Category Archives: Children’s Clothes

2019 and 2020, Top 5 and Lookaheads

The sewing community is overflowing with wrap-ups of the previous year and decade as well as lookaheads to the new. I’ll join in, I like making book ends (heck, I have a whole spreadsheet dedicated to my creations and charts over pattern companies and types of garments, as well as one whole spreadsheet dedicated to my fabric stash). So first: The Numbers!

I made 40 sewing projects last year, of which 8 were for the kids, 1 was a bag and one was a cutlery wrap. Having identified a dress gap in my wardrobe I made many dresses this year, most of which get heavy rotation. I worked with 11 different pattern companies, Burda and Allt om handarbete were the 2 clear winners due to my collection of those magazines. However, the Allt om handarbete block is not a good match for me and to be honest their patterns are a bit boring so for next year I doubt they’ll be featured much.

Now, let’s look at some pretty clothes, shall we? I’ve already presented my bottom 5 of the year, so obviously it’s time for my top 5 of 2019! In chronological order:

1. Woman Dress

I bought this fabric in the autumn of 2018 and on March 6th I scrambled to make the dress so it could be worn on International Women’s day 2 days later. After contemplating many patterns, I’m really glad I went for a simple design to showcase those big Venus-signs. I’m also really glad that the despite the time crunch I was sewing this dress in, I pattern-matched the sides and avoided putting two big circles on my boobs. Whenever I wear this dress, it always garners plenty of attention.

 

 

 

 

2. Red maxi skirt

Ever since making the Belladone by Deer and Doe a few years back, I’ve been wanting to make a maxi skirt using that pattern. This spring I finally did, with a heavy but flowy viscose bought from Ohlssons and buttons from my mum’s stash. I must have ended up mis-counting, because the waist ended up much bigger than anticipated, so the pleats are quite deep. But I loved wearing this skirt over summer.

 

 

 

 

3. Blue-striped Reglisse

Both the fabric and the pattern for this project was bought for Black Friday 2018 and sewn up less than six months later! I’ve also made a less successful wearable muslin, but I fear that it will leave my closet soon. With this one I took care with the stripe-matching and it paid off well. I have lengthened the bodice and the skirt and raised the armhole a bit as well as making a bit smaller, making this sundress pattern appropriate for the office, as shown by the fact that this is the dress I chose to wear for my word ID badge.

 

 

 

 

4. The Lego shirts

I have a whole post dedicated to these, so go there for details. They are just really fun to wear!

 

 

 

 

 

5. My first ever coat

I invested a lot of time and money into this coat and luckily it paid off. I love how it looks, the fact that I managed to find a red non-wool fabric for it, the quilted lining, everything. Plus I wear it pretty much every day in the winter so it is in constant rotation!

 

 

 

 

As for the upcoming year, I don’t want to set any major goals, but rather guidelines. I will continue to sew with a plan, in which I’ll make a 4-7 piece plan for each season and try to stick to it. Sometimes, there isn’t enough time or priorities shift, but I’m at that point where my plans are filling gaps in my wardrobe, rather than building it. So, my own guidelines for the plans I make this year will be:

1.Use what I have

I have a pretty big stash with fabric for most type of clothing. For each plan I am allowed to buy new fabric only if an identified gap needs it (for example, in my upcoming spring plan I am making a pair of trousers. I had no suitable fabric so I bought for that. For a shirt tunic I’m making I must use something that was already in the stash). I start the year with 83,5 meters of fabric, let’s see where I end up.

This also applies to patterns, that I will try to use what I have instead of buying new.

2. Refashion

I have some hand-made garments at home that could use some attention to make them better (Exhibit A). For each plan I will try to add a refashion that would make some less-loved garments into more-loved, or at least have them die in the process of trying.

3. Sell things I won’t use

This relates mostly to fabrics and patterns. You know we’ve all bought some fabric and then realized it wasn’t our style or something or patterns that really only have one make in them. I hope someone will like what I have and take some things off my chest.

Long post, so congrats if you’ve made it to the end!

