Now that Christmas is behind us, I can finally share these pjs that I made for my kids. I knew that I wanted a zip up, long john type of pattern (which is suprisingly hard to find) and ended up using this Jalie footed pajama pattern. This was my first time using a Jalie pattern so it was fun to try them out. An added bonus of the pattern is that it includes kids and adult sizes in the same pattern so if I ever need an adult sized footed pajama pattern (I’ve got Camp Workroom Social 2017 on my mind) then I am ready to go.
The pattern was really fast to sew up and pretty straight forward. The illustrations and instructions are a little bare, but because it’s such an easy sew it wasn’t a problem. I got a little confused when adding the pockets but ended up just making my own way to put them on which worked out fine. The pockets are actually my favorite part. Not many pjs have pockets but these are really flat so its not bulky or uncomfortable at all.
For fabric I used this really fun Christmas sweater print that I found on My Fabric Designs. I love that it has the look of a classic, somewhat cheesy, Christmas sweater, but it’s printed on organic cotton knit to make it comfy and soft on my kids skin. The red fabric is some cotton interlock from JoAnns. I initially intended on making both of the pjs out of the fun sweater knit print, but I didn’t calculate the yardage right so I ended up using the the red as the main fabric for my sons pjs and the sweater knit for the contrast.
My kids love the pjs so I call them a success. My only negative is that I personally wish they were a bit more fitted. I realize that is completely personal preference, but I would love to have a pjs pattern for my kids that is a more fitted zip up like a true long john look. I’ve been seeing that style in ready to wear lately and think it’s so cute. If anyone has any pattern suggestions let me know.
I used to be reluctant to spend time and money on halloween costumes for my kids. I knew that I could always buy one at the store cheaper than I could make it. But then a couple of years ago we were the wizard of oz for halloween. After we wore the costumes they went into our dress up bin. My kids and their friends wore those dressups ragged. I only wished that I had used better fabric (the cheap costume fabric I used tore at all of the seams over time) and took the time on some better construction. So now I’ve changed my tune. My kids can choose to be whatever they want for halloween and I will do my best to make it happen. It’s the one time of year that what I do for a living really benefits them. They feel special because their costumes are different than everyone elses. I try to use quality fabric like quilting cotton that will hold up to small and impatient hands and will wash and dry well. Even if it costs a bit more money. I know they will be worn over and over again as part of imaginative play which I love. Worth all of the time and money.
This year my kids wanted to be a kitty kat, and a New Orleans masquerade ball girl (inspired by our family vacation this year to New Orleans). I was pretty excited that there were no super heros or princesses involved so I didn’t complain. First of all the kitty. We went to the fabric store and I let my 3 yr old choose the fabric. He went with this leopard print fur because it was amazingly soft. I also got some tan felt for the tummy and inside ears.
I used Simplicity 2855 for the pattern. It’s a great, really versatile pattern, although I ended up taking an extra 3 inches off of the length in the end. Nothing too hard to sew at all. I did end up transferring the zipper from the front to back, just because my fabric was so thick that it looked wonky and I didn’t want it to be at center front. I also ommitted the shoe covers and mittens because I think those both just make it hard to trick or treat.
The only negative working on this costume was the fur. Never again! Such a beast to work with. It was my first time and I was not prepared. I broke 2 needles trying to sew through thick layers and I have fur everywhere. The end result was pretty great, but in the future I would try and find some fleece or something else thinner and easier to work with. Also, I won’t be about to wash this which is a huge negative.
Now for the masquerade dress. I used Simplicity 3725 for this one. Its a really great princess or period dress pattern that you could use for lots of projects. My 6 yr old daughter measured at a size 4 in the chest and waist for this pattern. I was scared that it would be too short so I went with the size 5 overall and just lengthened the skirt. This worked fine except that I took out about an inch on both sides at center back before inserting the zipper. Next time I would also take a bit out at center front so it was a bit narrower through the shoulders.
For fabric, the main black damask is this weird fabric that I found at JoAnns. I think it was marked as scuba knit but it’s much thinner than that and the print is felt. The nice thing is that I didn’t have to hem this fabric. I just cut it where I wanted it to end and called it good. The green lace is just something I had in my stash for lingerie sewing.
I did make a quick petticoat to help the dress stand out. To do this I just gathered about 5 yards of tuelle onto an elastic band. Not pretty but it works. I think if your fabric was lighter weight – closer to a quilting cotton, then it would be much fuller which would be nice.
That’s it. I hope you all have a really happy Halloween. It’s such a great holiday for sewists! Now I just need to figure out something for myself to wear.
I am always looking for new baby gifts to make up for friends and family. I’ve recently had a bunch of friends have babies so I decided to batch sew up a bunch at the same time to send out. I’m dying over how cute these turned out and am now on the lookout of for cute, organic knits to have on hand for this very purpose. You can find the fabrics that I used here, here, and here.
