Summer is almost over. Someone thought it was a good idea for school to start early this year, on the 27th, instead of after Labor Day like usual, and that means we only have five weekdays left at home together. I feel cheated. I’m not ready. Booooooo. I have Lila’s first day of school dress cut out and ready to sew, but I can’t seem to start on it. I think I’m in denial.
So for now I’ll show you a summer dress, the Mini Southport from True Bias. This is my first time sewing one of Kelli’s patterns. I don’t get tempted by a lot of patterns anymore, but I couldn’t get this one to leave me alone – I kept going back and looking at it until I finally buckled and bought it. And I’m so glad I did. I’m really happy with the end result and it was an all around great pattern – well-designed and easy to follow. I was impressed.
The bias bound arm holes and neckline took some time but came out looking so clean and professional. And the fit was spot on. I made a size five but lengthened both the bodice and the skirt to the six lines, and it’s just right. When I finished the dress it looked so short on the hanger! I was worried. But I love the length on her – definitely shorter than I’m used to, but I think it suits the style of the dress really nicely. I’m glad I stayed true to the pattern instead of adding a bunch of extra length.
The fabric is Star Chart in Turquoise Metallic from Lizzy House’s Natural History collection. I bought it locally at Cool Cottons, which has long been one of my favorite places in town to shop (and they sell online now, too). I love those gold constellations, and I always love to match my fabric to the current year’s Saltwaters.
I kind of love this dress, although it’s another one that makes her look way too grown up. Or maybe she’s just growing up.
Okay, I’m off to start on the next dress, time is ticking away…
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged dresses, sewing for girls, sewing for kids, true bias | 20 Comments »
Make it Perfect has a new pattern, the Scout Skirt and Sweatshirt, and I tested the skirt back in June. I always look forward to Toni’s pattern, they’re some of my very favorites. This one is no exception – a super simple, swingy knit skirt.
You can’t get much faster or easier than a skirt like this – a couple side seams, elastic in a knit waistband, and a hem. Speaking of which, I think I finally managed to figure out hemming knits on my machine – the twin needle really makes a world of difference.
I don’t have a lot of knits on my shelves, so I went to my local Fabric Depot to pick something out. This is a Windham knit called Sunshine Serenade Soire. I’d never seen this print, but it jumped out at me with its water color-y look and bright colors. A print like this goes with almost every solid colored top Lila owns, which is a plus. I made this skirt over a month ago and it gets chosen from the (sizable) skirt pile quite often – it’s comfortable and easy to wear and I can see myself making this one over and over again. This is a size 6 with no adjustments, and the fit is perfect.
You can see Toni’s versions and read more about the Scout pattern here. I hope to try the sweatshirt too when the weather cools down. And check out the new Make it Perfect blog and shop – the site got a beautiful new make-over!
Enjoy your weekend!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged knits, make it perfect, pattern testing, sewing for girls, sewing for kids, skirt | 5 Comments »
Here’s that stuff I meant to make for KCW. Turns out all I needed was three extra weeks!
First up, Oliver + S Class Picnic Shorts.
It’s true, Oliver + S patterns are spendy, but this one has definitely been worth its price tag. I’m on my fourth pair of Class Picnic shorts now, and I plan to keep making them for as long as she’ll wear them. This pair is pretty similar to the other ones I’ve made – I love these shorts in neutral fabrics so they go with everything. I decided on a size 5 based on her waist/hip measurements, thinking I would lengthen them, but as I was tracing the pattern pieces I realized I had absolutely no idea how/where I would add length. The curves, the facings…it was too confusing. They’ll be just fine for this summer but with a little more length they could’ve maybe gone another year.
The main fabric is Andover chambray in Navy (great stuff, from LiMa Sews), and the facings are Kaufman’s cotton chambray with pin dots in Indigo. I bought the dots from Jones & Vandermeer but it looks like it’s out of stock now. It’s a great neutral (but still interesting) fabric and it’s lightweight with a nice drape. I decided to interface (with SF101 Shape-flex) all the facings pieces with the thought that the added structure would mean less ironing. The shorts haven’t been washed yet so my theory is untested, but I have high hopes. I also interfaced my main front waistband piece for a little more structure there, too.
Now on to the top: The Oliver + S Swingset Tunic, the companion to my favorite skirt pattern.
This pattern rather tragically only goes up to size 5, so I felt I had to squeeze one more in. Last year’s tunic still fits perfectly, so I just added a 1/2 inch to the length this time. The bodice construction on this one isn’t the most intuitive, and the finish inside isn’t the neatest, but you still end up with a pretty cute little top, so who cares. The triangles are Mojave in Aloe from Leah Duncan’s Morning Walk collection. Her stuff is always my favorite.
Okay then. Shorts with different top!
Top with different shorts! Braids!
Bonus hug photo!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged leah duncan, oliver + s, robert kaufman, sewing for girls, sewing for kids, shorts | 13 Comments »
I picked out a couple simple projects for this edition of Kids Clothes Week. I had a plan, I really did. But here it is, Wednesday night, and all I have to show for myself is a skirt I made last week. Seriously, I’m having the hardest time getting my act together lately.