 

 

Sewn: Really Awesome T-shirts

We surprised the kids with a trip to Legoland this summer I wanted to add an additional surprise to make them dress properly for the occasion. On the second day of our Legoland stay the kids took on the park in colourful attire and received plenty of attention. I did not wear any of my Lego-shirts in the park (the jersey was too thick for the heat we had).

Two kids dressed as kids

Legoland is not that big and the two days we spent there were more than enough. The rides were just big and scary enough for the two kids (ages 6&9) and not too childish for us adults. My favourite ride was the pirate boats where all riders and spectators could shoot water at each and getting soaked was quite nice in the 30-ish degree weather we had. Plus the attention to Lego details is so good, I was really impressed. Big Lego-blocks outside, Lego-decorations in the hotel room at Legoland hotel, signs in Lego and my favourite: French fries at the buffet as Legos.

We ran into Emmet Brickowski in the Lego store, appropriately dressed.

I used generic t-shirt patterns for the kids, from Burda and Allt om handarbete, but don’t ask me to recite a pattern number or even the magazine issue. Like I said, generic t-shirt patterns. The armscye on Gustav’s t-shirt came out a bit too big and the sleeve hem allowance too small, so the sleeves are not perfect, but he is still constantly wearing the t-shirt, when it’s not in the wash that is. Erika also likes hers, but with so much to choose from in her wardrobe the Lego shirt is not selected that often. Maybe I need to turn it right side out since the back is white and she might not see it…

Dressed for work. I also made those trousers, but they deserve a post of their own.

All the tops were sewn up pretty quickly since they were fairly basic patterns. Although, by the end of project Lego t-shirts I was quite fed up with Lego fabric, knit fabrics and assembly line sewing. The t-shirts were well received, I turned a few heads and caused some smiles when I wore the Stella to work, and the Legoland surprise was awesome, cause in Lego Everything is Awesome!

Close up of my top. I really like the shape and fit of this top.

The details

Patterns:

Generic kid t-shirt patterns from Burda and/or Allt om handarbete
Stella T-shirt from Jenny Hellström’s book Sy! Från hood till skjortklänning
Sleeveless top, Allt om handarbete 104-04-2019

Fabric:

Klossar (blocks) from Jofotex. Yes, they are called Blocks as it is not copyright Lego fabric. Like when the Simpsons went to Blockoland.

 

Creations: Fun for Kids

Let me start with a disclaimer: This post is about children’s clothing. I will be blunt and say that I myself is not that interested in reading about children’s clothing so if you aren’t either you have my permission to carry on. However, for my own documentation I want to post about the kids’ stuff I’ve sewn, but to not clog my blog feed I will sweep them all up in one post. Most of them are from the same pattern as well, so there’s not much to talk about.

Leggings!

Coolest cassette leggings for coolest toddler
Coolest cassette leggings for coolest toddler

 

I’ve talked about the leggings for little E previously. I have made her two pairs, with cassettes and hearts (which did not make it to the photo session). The Cassette fabric came from my old nursing t-shirt (and scraps) and the heart jersey was leftovers from toddler skirts I made for my nieces. The pattern is really simple, I just traced a pair of leggings she already had. It’s so easy to sew for kids, the front and back are the same and they’re not fiddly with fit.

T-shirts!

T-shirt #1 in a cute print and happy colour
T-shirt #1 in a cute print and happy colour

The kiddo has had the honour of receiving two long-sleeved t-shirts this fall. The first one was a surprise for him as I saw the fabric in the store when I was shopping for myself and I knew he would like it. I used Burda 04-2012-144 as a base for the bodice and sleeves and then I changed it as I saw fit. I added a neckline band and cuffs to the sleeves (since I accidentally cut them too short), I made the neckline a bit more narrow and omitted the pocket and elbow patches. As for instructions, I didn’t use them and did it my way by setting the sleeves in flat, so much easier!

