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kcw spring 2014 :: postman shorts

10 Apr

i’m just gonna start off with the silly photo.

postman shorts

this guy’s a pro.  in about 30 seconds he goofballs his way through a photoshoot and then he’s on with his day.  such a crackup.

postman shorts

anyway what am i talking about?  shorts.  he doesn’t want to wear anything but shorts.  this started in february or so, the daily fight to get him to wear pants.  at least now temperatures are high enough that shorts are acceptable and i don’t look like a terrible mother for occasionally giving in when it was only 45 degrees outside and raining (he’d gladly wear a giant winter coat and thick socks as long as he could wear his beloved shorts and he’d NEVER say he was cold…kids are so weird).

postman shorts

the pattern is Dana’s kid shorts, a great pattern with lots of sizes and options for girls and boys.  it’s only $8 but super versatile, sews up fast, fits great, and i love it.  he’d long grown out of the ones i made him last year, so i upsized to a 3T and these are too big.  oh well.  pretty sure he’s in the middle of a growth spurt so i’m sure they’ll fit fine by the summer.

postman shorts

the fabric is upcycled, once again, this time from a pair of my old gaucho pants.  remember those?  it was a super unflattering style on me and i didn’t wear them much, but it gave me tons of soft corduroy fabric to work with here!

postman shorts

i wanted to add a little extra detail, and he STILL loves to wear his mini kingsley zissou outfit, so i added some bias tape from my grandma’s stash centered on the side seams to try for a similar look.  when i was done i realized they reminded me of US Postal Service uniform shorts.  but they’re still cute on him, i think?

postman shorts

didn’t add anything else…just basic, comfy shorts for him to grab and put on in the morning.  he usually comes out of his bedroom fully dressed these days, such a funny kid!

by the way, do you remember which outfit his shirt came from?  the answer!

you can check out all of my KCW projects here.  i’ve got some girl sewing up next!

kid's clothes week

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kcw spring 2014 :: baseball raglan

8 Apr

i think we can all pretty much agree that the best part of sewing for our kids is indulging their idiosyncrasies and obsessions, right?  for instance, if your kid insists on dressing like a “sports boy” most days but thankfully doesn’t know about brands yet, you can go ahead and make him a shirt with a baseball on it and he will be one happy camper.

baseball raglan

i upcycled my old tank top plus a maternity shirt whose blues complemented each other nicely.  since this KCW has a “mini me” theme, i’ve decided to use fabric from my upcycle stash as much as possible this week.

baseball raglan

the pattern is the Oliver + S field trip raglan tee (available with cargo pants or standalone) sewn in a 2T…but i used existing hems and still cut the shirt body to the cutline (even though i didn’t have to hem it) to gain a bit of length and make it fit more like a 3T.  i also cut the sleeves to be short sleeves (the pattern comes with long sleeves) and preserved the existing hems there too.

i only had the baby’s naptime to sew and he’s an unpredictable napper, so even though i should’ve made the 3T outright, i sewed what was already traced out on my table.

baseball raglan

aren’t those blues nice?   i love that raglan tees make color blocking so fun and easy.

baseball raglan

on the front, i freezer paper stenciled a baseball.  O is quite the little t-ball player (in our backyard) and i knew he’d like it.  i just sketched it super quickly onto freezer paper (after my basketball and soccer ball attempts didn’t work), drew over it with a sharpie to thicken the lines a bit, then quickly cut it out with x-acto knife.  i wanted it to look a bit messy/sketchy like i’ve been seeing around the Pinterests lately.

baseball raglan

i showed it to him and he said “oooh can i put it on right now?!”

woo!

baseball raglan

now maybe i can clear a couple 18-24 month shirts that he still squeezes himself into out of his drawer?

baseball raglan

the littlest fella actually napped long enough for me to start some shorts for O, too.  i went into this KCW cold (nothing cut out or prepped and only vague ideas of what i want to make) so i’m just taking it as i can.  if the baby sleeps in his bed for any stretch of time, i’ll sew like the dickens!!!!!

kid's clothes week

seersucker bodysuit

4 Apr

are you ready for a generous friday serving of chubby baby legs?  thought so.

lullaby layette bodysuit

those adorable gams belong to my nephew, who is once again modeling a pattern i tested for Oliver + S – the bodysuit from the Lullaby Layette Set.

