oct. 21st.  Each winner will get a free Clever Charlotte pattern of her or his choice.  See complete details below.

A few important notes about pre-orders:

1. We currently anticipate mailing out the first shipment of patterns the week of Oct. 24th, but we cannot guarantee the exact ship date yet.  We pride ourselves on fast turn-around times for all our orders and pre-orders are no different. We will do our best to communicate any notable shipping delays.

2. Since all of our orders process through PayPal, payment for any pre-orders will be processed at the time of order and not at the time of shipment.  This is not our preference, but we are at the mercy of PayPal and we hope you understand.  Again, our commitment to you, the sewing public, is strong and we value your repeat business.

3. We are in the process of uploading the A/W2011 Fabric Collection and notions to the shop. Everything should be available for purchase by Monday.

A few important notes about the giveaway:

1. We are happy to be offering three lucky winners one of our sewing patterns of their choice.

2. US & International customers are eligible.  To enter, you must place an order in our shop for any of our new A/W2011 patterns (that is, the Chickadee, Eider, Kestrel & Raven patterns) by 11:59 pm EST, Friday, October 21st. Each eligible order will count as one entry.  The winner will be selected from all eligible orders by random drawing & will be announced here on Monday, October 24, 2011.

3.  Good luck!


Have a nice weekend everyone and, as always, happy sewing!

~Erin & Carla

13 Oct 2011

Mix and Match

3 Comments Chickadee Blouse & Skirt, Raven Hoodie & Pants

What do you get when you cross a Chickadee with a Raven? This cute combo, of course:

Chickadee Blouse + Raven Pants

Nora’s top is the soon-to-be-released Chickadee Blouse. I made it in a light and airy cotton lawn with a kitschy print–I just have a weakness for vintage looking prints and I loved the color combination. Girly, without being overly sugary.

The pants are shown in the same dark teal corduroy as we feature in a few of our cover looks this season, and boy is it soft and comfortable. Comfy, as in knit pant comfy.  I would love to find some additional colors of this corduroy to make Nora a few more pairs of these pants for school and play.

By the way, here’s a close up of the inside of the waistband, featuring the buttonhole elastic.  (The contrasting fabric was just for fun.) There’s enough excess elastic on both sides to allow several inches of growth in the waist.

The winning endorsement for the outfit came from Nora herself.  When I asked her try them on this morning before school, I was only intending to check fit. She steadfastly resolved to wear them to school–which, I should add, was the first day this week that she hasn’t worn a dress. Yea!  Here are a few rare action shots:I didn’t say they were *happy* action shots, did I?

Have I mentioned Nora’s petite body results in some strange fitting issues–mainly, she’s all torso with short limbs (just about the opposite of me as she could be). So the pants are sewn in size 2T and fit fine in the waist, but are too long on her by an inch or so. I made the blouse in 3T and I’ll need to shorten the sleeves next time by quite a bit. In all other ways, the blouse fits her great.  (To be fair, these are the same issues she faces with RTW clothes.  After all, she’s 3 years old and weighs only 26 lbs!)

Happy Sewing!