You Should Be Dancing

My husband saw this shirt and told my son that he should be at the disco. So true! I don’t think he even knows what disco is, but Kid No 2 definitely looks like he has some dance moves in this shirt.

The Charlie shirt sewing pattern by Zonen 09, as sewn by The Finished Garment.
The Charlie shirt in retro stretch velvet (which is impossible to photograph).

This is the Charlie shirt, a 1970s-inspired knit shirt with lapel collar with short or long sleeves. The pattern is by Zonen 09, an independent Belgian pattern company that specializes in patterns for boys, with a retro feel. The patterns are available in Dutch, English and French, though not all patterns are available in all languages.

I made this in the same super-stretchy stretch velvet that I used to make dresses for my daughters. It’s perfect for this retro shirt, and super soft and cozy. I had nothing to coordinate with this fabric, so for the lining and collar I up-cycled a t-shirt that my husband had from a conference.  The velvet was leftover from a costume and the jersey was up cycled, which means that this stash-busting project was (almost) free.

The Charlie shirt sewing pattern by Zonen 09, as sewn by The Finished Garment.
My son loves that there are no buttons.

I did have to buy the pattern (of course!). The instructions are good. Unfortunately, I did have a couple of minor complaints though. First, the pattern is made to be printed on A4 paper, the standard in Europe, but it was really difficult to print this on 8.5″ x 11″ paper here in North America. Also, there are no grid lines on the printed pattern, only marks on the edges of the sheets, which means that it is hard to match up the pages when the edges were cut off by my printer. The pattern does come with one of those big, print-at-the printer versions though, so I might try that next time. But I was in a bit of a time crunch this time around. Maybe I’ll just buy some A4 paper…

Second, you don’t get the fabric requirements until you buy the pattern. Lots of smaller indie patterns do this, but, uggg, it’s so annoying. I needed a pattern that would work with this piece of fabric, so I had to take my chances. Luckily it worked out. Yay!

I wasn’t sure which size to make, so I went up one size. I’m really glad I did. The shirt fits quite narrow, even on my son who is a bit tall and lanky for his age. This was especially true of the waistband. If you sew this up, depending on the stretchiness of your fabric, and the size of the belly it goes around, you might want to test the waistband before attaching it.

In case you are curious, the shirt is lined in the bodice, both front and back, but not the sleeves.

The Charlie shirt sewing pattern by Zonen 09, as sewn by The Finished Garment.
The shirt is super soft and cozy.

My son loves the shirt and wore it the first chance he got. I like a collared shirt, and my son hates buttons, so this was a huge hit. It’s always nice to have something that looks a bit dressy, but feels super comfy.

So overall, a nice cute pattern, that has my son dancing like it’s 1976, or thereabouts. (And yes, that’s the year You Should be Dancing by the Bee Gees was released.)

This shirt is part of the Kids Clothes Week  Winter Challenge (a little late),  and the Stashbusting Sew-Along (The Love Challenge), and the Sewcialists’ Blue February Sew-Along.

Summary

Pattern Review: Charlie shirt by Zonen 09.

Fabric: Deep blue stretch velvet, and grey jersey.

Cost: €7.50 (about 11$ CDN).

Size: 122 (which is close to size 7).

Sewing Level: Average.

Modifications: None.

Results: Great. The shirt is quite narrow, so I’m glad I went up a size. I hope to make this again.

Blue Velvet Valentine’s Day

Everyone needs a new dress for Valentine’s Day, right? I made three.

The Hopscotch Dress sewing pattern by Oliver + S, as sewn by The Finished Garment.
Here is the littlest dress.

Years ago, I made myself the Ever After dress, as a Halloween costume (never blogged). It was lots of fun, but there was so much fabric left over afterwards, including 1.5m of wide, dark blue stretch velvet. For Halloween it was great, but it’ not really my style for everyday wear. And so it sat in a box.

The Hopscotch Dress sewing pattern by Oliver + S, as sewn by The Finished Garment.
The fabric is really very stretchy and extremely difficult to photograph.

But I have recently made a mini inventory of the fabric in my stash, and yikes, there is so much of it. I counted up the meters of fabric, but no, I am not posting it here. Too embarrasing. I am determined to remove some of the largest, oldest pieces of fabric. This was definitely a “what can I do with this?” project, but it turned out quite well.

I made three versions of the Hopscotch Dress by Oliver + S in sizes 18m, 4 and 6. It’s a simple, knit A-line dress with some gathering in the front, and can be made as a dress or top, with long or short sleeves. I made the long-sleeved version because I thought it would look better in velvet.

The Hopscotch Dress sewing pattern by Oliver + S, as sewn by The Finished Garment.
I made three versions: sizes 18 months, 4 and 6.

This is the first time I’ve sewn knits on my new machine (a Pfaff), and it was a dream. I don’t have a serger, but it wasn’t really necessary with this pattern. My regular machine worked very well.

As always with Oliver + S, the instructions were wonderful. The sewing was also quite quick. And the fabric, which is quite stretchy, worked very well.

The only thing to keep in mind with this pattern, is that it is quite fitted and fits very true to size, while I find a lot of Oliver + S patterns are a little big. Unfortunately, that means the dresses might not last past spring, but then the kids won’t be wearing velvet in the summer anyway. And really, I am just happy to see so much fabric out of my stash and in wearable form.

I ended up with three dresses that are very comfortable to wear, but look quite dressy – perfect for Valentine’s Day.

The Hopscotch Dress sewing pattern by Oliver + S, as sewn by The Finished Garment.
I only had one willing model. This is size 18 months.

And don’t worry, Kid No 2 who is not much into dresses, got something nice too. Blog post coming soon!

This dress is part of the Kids Clothes Week  Winter Challenge (a little late),  and the Stashbusting Sew-Along (The Love Challenge), and the Sewcialists’ Blue February Sew-Along.

Summary

Pattern Review: Hopscotch Dress by Oliver + S.

Fabric: Deep blue stretch velvet.

Size: 18 months, 4, 6.

Sewing Level: Average.

Modifications: None.

Results: Great. The dress is very fitted though, so I would go up a size next time. I plan to make this again.