Sewing for the Kids

I completely forgot to post this outfit I made for Lucy this past December.


I used Jalie's basic t-shirt pattern, but gave it the long sleeves from another of their patterns. The skirt is just rectangles and out of my head. Lucy was very specific about the colours and placement (no surprise there - she is always specific). I also refashioned the tights into stirrup tights. (In the photo, she is wearing the tights over a pair of fuzzy athletic socks - in ballet flats. She's nearly five, what can I say?)

Here's the story on the outfit. Lucy was invited to the birthday party for a friend from preschool. The party was held at a local gymnastics facility. The invitation specifically mentioned wearing sports clothes. As it turns out, nothing puts horror in my older daughter's heart more than the thought of "sports clothes".

The day before the party Lucy was falling apart right and left. Seriously. Extreme emotion over anything and everything. All day. Now Lucy has strong emotions even on her calm days, but this took the cake. It didn't hit me until bedtime that this was tied to some kind of anxiety about the party. As I coaxed her into her PJs and talked her down out of her tree, it hit me, so I asked her if she was concerned about the party.

She looked at me with nearly tangible relief. I went on to talk with her about how this was a party so the teachers leading the gymnastics activities were going to be nice (we had just dropped out of horribly taught swimming lessons), and that I would be there if she wanted, etc. She looked at me again, took a breath and said, trembling, "But what am I going to WEAR?"

I nearly laughed out loud.

I said, "Well, you should wear something that is comfortable and allows you to move. Something stretchy. Maybe a shirt and leggings."

"But I want to wear a skirt, and I (beginning to SOB) don't have any stretchy skirts!"

Hoo boy!

We did some quick thinking and remembered that she had the black and yellow shirt (maybe I made that in November?), so we decided that I would make a black and yellow spinny skirt. I mentioned that she might want something to cover her legs (weather-appropriate clothing is an important thing). Lucy wanted to wear tights, but I thought they might be too slippery. We had this pair of tights from Children's Place that Lucy refused to wear and that I had forgotten to return. I suggested that I could cut out the toe and the heel from the tights.

And that was that. Lucy went to bed calmly and pleasantly.

Both the tights and the skirt were finished before the party the next afternoon. (I did have to shorten the skirt and tighten the elastic after the party - we didn't have enough time for a proper fitting.) The yellow portion of the skirt is pleated, because I find that far less frustrating than gathering. The tights were cut off in spots (I had her try them on to figure out exactly where to cut the feet),then I stitched clear elastic to the openings, then turned them under and stitched them again. Tricky, slippery work, but not difficult.


Now for more recent (and not nearly as humorous) kid sewing. Peter needs PJs. He has been wearing the same PJs for two years and it shows. He prefers his PJs to be snug -like thermal underwear. Unfortunately, he has reached the age and size where store-bought PJs are loose - like lounge pants and a t-shirt. Then I remembered that Dawn of Two On Two Off makes thermal underwear and PJs for her kids. I did a quick search and found the local fabric store that carries Kwik Sew patterns.

This Wednesday, I bought the pattern and on Thursday I sewed a sample of the XS. It fits very well, but could maybe be a bit longer in the leg. Peter loves them. He also loves the fabric I bought for the "real" PJs. White knit printed with bright blue plaid on the bias. I have to keep my eye out for printed knit that is boy-appropriate, but not camo (we don't do camo at our house) and speaks to me of children and the silliness that is PJs.

Phew! Now I need to make the "real" PJs. Lucy wants a nightgown ("Please, Mommy? You made THREE for Clara." - two were muslins), but that can wait a bit. I want a dress. Two dresses, actually. I have been busily working today on fitting a muslin of the bodice of Burda's 10-2009-119. I just washed my fabric and I need to think about cutting into it.


Anonymous said…
That sounds like my Lucy (and my Peter, for that matter:). Oh the drama that awaits her teenage fashion years!

Or, maybe unlike the rest of us she will have figured out and be utterly secure in her own sense of style by then and breeze through it all. That wouldn't surprise me either.

Anonymous said…
I think that I might have been poor mother...

- robin
Michael said…
Then what did you do in all your spare time?

Sounds like you are enjoying all the sewing projects - I hope so! You have very lucky kids. You and Lucy are an especially dynamic duo. I hope her specific requests don't become too difficult as time goes on.
Janna said…
you are coolest mom!
Oh dear, poor little girl. I'm glad you got the skirt done in time!

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