Little Sunshine

I have taken a little break from sewing for others to knock out a few outfits for Miss L. Our weather rather abruptly changed from winter (fall) to spring-verging-on-summer and I had an epiphany:

The dressmaker’s daughter had no clothes.

Maybe it’s a slight exaggeration, but not far off from the truth. And so I’ve been toiling away, making sure my poor daughter did not have to venture out of the house in long sleeves and too-short jeans as the temperatures climbed closer to 80 degrees.

This darling little outfit was pulled together while L was at school on Tuesday. Yep, that fast. It helped that I used white thread on both pieces.

The bottoms are Bermuda shorts from the new Favorite Little Things pattern, Little Smarty Pants. You may have seen the all-growed-up version on me. Bloomers & Britches still has a place in my heart but I’ve now made her three pairs of these shorts and have another ready to cut and sew. Super cute, super fast to sew and really easy for her to pull on and off (Miss Independent likes to “do it myself”). Definitely see these being a wardrobe staple this summer.

I want the top in my size. Seriously. It’s Katie‘s newest pattern and I am in looooooove. Such a cute style and, of course, Katie’s easy-to-follow/understand directions make it an absolute delight to sew. I’m trying to figure out how many is too many of these tops to own. This one is made with Jennifer Paganelli‘s Sis Boom fabrics, the Casey Scroll and one of her new Bell Bottoms fabrics. (For the record, this top also counts against my Try It! challenge for this year, since I have a skirt made with the same Casey Scroll fabric (matching outfits item). Woohoooo!) You can also make a dress from the pattern; it probably goes without saying that I’ll be making one of those, too.

I did deviate from the pattern just a wee bit. On the armholes, instead of doing a narrow rolled hem (I’m really bad at them), I serged the armholes, then folded over once and topstitched. Luckily, the hem stayed nice and flat, like it’s supposed to. I think the next one I make, I’ll follow Katie’s directions for using binding on the armholes. (BTW, you can pick up your own copy of this pattern — you won’t be disappointed!)

On a side note … I just want to give a huge “THANK YOU!” to Beth and Kristin and the rest of the folks at Sew, Mama, Sew for letting me be a part of Women’s Clothing Month. They are so incredibly sweet and kind, and it’s really such a wonderful experience to take part in their themes and pattern reviews. And thank you to all the folks who’ve come over to visit my blog thanks to SMS.

Lazy Sunday

Honey headed into the office today so it’s been just me and the babies. Yes, I still refer to all of them as “babies” even though the older two have towered over me for years. Secretly, I think they like it; after all, they sometimes still call me “Mommy.”

Since conditions were right (a second camera operator) and the sun was actually out, I had J take a picture of me wearing my latest sewing-for-me project. These are the “muslin” I made for my first crack at Favorite Things‘ new Smarty Pants pattern. I did not hem them because I do not intend to wear them out of the house. Or likely ever. Nothing says “I have a big butt” like this fabric print. Why did I buy it? I have no clue. All I know is that I had enough of it to try this pattern without making some sort of hodgepodge clown pants because I had to use two or three fabrics.

But I digress.

I know capri pants are some big fashion no-no according to all those makeover shows but I don’t care. They are comfortable and hide my thighs, and they’re a bit cooler than jeans or long pants during the summer. (It’s not called “Hotlanta” for nothing.)

The pattern also makes Bermuda shorts and there are options for pockets and belt loops but I haven’t tried them out yet. And I’m not sure I will, since that style of pockets draws attention to my hips, which I’d prefer received a little less attention.

This is actually a pretty easy pants pattern. I highly recommend covering up the sizes and looking solely at the measurements to determine the best fit. Go by just your size and you may be disappointed. I know I would have been. Maybe “depressed” would be a better word.

Moving on.

The pants are only six pieces, which sounds like a lot but it’s not. Two front leg pieces. Two back leg pieces. Two pieces for the waistband. The waistband is two pieces because the back band forms a casing in which you insert elastic to fit the waist. The flat front waistband is a flattering look, and I like that the back fits closely so I don’t have to worry about someone seeing my Hanes Her Way.

Because these are a muslin, I didn’t do any serging of seams which did cut down the sewing time. Still, I made these pants from start to finish (cutting, pinning, sewing, fitting) in just a couple of hours. I think future iterations will be faster, especially because I spent a lot of time trying to figure out the assembly of the waistband. This is no fault of the pattern instructions; I’m just a hands-on learner and sometimes have to read the directions a few times, then practice with the fabric to get it down.

Favorite Things also makes these in a Little Smarty Pants version (which I also own) and I expect them to be a cornerstone of Miss L’s spring and summer wardrobe if they sew up as easily as I expect.

In other news, I added these Mommy & Me aprons to my Etsy today. I’m still loving the Heather Bailey Fresh Cut fabrics, accented here with a little Robert Kaufman floral plus a touch of grosgrain ribbon. I had originally planned to do the ruffle a little differently but I’m happy with how these turned out.

We had fun with our little photo shoot. I think L expected to keep wearing her apron as she played, since she dragged my mixing bowl and spoon into the living room. Sorry, kiddo!