Monday, September 29, 2014

Dance With Me Tunic


Oh my goodness.  I have to look away, it's almost too much.  The cuteness.  My baby is not a baby anymore.  She really looks like a little girl in these photos.  I can't believe it.


I won a giveaway for both of Lisa Lam's new children's patterns over at Scruffy Badger Time recently.  I know you probably saw the blog hop going around.  I entered a couple of different giveaways hoping to win as both patterns are incredibly cute.  So I was super excited when Winnie emailed me.  I planned on making up the Happiness Halter Playsuit first, but when both patterns arrived I noticed that the Dance With Me pattern included a pattern for a matching purse.  Yes, that's right.  A matching purse.


The way the patterns are packaged may be the most awesome I've seen.  The whole booklet is a pocket folder.  There are full color pictorial instructions first and then the pattern tissue is tucked neatly inside a pocket at the back.  The whole thing lays flat and is easy to use and refer to while sewing.  It is some seriously fantastic packaging, which I am a total sucker for.   It makes me want to somehow put all of my patterns in to pocket folders for storage.  I might have to look in to that.  I am lost in a sea of pdf pattern pieces at the moment.


Anyway,  I opted to make the tunic in a linen/cotton blend.  I made up a size 2 without any changes except for lining the bodice instead of using the facing pieces.  There is plenty of room for Jane to grow.   She is almost 18 months now, by the way.   I really love the pattern design but I have some major criticism about the pattern instructions.  They are craaaazy all over place.  The order of construction is super wacky.  I didn't follow it because it skipped around so much.  Instead, I constructed the tunic in the order that made the most sense.  You know, front placket, bodice, skirt, sleeves, hem.  I think the pattern instructions have you start by gathering the sleeve heads and hem (since there is a cuff) but then you just set them aside until later on.  It was really confusing.  In fact, I noticed in the illustrated photos that the example wasn't sewn up in the order that the instructions called for.  I'm being nit picky, I know.   But the instructions could really be simplified.  They are incredibly wordy, too.  That may just be my personal preference.  I like simple and concise.  There is a so, so, so much information included.  I think for a total beginner, it's too much information.  It's a little overwhelming.  


I also found the pattern to be pretty challenging.  The continuous placket, tiny sleeve cuffs and curved front placket.  I had to stretch my precision sewing muscle a little.  Which I am not very good at.  I followed the instructions for sewing gathering stitches to turn under the curved front placket.  And it came out sort of smooth.  I sewed it on the bodice anyway thinking it wouldn't be that noticeable.  But when the tunic was complete, the uneven placket stuck out like a sore thumb.  So my solution was to sew a close zig zag stitch over the lumpy edges.  It's a little rustic but a hell of a lot better looking than it was.  The continuous back placket was hard, too.



The purse is my favorite part.  Kitties!  Jane is obsessed.  That little grey stuffed kitty goes everywhere with her.  I think we may need to get another one on backup in case anything happens to this one.  Any guesses as to what her Halloween costume will be?  I was originally going to sew the tunic in the kitty fabric also, but decided it might be too much.  I did the purse lining in the linen.  She loves the purse.  She walks around with it and stuffs anything and everything in to it.  It's incredibly adorable.


All in all, I really liked sewing this tunic up and I especially love the end result.  I'm psyched to add both patterns to my library.  I know they will get used a bunch.  I am already working on a dress version of the Dance With Me pattern and you better believe I'm making some playsuits in the spring for Jane.


Now, I know this looks like the face of a sweet, little angel.  But let me set you straight.  Taking these photos?  Hoo boy.  To say it was a battle is an understatement.  While I definitely got some good ones, most of the photos looked like this:


That's her running away from me while yelling, "No!"  Her new favorite word.  She has also taken to slapping things out of my hand when she doesn't want them.  She likes to do that in public places when strangers are commenting on how sweet she is.  Ah, toddlerhood.  She's a little tyrant.


But a cute one, at that.  I am enjoying every minute!



26 comments:

  1. She is adorable! Love the top and the placket looks like a designer choice not a mistake!!! I'm sure you're going to make many wonderful versions of pieces from thus pattern.