I made up two different quick little knit patterns that are great stash busters. I think that the two together is a perfect baby gift that is modern, thoughtful, and easily gender neutral. I made the harem romper by Brindille and Twig. It’s such a cute and easy little pattern. I sewed it up just as instructed except that I took a small wedge out of the center front neckline because I noticed that it set a little wide in a lot of the photos that I saw. But that is just a personal preference. I made the whole thing on my serger and each one took maybe 20 minutes.
The most difficult part was adding the snaps, but luckily I finally got around the buying the snap setter and a bunch of size 16 snaps. It’s so much easier than the nightmare snap tool I had bought and chucked years ago.
I also made up the rabbit ear teethers which is a free pattern from See Kate Sew. It’s a really simple sew and pretty darn cute. The fabric was all scraps from the romper and I bought the wooden rings through etsy here.
That’s it. Love how these turned out and can’t wait to see all of the little babies in them.
I am so excited to be showing you guys the Mini versions of both the Emerson and Ogden patterns today. I have to admit that these crop pants on little girls is my fav thing right now. Not only are they super comfy and good for transitioning to fall, but they are also different and unexpected and just cool. I’m obsessed and so is she.
Lets start with the Mini Emerson pattern. The construction is exactly like the women’s version. There are two views. View A is a wide leg crop pant that hits mid calf. It is great in mid weight fabrics such as linen, chambray, and even quilting cottons. It’s equally great is something lighterweight and flowy.
View B is a pair of shorts with an approximate 2 inch inseam. Just like the crop pants, they have front pleats, an elasticized back waistband and a flat front waistband. The pleats give a lot of fullness to the shorts and without the weight that the pants give, I recommend that the shorts be sewn up in something a little more light weight like rayon, double gauze, and lightweight linen.
The Ogden cami is a simple little pattern with a soft front V, and spaghetti straps over both shoulders. Unlike the women’s version, the kids version has a simple elastic back. This makes it easier to get on and off and move around in. It has a partial lining in the front to finish the neckline. It is best sewn up in lightweight woven fabrics like voile, lawn, double gauze, lightweight linen and rayon. Another plus is that it is an awesome stash buster as it takes minimal fabric. You can even do the lining out of another fabric if you just have a few scraps left over from another project.
I love the two of these pattern together. The simpleness of the Ogden cami is a great balance for the volume of the Emerson bottoms. Both patterns are very easy to sew up and good for beginners. The patterns cover sizes 2T to 10.
You can find both patterns, and more information about them, here. Use the code MINI20 for 20% one or both patterns through the end of the week (expiring Sunday 9/11 at midnight EST). Let me know if you have any more questions.
I recently sewed up a new Charlie Dress for my daughter as the last one is getting short. It’s such a cute pattern with it’s drop waisted simple silhouette and great twirling potential. Such a favorite little girls pattern in my house. Not to mention a very fast sew.
For fabric I used some of Leah Duncan’s new voile fabric for Cloud 9. Her whole collection is so beautiful. I want to buy it all. I love using dark colored voile when sewing up clothing for my children because it has the benefit of being light and airy, but because of it’s darker color it’s still opaque enough that I don’t need to line it.
Just as a heads up, I think that this pattern runs a bit wide in the chest area. It matches with the measurement chart, but if you are one that usually just goes with your child’s normal ready to wear size you might want to rethink that for this dress and compare your measurements to her chart. I think I cut a size 4 in the chest and size 6 in length for my daughter which worked out great.
I also got to use my brand new labels from The Dutch Label Company on this dress and I love them. I already have a ton of labels with my logo on them, so when they offered to let me try out some of their labels I wanted to do something different and more personal. My daughter loves to tell anyone who compliments her clothing that I made it, so I decided to simply write “My Mom Made This” on them.
(You can also see that I used gold bias tape for the inside of this dress because it’s what I had on hand. As pretty as it is, it was a beast to sew with. Frays easily and doesn’t wrap around the curves like regular tape. Seems to me that it’s even more synthetic than the regular.)
I made a set with a heart on them and a set without depending on how sweet the item I sewed is. I also made up some labels for each of my children that said “propery of , their name, and my number” to put on items such as lunch bags and jackets for school. Already coming in handy. I’m not going to show you these though because they have personal info on them 🙂
I can’t say enough great things about working with Dutch Label Company. Their site is super slick, making it easy to see exactly what you are ordering. Also, you can do small runs instead of the 300 I had to order from a different company. If you are like me and your logo changed about 10 times in the first 3 years of your company, it’s nice to not commit to so many at once. I also appreciated the fast turn around. Because they are made in the US you will have your labels in hand within a week or two.
For any of you who want to give them a try, they are giving my readers 15% off for the next 30 days with the code “truebias” at checkout. Enjoy!