The thing about losing that much weight, is that nothing at all fits anymore. I went from a decent me-made wardrobe to nothing. But the thing about that is that you get to start over. I was feeling kind of stuck in a wardrobe that didn’t really fit me, both literally and figuratively. I didn’t really want to dress like a mum anymore, and I don’t have the kind of job that requires the corporate wardrobe stuffed in the back of my closet which suddenly fit again.
So when I made this dress I decided to choose something way more fun than I normally buy. Roses and skulls. I feel a bit more badass than normal, so I figure I’m doing it right.
This pattern is perfect. It is super easy to make and the fit is great! The only problem I ran into was of course the infamous Awkward Skull Placement™. There was a 1/2 inch of skull on the bodice front that I thought would be fine but then I decided it would irritate me constantly. I had to shorten the bodice by just a sliver. If I hadn’t, the length of the bodice would be perfect, but what’s a girl to do!
Pattern: Lady Skater Dress by Kitschy Coo available in sizes 1-8 (using their own pattern sizing system). I chose the short-sleeved view. There is also a long sleeve version.
Fabric: Red Goth digital jersey: 92% cotton, 8% spandex, and 200 g/m2 with black tubular ribbing. From l’Oiseau Fabrics.
I made the capes in three sizes: small, medium and large. The pattern only comes in medium and large so I had to draft my own small.
I didn’t make any changes to the pattern, and even hand finished the arm openings for a nicer finish.
I used some wool suiting that I bought out of season ages ago and chose a different quilting cotton to line each one. These were also from my stash. I think my total stash busting for these was about 8 meters (about 9 yards). Even the buttons were lonely singles from my button jar.
The kids love the capes, especially the big hoods, and they are really well suited for easily fall and late spring. My husband likes them too, though he thinks they look like little assassins from the video game Assassin’s Creed. So maybe they are still a little costume-y after all.
I think I’ve had this pattern (Simplicity 2063 from the Little Lisette collection by Liesl Gibson) in my stash for ages, but I was looking for just the right fabric.
Then I found this cute corduroy online. It’s super soft. The fabric is light-weight but it feels almost like velour. Perfect for little ones.
The pattern is quite simple. It’s an a-line, panel dress with flat piping to set off the panels. It wasn’t difficult. The instructions were good. The bodice is finished with bias tape at the arms, but I think I might prefer a lined bodice next time.
I didn’t make any changes to the pattern. I just followed the pattern instructions.
My youngest is growing so fast that it’s hard to keep up. I made the smallest size, size 3, and hoped it wouldn’t be too big, but it seems just right. Good thing I didn’t try to grade it down a size.
There always seem to be so many events to attend over the holidays, so a new dress is always handy for the kids, especially when it is as cute and comfortable as this one.
Pattern Review:Simplicity 2063 from the Little Lisette collection by Liesl Gibson, available in sizes 3-8, and now out of print. Fabric:
Corduroy, in blue.
Kona solid for the flat piping.
Size: 3. Cost: Pattern: $1. Fabric: About $18. Sewing Level: Adventurous beginner. Modifications: None. Results: Really cute and very soft.
Fence in White, Stars in Blue, Rainbow in Pink and Rainbow in Purple, all from the Angry Birds collection and all licensed to David Textiles by Rovio Entertainment, LTD. I bought this at the local chain shop.
Sketch in Grey by Timeless Treasures for the waistbands and leg bindings.
Sizes: 18-24m, 4, 6.
Sewing Level: beginner, intermediate if not just the pants.
Results: Excellent! I’ve made these 11 times before. I would highly recommend this pattern.
Just to be clear: The Angry Birds name is trademarked by Rovio Entertainment, LTD and used by the fabric manufacturer under licence. The pjs shown here are not official licensed products and are not available for sale. But you can always buy some fabric and make your own!
I can’t believe summer is almost over. This morning when we all got up in was only 10 degrees celsius. Brrrrr.
So I thought it would be good to clear my summer blogging queue, and make room for the fall sewing. This is one of my last summer sewing projects – two sets of the Oliver + S Ice Cream Dress (as tops) and the Puppet Show Shorts, in sizes 4 and 7 for my bigger girls.
The Ice Cream Dress I’ve made before, twice. It’s just as cute as a top and even easier to sew. Since I was making matching shorts, I didn’t do any colour blocking this time around.
I love the way these turned out. The fabric, some quilting cotton, was chosen by the kids. I picked this up at one of the local chain stores. I figure these will look good with jeans and they can wear them through the fall layered over t-shirts.
To go with the tops I made the Puppet Show Shorts, also by Oliver + S. This was my first time using this pattern, and I made it in one of my favourite fabrics, Cotton Linen Chambray from Robert Kaufman. I originally planned to bind the bottoms of the shorts in the linen, but working with linen on the bias is tough. The binding stretched out so much the shorts were barely gathered at the bottom. So I ripped it all out and started again. Still looks cute though.
