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Welcome to my Blog

I am a grandmother to 4 little girls. I blog about the things I make for them, review patterns, provide tutorials on how I've dealt with techniques or problems, which I hope may help others, and give links to the (mostly) free patterns I use. Every so often, I do a 'Best of..' post listing the best free patterns I've found under specific headings - babies, girls, boys etc. Enjoy the Blog!

Saturday, 15 February 2014

More on Peasant Dress Patterns (and Adapting the Size) for Baby Girls

I last posted about the lilac coloured dress I made for my then 5 month old older grand-daughter - but intended for her in a few weeks' time. Peasant dress for 5 month old girl. I based it on the Stitching Scientist's free pattern. However, there are several other good patterns free on the internet for a similar type of dress, and with tutorials available. The advantage of these is that they may be in different sizes. Stitching Scientist says her pattern was designed to fit one-year old twins who are small for their age, about 6-9 months size. Having tried it, I think it will be fine width wise for my grand-daughter who will be 5-6 months when she wears it, but I had to shorten it.

The one below was made from a different pattern for 0-3 months:

This was also a free pattern for this cute little dress, from Sewmuchado. The 0-3 months size was free when I found it, but she also has patterns in different sizes available to purchase. This web site also has a very clear tutorial (thank you). 

This is another free peasant top pattern, from make-your-own-baby-stuff, which comes in several sizes. As the author says, the design is quite forgiving. The elastication round the neck and arms means each size will probably work for at least a few weeks or even months: perhaps first as a long dress, and then as a short top.

I quite often find I need to adapt patterns, or adjust the sizes. You can see below how I adapted the Sewmuchado pattern, for a baby bigger than the suggested size.

Sunday, 9 February 2014

Peasant Dress Patterns for Baby Girl

My internet searches brought up several patterns that people have been generous enough to share. One of these helped me produce my first offering for granddaughter no. 1. This free pattern is from the Stitching Scientist. Remona, whose web site it is, said that her pattern was for twins girls of a year old who are tiny, and so it was intended to be a 6-9 month pattern. I though this would be perfect for our baby girl, who, at not yet 4 months old, is already out of most of her 3-6 month clothes. And when she goes to Mauritius in March she will be a little older anyway.

So here it is, now finished.

 I made various adaptations. You'll see I made it with two layers, a plain white cotton lawn layer, and an over layer of this pretty material I had in my fabric box. I think it's probably polyester, but it was quite fine and see-through, hence the under-layer. I just cut them out together and treated them as one layer until it came to the bottom hem.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Sewing for Babies - Do New Grandchildren Make You Creative?

Well, in my case, yes! I probably hadn't had the sewing machine out more than a couple of times a year in the last ten years or so, but since my first granddaughter was born in October, I've dusted off the sewing machine I had for my 21st birthday, started sewing a few bits and pieces, and have now asked for (and received) a more modern and much lighter-weight machine for this birthday. And now my second daughter is also expecting her first baby, also a girl, in April.

So an excuse to start plotting baby girl outfits. The baby already with us will be going to visit her other grandparents in Mauritius in March, by which time she will be more than 5 months old. And it will be warm enough there for her to start needing summer dresses in advance of our summer. (Oh what fun!) By the time our own summer comes, in June / July, she will be 8 or 9 months and probably crawling, and the new baby will be 2-3 months. Just right for her first summer dresses, too!

I have now spent many happy hours shopping, either on-line, or at our local department shop and fabric store.  Here is my first haul, a combination of new purchases, and scraps of fabrics I already had. The joy of baby clothes is what tiny amounts you need. Look at the gorgeous colours. I chose fabrics that might combine together well, and found notions and motifs to blend in. They all got washed, to avoid later shrinkage, and check they were colour-fast (one wasn't) and were then ironed ready for use.

Well, this, my first post, will reflect on my limited physical output so far! Oh, I have laboured into the night scouring the internet for ideas and patterns, and did a lot of pondering about which of the fabrics would work best for which design. I laid out  materials in various combinations, with different trims or buttons. I've even had a sewing tutorial with Emma Nicholson (thank you Emma ) to show me how to use my new machine. I've practised button holes and shirring on scraps of material. But  - somehow I didn't have quite enough materials or motifs, so what I did next was  ---- buy even more fabric!

You can see the pile has got higher, without much coming out the bottom - but ha! Yes, there are finally signs of something happening - you can see a (not-quite-finished) baby girl dress beside the pile. More posts coming on how I made it. Don't you love the little rabbit?