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Archive for the ‘sewing for baby’ Category

We are in Pune where we always come for our annual summer and winter vacations and I am yet to find my way to the sewing machine corner here. But, before this year ends, I thought I’d write about the last bit of sewing that I did before leaving Delhi. dsc_0036I have been eyeing the Mini Hudson pants ever since it came out, but I wasn’t feeling very sure about whether I could find the kinds of fabric she recommended locally, not even being very sure what exactly they were (french terry and sweatshirt knit). So, I averted my eyes and sewed other stuff. But clearly, like all good things it stayed somewhere at the back of my mind. Because, when I went to Sahni fabrics in Nehru place a few weeks ago, I spotted this stuff. I was told it is french terry; I suspect it’s not very good quality (the weave-is that what it is called-seems to not be the greatest), but I brought it anyway, followed by purchasing the pattern the same day. Lo and behold the pants were ready two days after that. From start to finish, I think this has been the fastest sewing has gone, in the last two years! dsc_0059dsc_0019dsc_0028I made it in a size 7 (for the 8yr old Ms. N) and as always extended the length but 1.5″. It hits right at her ankles, which means I could have gone a 1″ longer. I also think I could go down a size for my next make. In case of N, they are more loose on the thighs and hips than what I think the photos by the pattern designer suggest. The instructions are very clear, as I had found previously as well, although to be honest, I did not look at them carefully beyond the pocket making. There is also a sewalong for any extra help needed. The only change I made was to drop the button holes and consequently the cord in the waistband since I figured N didn’t need it. dsc_0039All in all, I think I can count this one as a major success, and sadly none of my photos really do any justice to her delight. But it would be fair to say that N likes, or I should say loves all aspects of it–the fabric, the ankle cuffs, the colour grey (apparently her favourite is grey these days!), and above all the fact that they are so so comfortable. Interestingly, I am actually finding out that she likes my experimenting with different types of fabric, rather than plain old cotton every single time!

And since we mostly find her upside down these days, here is a shot that she insisted I put on the blog. dsc_0066I think somehow if I could magically make 10 more of this she would be delighted!

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After all this, of course, I had to make #2. But, this time it’s for the baby!dsc_0077As it so happened, toddler M was in need of a nightdress. And since I was itching to make another version of the pants, I thought why not this with a t-shirt. (Never mind that fact that we were leaving in two days and there was really no time for this!) So, this time around it’s the same pattern in size 3 (he is 2 1/2) but without the pockets. I cellotaped the pocket piece to the pants front to make one piece, and did the rest exactly as pants #1.dsc_0060The pattern for the t-shirt comes from Rae, who is one of my favourite pattern makers. I made the shirt in size 2 (with added length), but really should have made it in size 3, because as the patten states it is a fitted tee. As you can see it rides up his stomach a bit, and while it is a cute cute tummy, I have to admit the shirt is also a bit short, with not much space to grow even around the chest.dsc_0118

dsc_0034But of course, he looks beyond adorable in it! Or, at least so we think. Adult M, thinks he looks like Elvis. Whatever it might be–two pants, one pattern, less than a week of sewing. I think I am feeling pretty accomplished.

The fabric here is what I had for a while from my New York days. It is by the designer Anne Kelle (I think, but sadly I didn’t save the selvedge). It’s (again, I think) a jersey knit, which is very stable and nice to sew with. It didn’t have as much of a stretch (only 25%–so less than what the pattern asks for), but it worked in this case. I somehow like the fit more on him than her, but it could because the fabric is simply better quality.The pink ribbing is really nice and comes from here (something I have had for a while). The cuffs are wider than I had hoped them to be (I cut them wider than what the instructions asked for, but I didn’t go back and check). Rae’s instructions are impecceable and worth following closely if you are making it for the first time. The tee turns out exactly as she describes it to be -a really slim, and fitting shirt , which means it is important to follow the chest size and sew accordingly. dsc_0061M is growing so quickly, that in all honestly I am not sure for how long he will wear it. But right now it’s perfect. And, while he doesn’t seem to have noticed his new clothes we are all oohing-and aahing over how nice they are.dsc_0016So that’s about from me. The year is almost over. It feels like much has happened, but that is for a different post. I still miss Christmas in New York and going to Chinatown for our Christmas dinner, even more so this year than before. But well, for now we are still here–in Pune and Delhi. I hope you have happy holidays and a good beginning to the new year. Thank you for visiting.