lullaby layette bodysuit

the pattern recommends light to medium weight woven material (though it can also be sewn in knit too as Tara shows!).  i knew i wanted it in a lightweight fabric, so i used an orange and gray plaid seersucker from Hancock Fabrics (with Jess again!) and tried to cut carefully because I still want to make a shirt for O with it too.  it’s a great summerweight shirting.

lullaby layette bodysuit

i made size 3-6 months for my 4 month nephew (just like with the jacket) and it fit him pretty loosely.  in my opinion the tester version’s shape was a bit too bubbly for boy babies and think it may have been slimmed down a bit in the final version, but i’m not sure.  it still looks mighty cute with pants!

lullaby layette bodysuit

all the snaps (6 here, 3 on the jacket) got me pretty comfortable with those even though snaps have been a dreaded technique of mine forever.  i think the fact that i sprang for these pliers (affiliate link) made a huge difference – they work way better for me than the plastic snap set you have to hit with a hammer and just feel more accurate, too.

lullaby layette bodysuit

while i always seem to take forever to sew plackets, the instructions on this one were clean and clear (of course) and the elastic casings at the legs were frustration-free too.

i think this bodysuit would be super cute sleeveless in stripes for summertime like a little old timey strong boy, or with a little peter pan collar added (for girls, obviously).  also if you didn’t catch Cherie’s tutorial for adding ruffle sleeves, go check it out!  so cute.

hey spring kids clothes week is next week!  did you sign up yet?  i can never help myself and always end up sewing for KCW, even when my sewing time is super scarce like it is these days.  might just need to keep it simple again.  O had a growth spurt which has made getting him dressed in the mornings a bit difficult, so he’s sort of my priority #1, though it’s always hard to resist pretty dress sewing too!!

lullaby layette tiny man jacket

21 Mar

i made this little jacket so long ago!  before christmas!  but now that the Lullaby Layette Pattern has been released, it’s bloggin’ time.

lullaby layette jacket

i was so excited to hear that Oliver + S was working on a layette pattern.  most of their patterns start for slightly older babies, so it’s fun to have options for the little ones now.  the pattern contains FOUR different cute little baby things to sew – a bodysuit, a shirt, pants, and this jacket.  the sizing starts at 0-3 months and goes up to 24 months, so it’ll last quite a while and would make for great baby shower gift sewing, too.

lullaby layette jacket

i actually pattern tested the jacket and bodysuit, the first time i’ve pattern tested for Oliver + S, and it was a great experience.  the reason i love pattern testing is i get to see the behind the scenes process of patternmaking, and with Oliver + S it was especially fun to get previews of the upcoming patterns, since they tend to be pretty hush hush until release.  i was totally flattered to be asked and took the responsibility seriously – i know a lot of work goes into making patterns as good as theirs.  the pattern was already pretty darn solid though – i didn’t have to do too much.  ;)

lullaby layette jacket

i sewed the 3-6 month size for my (at the time) 4 month old nephew, shown here.  my own baby boy was still in my belly!  i wanted it to be a “manly” baby jacket, so i upcycled my husband’s khaki shorts for the body.  i lined it with a pair of flannel pajama pants that were also my husband’s and added a little twill tape loop at the back neck.  the jacket can be totally reversible if you want it to be, and the lining of the sleeves is very cleverly done.

lullaby layette jacket

please disregard the plaid mismatch – i didn’t try to match it but apparently on one side i matched it perfectly!  not so on the other.  drat.  but i do love how the plaid peeks out when you fold up the sleeves.

lullaby layette jacket

i used store-bought double fold bias tape and size 16 snaps to finish the jacket (both larger than recommended by the pattern).  now that i look at these photos, i want to make another for my own little guy (or see if my nephew has grown out of this one yet…).

lullaby layette jacket

a couple of my bloggy friends have sewn adorable versions of the Lullaby Layette jacket – you have to check out Tara’s tiny sherpa boy (that hat!  Tara’s styling is always so good!) and Cherie’s awesome girl version that had me beelining it to the store for neon bias tape.  both of those gals also happen to have ridiculously adorable babies, which helps matters.

i’ll show you the bodysuit in a bit!  gotta do everything in small chunks of time these days.

small fry skinny jeans (and ramen!) tour

12 Mar

hey guess what?  i made jeans!

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

no let me try that again with more oomph – I MADE JEEEEEANSSSSS!!!!!