Cutest matching brother and sister
Cutest matching brother and sister

A few weeks later I asked the kiddo if he wanted that I make matching t-shirts for him and his sister. Obviously the answer was yes. He got to pick the fabric and decided on the purple with penguins (kiddo=major purple fan) (other options were pink with owls and blue with dinosaurs). The kiddo’s t-shirt is identical to the green one but with longer sleeves and slightly shorter cuffs. For little E’s t-shirt I used Allt om Handarbete 05-2008-6 as a base. The pattern is simple in the way that front and back are the same piece, but advanced in the fact that it is meant to have a button placket in the back. To me that seemed overly ambitious for a toddler t-shirt and just did a regular neckband. I lengthened the sleeves and added cuffs. Two simple t-shirts and two very happy children. Kiddo’s eyes were glowing when he got to put on his new t-shirt, made with love.

Cap!

This cap is so much cuter when a cute toddler is wearing it
This cap is so much cuter when a cute toddler is wearing it

Yes, the first category with only one finished product. I cut up my Envy dress, which I pretty much only wore for Me-Made-May and didn’t feel really comfortable in, to make little E a fall cap. I used this free pattern (to be cut on two folds, that was tricky!) from Stoff och Stil and it made for one adorable cap. Perfect for that in between weather.

My selfless sewing so far this year, although one can argue that it’s not completely selfless as I get a huge kick out of seeing the joy coming out of the kids’ eyes. Well, mainly the big one so far, little E kept pulling off her cap when I tried it on her. And I think she thought it was thrilling to wear the same shirt as her idol as well.

Kids clothes are quick and easy to sew, especially if I stick to t-shirts and leggings. I should take time and sew a few pieces now and then for the kids, they love it so much. But now, it’s back to me, me, me!

Do you enjoy sewing kids’ clothing? Do you enjoy reading about it? Or are you a selfish sewer?

Under hösten sydde jag några snabba projekt till mina barn. Jag gillar utmaningen med vuxenkläder, men för att rensa hjärnan mellan projekt är det rätt bra med att göra en snabb barntröja eller byxa, där passform inte är lika viktigt och sömnaden går fort. Min lilla har fått två par leggnings (varav bara ett par har fastnat på bild), en t-shirt och en mössa. Stora har fått två stycken t-shirtar med lång ärm. Kassett-leggingsen och mössan är återbruk av plagg jag sytt till mig själv, men som jag inte var nöjd med. Nu har de fått nytt liv!

Green Sweater for Kiddo

Some days ago I got the urge to sew. Not trace, not cut, not do prep-work, not learn my new overlocker, but SEW. Since I didn’t want to do any of those things I decided a project for the kiddo was in order. It would need to be cut, but that’s easily done and then it’s off to an instant gratification project.Grön sweatshirt (2)

The fabric was a bribe purchase. I took the kids to the fabric store to browse the scrap bin. I found that they had moved the scrap bin away from the toy area, too far to leave the kiddo on his own. So while I bought lucious things for me (a teal satin, purple interlock and black denim) I found a piece of green sweatshirt fabric and asked the kiddo if he wanted something in that fabric. He said yes.

Grön sweatshirt
Reducing flare

I browsed all my magazines and settled on BurdaStyle 10-2011-41, marked as a “girls sweater”. It featured raglan sleeves and a bit of flare. I reduced the flare, it didn’t seem good for a boy sweater (plus the kiddo is ridicolously slim and I wanted to add a cuff) and made it longer. Other than that I stuck to the pattern.Grön sweatshirt (1)

The neckline is a bit wonky, I probably should have stabilised it and the zipper insertion is a bit off, but other than I’m pretty pleased with it. I wanted an instant graftification project and, to be honest, I don’t put my most ambitious work into clothes for the kids.

Project summary:
 Pattern: Burdastyle 10-2011-141
Alterations: Reduced flare, made it longer, added cuffs at waist, neck and sleeve ends.
Difficulty: Novice

Fabric: Sweatshirt fabric and”cuff fabric” (recycled from failed project)
Notions: Zipper (recycled from an old pair of pants),
Estimated price: ?

Project rating:
I’m pretty pleased. The zipper and necklines could have been better, but now I know that for next time. The kiddo says he likes it, but so far I haven’t been able to photograph him wearing the sweater (either he wasn’t in a sweater mood or he’d put it on but objected to being photographed. I respect that).

