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Archive for the ‘tops’ Category

Of late, I seem to be making a lot of pants. All of a sudden, N’s pants don’t fit her anymore, or, more specifically, the problem seems to be that the distance between the waist and the crotch is a tad too small.

DSC_0062I perhaps would not have been too excited to cut and make a bunch of pants at this point, had I not made this a few months earlier. N loves it so much, so it made sense to repeat, i.e. make what she and I like. To resolve the aforementioned problem, I went up a size (8T this time) using the same pattern but brought the thighs in a bit.

It almost worked I thought, but I wasn’t too happy with how it looked:DSC_0041It’s too loose around the crotch. So I went back to size 7, reduced the folded in waistband by a little over 1/4″ and got much better results. Here is the second version. I like the fit around the crotch much better this time, although she can’t tell the difference, and loves both equally. 🙂DSC_0112The pattern for these leggings comes from Oliver+S. I added a cuff in the case of both, a pretty simple on for the purple ones and a “fancy” one for the black pair. (The idea for it comes from here.)DSC_0044The fold over “petal shape” was meant to be on the outside, but alas I was much too much in a hurry. I didn’t feel like unpicking it for a red-do it, and so inside it stayed. Ms. N hardly cares, because she is perpetually in some dance position which requires her to point her feet out!

Needless to say they are super comfortable. As it turns out the fabric is also perfect for winter. I bought both at Sahni Fabrics in Nehru place. The knit is a “double knit” jersey and entirely reversible. I haven’t seen it before, and am in love; I want to go back to get some more. 🙂

The same trip also yielded some nice silky knit in blue which is N’s favourite colour. The fabric was too light for a pair of pants (thankfully), so I decided to make a t-shirt. DSC_0005This is the Field trip Raglan T-shirt pattern from Oliver+S  which I also made in size 8. DSC_0009It turned out that I should have also stuck to size 7 in this as well (or perhaps even a 6?) with probably only a slightly bigger opening for the neck. See how enormous it is around her chest?

Since the fabric was so slippery, and the shirt was kind of feeling too floppy, I made a couple of minor changes to the pattern: I added a waist band (after cutting off the bottom 2″) and did the same with sleeves. It seems a bit more together now. She wore it immediately and to school the next day, so I guess it counts as a success. DSC_0011

DSC_0020But of all, this has been the more fun project, and I have been saving it for last!DSC_0084I had been wanting to try out kid’s undies for a while, and after spending some time on Etsy I found this pattern and this. That Darn Kat pattern gives different styles for boys and girls and runs upto size 8. I made the largest size for N. (When I checked right now for the site, the owner seems to be on a break but promises to be back soon.) The slight problem for me was that it does not give body measurements, so I made the largest size with the hope that it fits or is too large for her. I am happy to say it fits perfectly and they are very very comfortable. The fabric is all scraps–our old t-shirts, the kids’ old t-shirts, even her leggings– and by all accounts they are super comfortable. I have to admit, I balked at the idea of showing these on my model, but truth be told she was more than willing to model for these!DSC_0086The second pattern is from MBJM (Made by Jack’s Mum) and has two styles as well: briefs and boxers. This goes to till size 12. So far, I have made just one for M but it looks so cute on him that I want to make more.DSC_0003So. That’s it for today I think. I still have some more backlog stuff to post, but for now I need to go and pack. We leave for our holidays very soon.

Asmita/xx

 

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Hello Hello! I have of late completely ignored my blog,but it’s not because I have not been sewing. In fact, I am happy that I am sewing with greater regularity than the past few years, but what with school schedules, other activities, Diwali and such there has simply not been enough time to post. Cooler weather is finally here, and before I put away some of the clothes for winter, I thought I ought to do a quick post of things that got sewn last month.

