Thursday, July 26, 2012

Extra! Extra!

This is a perfect outfit for a little baby newsboy.  Well, really it's just the hat that reminds me of Newsies.  The rest of the outfit makes me think of a mini hipster.

A friend's little one turned one a few weeks ago.  I went a little overboard with sewing a gift.  I got kind of excited about sewing for a boy.  And it gave me an excuse to go fabric shopping.  I wandered around the fabric store looking at fabric and patterns and came up with this little ensemble.  How much fun I had!  What is it about sewing miniature things?  I really love it.

I knew I wanted to make a button up shirt.  That idea was firmly implanted when I went to the store.  They were having a McCall's pattern sale so I flipped through the catalog and found this pattern, McCalls 6016.

The shirt is put together exactly like a grown man's shirt.  I know this because I'm also working on a shirt for J (which is a long, sad post for another day).  It had all the same pieces-- just tiny sized.   I used a cotton shirting that is super lightweight and kind of pucker-y.  It's nice stuff.  I opted for pearl snaps instead of buttons.  Call me crazy, but I LOVED attaching the snaps.  Something about combining sewing and a hammer is super fun.  I am definitely planning on making myself something with pearl snaps in the future.   I used a block of wood instead of a wooden spool.  Does any thread even come on a wooden spool anymore?  I found that the hammer alone did not push the snaps together all the way.  I took a flat pair of pliers and very carefully squeezed the snaps shut after I had placed them all.  On the snaps with the actual "pearl" piece I did not squeeze very hard- just a little around the edges.

 I'm a little upset with my stripe matching skills, or lack thereof.  I thought I had it all planned out.  I matched the center stripe on the collar band and collar when cutting.  When sewing I matched the stripes beautifully..... on the underside of the collar.  I didn't pay a lick of attention to the right side of the collar (which is what shows) nor did I think about the fact that the band needed to match the shirt as well.  C'est la vie.  Lesson learned- turn stripes to avoid having to match.  I momentarily thought about unpicking and attaching a new band but scratched that idea due to lack of time.

I did a better job of matching the plaid on the shorts. Or man capris, whatever you want to call them.  I turned the pocket piece on the bias.  I couldn't match the waistband since it was eased on.  Any idea why the front and back pieces are flip flopped like that?  I mean, the horizontal stripe matches at the center and side seams, so I consider that to be a success.  I definitely need more practice matching patterns.  It's not my strong suit.  That's a little faux stitched fly.  Not much to say about them.  I liked this pattern, both the shirt and shorts, but the instructions were a little lacking in the finishing department.  I did my own finishing.  I used my new favorite overlock stitch on my machine for seams I couldn't use a french seam.  It all looks very tidy inside, if I do say so myself.

And now, the hat.  How fun is the hat?  I was not able to resist when I spotted the pattern in the catalog, McCalls 6575 (view A).   I was very concerned about making the hat because, well, it's a hat.  Not something I have a lot of experience making.  The pattern is great.  Great.  It's only three pieces.  The instructions are very straightforward and simple.  There really is only one major seam you need to sew.  But boy is that seam a doozy.  Both pieces are very curved and if you have no knowledge of sewing together curves, this would be an extremely difficult pattern.  But with a little notching and clipping it all fits together perfectly and makes an extremely adorable newsboy cap.  I actually sewed the seam in portions, pinning only one section at a time.

It's lined so all the raw edges are tucked inside.  Save yourself some trouble by keeping open two places when sewing together the hat and the lining- one on either side of where the back elastic goes.  The instructions tell you to only leave one opening but it is nearly impossible to thread elastic in through the casing when you can't pull it out the other side.  I ended up unpicking an opening on the other side of the casing and threading the elastic through with a safety pin, like I would any other time.  I made an extra large and it fit the little one year old's noggin perfectly. 

Fun patterns!  I recommend them both.   I'm ready to make more baby hats.  Pretty soon all of my friend's babies will be running around like little paperboys and girls.


  1. Oh, how handsome! I like the fun that you had with the pockets. And I love digging into my husband's toolbox for sewing gadgets. So far I've used the hammer (for snaps), pliers (for pushing and pulling a needle through really thick fabric handles), and the exacto knife (for cutting buttonholes open). I wonder what else is in there that might be useful in my sewing room . . .

    1. I agree! I went out and raided his toolbox and the garage. I used a scrap of hardwood flooring underneath when I was hammering on the snaps which was nice because I didn't make any marks on our real floors.

  2. Oh how cute! It's a gorgeous outfit, but I particularly love the little hat.

  3. This is adorable! What a great gift!
    I have two girls, so I don't think much about sewing for boys. This makes me want to sew for boys now! That hat is just so sweet.

  4. Cute cute cute. And did I mention cute? I've got a bunch of nephews this would suit.

  5. That hat is so perfect. I have visions of little Oliver Twists running around in streets, chasing dogs and pulling stunts. So fun!

  6. How fun! That hat is really adorable. I wish Owen would wear hats!

  7. This is just too adorable! THat will be one stylish baby. :}

  8. Very cute! I'll have to remember these patterns, I have a 1-year-old nephew!

  9. Omigosh, TOO ADORABLE!! I love everything about this cute little outfit; the patterns, the colours the style. You are the best at kiddy clothes. The clothes I made for my two boys were never this sweet. That hat is so funky and cool. Your friend is going to be thrilled!

  10. Thanks for the nice words, ladies! I really had fun making all these pieces.

  11. Oh I love! Like a tiny Dead End Kid from the old movie series!

  12. What an adorable outfit! The hat really is too cute.