flashback class picnic shorts on the line

this outfit is pure summer in oregon, 80s style – the way i remember it.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

french braids, tan skin, play clothes, and bare feet.  days were spent outside with my sisters and the neighbor kids – running through sprinklers, bike riding, and sometimes my mom would make a jug of kool-aid to drink on the back deck.  you know, to beat the thirsties.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

this girl, who looks a lot like i did at her age, has finally ended her three year long shorts strike!!  wahoo!  i love her in shorts, she gets all goofy and acrobatic.  and these shorts (plus time spent with cousins at grandma and grandpa’s house plus oreos) brought out even more of her goofball side.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

these are the oliver + s class picnic shorts – a pattern i’ve admired a long time and finally sewed up! (my buddy Gail was a major influence and has sewn my favorite versions – here, here, and even a pair that look a lot like these, ha!).  frankly, i hadn’t made them yet because they looked like more work than i usually want to put into kid shorts.  shorts are one of those items that can be made SO quickly, spending a couple hours seemed like a lot.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

but I LOVE THEM.  they were so worth the extra steps.  i love how they’re like (now seemingly ubiquitous) racer shorts, but elevated.  they’re feminine, adorable, and look comfy as heck.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

i made a size 4 with no modifications except adding a second line of topstitching and a bartack at the bottom of the faux fly.  i usually add length to her skirts and dresses, but couldn’t wrap my brain around that on these with the facings and the whatnot, and the length turned out great anyway.  the fit seems absolutely perfect to me.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

the ladies behind shorts on the line, Carla and Rachael, got some awesome sponsors this year, and Britex Fabrics is one of them.  you know i love Britex and am lucky to be a blog contributor for them.  the thing that has always impressed me with Britex is that though their fabrics may look like any other fabric on the website, in person it is always better than you imagined it would be.  this denim stretch chambray is super soft with a bit of a sheen to it, and the perfect amount of stretch for ultimate comfort.  i used the wrong side for the body of the shorts, and the right side for the facings.

it was her call which side to use for which part of the shorts.  this kid.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

oh!  now i’ve gotta talk about her shirt.  i actually sewed a floaty swingset tunic to go with the shorts, but once i made them, it didn’t seem right together.  the retro look of the shorts demanded a more retro-style tee.  i wanted to do a freezer paper stencil on it, but what?  i was stumped.

i consulted my graphics guru Tara (check out her freezer paper stencil work, she’s amazing), and let her know my dilemma.  she said “what i really want to see is the shape of oregon on that tee.”  GENIUS.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

the “heart in oregon” sticker is our homage to the iconic “i heart NY” tee.  they’re on car bumpers allll over portland.  my husband and i both grew up in oregon, as did my parents, and my grandma even had an “oregon native” sticker on her volvo.  oregon pride!  i got the symbol off a google image search and added cooper black text below (suggestion from the husband, thanks hon!).

i debated making the whole graphic in white or doing the heart in hot pink (it’s usually green).  for E’s sake i’m glad i did the pink.  she’ll wear it more.  😉

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

the shirt itself is a flashback skinny tee in a 4T with 1/2” added to the hem length.  i upcycled a shirt of my husband’s and preserved existing hems (tips here), so the actual added length is more like an inch.  i made it short sleeved and scooped out the front neckline a little bit for a girlier look.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee

sigh.  another outfit for my kiddo that i want for myself.  off to persuade Liesl to release the class picnic shorts for adults!  outdoor concert shorts, maybe?

so happy to be included in shorts on the line again this year!  such a fun series.

class picnic shorts and oregon love tee


if you’ve been sewing shorts lately, be sure to enter the sew along on kollabora and enter to win fantastic prizes!  rules here, prizes here.

Sotl 2014 banner

This post is part of the Shorts on the Line sewalong.  Shorts on the Line 2014 is sponsored by: Britex FabricsHawthorne Threadsmiss matatabi, and Soak Wash.  Hosted by imagine gnatssmall + friendly, and Kollabora.

P.S. I have to mention that Oliver + S paper patterns are currently 50% off!


32 thoughts on “flashback class picnic shorts on the line

  1. createnic says:

    I’m glad to see your daughter’s shorts strike ended. Mine has one too. She is 3 1/2 and I hope she gets over it as there are some super cute short patterns out there on Shorts on The Line!

  2. rachael {imagine gnats} says:

    oh holy perfection, just everything about this outfit and these photos is just. freaking. right! love XO

  3. Tara says:

    Thank god she wears shorts again. Those chicken legs needed to be seen in those shorts. The fabric does look really nice. I didn’t realize it was all the same stuff!
    Em, your modeling was top notch, girl.

  4. rachel says:

    So awesome! All of it! Way to go, Tara, on the Oregon tee suggestion. It’s perfect! I love that you used pink for the heart, Kristin! The entire outfit is so great and your photos are, too. So fun!

  5. Kelly says:

    This outfit is perfection! The pink heart is perfect to give it a girly touch, it looks so great. I would totally wear that shirt! E has some serious modeling skillz too 🙂

    • kristin says:

      so funny – she just sort of goes through her ballet moves, i take some photos, she runs away, i get her to come back for two seconds to get a few more photos, and we’re pretty much done. it does seem to work best when she’s having fun, though, for sure. 😉

  6. gail says:

    Those shorts are soooo cute on her! And yes, Tara is a genius for that suggestion, I want to come over and steal that stencil and make that exact shirt RIGHT NOW!!

  7. Carla // small + friendly says:

    These came out so cute and I love the whole outfit! And your little girlie is so grown up all the sudden, why do they do that? Thanks so much for sewing with us!

  8. Kristi says:

    for those of us who are just dipping our toes in the water of freezer paper stencils do you have any good ideas of where to get free ones or how to make them (I’m also not real artsy!) Thanks 🙂

  9. Heather L says:

    Ok…your daughter in her shorts was so cute, I actually went and ordered the pattern. (And a couple of others). Thanks for sharing about the sale. You should should totally get commission on this one. I hesitated since it’s so close to the end of the summer, but with the sizing going up to 12, I could totally sew some down the road if I don’t manage it soon. (I live in Canada and before you know it, it will be snowing.)! Love your blog, never comment, sorry! 😉

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