I wrote this post ages ago but didn’t get around to getting photos of my daughter till very recently. So, instead of rewriting the entire post, let’s pretend it’s still January 4. Deal? Ok. Here goes.
We’re already 4 days into 2015. Our tree and decorations are still up so it still “feels” like the holidays, but the kids go back to preschool tomorrow and I go back to work. It’s been a long two weeks with one of the 4 of us being sick at some point during the holiday break. But that didn’t stop me from sewing. Ever since I made my promise to myself NOT to sew until I was up to date on the blog, I’ve been itching to sew something.
There are certain fabrics in my stash that I purposely bought for a specific pattern and then others that I just liked and “had” to have. Who am I kidding, most of the fabrics I have are there because they are pretty. I guess that’s why I have so many. Anyhoo…I digress.
This is the Playtime Dress and Leggings pattern by good ol’ Oliver and S. I bought this “just for fun” birch knit specifically for leggings. These were a pretty simple sew, but hemming was a pain. I’m still new to knits and I haven’t fallen in love with them yet. I hope to one day. So I’m going to keep trying. This was my first time using a twin needle. I tried to on the hopscotch dress I made, but I hadn’t changed from a zig zag stitch and when I went to practice on a scrap, my needle went down right onto the presser foot and broke. Lesson learned. Always put your stitch back to straight.
I say hemming was a pain because of the tiny opening at the ankles. Also, turns out I had my machine set to the wrong stitch. I thought it was a stitch for a double needle, turns out it is actually the stitch that stitches on top of each one several times. Also, seeing as when you use a twin needle you have to stitch on TOP of the fabric, I had a hard time getting the fabric under the presser foot. I made this way more difficult than it had to be, but by the time I made the playtime dress, I had it pretty much figured out.
I’m happy I made the leggings first because the mistakes I made will be mostly covered by Maya’s top and will be scrunched up at her ankles so you won’t see the wonky stitching. I’m glad the mistakes didn’t end up on the dress, because they would have been much more noticeable.
Maya has worn them and she says they’re pretty comfy. The size 4 fits her perfectly. Hopefully I can actually get some photos of her in the leggings.
Next is the Playtime dress. I also purchased this Art Gallery “radical blooms” in blush specifically for this dress. This is the first time I’ve sewn with Art Gallery knits. This one did not disappoint. It’s so soft and comfy. Maya is going to love this dress. And this is exactly why I must start loving sewing with knits. Because they are comfy and that’s what kids like. The art gallery knit didn’t seem as “stable” as the birch knits. I don’t know if stable is the right word or not, but I mean, the edges rolled a bit and it was a bit thinner. But that’s not a bad thing at all. It made for the softest dress ever.
Turns out I thought I was smarter than the pattern instructions. The dress is meant to be sewn with woven or knit and Liesl tells you what to do depending on the type of fabric you are using. Of course I thought I was smarter and decided to eliminate the buttons in the back. Because it’s knit, I thought it would be perfectly acceptable to eliminate them. Turns out, because of the way the facings are and that there is no neck binding, there is very little stretch at the neck. I knew as soon as I had the bodice together and just about cried because I really didn’t want to have to make a new bodice. Then I remembered the way the opening is made on the “first day” dress. And I opened up the facing and sewed a notch, put an elastic loop in and cut the notch. Flipped it right side out and tada! It fits over Maya’s head. Not perfect, but not too bad either. Yet another lesson learned.
Ad hoc notch
I used my serger for most of the construction of the dress. I still don’t feel comfortable serging a bodice and gathered skirt on the first pass, so I sew it using the “lightning bolt” stitch on my sewing machine first and then go over it with the serger to make it look better and have the layers all together as one.
Why is Maya’s face painted you ask? Well…she went to a friend’s birthday party the day before and refused to let me take her face paint off. So there you go. I think it looks pretty good with her new dress.
These leggings are just some I picked up at Gymboree I believe. I think they go pretty well with the dress.
Oh, I forgot to mention this dress has pockets! Pockets are a definite plus these days. Maya just loves having something to put her “treasures” in. I just have to remember to check them before throwing her clothes in the laundry now.
I just love the “peter pan” collar stitching. There’s a facing underneath so it’s important to sew it down and I really like this detail.
Any reason to jump
Maya brushing her little broom…this child of mine cracks me up daily.
No, I didn’t make the dress and polka dot leggings to “go together”. It just so happens I wanted to try my hand at knits again and I had both of the fabrics and this pattern was sort of a “two in one”.
So there you have it. My first sewing projects of 2015. It feels so weird to be writing 2015.