BUT… I did manage to accidentally fit things in with the traveling theme, and I do love it when a KCW button matches my skirt. So I’m pretending all is not lost.
Anyway, this map fabric, I love it. It’s from Moda’s Passport collection, which includes maps of New York City, Paris, Tokyo, and London. Each one is beautifully detailed and comes in several colorways. This one is my favorite – perfectly muted blues and greens and grays.
I went with another Compagnie M Lotta skirt, but changed it up a little. Lila’s first Lotta ended up needing elastic for a better fit, which means the zipper doesn’t get used at all. So this time I scrapped the zipper and made it easy on/easy off with just elastic in the back. I cut the back piece on the fold and added extra length at the top so I could fold down a back waistband and thread elastic through it (if you’ve ever made the Hopscotch skirt, same idea). Unsurprisingly I made some mathematical errors that complicated the process, but all in all, it was a really simple modification. This skirt pattern is becoming one of my favorites.
In other news, there’s only one thing growing in our garden, but it’s one very delicious thing. This time of year is the best.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged moda, sewing for girls, sewing for kids, skirts | 15 Comments »
Q: What do you get when you cross Alison Glass’ Handcrafted fabric with the Oliver + S Hopscotch skirt pattern?
A: The only article of clothing I’ve sewn in a month!
Okay, there’s my icebreaker. Now we can get to the skirt. This yard of the Plus print in Strawberry had been burning a hole on my shelf for some time, I just couldn’t decide how to put it to use. I hope I did it justice. The whole Handcrafted collection is stunning, the colors really glow. It’s hard to capture, but I think these photos are the best representation.
I’ve made the Hopscotch skirt several times, so there isn’t much I can say about this pattern that hasn’t been said. I love the style, though – simple but sophisticated, and the elastic back waistband makes it practical to wear. And of course, the pockets are genius.
I’m feeling inspired to sew some summer things for Lila, more skirts for sure. And last week I bought this pattern to sew for myself. There’s an 83% chance I’ll chicken out on that one, though. We’ll see.
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged alison glass, oliver + s, sewing for girls, sewing for kids, skirts | 18 Comments »
Kids Clothes Week spring edition is officially over, but I’m back with one more project I finished last week.
I knew I must have something on my shelf to go with this KCW’s Wild Things theme, and it turned out to be these dinosaurs. After a couple nights work, they became a little Sketchbook shirt.
I made this shirt in the smallest size when Oscar was 7 months old – I was so excited for him to wear it, but it never really fit right. This one is better, but not perfect. I made a size 2 (lengthened to 3), and I’m wondering if I should’ve slimmed it down to 18-24 months, because it’s a bit too wide in the shoulders. And there’s something not quite right about the sleeves, I had trouble getting them to lay flat in the shoulder seams.
But it’s still a decent little shirt, all in all, and the dinosaurs are pretty cute…even if that red one on the sleeve happens to be breathing fire. (?)
Maybe I just need to play around with this one a little more, but are there other button down shirt patterns people like to sew with? If you know of one with a great fit, I’d love to hear. I do love a little boy in a button down…
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged kcw, oliver + s, sewing for boys, sewing for kids | 21 Comments »
We had a short bout (now over) of beautiful summer weather, during which I learned two things: Oscar is low on warm weather clothes, and he looks awfully cute in his sister’s old elephant pants.
Sailboat pants appear to be the only usable hand-me-down among the our stacks of outgrown handmade clothes – he’s now worn the elephants and these (from 2011!), and since it’s Kids Clothes Week and all, I thought it might be nice for him to have a pair of his very own.
The striped chambray (from Kaufman House of Denim) had been earmarked for several different projects, but I decided to just use it already – it’s neutral and plain, which is normally how I like my Sailboat pants. I did turn the stripes sideways for the side panels though, to keep things interesting. And anchor buttons, because obviously.
It’s been almost three years since I’ve sewn a pair of these, and I had forgotten how much I love this pattern – the construction is smart and simple, and they’re surprisingly quick to sew. There are some nice little details, too, like the side vents and the button panel, and they’re easy to get on and off with the elasticized back waistband. Plus: cute. And unisex! When people ask which Oliver + S pattern to start with, I usually recommend this one.
I will mention though – I made a size 3, and the placement dots for the bottom buttons seemed way off to me (which I think I faintly remember from last time) – my advice would be to make your buttonholes (as marked), then stick a pin through the hole to mark where you want to sew on your buttons. And if you happen to have a paper copy of the pattern, check the errata on the website – there are a few (fairly obvious) little things that need correction.
Anyway, that wraps up my first days of KCW. The theme this time around is Wild Things, and while there’s certainly nothing wild about these pants, I’m hoping to sew another warm weather item for Oscar that might fit with the theme a little better. We shall see. Happy sewing!
Posted in Uncategorized | Tagged kcw, oliver + s, sewing for boys, sewing for kids | 17 Comments »