Asmita/xx

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Hello again!dsc_1186As promised, I am back with a post about birthday #2 which also happened in July, this one in Delhi. It was a much smaller affair than #1, although N did initially try and get me to invite her friends as well. We decided against it, and she did eventually come around to understanding that this was baby M’s birthday celebration which meant inviting people-adults and kids that he knows well. That included our neighbour’s daughters who are N’s friends and who M is immensely fond of, and their mother who is our friend too and who shares her birthday with M. We ended up with a really small guest list, actually, mostly the same people who had made it to his first birthday party last year!

N helped me make a banner that I had been long dreaming of.dsc_1218This was super simple. First, I sewed up two fabric triangles together wrong sides together. Then, N did her thing with the pinking shears and I basted the letters cut out of felt with some glue first and then added a machine stitch on the top. I hope it holds up for a few birthdays at least.

Then came the dress. dsc_1228

dsc_0167The shirt pattern is from the Lullaby Layette by Oliver+S. I love this pattern, and having used it several times before I wanted to give it one last shot in the 18-24m size. To be frank I contemplated briefly if it was a tad too girly, but eventually that didn’t deter me from making it. He’s two, and girly or not, I think he looks so adorable in it. Besides, it such a fabulous pattern and the print is so cute . I find children specific prints in good quality hard to come by in India; this fabric was gifted to me by my sister-in-law and I must ask her where she got this. The fabric is voile hence perfect for summer; I had only 0.75 metres and the shirt fitted perfect in the little bit of fabric.

I also made a pair of pants from some mangalgiri cotton to go with it, again from the same pattern I mention above. N wanted to add a helicopter, because he is kind of obsessed with them and so she drew one and I embroidered it at the bottom edge. (I am sorry to not have better photos here of the pant–he does like to roll on the ground a fair bit and I failed entirely in getting him to stand for a photo shoot, let alone wear the shirt and pant together.)

But I do hope you get the idea. It a seriously comfortable pair of pants and shirt/top, and with Liesl’s fantastic instructions it comes together very quickly-even the placket. I will be sad when he outgrows this size.dsc_0123dsc_0121Here are a few more photos of baby M in action (in case you haven’t had enough 🙂dsc_0175

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dsc_0177And, all in all it was another fun party. I didn’t get a picture of the yummy chocolate cake we had. But it was worth making despite the fact that it was hot humid day.dsc_1250And despite some difficult times last year, looking at him now feels like time has flown. With always a ready smile on his face he has become a chatterbox that I never expected him to be! is

Asmita/xx

 

 

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After making some shorts for N it was time to embark on some pant making for baby (now toddler) M. Truth be told, I have hardly sewn for him. We are very very lucky to get a serious amount of good quality hand-me-downs for him from N’s classmate’s brother. Once we are done with it we pass them on to someone who is a couple of months younger than M. It’s a good get-use-pass on chain going on and frankly I am very happy with it. But recently there has been some dearth of pants in the midst of unsuccessful potty training practices and I wanted to try out a few patterns.

So here goes. #1

The pattern comes from Heather Ross’ Weekend Sewing. I bought this book ages ago after I took an excellent class with her at the Purl Soho and was entirely smitten by her charm and sewing skills. I haven’t made a whole lot of things from the book, but what I have has been put to plenty of use, such as these pants. I literally must have sewn up about 6 or 7 for N in various sizes then, and I had saved the paper patterns from then. So I cut a 12-18 months size based on his measurements (M is 21 months now) and made this in less than an hour. It’s is very quick. Only two pattern pieces and then the top turned down for the elastic casing. I suppose one can add lots of embellishments, pockets, colour blocking that kind of thing, but I decided to stick to the basic version. The fabric is remnants from N’s dress here.

#2 comes from Oliver+S’ lullaby layette pattern.

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I made these back when M was barely 6 months old and enjoyed the style very much. Given his current measurements I made in the 12-18 size, but he still also fits into the size 6-12m although they are ridiculously short now! I think with a cloth diaper the current size would be too tight but since we are almost entirely avoiding a diaper during the day these days these are doing just great.

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The main fabric comes from Milind’s old shirt. The waistband and pockets are from some fabric I had left over from an old pair of N’s shorts. Babies and pockets–there is something always smile worthy about this combination!

#3 is my current favourite. Right around the time M was an infant I bought this pattern and then sadly completely forgot about it. I am glad I found it just in time because it runs only till size 2T.  Again I made it in the same size as above, and I am so glad I did.

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As Rae says these are clearly designed to be worn on babies in diapers and I have to say that the back panel does make an already adorable baby body part look only cuter (of course, I am talking of baby bottoms :-).

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I used 1/2 metre of mangalgiri cotton that I bought in Pune during my last trip and some scraps from the khadi that I used for N’s pants a few years ago.

Not surprisingly N is pretty delighted to find bits of familiar fabric in baby M’s clothes!

