Kid Scraps

One of the fun parts of making my own clothes is that there are always enough off scraps left over to make clothes for kiddos. I have a lovely niece who is 3 years old, born a few days after my own child. She lives in Kansas, so I can’t take pictures of her in the cute things I make, but I do love sewing up fun girl clothes now and then.

Her is her rock star shirt, for her late night adventures on the town. It’s silver glitter like any outrageous girl would wear and love. I wish I had metallic silver thread for top stitching!
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The second one is a pullover in a heart sweater fabric with black cowl collar and cuffs. The pattern calls for fleece, but it’s more sophisticated in this heart swear knit. It really shows how children, when small, are more square than rectangle. It’s a 3t, I think the pattern is by Peek A Boo, one of my favorite indie kid pattern companies. This can be worn over say, a metallic silver light weight shirt for her cold Kansas winters. I love pattern matching, and the hearts are perfectly lined up on the sleeves as well.

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I also whipped up two shirts for my son, using the same patterns one size up. He is broad in shoulder and chest, and with some instagram fitting help from OneGirlCircus, I realized he needs a forward shoulder adjustment. Which makes me think in 50 years with all our computering, our species will go back to looking like apes, rounded and hunched.

Ace looks like a little sailor in this herringbone sweater. It’s a bit large, great for layering and growing into.

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The poor kid just got a haircut, actually two haircuts over two days, from me. He has such thick hair, and struggles with haircuts, that we had to go shorter than I prefer. Luckily he likes to wear hats.

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I have tricks, as he gets older and I gain more experience, in capturing fun kid photos. Tricks I think, sounds negative, but really, there is a process to letting someone do things their way, when they are doing something for you. Now if only I used a real camera instead of my phone…

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The second sweater is a black and heathered grey stripes. I can see the end of my freedom in choosing clothes for him. When I presented this recent make, he asked, “what’s on it?” and when I said, “stripes” he looked so disappointed. He wanted me to put Lego or Avengers on there, something fun and playful. Guess I had better practice my sketching and appliqué.

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I do love how simple shirts are to make, and using up my scraps from my knit dresses is perfect. When you cut circle skirts from giant yardage, you end up with these strange triangles of fabric. I was able to squeeze out these sweaters, but I did piece together the back on one of them.

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So here is the thing you have really been waiting for.

How To Capture Your Children On Film

1. Go outside. Don’t bother with indoor photos. The nature will distract them in good ways, give you better light for getting photographs in focus, and provide some stimulus for engagement and interest in the picture.

2. Encourage your little one to run and play a bit. This gives you time to set your scene and camera up properly outside, and gives them a chance to run their squirms out and about.

3. Pick a place, and let them help. If they are involved in the decision making, they get to control their environment a little bit, and will be invested in doing a good job. I like to give two choices. Would you prefer the camellia bush or Gerald the Gnome? Let them say cheese and get a few snap shots of their silly forced faces. Little ones are learning social customs, and saying cheese is unfortunately a standard in our culture.

4. The most important of all, encourage them to talk to you. My favorite and no-fail way of getting a true, happy photo is to have my son list his favorite things. I choose a topic like “ninjago” or “snacks” and he just lists things to me, usually with lots of very specific details. There is something in toddlers that they seem to like doing things in a specific way, their way ! So let them tell you all about something they love, or they do well. The pride and joy will shine through their faces. Authentic joy is easy to express when given the opportunity. Who doesn’t like talking about things they love?

4. Take a bunch of photos or just a few but, and this is important, relax! Do your best to let them do what kids will do. I’d rather see a happy kid running around in circles, gesturing about the Lark they just heard or the moss they are squishing on then a strained smile with a kid sitting stiff and unnatural.

Best of luck to you makers out there!

Here is some pictures of my kiddo today, in fact, these were all of the pictures I took of him for this post today.

My son the sailor.

toddler sweater by bird and bicycle

He is really into jumping

toddler sweater by bird and bicycle

and explaining his favorite foods.

toddler sweater by bird and bicycle

The End.

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