Friday, April 10, 2015

Ottobre 03/2008-19, Rainbow polka dot unicorn style

Myra personal style has experienced some evolution lately. She still loves pink, princesses, and all thing frou-frou, but she's expressing that love in a more understated way. Princess printed tops with skinny jeans or a high-low tunic with ruffle detail and bermuda shorts are much more likely to get worn than a fluffy dress.
But it's Spring, and I always make Myra a fancy dress for Easter, and she's been crushing on unicorns lately, so I decided to try for this pretty but not too fluffy style, made up in unicorn themed coordinating prints by Riley Blake Designs. Which fortunately, she loves, Whew! The pattern is from the 03/2008 issue of Ottobre, style #19. It's a sweet dress that I've wanted to make her for some time.
The skirt is a gathered half circle and the band at the bottom is nicely shaped for fullness. She might be growing up, but she still loves a dress with some twirl! She's been favoring longer skirts lately, so this length is about perfect. Functional when she wants to run and climb, but still long and girly.
The dress closes with a back invisible zipper. I love how the back band isn't broken up by the center back seam. It meant the construction was a bit less intuitive, but it still went together well with typical great Ottobre drafting.
Ottobre's instructions called for a lined bodice, but a separate petticoat in lieu of a skirt lining. I elected to line the entire dress with white satin. The bodice is lined with a lighter charmeuse weight satin and the skirt is lined with heavy bridal satin to give it more body. I finished the lining with a serger rolled hem in pink to tie it together.
I was really worried that this dress was going to be a flop, since she really hasn't been wearing dresses much, but she truly loves it and I've had to fight to get it off her since I finished it. What a relief!

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

The Barrie Boy Cut Briefs!

So, in the interest of not getting weird Google search hits, we'll be referring to the above items as "pants" in the UK sense. Just to make that clear. But I'm excited to finally have some that FIT!! Just released yesterday, the Barrie Boy Cut Briefs by Kitschy Coo.
In fact, I love them so much that I am posting pics. Because I have never had a pair of store bought pants that did not expose cheek or creep into inappropriate places. And these stay put!! No creeping, no shifting, no need to tug on them all day. They are awesome.
I thought it might be interesting, in the interest of science, to do a little comparison photo between the Barrie Briefs and my typical boy cut brief, which I get at Target. The thing I noticed immediately is that the backside/leg coverage is completely different. The storebought pants have a higher leg rise, but angle up sharply so that the coverage in the rear is compromised. The leg openings also do not pull in snugly. These factors make them very pretty on a table or hanger in the store, so we buy them, but they don't curve around the body, so they're uncomfortable on.
Unlike the Barrie Briefs, which come low enough on the leg and are full enough in back to cover the topic, and which also feature snug leg bands, which hold everything in place. This rocketship pair was the first I made. It is the low-rise in a straight size 4, and it is perfection.
This pair is my favorite. In general, I don't wear cotton knit pants, so I made this pair out of mesh with stretch lace in place of the bands. I used the same pattern pieces, including using the band lengths to measure my stretch lace. I used a scrap of cotton knit for the gusset and constructed them per the instructions, except that I topstitched on the lace rather than sewing it on like a band.
In addition to being insanely comfortable and fitting like a dream, they are super fast to make and take very little fabric, so they're super economical. So, see you later poorly fitting Target pants - I'm wearing the Kitschy Coo Barrie Boy Cut Briefs from here on out!!

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Pajamapalooza 2015

I took over 100 pictures. And that was the best one...

It seems like every year my kids all need PJs at once. You'd think I could manage to plan for this better, but every year it seems like I am making 12 or so sets of PJs. At least this year it was just the boys.
Sort of. Myra has a collection of nightgowns that I made her several months ago. They all still fit and she loves them, but a friend of hers gave her these fleece pants, and she needed a top to go with them.
It turns out to be sort of fortuitous actually. I've been wanting to make this pattern (Ottobre 06/2010-18) for her since the magazine came out. In 2010. I even bought this fabric with this very pattern in mind. In 2010. I was so on the ball about it in fact, that this is the largest size the pattern is drafted in. And when I got the magazine she was too small for the smallest size. Seriously, how does that even happen?!
Since I had waited until the last possible moment to make this, I decided to go all out with the topstitching. I did a line of stitching on either side of each seam, with the thread color contrasting the fabric. Myra loves it. And it wasn't as hard to do as it looks. I just threaded my coverstitch with the two colors in either needle. This pic also show the cool fabric. It is a knit double cloth. The pink layer is an athletic mesh which is bonded to the green jersey layer. The green shows through the holes in the mesh, and the pink bonding stitches show on the green side. It's a very neat effect.
Duncan's PJs are extremely basic. The pants are one piece pants adapted from Sewing for Boys. The shirt is long sleeve, cuffed sleeve from Ottobre. I honestly can't remember which one it is, but there is one in nearly every issue.
He likes them, and I made 3 sets, so I busted a ton of stashed flannel and knit scraps on these. Total win.
And last but not least we have Logan. Logan decided recently that he wanted to change PJ styles. His past pajamas have been long sleeve and long pants, both made of flannel. He told me a few weeks ago that these were too hot (note: It was snowing at the time.) and that he wanted short sleeve tee shirts and shorts for sleeping. So, here we go. This is set #1, made with Ottobre 03/2013-23/39 and 06/2011-37
I've made him two sets so far, and he's very happy with both. You can see the second set in the top picture. Those two sets were random stashbusted fabrics, but I find that the stash is very low on older boy friendly knits, so I ordered a few, and then I'll make more. You can never have too many comfy PJs.