Monday, December 8, 2014

Esty Shop Round-up

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I am always on the lookout for new designers that make patterns for tween sizes and most of these I find through blogs. But, I have noticed that there are a few pattern designers that have stores on etsy.com.

I am a big fan of etsy and buy most of my gifts from there. I love how it is all small independent businesses. So, I thought it would be great to go on etsy and do a search for children’s sewing patterns. Here are my favorites of what I found:

Sally actually found this shop, Blaverry and sent me the link.  We both really liked her style but most of the clothes are for girls.  But this jacket could be easily made for a boy with the right fabric choices.

Girls & Boys reversible jacket


 Livi Stitches Patterns is a pdf. pattern vendor that has a lot of ruffly cuteness that is more geared for younger girls.  But, she does carry some patterns that are both sized and designed so that a tween could enjoy them. For example, here is a cute basic skirt with color blocking opportunities.

Lucy Skirt


OK, this one only goes to size 10, which is not a tween pattern. But the dress is so beautiful, I had to share it. Maybe one of our readers can get some use out of it. It is by My Childhood Treasures.

Colorblock dress



Felicity Patterns have modern style patterns for both boys and girls. The sizes run up to size 12, so a smaller tween can fit these.  I like this shirt as an alternative to T-shirt for a boy but it is not so dressy as to make him feel constrained.

Kiernan shirt

The Scientific Seamstress has some tween patterns too!

Bowling shirt

There is an etsy shop called Fishsticks Designs and this designer not only has a lot of tween patterns, she has a lot of BOY tween patterns.  Many of them are great basics that you could use to make to fit your boy's unique or notso unique style.

Campshirt
For more of a modern, urban style, you may want to check out Heidi and Finn patterns.  Here is her Urban Unisex Hoodie pattern.

Heidi &Finn


What are your favorite etsy shops for patterns?


Monday, December 1, 2014

Dressing up a PJ pant

Pin It The first clothing item I ever sewed was in home-ec.  Of course I was part of a generation that did not call it Home Economics; we called it Life Skills.  In that class I learned some cooking skills, sewing, budgeting, and other miscellaneous things that everyone should learn before graduating high school.   Do high schools still have classes like that?

Well, my sewing project was a pair of PJ pants.  And it really is a great starting point for sewing clothes.  The fit does not need to be exact.  You have mostly straight lines, but do have to learn to navigate a couple gentle curves, and they are pretty practical.  And heck, if you screw them up, you wear them at night and no one will see them.

Recently my daughter wanted some "pull-on pants"  she did not want the hassle of a snap and zipper.  I was totally flabbergasted as I have working so hard to perfect my fly techniques so I can make real jeans for her and not have her wear clothes that look like mom made them.

So, I decided to break out an easy pattern and make PJ pants, done fancy.

tween PJ pant

I asked her if a pair of slacks would work and she was a bit dubious, but conceded.  I did not want her to look like she was actually wearing PJs to school.
I used some bottom weight fabric I picked up in the remanat bin.  It was just over a yard and I loved  the plaid.  I had actually hoped to make myself something out of this fabric, but oh well, she needed pants more than I do.


I dressed them up a bit by using studs on the pockets and ice blue top stitching.   Instead of making an elastic casing, as the pattern called for, I used wide pretty ice blue elastic that I zigzag stitched right on top of the fabric.  The technique I used is one I learned for making circle skirts on the blog MADE  This gave it a bit of a high-waisted look and I thought dressed them up more.  I think with other modifications,dressed up PJ pants could be equally good for a boy.


Abi was not exactly thrilled with the high waisted look.  But I promised her that with a long tunic, it would be just fine.  She has just grown accustomed to a mid rise pant and so her first assumption was that I made them wrong.


I did make them a little long though, I wanted there to be room for growth.  So many of her pants right now look like she is waiting for a flood, so I am glad that I added that length.  Hopefully she can wear these through the winter.


Have you ever dressed up PJ pants?