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DSC_0035This little summery top was cut way back in August, but I didn’t actually finish it until last month. That’s a pity because it really is perfect for the hot months of summer and I wish I had not ignored all the way until summer was almost over. The pattern (previous version is here) is from Happy Homemade vol 2(I have the Japanese version). I almost cut it in 120cms (what I thought was N’s current size with added length), but then later re-traced it in one size larger. This turned out to be a excellent decision. For one, I think it is not at all looking big on her, and two, given how late in the year I finished it, this way she can now use it next summer too. I have written often enough about this particular Japanese sewing book on the blog, and given how lovely so many of its patterns turn out, it remains on of my favourite.

The fabric is voile that I got locally at H.P Singh (Nehru Place). This is the first time I used ready made bias tape (purchased long time ago in New York) and I must say having the stuff ready at hand made sewing a breeze. It was super quick–I rarely get things done in one afternoon (or morning), and I as well as N were pleased to have it ready to wear by the end of the day!

But speaking of favourite Japanese patterns books, I might have another one that is fast becoming a new favourite. This blouse pattern comes from Kana’s Standard for Kids. As with other Japanese pattern books, this one has simple but pretty patterns for tops, dresses and pants, where one basic pattern yields several variations. Additionally, as the cover claims, most of them don’t require sewing buttonholes or zippers. It runs upto size 140cms–the one I made is in size 130cms, and the patterns come with added seam allowances (definitely a plus and time saver for me).

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DSC_0071This is A-7 from the book, and on N’s special request I made two of exactly the same tops –one for her and one for her friend. They wear their matching tops to school every Friday which is very sweet. My favourite part is the frill on the sleeves-it definitely makes the otherwise simple design quite lovely.

DSC_0065(Apologies for those rather scary looking fingers popping in on the bottom right. I am sure you can guess who they belong to!)

The fabric comes from a new shop I discovered in another part of town (Ffab Creations, Central Market, Lajpat Nagar), and they have a nice constantly changing collection of cottons, especially khadi. My only gripe is that the colour of this one still runs like mad, which means I always have to wash it separately.

Here is another picture (showing more of the owner of those little hands)

DSC_0064Apparently, this was one of their colour coordinated days. His pants come from the same fabric and the pattern is my all time favourite (“Big Butt” baby pants from Made by Rae). (They look awry above, I know, and would have looked much better in the photo had he let me adjust them a bit, but of course now that he can put them on his own, no one can touch them anymore.) I have lost count of how many times I have used this pattern. It is fantastic, and as I have mentioned before highly recommended, but, M is three now, and the largest size is 2; sadly, I am not sure how long I will be able to use it for. Sadly, these may very well be the last ones I make.

And finally the pants. The pants! Or rather, more specifically, the leggings. I hope you noticed them in the photo above….because there are the most loved, the best thing of this moment (according to N of what I have sewed).Thank you Shelly for unknowingly giving me a nudge in the right direction. I have had this pattern for ages; it was N’s dire need for some bottoms, and seeing these made me finally trace out the pattern and make them in less than a few hours. The pattern is from Oliver+S and it has only two pattern pieces. I traced a size 8 and extended the length by 1.5″ and they are a perfect fit. N adores them. And, she wears them constantly as you can perhaps judge from all the photos above.

DSC_0002I had very limited amount of fabric for this one, something I had for long (Riley Blake Design), but it was finally put to good use here I think. I need to make more pants for N and have cut one more pair in different pattern, but I can’t wait to make more and more of these.

And before I sign off–I had almost forgotten about this pair:

DSC_0012N’s and M’s littlest cousin had his second birthday a few months ago. My sister-in-law asked me to make something for him and I couldn’t resist using the Lullaby Layette pattern (from Oliver+S) one more time. The only addition this time was a pocket and some embroidery on the bottom of these pants. Tiny pockets on tiny clothes are so cute–I wish I had had this idea when I was making tons of these tops for M. The fabric is again local, from H.P. Singh. I am rarely able to find kid friendly prints in India, so this one with a tin soldiers print was a find.

And that pretty much covers most of my sewing from the last few months, and definitely brings an end to summer sewing for 2017. I can’t believe the year is almost gone. But, I still have a few things planned, so there is more to come. Perhaps even as early as next week. Thanks for stopping by and and come back soon!