Oh, and before I forget I also made two super quick pairs of shorts from the Oliver+S free pattern.

The blue fabric is remnant from N’s pajamas and the red is from my old dress.

Sewing for N, I noticed felt quite different from sewing for M. I have, of course, made a few things for M here and there, but this is the first time when I really got down to making a bunch of stuff. With N, I find her to be increasingly totally involved in the whole process. Over last year especially, it has become almost impossible to surprise her with a new dress or pants. For one I have realised she doesn’t like these kind of surprises. She now wants to be a part of every bit of it–how to the patterns look, what gets sewn where and the different kinds of fabric, not to mention the choice of embellishments. Baby M of course has no clue that I am sewing anything for him, of course he doesn’t notice that he is wearing a new pair of pants. 🙂 And so, in some senses the final effect with him in his new clothes is a kind of a surprise. I am enjoying it, and really savouring these two different moments in a sewing process.

What about you? Do you often think of how this end point of sewing a garment feels like?

Asmita/xx

 

 

 

 

 

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I am currently in love with the Oliver+S lullaby layette shirt pattern. With the paper tracing already done it’s possible to whip one up  in less than hour including a little bit of embroidery added to make it extra special.

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I made two in this last week and with temperature rising by a degree everyday (we were at 43 deg C today!!) these are perfect for the summer.

Here are a few photos of the boy in wearing these –as you can see from all possible angles. 🙂

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For the orange one, I added a bit or running stitch to the top placket with two press buttons on the inside. The fabric is a lovely mangalagiri cotton that I know will only get softer with time.

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The fabric for the black one is also mangalagiri cotton, both of which I purchased on one of my Pune trips.  On the black one I tried some free cross stitch from here.

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I think adding a bit of hand stitiching, especially something as quick as this makes the pattern more special and I hope to make lots more.

To me, this is simple, basic and yet very gratifying bit of sewing. It has just a few complicated bits (one has to get the placket right and make sure that the sleeves are set in right), but I can manage that even at the end of a long tiring day. I really do love this little blouse. And it is reminiscent of the ubiquitious “zabala” that all babies wear–both girls and boys.

It’s what baby M is going to live in this summer!

Okay! I think I have told you enough about how much I love this pattern. Do you as well? I would love to hear what you think and what variations you would do.

Asmita

xo

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I had almost let another kids clothes week challenge pass me by, but then at the last minute I decided to buckle down and get an hour of sewing done on Monday night.

And here is sewing from day 1. DSC_0008

A quick pair of baby pants from a pattern that I had recently had a chance to use. I made them in the same size as before (6-12 M). They are roomy but not too large, accommodate a cloth diaper really well, and all in all very comfortable.

Here’s a few more baby photos: DSC_0100 DSC_0049

As you can see the boy loves them (or so I assume :-). The main fabric is from a Melody Miller line that I have had for ages.The orange one is scraps and the the reason why there is only one pocket is because that’s all the fabric I had left.

They are made exactly according to instructions except that I folded a lot at the bottom (almost 2″) Perhaps he is shorter than babies in this age range? –I have no idea.

Day 2 was the following: DSC_0009

Yes, another pair of pants made with exactly the same pattern. But this time with two pockets 🙂 DSC_0002

I love love love this fabric even more that the first one. It is what I had left over after making the library dress for N a while ago, and the cotton is the softest possible, with a beautiful weave of red and purple. DSC_0010

My apologies for no photos of baby M in this pair. I finished it as the light was fading and the boy was getting cranky. Photos were impossible, especially since considering how long the first “photo shoot” took!

But, I am actually glad I took the plunge! And while my sewing is clearly not in line with the KCW theme “wild things” this time, I can guarantee that the boy is definitely moving around like a monkey.

I will leave you with one last shot (my favourite), while I get back to some more sewing. DSC_0005

Happy sewing! Asmita

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Soon after I came to know that we were going to have a baby, I was delighted to find that Oliver+S was releasing lullaby layette pattern. This meant that I could begin making clothes for the new tiny baby with a pattern from my all time favourite pattern company. Of course, I couldn’t wait!

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Well…it’s taken me a full six months to make my first little shirt-pant set, but now that I have made it I couldn’t be happier! With such fantastic instructions, you aren’t really surprised, right?

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So, remember I said I have more of this fabric to show you in my last post? Well, the valentine’s day heart that went to this baby’s big sister was only a tiny part of the fabric that went into the making of baby M’s pants. N had insisted on a surprise gift that she could share with her brother, and aking a heart necklace for him seemed rather pointless–it would either find a way into his mouth, or dangerously around his neck, so I settled for making one pant and one heart out of it.

