February hit me with a bing-badda-bang, upside the head. My kiddo was very sick and I had to re-learn asthma medication, urgent care trips, doctor visits, and navigating the medical world all over again. Then I got the same virus, and had my sewing machine checked by a mechanic waiting for my return to health. I didn’t celebrate Valentine’s Day, I didn’t sew anything for myself, I didn’t get out enough. I stayed in, took many naps, and finished a few items on my sewing wish list for this year.
As you may have heard me complain, I incorrectly measured his chest circumference in my cold-medicine haze, and made him a bunch of too-big clothes. So not to worry, he will grow into them, it just means he still doesn’t have enough clothes for summer yet. I may have to find some evenings in “Me in March” to get him some board shorts and tank tops (ha! like it will ever be warm enough in Seattle for that!)
Without further ado, here are some of the projects I was able to complete.
Ottobre Toddler Boxer Briefs Anyone can be a super hero, if they have the right underpants.
A McCall’s pattern into flannel pajamas in homage to his Uncle Nic, the heart breaker. The shiny black pearl snaps really bring it together in Uncle Nic’s style.
I am particularly proud of these. It was my first standup collar, and I completely mimicked the perfect jean top-stitching on the pants. They should last a long time. I built them in a way that I can easily elongate the legs and add to the waist too!
Oh yes, I did line up the pockets intentionally. ‘Cause that’s how we do.
A Go To Patterns Winter PJs in stash knit which has no stretch and I dislike working with. (Side note: No more cheap knits from Joanns, or any fabric really. If I am going to hand make my kid’s clothes, it has to be both durable and functional and quality fabric that doesn’t pill and fall apart after a few washes.)
See my super cute tag?
The FOE (fold over elastic) is super fun to use and is a nice splash of unexpected color. It might just be my little man, but the back rise is extremely high to cover his diaper. Another fun reason to make knit jammies for your little people, so that they fully cover the business end of toddlers!
The top stitching is pretty neat on the front, a happy accident as I didn’t have enough fabric so I had to combine two pieces to complete it. I like the lines as it reminds me of skater shirts from my teenage years.
A Go To Patterns Winter PJs (Just the Pants Please) I used the scraps from my Canvas T-shirt to whip up a pair of hot pink and grey pants for my little man. Yes, he will wear these awesome, perfect stripe-matched pants. I may make him a sleeveless tank to match.
A Go To Patterns Varsity Cowl Neck Pullover in a charcoal ponte knit. I used the left overs from my Renfrew Top, so we kinda have matching sweaters now. I have many plans for this pull over pattern and hopefully will be able to execute them this summer! It is an easy to make and a wonderfully comfortable pattern as the cowl neck makes pulling it over the head so easy!
And now, a little sewing rant…
…which is probably due to my lack of experience…
I dislike many things about pdf patterns (I bought a ton at once because I thought they were super cute and I liked the size ranges and supporting independent sewing shops. I will be hard-pressed to do so again.) in particular the “home made” pattern designers who don’t include things like finished garment size, or the size they estimate for a “2t.” I may be lazy but I don’t want to have to measure the pattern pieces to figure it out. If they truly graded the pattern for different sizes, then just put a chart in each pattern of what the size range is. Or a sentence about “we use McCalls pattern sizes” or something so I know. Some people might not know how to measure the pattern to see what size to make. Also, the pattern should have match points on the pages and be clearly marked for seam allowances, crotch lines and the lines you use to alter patterns.
I want full instructions if I am paying full prices, like double stitch here, iron the seam allowance to the back, top stitch, trim the extra, etc. While I know all of these things, I like reminders. I like professional pattern instructions. These patterns would not be super successful if made by true beginners, and that frustrates me a great deal. So I know, my fault I bought them, but I won’t be buying patterns unless I know they are a capable designer with complete instructions and a professional product.
Also, a question for anyone who sews for children, or adults who have similar proportions. My son has roughly a 20″ chest, a 22″ big belly, and a 18″ waist that is so low in the front, his front rise would be like 8″ while his back rise is like 12″ (if I want to cover his diaper, which I do.) This is fairly odd shaping. I make mostly super comfy clothes, knits and loose fitting styles. Any experience you may have that would help me or advice on fitting pants to this little guy would be most appreciated! I have just learned to make his shirt swing out a little at the waist to compensate. He is only 18 months, I assume he will grow up and his tummy will thin. I just am finding it very challenging to fit pants to his little belly and rump. Making high backs and long shirts just looks odd to me. See grumpy baby below. (He wanted to touch his Dad’s fancy camera so badly, but had really snotty fingers. Poor bubba.)
So now it’s Me in March! And I have already got some plans laid out, ready and waiting! They will have to wait for another post as I am off to sew!
PS: I have now tried out a few pattern designers who are independent but are completely professional too. Try Cake Patterns Tiramisu or Dog Under My Desk Two Zip Hipster. If you know of others you enjoy, please share! Here is an extensive list – I want to try just about every one! http://agoodwardrobe.com/2011/12/22/independent-pattern-designers/