Asmita/xx

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Our three-year old, no longer a baby, M got a bunch of clothes recently. I made all of them, except one, from the same book, so today I thought I could do a book review of sorts.

I got this book from my last trip to Tokyo in May, the chief attraction of it being the fact that it has several unisex patterns, some of which start at 80cms and run up all the way to size 150cms. N’s t-shirt that was featured in the last entry came from here too, following which I made a few things for M.

First up, the tops:

Besides the t-shirt that I made for N, I made M this loose fitting shirt for M, titled in the book as “cook’s shirt.”

DSC_0025 With a double breasted button placket, supposed to mimic a chef’s uniform, the shirt was pretty easy to put together–good instructions, enough pictures, that kind of a thing. The top technically opens all the way down in the front, but given that these little hands are desperately trying to put buttons on and take them off all the time–still somewhat unsuccessfully, I decided to stitch down the placket for the bottom half while still keeping the buttons. So now thankfully, there are only four top buttons to fiddle with.

The fabric is a light and lovely printed voile that my sister-in-law gifted me ages ago; the buttons come all the way from Taiwan, a gift from another friend.

The second top is even simpler. It is a simple A-line blouse with a back closure.

 

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Given how easy this was to make, and how wonderfully it showcases a special fabric (in this case a double gauze submarine print brought on my Tokyo trip) I had high hopes from this blouse and thought it would be my favourite. Except that, I find the top a wee bit short, and perhaps a tad too feminine. The girl version, in the book shows gathered sleeves with cuffs at the wrists, and I think I might like this one on N more than on M. Oh well, he doesn’t care really for very much except the submarines, and would rather wander around in a skirt than pants on most days. And, who am I say to no to a feminine touch on boys clothing? Plus, its double gauze, summery and we all love blue. So, I would say it works well, and is in heavy rotation.

Having said that, I would still like to add my two bit (reminder to myself and others out there possibly interested in the book): check to see the length if more needs to be added–prior to cutting, of course. M was exactly 100cms when I made it, and that’s the size I cut. It’s been about three weeks since I made it, and its already too short. I might add a band in contrasting fabric at the bottom. Two, the sleeve width runs on the side of narrow. This would not, I think matter to a overall skinny kid, but it did for M. This surprised me, since I am so used to sewing for N, and she kind of floats in Japanese patterns. But my over all sense from the tops in this book is that they might not be as broad as in some other books, which is something to keep in mind for future sewing.

And, now over to pants. (I promise we are done with the bicycle photos for some time now.)

DSC_0165These pants were actually the first thing I made from the book. Titled as “Thai pants” they have again two options: either two side pleats, or a gathered front. I opted for the latter, and it produced a rather cute pair of everyday pants with an elastic waist. They sort of balloon at the waist and then taper to become quite narrow at the ankles.

The grey ones are in mangalgiri cotton and the blue fabric is also cotton but slightly stiffer than mangalgiri with less drape. I got both at HP Singh in Nehru place (see here for a write up on Delhi cloth markets).

Unfortunately, as I write this, both pants are no longer in use. After a few wears, they both tore at exactly the same place–right near the seam at the crotch. I.e the tear was in the fabric, which meant that they were unrepairable. I am still wondering if I should have cut them on cross grain, without which there was too much stress on the fabric when the boy was playing around and doing leg splits (in imitation of his sister). I had initially loved the look of these, and given their simplicity was planning to make one for N too. Not surprisingly, older sister has refused this pattern! I won’t be making these anytime soon (unless perhaps I find some very small baby to sew for–someone is the 80cms range, who is not quite as rambunctious)! But besides that I need to figure out what went wrong with these. Because they are so cute!

And that’s about it in terms of the book review. Despite the failure with pants, I still like this new addition to my collection of Japanese books. It has a good mix of standards, and for those interested also carries three patterns in adult sizes. And, I do like all the tops I made from it. There are still a few other pants to try, and I definitely want to make the blouse with cuffed sleeves for N. It will be good for cooler weather which I hope comes soon.

