This time I made quite a few adjustments. First, I went down two sizes. I made size 12, which is about 2 sizes smaller than the size chart indicated I should use. This made the fit at the shoulders much better.
I skipped the waistband altogether, which wasn’t especially flattering on me, and lengthened the top by three inches to make up for the length in the band and then some. I’m a little long in the ribcage and ready-to-wear shirts are often too short. This is the length I prefer.
I also skipped the zigzagging around the neckline that is called for in the pattern instructions. Last time, I tried this on the back of the neck but I didn’t like the look. to hem the shirt, I used a double needle. I’m much happier with this finish.
I also used better fabric. This jersey is a bit more expensive than the last time, but has much better recovery. That makes it a little more flattering, but also more comfortable. It’s also really bright, which I like. Who says kids should get all the fun?
I am so much happier with this shirt. It feels great and cheers me up when I wear it.
Pattern Review: Renfrew Top by Sewaholic Patterns. I made view A. Fabric: Cotton-spandex Jersey, from L’Oiseau Fabrics. Cost: The pattern was a birthday gift and the fabric was about 16$ a meter. Total: about 25$. Size: 12. Sewing Level: Adventurous beginner. Modifications: I didn’t zigzag around the neck band, I lengthened the shirt by about three inches, and I skipped the waist band. Results: So much better than the first Renfrew I made. I plan to make this again with the cowl neck.
This fall, when I made my kids t-shirts there was a lot of extra fabric. So I decided to take all the leftover fabric and make some matching hats for everyone and skirts for the girls.
I used the Slouch Beanie by Brindille & Twig. It’s a very simple, fast easy project, but the results are just sooooo cute! My kids look like little elves.
The hats are reversible, and they can be worn, as designed, like slouchy skater beanies. It’s great when mum is doing the styling. But my kids usually fold up the bottoms and wear them that way.
The skirt pattern is from Collection privée filles & garçons by Atsuko Maruyama and Noriko Onoda (a French translation of the Japanese pattern book シンプル＆デサイン おんなの子服 おとこの子服 ). The book contains 27 patterns available in sizes 90-140 cm. I made the “#12 Jupe – legging” (skirt with leggings) in sizes 120, 110, and 90.
The pattern comes with attached capri leggings, which are adorable. But here in the land of Hoth, where tights are pretty much required for six months of the year, they seemed a bit impractical, so I left them out.
Both patterns were super quick projects and I made the hats in a day and the skirts in another.
Skirt: from Collection privée filles & garçons by Atsuko Maruyama and Noriko Onoda (a French translation of the Japanese pattern book シンプル＆デサイン おんなの子服 おとこの子服 ). The book contains 27 patterns available in sizes 90-140 cm. I made the “#12 Jupe – legging” (skirt with leggings) in sizes 120 (not shown), 110, and 90.
Fabric: Jersey. Cost: Hat pattern: 4.50$. Skirt: 0$ (used for another project). Fabric: $0 (leftover from other projects). Project Sewing Level: Beginner. Modifications: For the skirt, I did not include the leggings. Results: Fun, easy sewing.
I’m not sure how your October was, but mine was crazy! October is when work gets busy, homework piles us and then, Halloween! I managed to get a bit of sewing done for Kids Clothing Week (KCW). But did I get around to blogging it? Of course not.
I try to sew my kids what they need, so with the approach of crisp fall weather, some long-sleeved tees seemed like a great project. I used the Field Trip Raglan T-shirt pattern by Oliver + S, and sewed it up in sizes 2, 4, and 6.
This is a super fast project. The instructions are great and there are only a few pattern pieces. The only change I made was to add bands to the sleeves. Partly, this was because I like the look, and partly this was because my kids are on the tall skinny size and I wanted to be sure the shirts last through the winter. Next time, I might go up a size, at least for the three bigger kids.
I used my regular sewing machine, as a I don’t have a serger, but this worked really well.
The kids picked these fabrics themselves ages ago. Mostly I used cotton jersey from the Riley Blake collection, but the dark grey is from the Robert Kaufman Laguna collection. The Riley Blake colours are really bright, which I love, and the kids do too.
This pattern looks great colour blocked, especially with stripes. I’m seriously considering copying at least one of these tees using a grown-up pattern.
Jersey is usually about 60″ (150 cm) wide, so I found I had a lot of extra fabric left over. But that just meant that I had enough for a couple more cute projects that I’ll be blogging soon. Yay!
I really, really love these shirts. Even though they were super quick and easy projects, I’m really happy with the results. It’s really hard to find t-shirts that are fun and bright but that aren’t pink with sparkles or covered with logos. I’ll definitely be making more.
Cotton Jersey in Heathered Knit Pepper from the Laguna collection by Robert Kaufman.
Cotton Jersey in small chevron in aqua, small chevron in rainbow, small dots in red, solid red, and 1/2″ stripes in red, all from the Riley Blake Knits collection.
Sizes: 2, 4, and 6. Cost: Pattern: (gift). Fabric: About $10/shirt. Sewing Level: Beginner. Modifications: I added bands to the sleeves, and didn’t put pockets on all the shirts. Results: Amazing. My kids love these shirts and wear them at least once a week.
So I was very excited to be a pattern tester for the newest version of the pattern, which now includes a sweater, a short-sleeved version, and an expanded size range from 12m to 12Y.
And is it ever easy to sew! I finished about one project per nap. I love one-nap projects!
In the end, I made this pattern six times: three tops and three dresses, in three different sizes.
This project calls for knit fabric, and obviously a sweater knit would be ideal, but sadly the choices were limited at my local fabric shops and I had no time to order online.
The smallest kids chose the fabric for the tops (ack! so cute to watch them choose fabrics) – a slinky rayon jersey. In that fabric, the tops have a retro 70s vibe.
The pattern changed slightly during testing, and now has a banded waist, but these tops were made before the change.
For the dresses, I chose a ponte de roma that has a bit of a soft, sweater-knit texture. This fabric gave better results than the jersey. It’s a stable knit that is still very stretchy and has great recovery.
I only made two changes. First, I shortened the sleeves by 1-2″, depending on the fabric and dress size. Second, I attached the cowl neck first, before starting the sleeves. I find it easier to work this way, but it’s just my preference. See a discussion on sewing flat versus in the round, here.
I didn’t use a serger – I don’t have one. I just used my regular machine, which has a faux overlock stitch and I hemmed everything using a double needle. This worked very well.
The results were great. These tops and dresses are cute, cute, cute and the kids love wearing them. Yay!
Dakota stretch rayon jersey knit Hearts in navy, pink and teal (medium-weight knit, 95% Rayon/5% Lycra, 4-way stretch, 25% vertical stretch and 50% stretch across the grain).
Ponte de roma in grey, (medium- to heavy-weight knit, 80% Polyester/15% Rayon/5% Lycra, 30% stretch across the grain), magenta, and dark teal – not shown – (medium-weight knit, 50% Polyester/45% Rayon/5% Lycra).
Sizes: 2T, 5T and 7Y. Cost: Pattern: 0$. Fabric: About $12 per top and about $16 per dress. Sewing Level: Confident beginner. Modifications: I shortened the sleeves, by 1-2″, depending on the fabric and dress size. Results: Great. This was fast, and I love the trendy look.
Disclaimer: The pattern was generously provided by Heidi & Finn, in return for testing the pattern. As always, my opinions are my own.