Now, some of you Oliver + S fans may have noticed that the Puppet Show Shorts do not come in size 7. I graded these up two sizes from the largest available, size 5. I also added two inches to the length, which is a little better for my 6-year-old. It wasn’t very difficult.
I love the pockets on these shorts. Adorable.
These are the size 7, and she really did need those two extra inches. Next time I’ll make the binding a bit shorter so that it’s a bit more gathered at the bottom.
I finished the outfits on a rainy day. After the first doomed indoor photo shoot we waited for a sunny day and had much better luck. But would the two kids pose together? “Nooooooo!” So you’ll just have to trust me when I say I made two whole outfits.
There is one little person who has been missing out of the handmade sewing this year, and that is my smallest. As kid number four, she has a huge selection of hand-me-downs, but it’s still nice to have something new once in a while.
As soon as I saw this fabric I knew it would be perfect for a summer dress and I knew just the right pattern – the Geranium Dress from Made by Rae.
I bought this pattern way back in January, so it was about time to actually make it.
This is a great pattern. It’s cute, quick, easy to sew and comes with some nice variations for sleeves, neckline and pockets. You can also make it as a top. And it’s easy to add a personal touch with piping, rickrack and other trim.
I chose the simple curved neckline and flutter sleeves. The pattern calls for the sleeves to be finished with a zigzag stitch, which sounded a bit odd to me. I saw some versions of the flutter sleeves online which were lined, but they looked really stiff. So I stuck with the directions and I’m happy with the results.
The bodice is lined and I used a very soft cotton batiste. If I were to make the dress again, the only thing I would do differently is to understitch the lining to better hide it. I thought about it as I was sewing, but I wanted to keep the inside nice and soft- as if a couple extra lines of stitching would suddenly make the inside unbearably itchy for my baby. The things mothers do for their little ones…
The sizing was really good. I made the 12-18 months size and it fits well, but will also probably last through to spring. I have a new walker, sometimes crawler here, so she sometimes finds the length a bit annoying, but I think it looks adorable.
The pattern calls for 1 1/3 yards of fabric for the 12-18 months size. Even though the print I used is directional, I still had a lot left over. I was even going to make a matching diaper cover, but my printer ran out of cyan ink – because you need that to print in black and white. I hate it when that happens.
This is possibly my favourite sewing project. I love the results. Super cute!
This is a Warp & Weft Sewing Society project. We are a group of talented sewists and quilters creating beautiful projects inspired by the fabrics from Warp & Weft Exquisite Textiles. You can find the fabric used in this project, Floral Meadow from the Storybook Lane collection, online in the Warp & Weft shop.
My baby is getting so big! She just turned one and is walking and talking. It makes me a little teary just thinking about it, especially since this will probably be our very last baby. So to celebrate I thought I’d make her something sweet.
But bonnets have a rather short lifespan, so there was a little time pressure.
No one puts a newborn in a bonnet, and once you hit two (barring historical reenactments, and fashion moments from the eighties), your bonnet days are numbered. Here in Montreal, the number of days the weather even allows bonnet wearing are extremely limited. So this is also a last hurrah to summer.
For fabric I used Floral Meadow and Curvy Stripe from the Storybook Lane collection by Kelly Lee-Creel for Andover Fabrics (courtesy Warp & Weft Exquisite Textiles). I love the floral meadow! So beautiful! And it has a great scale. If you look at it all spread out, it has a repeating grid pattern, but it is really easy to match. It also has a little bit of a sheen to it, a bit like cotton sateen.
The pattern calls for two fat quarters of each fabric, which is what I ordered. That would be the perfect amount, unless you also want to make matching piping and binding (you do!), in which case you need another fat quarter. Ooops!
I happen to be pretty economical at cutting fabric, but this was the biggest fabric test of all time. I just managed. And there may (ahem) be a couple more seams in the binding than I would otherwise have sewn.
This is a really easy pattern to sew up. It’s a quick project and great for beginners. I made it in a 1T-2T, but it comes in sizes 0-8+. This was my first time making my own piping, and it went so smoothly that I will be churning out piped garments in the future.
This bonnet also gets a lot of attention when we go out. I’ve had so many compliments! I would love a good excuse to make another, but I may have to wait for a baby shower to make this again. After all, winter is coming (sigh).
Seriously though, this kid is going to be wearing this bonnet everyday until the fall weather hits 😉
Warp & Weft Sewing Society
This is a Warp & Weft Sewing Society project. We are a group of talented sewists and quilters creating beautiful projects inspired by the fabrics from Warp & Weft Exquisite Textiles. You can find the fabrics used in this project, Floral Meadow and Curvy Stripe from the Storybook Lane collection, online in the Warp & Weft shop.
