Back to School

Well, both kids are back to school.  I realize Jacob is only 2.5, so saying he is in “school” seems like a stretch.  But alas, they are both at school.

This year Jacob moved from the toddler program into Casa.  So he and Maya are actually in the same class.  They were both so excited to be together.  They aren’t actually together the whole day.  They have a work period with the whole class (casa 1, 2 and 3) and then they split up for much of the rest of the day.  Jacob goes to the sleep room in the afternoon for a much needed nap,  and Maya goes to the resting room. I wonder how much “rest” she’s actually getting.

Anyway, onto the clothes.

As you may recall, my husband and I went to New York City for a quick weekend getaway for our 5th wedding anniversary in May whereby I discovered the mecca of all fabric stores:  Mood Fabrics.  You could literally spend a week in that place and not see it all I think.

I bought this shirting fabric there.  It is so soft and drapes so nicely.  And though it’s 100% cotton, I don’t think I could wrinkle it if I tried.  Which is perfect, because I hate ironing finished garments.  (Just ask my husband about his button up shirts).

I think it works just as well for dresses for girls and shirts for boys.

This is the first time I’ve sewn both of these patterns.  Maya’s dress is the “Jumprope Dress” by Oliver and S and Jacob’s shirt is the “Sketchbook Shirt” also by Oliver and S.  Have I mentioned before how much I love Oliver and S?!

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Neither of them were a quick sew.  But I knew that going in.  I’ve seen plenty Jumprope dresses in blog land to know what I was getting myself into.

There’s a collar, button placket, sleeve tabs, belt loops and buttoned pockets.  Nothing necessarily “new” to me, but I haven’t sewn so many of these elements in a single garment before.

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It’s not that the pattern is difficult, it was just time consuming.  Combining the facts that the kids are going to bed later (bye bye 6pm bedtimes), I work full time and I’m trying to keep on top of all things family and home related, I don’t get as much time sewing.  So my hour or two here and there are really precious.  I think this dress took 4 or 5 evenings from start to finish.  But I LOVE it.  Like, really love it!  I kind of want one for myself.

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I may have had to cut the bodice out a couple of times because I forgot to match my plaids the first time around.  But I’m glad I noticed and that I had plenty of fabric to recut the back and match it to the front.  That’s the only problem with plaids…the matching.  But it’s not difficult to do, especially with well marked patterns.  It’s easy just to match the notches on a certain “mark” on the front, find the same repeating “mark” and place the back piece.  I love Oliver and S for that.  It makes matching patterns really easy.  As long as you actually remember to do it and don’t just put your pattern piece down willy nilly.  But enough about that.

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Maya actually likes this dress!  It’s all in the delivery.  I told her it was twirly and had secret pockets and bam! instant love.

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I decided to use pearl snaps instead of buttons.  A bit finicky, but I love the look.

Now onto Jacob’s shirt.  This was my first time making the Sketchbook shirt.  I’ve made the shorts before (here), and I have made button down shirts (here and here).  But this pattern was new to me.

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I chose to do a combination of view A and B.  The collar from A with the short sleeves from B.  I definitely chose well by making it short sleeved for several reasons.  One, it’s chilly in the morning, but still gets quite warm by noon.  Also, the kids’ classroom is quite warm and my kids are furnaces on a cool day.  But mostly because the short sleeves are simple.  A hem and that is all.  I “may” try to make a long sleeved one some day, but all the details that make it super handsome (extra buttons and plackets) are also that details that are still a bit intimidating to me.

Goofy boy

Goofy boy

My collar is definitely not perfect, and I had a bit of trouble attaching everything (seems to be a common occurance based on my research), but I still like it.  It doesn’t help when you start something the day before your child needs to wear it either.  I would recommend giving yourself 2 to 3 evenings to sew this shirt, instead of the afternoon and evening I took.

Jacob button placket and collar

I cut the placket and the back yoke on the bias.  I think it adds a little something extra.

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When I finish something for the kids, it’s always at night when they are sleeping.  I don’t sew when they are awake.  I barely get to see them with school and work getting in the way, so I always wait to sew till they are sleeping.  Because I finish at night, I like to put whatever it is on a stand or mannequin and then put it in their room so they see it when they wake.  It seems to make them really want to wear it.  The morning they saw these was extra special, not only because they had matching outfits (I’ll be sad when they don’t want to match each other anymore), but also because it was Jacob’s first day of Casa and them being in the same class.

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How have my babies grown so much!?  Wasn’t Jacob just born?!

Jacob first day of school blog

A Sailboat Shirt

It’s about time I sewed some clothes for my little guy.  He gets so excited anytime I make him something.  His eyes light up and he’s so appreciative.

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I purchased this red striped knit when we were in New York City from Mood Fabrics.   I made Maya a dress from it (haven’t blogged about it, but I really should) and I made Jacob a “matching” raglan T-shirt.  They were beyond excited to have “matching” clothes.  Unfortunately, the t-shirt was a tad too small for him.  He wore it a couple of times, but his tummy liked to peek it’s way out.  He kept asking for his shirt when Maya would wear the dress, so I had to get my butt in gear and make him something.

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He saw me cutting the fabric one day and asked me, “Is that for me?”  And when I said yes.  In his cutest little voice every said, “thank you thank you thank you”.

This is not the first time I’ve sewn a sailboat shirt from Oliver and S.   I made one for Jacob about a year ago, but it looked like jammies, so he didn’t wear it very often.

This pattern can be sewn in woven or knit.  My first was woven, and this one is knit.  I think I prefer it in knit to be honest.  Mostly because it’s way easier to get on a squirmy 2.5 year old.

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There’s not much to say about the pattern.  Like usual the instructions and the end result were perfect.  I really like the curved hem and boat neck.  I also love using facings instead of hemming, especially when there is a curve like this one.

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I used snaps instead of buttons and button holes.

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Jacob was a little sad in the morning when he saw the shirt.  He was expecting it to be a dress just like Maya’s.  His exact words were, “That’s not a dress.  That’s a shirt”.  But he eventually decided he liked it and he wore it to preschool.

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I made this in a 3T.  It’s a bit big on him, but that’s okay.  He’ll definitely be growing into it.

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Notice it’s long sleeved?  Yeah…it got cold here….fast!