Sunday, 27 October 2013

KCW Project 4 - bleached trackies

As usual, the token Kids Clothes Week effort for my son. I am constantly frustrated by the limited fabric options on offer when it comes to making tracksuit pants - it's either thin cotton jersey, or thick cotton polyester. Why can't we buy nice pure cotton fleecy material in Melbourne? Is there some secret fabric warehouse I don't know about, or is this stuff just not available? But enough complaining. I bought some unsatisfactorily thin black cotton jersey and thought I'd have a go at splattering it with bleach. I was really surprised when, instead of the white spots I was expecting, I got a lovely burnt orange colour - cool! I used one of the kids' old toothbrushes to do the splattering and it was fun seeing the little spots and splatters emerging. I used the last pair of trackies I made as the pattern, but I think I rushed things a bit and the fit is not quite as good. As with last time, I used ribbing for the waistband and put elastic inside it.

K's not completely sold on the splatter pattern, and when he tried on the pants he said they looked too much like leggings. So I added bands of ribbing to the leg hems, which looks weird and wonky when they're not being worn, but does make them look less legging-ish on.

My stubborn boy would only model with his skateboard - like last time - which is strange as he hardly uses it otherwise! I love the splatters and even though the pants aren't the best fit I think they look OK, but it remains to be seen whether they'll be worn or not. Hey, I tried!

Saturday, 26 October 2013

KCW Project 3 - Happy Homemade dress

A tried and true pattern from Happy Homemade vol. 2, this time version B, which doesn't have the shoulder frills. I couldn't believe my luck when I found this cotton fabric on the $2 table at Darn Cheap - I love the bright green checks.

A couple of minor alterations: I used ties instead of buttons at the back, as all R's button-up dresses catch her hair. And I added patch pockets cut on the bias, as she loves to have pockets to put her little treasures in.

The pattern is an easy sew; the only hard part was getting R to model it. I had to play a half-hour of dentist-and-assistant games (all her toys needed check-ups) and a magnetic doll game as part of our deal, after which she sulkily posed for photos, accessorising the dress with a fly-swatter. This one will get a lot of wear, I think - so loose and comfortable. And the fly-swatter will come in handy once the weather warms up...

Thursday, 24 October 2013

KCW Projects 1 & 2 - tiered skirt and hooded top

I seem to have got off to a slow start this Kids' Clothes Week. I have quite a few items in various stages of production, and even managed to finish one of them on the first day, but haven't been able to photograph and blog til now. The timing is perfect for me to make some summer clothes for R as last year's dresses are looking tragically short - more like tops, really - and with school looming next year I'm feeling the need to sew like crazy while she's still able to wear casual clothes every day.

So here are projects 1 and 2: a tiered skirt in seersucker, loosely based on the measurements for the one in Happy Homemade vol. 2, and - from the same book - a hooded top in linen. I adore the linen; it's a beautiful dusty shade of blue and is very light, perfect for warm weather. The skirt was straightforward, the top less so. I found the binding instructions a bit confusing and am still not sure I did it the way the author intended (despite using an English version of the book!). Then I made stupid, time-wasting mistakes like putting the sleeves on the wrong way and sewing seams badly so I had to unpick them, which, as I had matched the cotton perfectly to the fabric, was a very difficult task. The top is lovely but the neckline is huge on R, so if I make it again I will have to do some adjustments.

Now if I can just finish the dress, leggings and track-suit pants I've half-sewn, I'll be very happy with myself...