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Tuesday, 31 December 2019

More About this Site

Soon there will be pictures of my favourite projects here to help you navigate to the best bits. In the meantime, use the tabs or the search box. There are specific tabs for making babies' and children's dresses, and things, with legs (shorts, trousers, pants, PJs etc), plus a more general Make Baby /Child Clothes tab for other sorts of garments (e.g. skirts) and mixed (e.g. PJs with pants and a top). 

Thursday, 19 September 2019

Girl Patterns - Baby Girls - Page 1, 3 months to crawling

This two-page post reviews some of my favourite free PDF patterns for baby girls, from about 3 months old to toddler age. If you specifically want clothes for baby boys, see this post. I'll be doing posts for older girls later.

I've been making baby and children's clothes for the past 5 and a half years, when I first became a grandmother. I hadn't made many since my own children were babies, and the difference between then and now is that there are many people now who provide free PDF patterns on the internet. (Though I still had a handful of paper patterns from 30 years ago.) So I've devoted my blog to searching out and reviewing free PDF patterns for babies and children.

I have a separate series of posts for newborn patterns, for boys and girls. Regular readers of my blog will know that I generally try to dissuade people from making the smallest 0-3 month sizes - they may never fit, or may be outgrown faster than you can change a nappy. . But I know many people want to make them anyway. If that's you, off you go to my other post, and come back here when you want to make baby girl clothes in larger sizes.

Note that at the time of writing, all these patterns were free. Pattern designers are often generous enough to offer some taster patterns, which is a great way to decide if you like the patterns from these designers before you move on to paid-for patterns. Please ensure that you acknowledge them, as I always do, if you want to use the patterns or write about them. Not all of them want their patterns used commercially (for example if you are selling items you make for a profit.)

Friday, 16 August 2019

How happy I am when the clothes get worn!

How I love it when the clothes I make for my grand-children are worn from choice! Of course, when they are young, they don't get much choice over what they will wear, but as they get older, they are particular. For instance, one of my grand-daughters from 2 to 5 refused to wear a dress,  whereas one of her cousins refused at the same age to wear anything BUT a dress.

So if they don't like something I've made - they won't wear it! And I'm delighted when I see them choosing Grandma's clothes. Here are Fleur, then 4, and Rose, 3. They are visiting their other grandpa thousands of miles from home. Fleur is in her newest Grandma-made shorts, and Rose has stolen Fleur's from last year, because she's always loved them and now they fit her. 

Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Monkey Bar Skirt/Shorts pattern review

I'd been meaning to try the Hey June Monkey Bar Skirt for some time, and I finally got round to it this summer. It's everything I hoped it would be.  I'm now two down, and others planned. Here are the first two.

The idea of this skirt / shorts is that little girls can (as little girls do) hang upside down on a monkey bar, without revealing their underwear. I made some minor modifications to suit us, but other than that I followed the Hey June tutorial. To find her free pattern and find out what I did with it, read on!

Monday, 22 July 2019

Making curved or flared frills, skirts, shorts and sleeves using the Slash and Spread method

When I first started on this post, I'd intended just to cover adding a curved frill to the bottom of an A-line dress. But I've realised that the method, called slash and spread, is the same for any time you want to make a flared or curved pattern, so I'm killing a few birds with one stone. However, I will cover a curved frill, because that may be how you arrived at this post!

I will also cover:
  • making a twirly skirt pattern
  • using the same approach for flared shorts or culottes
  • a hack for flutter sleeves
  • and a cowl neck.

    How to make a cowl top - the easy way

    For the birthday of one of my daughters, I had ear-marked some stretch silk jersey, and found the cowl hack I'd used earlier.

    I adapted a simple tunic or blouse pattern to make into a cowl top, it's easy to do, and I think looks effective. She's happy with the top and wore it to work the very same day. I did make her a belt to wear with it, but she liked it as it was without.To find out how easy it is to adapt a pattern into a cowl neck pattern, read on.

    Some fabric I didn't like - and how to avoid it!

    Do you ever get a project that's bad from start to finish? This was one of them. So my only purpose in blogging about it is to help you avoid the same mistake. The mistake was buying this fabric in the first place! I had bought quantities of some fabric I thought was very pretty on the internet - in two colourways. And as soon as I started using it, I hated it! But I'd committed to make two of my grand-daughters dresses out of the wretched stuff, so I persevered. And finally, the end result was OK - for a while. Pretty, aren't they?

    So if you have also given in to - I don't know what to call it - the urge to buy something without thinking it through - you may have sympathy with me. If you have also fallen into a desire to buy this type of fabric - then you can find out below what I've learnt.

    Yes, this is the fabric. It looks very pretty. It's stretchy, and it has little frills of fabric all over it. I bought this kingfisher coloured version, and one in deep pink - you could perhaps call it magenta, or raspberry, similar to the pink flowers in this kingfisher version. So what's not to like?   If you want to find out, read on!

    Tuesday, 2 July 2019

    Free Tank Top Patterns for Kids

    I'm always very grateful when pattern designers release a few patterns free. If nothing else, it enables you to decide which designers to follow. I don't want to start by shelling out for a pattern that doesn't work! Some people are not designers at all, in the sense that they don't sell their patterns; they are, like me, doting Grandmas or Mums (or Moms, in the US), who like making children's clothes, and to share what they can.

    I've made a few tank tops in my time - perhaps not as many as other people, because some of my grand-daughters (or their mothers) like to keep their shoulders covered. But in the course of doing this, I've found a few patterns that have worked for me.

     Here's my most recent effort - the straps are not  really as lop-sided as they look!

    To find my favourite free PDF tank top patterns, read on.