Another pair of Parsley pants! This time with dinos!
Last week was Kid’s Clothing Week (KCW). The idea is to sew for one hour (minimum) each day making kids’ clothing. I didn’t do too badly, but I had trouble sewing all week and blogging too. So this is the last catch-up blog post for KCW.
After allthosedresses, a certain someone was feeling a bit left out. And I had been promising to sew up this dinosaur print that has been in my stash for ages. So this was a great excuse. Originally I was going to turn this fabric into a shirt, but it’s way more practical as shorts.
These are the Parsley Pants (as shorts) from Made by Rae. They are the same as the pair I made previously, but I skipped the flat front, and this time I used an 8″ inseam. My son is a fan of long shorts, and this way he might even get to wear them next year too.
I made box pleat pockets, which are a big hit. The pattern says you can adjust the pockets for a cargo look, but I stuck with the standard pocket placement. I also followed the included instructions for pin tucks.
And again, I followed the online tutorial from Made by Rae on using flat felled seams with this pattern.
These were an even bigger hit than the last pair, but then dinos are always awesome!
Sewing Level: Intermediate (with the modifications below), or beginner.
Modifications: I followed the included instructions for added pintucks on the front and back, and box pleat pockets. I top stitched and edgestitched the pockets and pocket flaps. I also used flat felled seams in the inseam. I made these as shorts with an 8″ inseam.
Results: Great. I would recommend this pattern and will definitely make it again.
I made this dress two years ago, but since I took some good photos this weekend and I haven’t blogged it yet, I thought I’d do that that now.
This is Burda Kids 9702. It comes in sizes 18 months to 5. But if you’d like it in a larger size, it appears to be almost identical to Burda Kids 9755 which comes in sizes 6 to 11. I really like this pattern, so I just recently bought the larger one as well.
I made view A, a sleeveless dress with gathered skirt, buttons in the back and a bow tied in the back at the waist. It isn’t especially clear in the technical drawings, but view A has an almost empire waist, while view B is longer in the bodice. I would probably use the longer bodice if I were to make the dress again. I skipped the flowers on the waistband.
I made it this dress a size 5 when my daughter was a size 4. It’s meant to be tea length, but it was extra long at first. But I’m glad I didn’t shorten it because it has lasted two years, which is amazing when you consider how much she’s grown over that time. Crazy!
This was a really easy pattern to make. The instructions were great and there were no hitches – just straight forward sewing. It was also quite quick. It’s a classic style, and I’ve tried other patterns in a similar style before, but this one has been the best. I cannot recommend it enough.
I made the dress in quilting cotton. The fabric is Pick A Bunch Organic Blooms in Sunflower by Nancy Mim’s from Robert Kaufman. Quite a mouthful! But really cute, and the larger print works well with a longer skirt. I had a tough time choosing the thread. The entire dress is topstitched, and the colours are so different. In the end I went with a dark pink that matched the fabric background.
This dress has gotten a surprising amount of use. It’s one of my daughter’s favourites. It’s great for summer, but she also layered it over shirts in the fall and spring. But it looks like it’s almost time for a new one, she’s growing so fast!
It’s been so hot in Montreal lately, the perfect weather for linen dresses.
This is the Jump Rope Dress (view B) by Oliver + S. The shirtwaist dress features cuffed sleeves, gathered patch pockets, collar and front placket. I made view B which has long sleeves and an a-line shape.
My daughter is between sizes 3 and 4 at the moment, so I made a size 4, which was a little long and slightly large, but leaves room to grow. The linen fabric doesn’t have a lot of give, so making it larger, rather than smaller seemed like a good idea.
As with all Oliver + S patterns, the instructions are great, but this is not a pattern for beginners. Oliver + S patterns are rated by difficulty on a scale of four scissors, and this one gets three. It’s not really a difficult pattern, but it does have a lot of finicky details.
It’s made like a proper men’s shirt, minus the collar stand. The instructions for the front placket, for example, take one full page of the pattern instructions. On the other hand, the results were great. I’ll be making another. Seems kid No 1 wants one too.
The only change I made was to the hem. The pattern calls for a narrow hem, but the dress was just too long for my little girl, so I made a wider one that I can always lengthen later. I also used contrasting fabric for the pocket binding and inside front placket. I’ve seen other versions where the entire collar and placket were in a contrasting fabric and that looks really nice as well.
I have been hoarding this fabric forever, so it was time to get it sewn up. The fabric is a cotton linen chambray in Indigo Washed by Robert Kaufman. It has a really lovely sheen, and the colour is beautiful. It handles like a linen, which means it’s a little stiff at first, but also stretches a little while sewing. The key is lots of pressing. It has to be my favourite fabric ever.
I love how this turned out. It’s cute and easy to wear, comfortable for the summer, nice enough for school and quite durable. I really love the pockets.