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  2. Oh my goodness!!! Pure love, love, love! This is an absolutely adorable dress you have made. WOW. Your little one is so cute!! Yes, do get a backup for the stuffed kitty. If it gets left behind someplace, life will stop and it will be pure madness for a while. It is a good idea to have a little replacement for that most loved item. Only one of mine had something like that and it was her little pink blanket. Now it is tucked away safely for a keepsake. It got replaced once. :)

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    1. It's not a 'have to have it' situation... yet. But I think it's heading that way. She has a few other stuffed animals she'll take in it's place right now. We'll see... :)

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  3. Love the dress, the purse and the model!!!! I'm so thrilled to see what you've done with your first make from these patterns and am so glad that you're pleased with them too. It's too cute for words, but interesting what you say about the instructions. You've done a cracking job - you talk about fudging it, but to me it looks so neat and beautifully finished. Look forward to seeing the next one!

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  4. oh my, look at that little girl! she's so cute! and what a lovely outfit too (that purse is so fun)

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  5. Aww, your daughter is so cute. I love this outfit. Ditto on getting a second cat. That strategy saved our bacon on more than one occasion. ;)

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  6. ARGHHHHHHHHHHH - too much cuteness, I can't cope!!! How adorable is your wee daughter! And getting so big, look at her running around! I bet she keeps you busy, hee hee hee. Her little dress is so gorgeous (and I have to admit I would quite like a dress like this in my size! lol) and how flipping cute is that purse!!!!

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    1. I want one in my size, too! I bought enough fabric to make myself something, too...

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  7. The dress is super cute, as is the model...but the matching purse is wonderful. I want one!

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  8. Everything about this is too cute!
    -Sewingelle

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  9. Aw, that face and her little kitty!! Agh, she's insanely cute. So is the dress, but whew, that sounds like a lot of tedious sewing for a toddler!

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  10. Adorable. The dress is pretty cute too. Actually, I love the dress, and the fiddly details make it look special. There are 10 thousand (slight exaggeration little toddler patterns with a gathered skirt, sleeves and no collar, but the darling front placket, the back snaps and the PURSE! make this pattern look very tempting. Fortunately for my wallet I have no toddlers, and 9 thousand (slight exaggeration) little toddler patterns already.....
    For a curved pocket/placket, I cut out a cardboard piece in the desired shape and iron the dratted thing into shape over the cardboard before I sew it . That prevents lumpiness, but your save is brilliant, and looks deliberate. Gathering? Useful heads up on the instructions, they sound peculiar.

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    1. I have done the cardboard trick for pockets before. It didn't even occur to me to try it for the placket. Good call!

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  11. The dress (tunic?) looks really lovely. It's a great easy shape for a busy girl, and I'd never have known about placket issues if they weren't mentioned! Side note: I am really enjoying watching your daughter grow up, I have a friend with a little girl about the same age and they are doing similar things at similar times...happy memories for us parents of teenagers :)

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  12. so, so cute! i'm sure you'll get miles out of this pattern--it's such a nice style for little girls. i really like the placket with the stitching around it, never would have known it was covering a problem spot!

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  13. She's so cute! Great outfit for her, and the kitty purse is just right. (I still have a kitty purse from when I was about that age, but I don't think my mom made it for me)

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  14. This little sweetie looks a lot like her momma:) I love sewing for little girls. Enjoy every minute of it!

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  15. Oh, what a sweet little dress, it looks to be just beautifully finished to my eyes and she looks utterly cute in it, of course! I miss sewing for toddlers, it's quick, uses only a little fabric and is more fun than adult stuff, and they always look adorable in everything :)

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  16. Oh my goodness, she really is a proper little girl now, and so adorable. The little dress and bag are so sweet. I can just imagine her toddling round with her bag with all her important things in it!

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  17. Oh my goodness, stop killing me with the cuteness! Your daughter is adorable and so is her outfit!

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  18. She is such a wee cutie, and her dress is gorgeous!

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  19. Love this!!!! She's so beautiful and photogenic. My heart swells looking at these photos. Fantastic work on that dress.

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  20. What a sweet sweet little one! Gorgeous dress too - the placket looks meant to be!

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  21. This is so cute and Jane is absolutely adorable! I can't even take the pictures of her with the little kitty purse. SO CUTE.

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  22. So cute, and she looks just like you! What a sweet outfit - the placket was an excellent save, IMO.

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  23. What a sweet dress! She looks so adorable in it. I love the sleeves and placket detail.

    Okay. Random. But I've been listening to A LOT of kid music on Pandora and you always pop into my head when this song comes up. It's called "Little Liza Jane" by Elizabeth Mitchell. So cute! Check it out if you haven't heard it.

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