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Week 10 Toddler Pinafore 

Keeping it simple this week. I’ve just spent a few days finishing a Uni assignment on a particularly difficult topic plus there has been loads going on at home, so, here is something I did outside of my head.

It’s part of an idea I had for what to dress bub in overnight while we are camping as she WILL NOT stay under the covers and I have no idea what the weather will be on the East Coast in September.

I wanted it to be layers and comfortable and warm without screaming “I’m pyjamas” and something she can keep wearing as she gets bigger.

Quite a bit of thought and research went into this over the last few weeks.

I started trying to find out the best kind of camp blanket for warmth. It’s woollen, of course. But I have not the time nor the money to knit her a completely woollen outfit. Plus the itch factor of most wool fabrics ruled that out.

Next on the list was fleece (or as I know it polar fleece).

This was kind of perfect.

I think polar fleece is made out if recycled plastic- so that’s a bonus (And I’m not ready to be disabused of that notion yet, thank you, I can’t afford to be right now)

 In addition part of a bundle of second hand clothes we received recently was a fleece Kathmandu jacket for bub in a beautiful teal green.

So with that in mind as a top layer, and a simple cheap cotton onesie and the bottom layer, the middle two are going to be this pinafore and a pair of loose pants.

I ordered the fabric in a Lincraft sale two weeks ago and got beautiful microfleece for $4 a meter. 

I was going to wait for all the fabric to arrive but the navy blue was sitting there all washed and ready and I really needed to do something other than uni work so here we are.

I based it roughly on this pin, which is a so simple, pretty toddler/little girls dress.

Click for link

But my printer wouldn’t print the pattern so I traced one of her old pinafores on to baking paper 

*NB making an actual pattern is highly recommend – the finished product is so much better plus I felt like I was doing it ‘properly’

I hope you can see the pencil- one line was for front, the other for the back

So, I traced and cut and pinned and even stay stay stitched, then zig zagged over the top so it all looked right.

I also hemmed around the neck and arm holes and did a bit of notched cutting (look at fourth image from last to see what i mean)(Oh yes, I have all the lingo down now)

I then used the buttonhole attachment on my sewing machine (which I adore). Every other buttonhole I’ve done has been by hand. Pah! say I to buttonholes taking an hour. Mine took about twenty minutes all up. 

In addition I worked out this rather cool way of keeping buttons handy while you are sewing them on – 

so they don’t wander off and disappear in your sewing table-which I’m sure looks just like mine…doesnt it?

Anyway there you go. Part one of bub sleep system done.

Not that she’d try it on for photos, so you’ll have to make do with regulation “on a white surface” ones.

Parts I’m most proud of? The strap ends and buttons. Also the idea of the drawstring so it won’t ride up. I’m going to put them in the pant cuffs too. That way they can be loose comfy daywear or snuggly nightwear that keeps out cold air.

There will definately be more pictures when I do the pants. 

In the meantime I’m just proud I made something properly- I even changed the bobbin thread.

NB Please excuse the slightly formal academic language- think I’m still in assignment mode.

Just quickly, because I took about forty five minuites to get right-ish, I also wore my first Sari this week thanks to this pin. What do you think?

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The promised next post…and the Frank #upcycled onesie nightdress or larger onesie

After some thought last night & some doing today I’d really like to give the other parts of baby relaxation a longer chance to work- so that’s what I’m going to do & I’ll write about it next week.

In Life Beyond Pintrest if you have a baby who has outgrown two long legged jumpsuits but you’d like them to keep wearing them because they are cute/warm/have loads of wear in them/ good grief I’m not paying that for a warm nightie/pjs for an infant. You could do what I did today and sort of mash up the idea of making a denim skirt from jeans (that I remember reading in ‘Dolly’ when I was, oh, 14?) and create this :

The Frank Nightie or Onesie

 (Frank for Frankenstiens monster- get it? Ba-doom-chh)


 I’ve never written a tutorial before but I’ve  done this twice now & bub loves them &I’m always up for an upcycle so I thought I’d give it a go for other cash strapped parents out there.  

Both times The onesies have been knit fabric. This time definitely turned out better than the first. 

So keep all seams facing inward (boho style doesn’t work here), hem any rough edges in a straight stitch & do all the little bits first.

So- 

1.Put one onesie on top of the other ( choose the one you love most  for the main fabric -onesie 1 in this tute). Pin.

2. Cut where you want the bodice to end on onesie 1 through both onesies. Unpin.

3. Cut onesie 2 just above the crotch press studs (Or as long a piece as you want for the middle) you’ll end up with a knit tube.

4. Look at the sleeves of onesie 1- if they need lengthening slit a small way up the sleeve along the hem. Place this sleeve on onesie 2 sleeve at a point where you will have enough length with added sleeve coming from top of slit.

5. Cut press studs off onesie 1s legs. Using left over leg fabric fill in the gaps  (this is where jeans-to-skirt comes in useful) pin. Sew- straight stitch. Check. Sew again zig zag. Cut off excess fabric.

6. Hem the edges of the arm slits

7. Pin sleeves together – if you are clever you’ll be able to do the sleeve 2 inside sleeve 1 trick. 😊 I wasn’t and had to unpick. Put the sleeve from onesie 2 inside 1, seam towards the middle (Or to normal people not inside out). Line up the end of the sleeve with the top of the slit and pin. Sew.

8. Pin the big band you cut in step 3 to onesie 1 top part in the same way as you did the sleeves. Hem. Repeat with skirt.

9. There you go- a Frank Nightie. (Of course also iron all seams. If you own an iron)

(If you want to keep it a jumpsuit repeat the steps you did to get the “body tube” on each arm and leg. The sewing works the same way as the body portion in the above tutorial. The main thing to watch out for is the press studs and placement thereof but if I can do it- anyone can. See images- hopefully they’ll help)

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