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Omni Family Tour

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IT's a FAMILY affair with the Omni Tempore Pattern by Sofilantjes Patterns!  And today I get to be a part of the pattern tour, actually I get to be 2 stops and you can check out my other post over at Daisy Chain Creations. Let's just say, I covered the gambit with the size ranges (2 12 month ones, 1 size 10, 1 size 12, 1 adult small and 1 adult medium) I made and it was kind of fun.
Here are the 3 that would fall in the Tween range...and they all love them.
Size 12, Adult small and 10
The Omni is a very quick sew...seriously it is one of those patterns that takes longer to tape and cut out than to actually sew. The other great thing about it is the size range...12 months to XXXL. You can't beat that? 
It comes with several options, like shawl collar or hood, banded waist or not, cuffs or not and is to be made out of fabric with stretch. I used micro fleece for the girl's and sweatshirt material for the navy one. (Check out the many stops on the tour to see what others have used...I used a knit fabric for my version)
Sophia got a shawl collar with the kangaroo pocket, cuffs and waist band.
Good: The instructions were great and easy to follow. The many options and sizes available. The simplicity of what is needed (just fabric!). The wear-ability and comfort of the finished product. There are lots of good things with this pattern.
For the 2 adult versions I added the hood option instead. Just be forewarned, it takes a lot of fabric to get the hood...don't skimp on that part of it.
Bad: I would say the only bad thing is that it seems to run a little small (or maybe we just ate too much on Thanksgiving...these pictures were taken the day after because of bad weather the day before Thanksgiving). If you want it for layering/wearing something underneath, I would go up a size than the one listed for your measurements. My kids like to wear sweatshirts like coats almost (something they might have to change now that we don't live in the warmer South), so they like to layer them and take them off in the warmer classrooms at school...Ethan especially would have liked his a little roomier.
Ugly: Nothing at all.
I give this pattern 5 LIGHTENING BOLTS, because it really is a great pattern.
Disclaimer: This pattern was given to me as part of the tour, but all opinions are my own. I really do think it is a great pattern and wore mine out shopping all day today.

Now go check out the other stops on the tour and try your hand at the awesome prize packages!
Prize Pack #1

1.5 meters of fabric from Joy Fits Fabrics
Omni Tempore Pattern Bundle by Sofilantjes
Bustle Skirt Pattern by Koda Baby Boutique
1 Pattern of choice by Filles a Maman
1 Pattern of choice by Serger Pepper
1 Pattern of choice by E+M Patterns
1 Pattern of choice by Striped Swallow Designs

Prize Pack #2

1.5 meters of fabric from Joy Fits Fabrics
Omni Tempore Pattern Bundle by Sofilantjes
Grace Pattern by Rose & Lee Designs
1 Pattern of choice by Filles a Maman
1 Pattern of choice by Madeit Patterns
1 Pattern of choice by Dandelions n' Dungarees
1 pattern of choice by FABulous Home Sewn


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Monday, November 24th 


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Wednesday, November 26th


Thursday, November 27th


Friday, November 28th


Saturday, November 29th

Wednesday, November 26, 2014

Any one for Finnish clothing? Intro to Ottobre magazine

Pin It There is a Finish (from Finland) sewing pattern magazine that has the most amazing and professional looking clothing. It is called Ottobre Design.  The magazine does come in an english language version and it contains patterns from infant to tween sizes.  The tween patterns are very stylish and have a very European vibe; which is not surprising since it is a European pattern magazine.

Some of our favorite bloggers that sew for tweens use Ottobre patterns.  Such as Sabrina from Sew a Straight Line.  She recently reviewed an OTTOBRE moto jacket pattern for us HERE.


The Autumn 2014 issue has some great looking patterns for tweens.

Ottobre Design
Something to be aware of when buying an Ottobre magazine is that instructions are minimal.  I would say the patterns are for a beginner who is familiar with sewing vocabulary and is ready to push herself to the next level.  Intermediate and higher sewers will find the professional techniques to be quite efficient.

from the Supermodels and Hipsters line of the 3/2014 issue


Especially if you are sewing for a tween boy, this is a magazine for you!  There are wonderfully cool boy clothes and it is fun to see how they are styled in the magazine.

3/2014 Issue
4/2014 Issue
I have a couple issues from 2007 and I still use them.  The patterns come in a large sheet with each outfit drawn out in a separate color.  This can be intimidating because you have to first find you pieces in the jumble of line drawings and then you must trace each one out.  I find that a cheap sewable interfacing works perfect because it stays still as I trace and I can easily see through it.

NOTE:  There is no seam allowances on these patterns!  You just add the allowance you want to the pattern.  I usually go with a 1/4 inch.

Also, the interfacing is durable and with these great patterns, you will use them many times.

Have you ever sewn an Ottobre pattern?  What did you think?