Asmita/xx

 

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DSC_0051Well, so as it turned out the poor boy did not get to celebrate his birthday because he fell sick. He got swine flu! And while the worst had passed by the time the big day came around, he was still very tired and cranky and not up to much. We still did a few things to commemorate the occasion, had cake, and of course he got all his gifts. DSC_0037

DSC_0046And so, in effect, I did not get to finish the sewing I had started for him (It’s just about getting done only now….). But since we are here, I thought I might as well write about some of the stuff I finished a while ago, and which in fact comes from the same book that M’s birthday clothes come from. DSC_0042And so to change the topic…

These pants for Ms. N got made way back in May. She wanted orange pants at the beginning of her new school year, and orange she got. With some blue pockets…DSC_0093The fabric for the pants is mangalgiri cotton with thin orange stripes on it, and being mangalgiri, it is perfect for summer. I bought it in Pune, but really quite easily available in Delhi too I am sure. The pockets come from scraps of a Lotta Jansdotter fabric that I used previously for a skirt. The pattern tried and tested several times before, comes from one of my all time favourite Japanese pattern books. As you can probably tell, these are pants with a lot of style (slightly flared bottoms) and come together in no time. They are incredibly simple to sew. There isn’t even a separate waistband, which means there are essentially only two pieces of fabric, three if you include the pocket.

This time I made it in size 120 cms with length at 130 cms, but she complained about some tightness at the crotch. Next time, I will definitely need to size them up. Uncomfortable or not, she is still wearing them, and four months later these are very much a part of school wear. And while she loves them, I have actually been surprised as to how many adults have come up to me and swooned over these. I suspect it has something to do with the brightness of orange. Or, perhaps it’s such a unexpected colour in pants? I really have no idea.DSC_0056And now the top. DSC_0077It wasn’t particularly made to go with these pair of pants,, but somehow both happened around the same time. And, can I just say, I love this slightly large, slouchy shirt. It’s been my favourite and most fulfilling bit of sewing in a while. I like the shape, it’s swing-iness, the fabric (knit from Okadaya, Shinjuku), and how in general it looks on her. The pocket was a bit of an afterthought (yes, I did sew it after the rest of it was made) because it looked like it needed a pocket. The fabric is a scrap from her old favourite pair of tights,so it seemed like a good way to hang on to those tights too.

The pattern appropriately titled “big silhouette t-shirt” comes from this book (I am currently using it for both of M’s shirts), and has a good bunch of patterns which are unisex. Most of the patterns are in the 100-150cms range, but a few also run as small as 80cms, so it’s a good book to have when one is sewing for both a boy and a girl, who are quite a few years apart. This was one of my earlier “tries” from this book, and was a easy sew (no different in effect than other t shirts that I have made). The length is on the shorter side, despite my adding a good 10cms to the 120cms size–it rides up a bit as you can see, but she is not complaining. And it’s pretty wide–no worries there that it will fit her for some time to come!DSC_0082

DSC_0060DSC_0078That’s about it…looking at these photos taken on an outing during our Pune vacations not so long ago, makes me feels like it happened many moons ago. This summer, has been particularly hard and somewhat long (it still continues to be hot in Delhi despite intermittant rains, unending in the humidity, it seems), and I have at times been relieved that I have had some chance to do sewing.

I am not sure, if we get another opportunity to celebrate the boy’s third birthday–he has had his cake and received his gifts, and is a bit confused now at the mention of a birthday party, thinking perhaps that there is endless array of cars still waiting for him. So, while we are skipping this yea’s full fledged party, I am posting here one last photo of his taken during the same outing.DSC_0076IMG_20170614_084125843As with N who turned nine, at the beginning of July, I can hardly believe M is three. And he is marvelous–with his incredible energy, quiet sensitivity, and beyond everything the sweet love for his sister.

Asmita/xox

 

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