Getting some sleep…

For the first month of her life baby E had terrible nights. She was awake for up to two hours and would only go to sleep on either of her parents. We were getting desparate and I turned to the web for ideas, any ideas on how to get her to sleep by herself, even if it still was in our bed. One of the ideas I came across was a babynest.

So, what is a babynest you might ask. In short it’s a padded matress for small babies, made to be snug since that’s how babies like it (it’s not that they have a lot of room in the womb). Another thing one can know about the babynest is that the “official brand” retails them at an incredibly high price, 849 SEK (€100). However, if one can sew…

Babynest

A babynest seems to be a Swedish thing since I could find many tutorials here, but not many in English. Perhaps my googling skills are dwindling. Anyway, it’s a padded matress with extra padding around, which is drawn in using a drawstring. It creates the baby’s one space, snuggly but the baby still has room to move.

This was quite a quick make, to be fair I didn’t worry too much about seam finishes and polishing. I don’t remember how much the fabric cost (which I needed one metre of), but the stuff I bought was about 100 SEK (€11.71) and I think the fabric could have around80-100 SEK (€9.37 – 11.71). Either way, my babynest is less than 1/4 of the retail price.

Babynest (2) The real verdict, however, lies not in price or quailty but if baby E likes it. The first night I was able to put her down in her new nest after nursing and she fell asleep herself. The second night was not as good, but after a few nights she’s getting used to it and does fall asleep on her own, in her nest, for most part. Success! Although I don’t know if she would have done that either way, but from what I’ve gathered about her, she probably wouldn’t. We’re all getting better sleep now and soon perhaps we can move her, and the babynest, out of our bed and into her bassinette. I can slowly feel my energy returning…

(Yes, I am aware of the fact that sleepless night will be part of our lives for some time to come. But those nights when you can sleep, that’s what you want).

Christmas Stocking

The last day of the year and time to present the one Christmas sewing (by machine) I did this year. A Christmas stocking for the kiddo. Every Advent Sunday Santa came by and gave him a small gift, something that was typical for the season; a snowglobe, a rolling-pin (for making gingerbread cookies), a book on Christmas and clothes to wear on Christmas Eve.

Julestrumpa 001

I used this tutorial, which was easy to use since it came with a pattern as well as instructions, not too much to think about. The only thing was that I couldn’t figure out if seam allowances were included or not, but I added them and it should have been an easy fix if they weren’t.

Julestrumpa 003

All fabrics are cotton from Stoff och Stil (outer fabric, no sites for the others). The lining fabric is padded so I didn’t need to add any extra padding as required by the tutorial. I liked using the padding since it gave the stocking more body and it doesn’t just hang down. I bought some extra so I can use the same padded fabric for a new stocking in an upcoming year.

The first thing the kiddo did was to pull it on like a regular sock, it covered all of his leg. Then we hung it up in his room and Santa snuck in to give him the gifts. A quick and easy project.

Cassette T-shirt in Action

For the kiddo’s second birthday I made him a cassette t-shirt. I never got around to posting about the finished t-shirt, so here it is.

The kiddo at his birthday party opening one of his gifts. I still haven’t mastered jersey, which can be seen in this t-shirt. I’m not very good at finishing, both necklines and hems. For this t-shirt I used a bias cut strip to finish the neckline, which turned out a bit big. For the hems (sleeves and bottom) I haven’t mastered the twin needle, I probably need to practice to find the proper settings on my machine, I usually end up with a “buldge” between the seams. I need practice!

I really like the t-shirt and I have enough of it to make myself a top too. We’ll be matching in cassette t-shirts! (If I get mine done before he outgrows his).

At the moment I don’t get much sewing down, the husbie and I spend our evenings watching Le Tour de France. It is pure torture as it feeds on my France-withdrawl. I love France, it’s such a beautiful country and I want to go there at every given chance (but still wanting to go other places, too). Ah, France…

My husband usually cheer for the one he thinks is the best, I usually cheer for the cutest one. They coincide, but unfortunately Andy Schleck is not competing this year due to being injured. So the tour is just longing for France.

The last gifts

Before Christmas I finished my last homemade gifts. Then I was struck down by the flu and derailed in blogging. I was lucky that I was able to finish my last gifts.

