Much like myself, Lila has a special fondness for all things crafty. I have zero confidence that she could pick a tennis ball out of a line up, but she can distinguish between my pinking shears and my scallop shears in seconds flat. In fact, it’s really my craft supplies that she prefers, and she seems to be happiest when she’s making a huge mess. She’s been known (all within the last week) to spill an entire tube a glitter, glue her fingers together on purpose, apply stickers in the most inappropriate of places, take scissors to an entire package of band-aids, and paint herself from finger tips to shoulders (that’s every time the paints come out, actually). Should I be supervising more closely?
Anyway, I think the whole arm-painting thing is why I was drawn to the long-sleeved art smock from Oliver + S Little Things to Sew.
When I bought the book it was the project that appealed to me most, and my friend Trinh made one for Lila last spring. It gets a lot of wear, and does indeed prevent her from painting her arms in their entirety, since she can only access her hands. Foiled!
That’s the one Trinh made for us. It’s in the wash a lot, so I figured I could justify making one myself. I made the medium (size 4-6) so it’s big on her now, but it’ll last a long time.
The main fabric is Raindrops on Posies from Alexander Henry – I bought it to cover the kiddie table for cloud cookie decorating at Lila’s birthday party…
….but then I thought the raindrops looked like colorful drops of paint, and pairing them with these little scissors from Cosmo Cricket seemed like a good art smock combo.
The pattern has some nice details – French seams make it clean and tidy on the inside, and it closes in the back with either Velcro or two snaps (I went with pearl snaps, my favorite).
And while we’re on the subject of craftiness, have you checked out Crafty Chloe?
Our copy was yet another gift from Trinh, and an immediate favorite read. It’s such a cute story, about a girl who also probably can’t identify a tennis ball, but solves all sort of problems with her craft supplies. The illustrations by Heather Ross are delightful.
Highly recommended if you’ve got a crafty kid at home….or you might just enjoy it yourself!