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!