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

huge personal sewing triumph over here – i’ve wanted to make jeans for a while and eventually would love to make them for myself, but i’m not ready yet.  and i know, if you’ve been following along with this pattern tour, you’re hearing the same thing over and over – that the Small Fry Skinny Jeans Pattern is clearly written and incredibly detailed.  that the fit is great.  that you’ll make legit-looking jeans from it.  that you’ll learn a lot.  and i’m here to reiterate all of that.

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

this pattern rocks.  it’s just so good and so impressive.  it’s not a quick sew, and given the fact that i’ve got a newborn in the house, i spread this out over many sewing sessions.  but i really enjoyed the process of making these jeans.  it was so fun.  it’s the kind of pattern i wanted to take my time with, because jeans are one thing that really shouldn’t look home sewn, if you ask me – especially boy jeans. I wanted these to look like a mini version of high quality man jeans; nothing fancy but still special because of the craftsmanship required.

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

the fabric is a pair of dark blue Levi’s that never fit my husband properly from my upcycle pile.  it’s sturdy MAN denim – real Levi’s denim – and that went a long way toward making these puppies feel legit.  there’s no stretch woven into the denim, but i noticed that the original jeans appeared to be cut on the bias which gave them a little bias-cut stretchiness – does that sound right to you?  the grain looked diagonal to me! (update: here’s my answer!)

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

the other thing that makes jeans look “real” is the thread.  topstitching thread is recommended, but i had this Gutermann “Extra Strong” thread (affiliate link) on hand from this duffel that was the right color, so i used that.  it comes on a larger spool than topstitching thread, so i didn’t have the thread supply issues that some other tourmates had, and i used it for almost every seam except the thread that would show on the waistband facing.  i sewed with a size 16 needle but actually broke it while sewing down the belt loops (it’s thick denim and my machine freaked out at the 8 layers or whatever it is – had to do a little hand-cranking to get it through).

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

i made a size 2T with 3T length – O is potty trained but the small pattern size range allows for a diapered bum, so there’s actually room to grow in the hips and waist.  the pattern has an adjustable back waistband using buttonhole elastic and i made him a quick belt to help cinch them up too (i got a yard of this great cotton belting from JoAnn and cut it to his waist measurement plus 10” then fray checked the end).

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

i deliberately made the jeans extra long, partially so he could have big cuffs like Celina’s and partially because i knew these would be a lot of work and i wanted them to last a long time.

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

it should be clear that though this isn’t really a “quick and easy beginner pattern” (make parsley pants if you’re looking for that!), it will lead to fantastically pro-looking jeans.  Laura guides you through when and where to add all that topstitching, how to do a flat felled seam (my first time!), how to make a little coin pocket, and your choice of a half or zip fly (i chose half fly).  i referred to the mangled remains of the Levi’s to double check the topstitching and seams as i went and added bar tacks to match, but other than that i just followed directions.  as you can see up there too, i chose a brass snap instead of a button to close the top – easier and quicker to undo for him.

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

on the back, I added a little twill tape tab under the pocket and a piece of canvas duck as my jeans “brand patch.”  since my goal was to make these as real as possible, those details were important!

to finish my “tiny Portland hipster” look, i made him a silly shirt based on his favorite food!

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

have you seen this yay shirt floating around pinterest?  or this similar pizza one?  well my little guy isn’t a huge fan of pizza, actually, but he does enjoy ramen noodles very much.  ergo, ramen shirt.  it’s freezer paper stenciled – i hand-lettered it and cut it out with x-acto knife.  he loves it.  LOVES IT.  the shirt is a flashback skinny tee in 3T made in a very stretchy midweight knit from JoAnn.

new favorite shirt to shoot webs in.

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

i really wanted to take some father-son photos in their slim-fitting dark jeans, ironic t-shirts, and converse on the way to get some artisanal doughnuts and cold brewed coffee, but it didn’t happen.  ooooh well.

small fry skinny jeans and ramen tee

if you want to make awesome jeans for a kid in your life, you need the small fry skinny jeans pattern.  the smaller size range goes from birth to 3T, and the larger size range goes from 3 up to 12!  and through this friday, it’s 20% off with the code TOUR20.

you know you need it….!

p.s.  i received a copy of the pattern for free for being a part of the tour.  i love this pattern for realz!

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