The “big” gift for the kiddo from us was a kitchen. So, it only made sense that he would get an apron too, he loves helping us out when we cook or do the dishes. I used the same fabric as I did for his cousins last year, but only the animal print, there was not enough giraffe print fabric left. I used this tutorial, with the suggested changes.

In stead of tying the bands around the neck, I added a snap for closure. I topstiched all around the edge to get some more stability. Before Christmas the kiddo liked it, now he has otitis, so he hasn’t really payed much attention to his Christmas gift. But they can wait while he heals.

My final gift was yet another grocery bag. Charlie, again. This one is in a cotton jacquard, courtesy of the scrap bin. It was for my aunt and uncle, who really liked it, especially the pouch feature.

Mushroom tunic

The Christmas sewing continues! Since I ran out of sweatshirt fabric after making three jackets the youngest cousin to the kiddo will get another garment.

She’s getting a tunic in this adorable mushroom fabric (the next time I’m in the fabric I must see if they still have the blue/turquoise/green jersey mushroom fabric, I hope so!). This is a woven. The pattern is from Allt om Handarbete (Ingeliese) 05-2008-7.

The neckline is a keyhole neckline finished with a drawstring. I imagine that it can be used even in the wintertime with a long sleeved shirt underneath and then later with a t-shirt. Bright and happy colours are needed in the darkness of winter!

There are pleats along the front, held in place by a panel. I really like pleating on children’s clothes.

g cousin who didn’t get a jacket.

Project summary:
Pattern
: Allt om handarbete/Ingeliese 05-2008-7
Difficulty:2/5, AoHS’ rating  – I agree. It was very simple sewing with no hard techniques.
Alterations: None

Fabric: Printed cotton.
Notions: Thread.
Price: Fabric 40  SEK (€4.42), thread 1 SEK (€0.11).
Total: 41SEK (€4.53).

Project Summary: The fabric is really cute, and I like the style. I can see why people like sewing children’s clothes since it’s so fast. What I don’t like about it is sewing the small bits. Plus I don’t get anything from it. Anyway, I like the fabric and the style and I hope that the kiddo’s cousin (‘s parents) will like it too.

Matching Cousins-jackets

The Christmas sewing goes on and on and I’ve been having a little mini sweatshop here, fixing up three jackets.

The kiddo and his two older cousins will get matching jackets. Almost, the kiddo’s has a blue zipper. Plus he has matching pants. The pattern is from Allt om handarbete (aka Ingeliese) 08-2008-106. It only goes to a size 90 cm (the kiddo’s size) so I scaled it up to 100 cm for his cousins who are nine and ten months older than he is. This is why they have different zippers, so that I easily can separate them from each other.

It’s a raglan style jacket, the sleeves is in two parts and go all the way up in the neckline. It closes with a zip and and edges have wristlet fabrics (ah, the pulling!). I love how they turned out and I hope the kids like them too. yesterday I put them on the floor to measure sizes, the kiddo took them and ran away with them. I think he likes them, but he has to wait for Christmas.

It was a fairly easy pattern, the only difficult thing was all the pulling. But I like the result!

Up next on my Christmas sewing list is another Charlie and a tunic for the remaining cousin who didn’t get a jacket.

Project summary:
Pattern
: Allt om handarbete/Ingeliese 08-2008-106
Difficulty:3/5, AoHS’ rating (the pattern also included pants with pocket) – I agree somewhat. The sewing was very easy, as I mentioned above the hardest part for me was the wristlets, especially the wrists. To think I sewed 6 of them!
Alterations: None (if you don’t count that I didn’ sew the pants).

Fabric: Sweatshirt fabric (so soft!), wristlet fabric
Notions: Thread, zipper, interfacing
Price: Fabric 29  SEK (€3.19), thread 1 SEK (€0.11), zipper 22 SEK (€2.42) Wristlet fabric comes from an old project which I don’t know the price of.
Total: 52 SEK (€5.71) + whatever the wristlet fabric cost.

Project Summary: I just love the purple colour. I had planned to make myself something of the fabric, but this idea was so much better. I know the kiddo likes his, let’s just hope that the two cousins do too.