This is quilting weight fabric that I have held on to for six years (!!) and I think that’s waay to long. I am glad that finally it has been put to a good use. The 1/2 yard was not enough to make the pants so the waistband and single pocket come from M’s (senior) old shirt.

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In fact the pocket comes from the original pocket, and there was only one on the original shirt. Result: one original pocket became one baby pocket. The top also comes from the same re-cycled shirt and I had just enough to make the long sleeved version.

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As you can see we have quite a new outfit here. (Of course, the minute after I had put it on him, there was a biggish spot of drool right there). But he is a baby, and a cute one at that 🙂 so we shall let that one pass!

So now on to the details about the pattern. Since M is about to turn 7m old, I made a size 6-12m which is very roomy and easy to put on. In absence of snaps (which I don’t know where to find in Delhi, so if anyone does please let me know…) I used two buttons. In a hurry to get done with the shirt I did a pretty terrible job with the buttonholes. As you may notice I have avoided taking any photos of it 🙂

Pants: large enough to fit a cloth diaper on the bums, and long enough to last six months I think. The pocket(s) make it extra cute.

Shirt: I *love* the placket, and the little pleat it creates. I know baby shirts don’t have to be elegant, but somehow this placket and the little back pleat makes the shirt just that.

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I am so very happy to have finally come around to making this little dress for the dear boy, and already a bit sorry that I missed making it in the 3-6m stage.

Which actually gets me to this thing that I have been mulling over for a while. The thing is that, I think when we had baby no. 2, somehow I was under the impression that it was going to be easy, and things would be just like they had been with N. Anyone could have told me that that is impossible. They are after all two different babies!

Sure, some things have been easy. For one I (and M, the father) are not washing every single toy that he drops on the floor. Often it just gets a quick wipe and is handed back right to him. Neither is every single whimper responded to. So, I am sure you get the general idea–yes, we, well really I am (since senior M is always this way) way more relaxed.

The thing though is that until very very recently I did not really think that M and N are all that different. Not carbon copies really, but well you know, kind of the same. And it would surprise me every time baby M did something very different than what N did as a baby.  And that is where this overhwleming feeling of drowning came in. M is a super energetic, loud, taking-time-with-falling-into-a-sleep schedule kind of a child. To be honest, a bit high maintainance. N was quiet, social, energetic, but not-all-over-the place kind of a baby. I am sure as they grow older things will change and more differences (and even similarities) will emerge. So I guess really the lesson for me at this point has been to not compare but give more space for difference. And as I come to appreciate this not-sameness, certainly at the very least notice it, I find that I can enjoy it more and feel less overwhelmed.

I know this might sound perfectly normal to people out there, but it has taken me a while to realise this. And its something that I need to keep in mind in a conscious kind of way most of the time. I am glad that I got back to being able to start writing–thank you very much for all the encouraging and sweet comments–and thereby sewing. Because the sewing helps me notice these differences even in myself, and in a good way. Six years ago, I could not sew a piece of clothing, now I can! That is something to appreciate, as a start.

So, this has been a longish post and I must stop and get back to life around here. But thank you for visiting and reading!

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xo/Asmita

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happy diwali 2014

Happy Diwali dear friends! Hope it brings your way lots of good and joyous things in the year to come.

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We have had a relatively quiet one here. N played with a few sparklers, a few close friends visited us, my cousin arrived late last night to spend a few days with us and see the new baby and her niece (and of course us :-), and the boy turned three months old.

I have done such little sewing as you all well know but managed a pant the night before. I am happy to say that it took all of twenty minutes and the pattern is the free one from Made by Rae. It’s super quick, took very little fabric, but is a wee bit tight, so the next one will have to be larger.

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I am however excited to day to show you something else too.

mini quilt 1mini quilt 3It’s a mini quilt. I am planning to put up on the wall behind baby M’s cot which currently sits in our bedroom.

You see, M does not have anything like a nursery, and will most probably move into N’s room when he moves out of ours. The walls were kind of bare…and I had been wanting to put something up for him to look at. (Well, there is always the ceiling fan….but still…)

And, I had been dying to make these mini quilts from the purl bee series. The pattern is from here, and comes with excellent instructions. It took me almost two weeks to make, but it was fun adding the layer after layer.

I hope baby M will take a look at it once in a while when he decides to take a break from staring at the fan. 🙂

mini quilt 2The fabrics are all scraps from here. Many  are remnants of things I made for N, so seeing them again makes her happy too.

And for the final photo, here’s me holding it up. 🙂mini quilt 4

So what have you been sewing. I believe kcw is in full force and there is incredible amount of loveliness to be seen and admired. Have you participating?

Asmita/xox

 

 

 

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