Two ladies who have rediscovered sewing in order to provide stylish and well-fitting clothes for their girls. As our girls are growing up into young ladies they are not yet physically ready or mature enough for adult clothes, and thus adult patterns. So we are in search of fun, functional, and fashionable pre-teen patterns to share with you.
There is nothing quite so easy to sew as a skirt. The fitting is fairly simple and you can often get away with two side seams and a waist band.
And when you want more variety, there are a ton of great tutorials to help you create this wardrobe staple.
Project Run and Play is doing something different this year by having a linky party each month for a pattern remix. January is Alida Makes' Bubble Skirt/Dress. When I saw the theme, I thought it was the perfect time to review the tutorial and highlight other great skirt tutorials.
In order to avoid the shirring requirement in Alida's skirt, I used a knit (an old shirt belonging to my son before he out grew it.). I simply stretched it while sewing it to the main fabric the way you would ribbing on a tee shirt.
The cardi that is in this picture is from last year. She actually has barely worn it because she was not a fan of the ruffles. Tweens can be so fickle. But I think they pair beautifully and much better than the jeans she insisted on wearing with the skirt.
There is also a very fun event at Friends Stitched Together; a series called CraftingCon and this month's theme is Dr. Who. My daughter loves the show and I thought I could style her up as a tardis for a photo shoot. But she was not in the mood.
The pajamas include a “V”-neck t-shirt to be made of knit and pants/shorts with an elastic
waistband that can be made from woven fabrics. A
hooded robe with a belt is also included and that is what I will be sharing today. I have not yet made the pajamas but will review them when I get a chance to try them out.
Clearly, PJs and robes are unisex and thus a pattern you can use for boys and girls.
Pattern Source: The Sleepy Bear PJs are a pdf downloadable pattern that you can buy at DIY Crush and other PDF pattern retailers. I don't know why, but I could not find them at the Ellie Inspired website.
Sizes available: The pattern will fit all your kids because it includes sizes 1-16 and 15″ & 18″ doll pattern. So, if you tween is still into American Girl dolls, you can make matching bedtime outfits.
required: For the robe, I used fleece, but I think if you want a lighter version, flannel would work. And for a luxurious model, minky would be ideal. I lined the hood with satin to keep her hair from getting to much static build-up.
Skill level required: Beginner. There are no fancy closures ... actually no closures and this great pattern to learn to sew on. The instructions are easy to understand and there are a lot of pictures to guide you through. Honestly, the pictures were enough to guide me through the whole robe.
My daughter has been begging me to make her a robe for years. Yes, years. I made her one when she was a size 5 and she out grew it a long time ago. So, when I saw the great sale at the Pattern Revolution, I had grab it up.
Good: As I said, the robe was a quick and easy sew. The hood had a nice shape and size.
Bad: I the robe runs a little short for my tastes. I made a size 12 and it hits above her knees. I thought it was too short, but then I looked at the pictures and it is supposed to be that short. But if you want a below the knee robe, cut it longer according to measurements of your child.
rating: I give this pattern 3 bolts.
Today we have Mona from SewMona giving a review for the Skinny Jean by Peek-a-Boo patterns. This pattern comes in the lower tween sizes, but since good pant patterns are few and far between, we thought we would share.
My name is Mona and I blog at sewmona.com about sewing, homeschooling, camping, and living in Florida. I also have an etsy shop where I sell footie pants. I started sewing for my Barbie dolls when was a little girl around 10 years old. My mom sewed and she taught me. I’m pretty good if I do say so myself. I made my prom dress in 12th grade and four years later, my wedding dress. Few things have stumped me. I love making clothes for my kids and occasionally my husband (I can make casual button-up shirts) and myself. I made my first pair of two piece footie pajamas for my daughter when she was about 4. When they wore out, I made her another pair. At that point I realized there might be a market for them, and SewMona was born.
required: Buttonhole elastic if you choose to do an adjustable waist or
just regular elastic (you can make your own buttonhole elastic too), a button,
denim needle if you’re using denim
Skill level required:
Some sewing experience helps, but the directions and pictures are excellent. There’s also a Facebook group that’s very
helpful if you get stuck.
How you came to
choose the pattern: I was looking for a jean/pants pattern for my kids that
wasn't just a basic elastic waist pull-on style. I also didn't want something too
complicated! This pattern was just what
I was looking for.
Did you deviate from
the pattern? If yes, how? The front
is low rise, I made it just a little higher (she likes her pants just under her
belly button). I also cut them a little
long and a little bit bigger all around (I made a size 10) as my daughter seems
to be sprouting up!
Good: I love that
these look like jeans! Five pockets, a
“fly” with a button, the top-stitching. There
are so many options here so you can customize the look – adjustable waist or
not, belt loops, small pocket in the front pocket, the button can be working or
just for looks (mine is just for looks).
I also love that all sizes are included in one pattern.
Bad: Even though
it’s a faux fly, it was still a little confusing to me. After looking at the pictures and a pair of my
jeans, it made sense.
rating: 4 bolts
Thank you Mona for giving this review! We love to hear new voices and share experiences.
Today I am reviewing a Peek-a-boo pattern that has variations for boys and girls. The Boardwalk Henley/Hoodie. I have sewn a couple for my son who loves his. I have blogged about them at Without Directions HERE.
Name of the pattern: Boardwalk Henley/Hoodie
Pattern Source: It can be bought at the Peek-a-boo pattern shop as a .pdf downloadable file.
Sizes available: The Henley comes in a whole wide range of sizes from 3 months to 12 years.
required: The pattern calls for knit fabric but I have made versions with a woven for the hood. The button placket makes a stretchy neckline unnecessary so you are safe to use a woven at that part. Which brings me to the other special material ... buttons/snaps; you will need two.
Skill level required: This pattern is super easy and if you are a beginner sewer, please feel free to take this project on. If you have never sewn a button, I think this is a great project to start. I highly recommend that you do not skip interfacing the placket in order to keep it stable when sewing the button holes.
How you came to
choose the pattern: My church was having a Christmas Eve service where the children were invited to dress as their favorite nativity character. My 3 year old was an angel, the 6 year old a shepherd, and the 11 year old (she just had a birthday) a sheep. I was surprised that she decided to dress up at all, but she still thinks of herself as a little kid and has told me she is not ready to grow up just yet.
So, I decided to make something that can easily be converted to a useful piece for her wardrobe. Not ready for a new purchase I decided on this top and of course, white fleece is the perfect thing to be a sheep. I made some ears and a tail to pin on just for the night.
Did you deviate from the pattern? Yes I did. I used fleece which if you are at all familiar fabric, has no stretch. I counted on my daughter being much thinner than the average 12 year old to buy me some wearing ease that would compensate for the lack of stretch in my fabric choice. I also lined the hood with a satin fabric to keep the static from messing her hair.
Good: The pattern is designed with elements for many ages and both boys and girls. You can add a hood or have a simple henley neckline. I have not yet tried the gathered front or dress version, but they may be coming in the spring and if it does... I will share the results.
Bad: I don't have any complaints. It was a nice easy sew with great details.