KCWC: Kimono PJ’s

So after a storm of Etsy orders for me, many hours and several meetings about backyard chickens, a wedding my husband best manned for, one hurricane Sandy, and my old 95 civic finally giving up the ghost causing my husband to drive 4hr and an overnight stay to replace it–all in the last two weeks (oh, and the kids and me got colds somewhere in there)… I am finally getting around to my KCWC projects. I cut last night and sewed my little heart out today. I learned a bit more about making patterns and tried out a tut I’ve had on the to do list for forever and a day.

Here is the third and fourth pieces I made today. I’ll post up about the first two “another day” (as Redding would say.)

I was inspired last year, well, that’s not true exactly. I saw Rachel @ StitchedinColor make pajamas from Oliver + S bedtime story pajama pattern last Christmas. I thought they were every bit as awesome as everything else that woman creates, but the kimono look of the pattern didn’t speak to me until now.

Have I ever told you I’m cheap? Yes. I am. And this little voice in my head says “Huh, I shouldn’t buy that. I could make that myself.” It speaks often and tells me lies, because replicas usually aren’t as cool as the originals. But anyways. This was experience today, but the results still made me and Redding happy. And I know how to fix my pattern and not make the same obvious mistakes that came as a result of multi-tasking dividing my attention. Observe…

 Redding’s Bedtime Story inspired Kimono PJ’s
 I really like this flannel I bout from Joann’s last year. It’s sooo soft. It will pill after being washed 10x’s, but lets not dwell. When I bought this, Redding had gotten bit (not a serious bite at all) by a spider on his hand while he was asleep and when we told him what the bite was from, he decided he was afraid of spiders. Actually, that might be a lie. I think that’s why he was afraid, but maybe it was something else that made him scared. Anyways, he was scared, and I didn’t want him to be. We cured his fear of grasshoppers by buying him a shirt at Goodwill (best find ever, brand new, with tags) by Babygap that had a diagram of a grasshopper on it and then he thought they were cool. So, spider fabric it was to try the trick again. Spiders really creep me out btw, but, I didn’t tell him that. And he held the fabric like a blanket for a couple days, then didn’t mind spiders anymore. He won’t touch most bugs, spiders included, but he thinks they are cool to look at.
 

 The style of the shirt is an almost square back with a slight, and I mean slight, curve at the neck in and straight sleeves. Right angle sleeves I’ve heard them called. No curves in the armholes, just straight. I liked Rachel’s look for her son using buttons, because Redding is currently learning how to do buttons and loves them on everything. I’m seriously going to make him a pillow with buttons and flaps all over it so he can sit contentedly and button away. But more of that later.
So buttons. Both are sewn to the inside panel with the buttonholes on the outer so he can see them and button them easily. He did it all by himself. My machine has an automatic buttonhole foot that I pulled out and bothered to learn how to use. And I don’t want to ever go back to doing it myself again. The foot is a dream.
I also use the zig zag stitch on my machine with my presser feet lowered to sew the buttons on. Takes 2 seconds. Love it.
And That’s the only things I did correctly for this pattern. Oh, I also like how the double stitching around all the edges and hems turned out. And topstitching the shoulders and arms to lie flat works great with this style of sleeve.

Now the list of what I’d do different:

  1. Take an inch off each side pattern piece to narrow the shirt from top to bottom. The shoulder are hanging off the kid. 
  2. Not forget to use Bias tape for the bias and neck edges. I got hem happy with my iron and double stitching. Forgot the bias tape.
  3. Make the inner edge of the shoulders wider so the shirt would hug his neck more. Had I not lost at least an inch with my hemming, this might not be a big deal, but still. I made it work by taking 3″ triangles of grey fleece and zigzag stitching them on where I needed more fabric. It actually looks like a fun detail I meant to do all along. But you know different 🙂 Wyatt sat in my lap while I sewed them on and he helped me push the fabric through. He was very sweet and wanted to help and was surprisingly compliant when I helped him do things. He really liked my up and down needle button.
  4. Not cut two right front panels. Apparently, in my groggy state, I was so entranced by my 49th viewing of Pride and Prejudice that I cut two right panels. I have no excuses. I even noted it on the pattern. But alas, I went to sew what should have been the left panel on and the wrong side of the fabric was facing out. Luckily I had one 5″ wide strip leftover that covers the exposed part of that panel so it looks like I did it right. But, I didn’t. You can see it very plainly when the full left panel is exposed and only half of it is double layered and the wrong side is showing on the other half.

I am really looking forward to trying this pattern again. With a few modifications (and more attention to one task at a time) it will be awesome.

To go with the top, I dug Redding’s best fitting pair of pants out of the dirty clothes and made a pant pattern. Took my a while to draft it, and I compared it to another Mcall’s pattern I had, but didn’t care for the sizing of, to get the crotch and butt curves right. So here it is.

The Basic Pant
I have no regrets with this pattern whatsoever. It worked like a dream, sewed up in like 15min flat, and was easy peasy. The fabric is a lovely thick and soft heather grey fleece from Joann’s that I bought to make a winter coat or something like that more than a yr ago, but began using for random projects. I had just enough to cut out the pants, and Redding says they are so good and nice. I will be using that pattern a hundred times more to make the kid some winter pants and with add pockets and probly skinny some up, and do stripes and knee patches. I talk big. Dream big. But follow-through, meh. We’ll see. Oh, I should have either used a thinner elastic (I used a 1″ ish size) or made the elastic casing in the waist roomier so the elastic doesn’t roll over in parts. That’s a pet peeve of mine usually, but the fleece is so thick, it doesn’t matter in this pattern. They have a nice fit, but the fabric makes them look a tad strange as most sweat pants do. And Redding had a diaper on for bedtime, which isn’t usually the case. Diapers make everything fit strangely. 
And that’s the new PJ’s and cool weather Pants! Sandy blew us in some nice winter weather. The low will be in the 50s and the high is 60s tomorrow. Yay!!! 
Redding insisted on you seeing his scraped “armbow” and silly face. So here ya go.

The Pumpkin Shirt

KCWC Fall 2012- the Pumpkin Shirt
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 Redding has decided that he’s in Love with Pumpkins. And Fall. And Holidays in general. So we made paper mache pumpkins and painted them. He thought that was very fun and then he asked for a pumpkin shirt. So last night, I was able to put one together. I was planning on painting the pumpkin on, but then I found in my old clothes stash, a FL Gators shirt with long orange sleeves. Happy Day! So I cut up one of the sleeves, used one of Alan’s old black Tshirts, and snagged a small scrap of green for the stem.

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I used one of Redding’s new shirts to trace the pattern for this shirt directly onto the black fabric and cut away. I’m happy to say I didn’t use a single measuring tool for this entire project. It was fast, easy, and all free hand. Very liberating.

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It wasn’t my original intention to make the shirt a sleeveless style, so the arms are too long at the shoulders. But the weather is starting to cool off (It’s only 83F outside right now!) and so I’m sure he’ll be able to wear it over a long sleeve shirt and it will look fine.(Ignore the spots of oatmeal from breakfast.)

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Redding really likes it and put it on as soon as he got up. I sewed the orange pumpkin on so that the edges will curl up around the stitching when it gets washed. The green stem should fray pretty well too.

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