Tag Archives: sewing for boys

Batman shorts

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The final project from KCW is some shorts for lil’ E, they are basically the same pattern I drafted for the racer shorts except they are sewn up as a regular pair of shorts. Admittingly they turned out a wee bit long, but E has been hungry every 12 minutes for about a week now so I’m sure there is a growth spurt on the way.
lemons are for licking

The fabric was gifted to me years ago, I totally forgot about it. The print is just perfect for E as he love love loves Batman!! (he still wears the Batman shirt we freezer stenciled 2 yrs ago on a weekly basis.) Its a interlock knit so fantastic to work with and extra comfortable for the active boy.

lemons are for licking

 

I did my favorite waistband on them, using a ribbed knit and draw string. If you look in my sewing frenzy the holes for the drawstring were put in the back of the waist lol. I’ll be replacing the string with elastic to correct that, it will make it easier for dressing with elastic anyway. The bottom hem has a bias taped finish. For the pocket I used the same purple ribbing, trimmed in bias tape to stabilize the stretchiness.

 

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This is the last post of what was sewn up for KCW, both boys got a new shirt and new shorts, pretty good for just 1 hour a day at the machine. I do want to try to continue the dedication to sewing. I want to hit the machine for an hour a week over the summer. Not sure if it will happen but I’m going to try ūüôā

 

 

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Racer Shorts

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Racer Shorts

Yes this is another KCW post ūüôā

One of the projects was racer shorts for Mr. K. the inspiration comes from Made, and Dana’s tutorial on new school takes¬†on¬†racer shorts form the 70’s. I had planned to whip up more than 1 pair of these….however one pair¬†with this material was quite enough!

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The material was a nightmare ! I picked it up in a discount bin, its a athlenctic type knit. Its such a shame really that it is a grumpy material to work with, because its a bright happy blue, really light weight and so it will be comfortable to wear  Its the kind of knit that just skips stitches like crazy,

I stated with a zig-zag…no luck…and then went to my stretch stitches, well my thread kept breaking ! So I switched over to the¬†¬†serger. It was still a pain ūüė¶ ¬† the overlock part was fine, but the main seam needle thread kept breaking. Ugg !

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¬†The saving grace on them was the bias tape that makes them a racer short. It totally stabilized the fabric so its the one part of the project that wasn’t at all frustrating. The detail it adds is nice, Mr. K got to choose the colour. And bonus not hemming ūüėÄ ¬†I’m already looking at the fabric stash and trying to decide what to make into more bias tape so that I can make more racer shorts.

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I will mention and let you all see the horror of the waistband, and what I tried there. E has a pair of swim trunks that have a boxer like waist with 3 seams all gathered. I attempted it even though I knew the fabric was horrid to sew (stubborn when I get a design idea i guess.) It looks pretty ruff !

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Good news is they stay up on his trim waistline and he has been wearing them all week.

PS: just realized I forgot to say the pattern is self drafted from a pair of his shorts

Mis-Matched Reglans

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Mis-Matched Reglans

I didn’t make time to blog about the projects I managed to finish during KCW, so I’ll try my best to roll them out quickly now that we have reached day 7. Starting with…….

Mis-Matched Reglan T’s

lemons are for licking

Some of you might be saying “what is mis-matching?” Its what I call it when you make outfits that go together but don’t totally match, by changing up the trim like here or having a theme fabric like these ones here and here. I absolutely love doing it and think it looks so cute ! (I will even admit it makes me smile when folding their laundry – weird I know.)

lemons are for licking

Following the KCW theme of travel, I pulled some jersey knit from the stash that has little cars on it. The accent fabric is up-cycled T’s, so I was able to utilize a few existing hems.

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The pattern is Field Trip Cargo Pants¬†and Reglan Shirt from Oliver and S. It was in size 18m-4T, so I did have to adjust it to fit my now larger boys (and realized how long I’ve been doing this sewing thing). The adjustments where easy ones just a 1\4 inch on the fold of the shirt pieces, and adding length to the bottom.

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I had some major frustration with the neckline on the red shirt. The cute car fabric has minimal stretch for a knit, so even though¬†the pattern piece had been adjusted for the added width, I didn’t compensate for the difference in¬†stretch that ribbing would have had. I ripped the neckline out twice trying to get it to strech around evenly, then tried re-cutting a new piece. When that didn’t work I gave up on perfect. I ripped out a few inches the third time and cut the neckband to¬†add what was needed. So there are 2 seams in the neckband and one of them is on the side not the back. Oh well embrace imperfection and move on because the boy wearing clearly loves it !

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The sleeve length turned out good, I was going for a 3\4 but am happy with how they look on the boys sitting just at elbow length.lemons are for licking

The best feature according to E is the pockets and what he can hold in them.

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They had so much fun taking these photos. I usually have to bribe them and struggle. I guess it helps that they were aloud to climb all over their sisters truck ūüėõ

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Mr.K was full of ideas and came up with the Run DMC style pose ūüôā and lil’ E was all about what he could put in his pocket. There are so many cute photos from my usually camera shy boys I might just do a photo- shoot post.

PS: yes those are also new shorts from KCW more posts coming on those soon, and you can check out all the fun of KCW by clicking the button below
kid's clothes week

A Golden Pick-Axe

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A Golden Pick-Axe

lemons are for licking

My little E is possibly more obsessed than his brother with mine craft. He plays “pretend MineCraft” on a daily basis assigning diamond armor and golden pick-axes to me as we walk threw our day. While I was sewing up K’s Creeper Shorts, E started telling me what he wanted on his. A golden pick-ax

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The pattern again is clean slate pants by blank slate patterns. For E’s shorts I used a straight up size 5 in width and length, sewn up with the front pocket option.¬†The size¬†fits him well. The material is from the stash again, its actually the accent material from K’s MindCraft shorts. The little square pattern works so well in this¬†theme. ¬†The applique material is jersey knit from the stash, its actually queen size jersey knit sheets I grabbed from Jysk on clearance.

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Jersey knit posses some¬†challenges when using it as an applique, its too bad I didn’t have any suitable fabric in anything other than this oober stretchy knit. ¬†(You can read my applique tips in the previous post here,) the biggest issue is usually warping of fabric, and jersey makes that trickier because it is so stretchy. To help with this I used fusible interfacing on the main brown fabric to make it ¬†hold its shape better. I added it before cutting out the ax, and in hind sight I should have for the light brown too, with all those tight snips. But at the time I was worried it would make the entire thing too bulky and thick.

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The whole thing ended up being bigger than first imagined, because the pick-ax is designed on an angle, in order to cut it all out and make it sew-able I had to increase the size. It was a tricky one too, and I’m a bit unsatisfied with it.

lemons are for licking

golden pick ax

I mean its totally recognizable and cute, but its a bit warped and sloppy looking. Part of he problem was that it is designed on the angle and I didn’t think about that until cutting out the light brown. I ¬†had to add a bit of¬†overlap¬† or end up with 9 light brown squares. The on the fly cutting did not turn out well ūüė¶ and the sewing together compounded it … so the middle is pretty warped.

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see it the flap is not over the zipper

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so i sort of fixed it

 

 

 

There is one other error on this project and its the zipper fly. This is only my second fly so I’m not too sure what happened. There is no real flap over the zipper. I must have mis-aligned something, even though I was following the tutorial I managed to goof. But hey its all apart of learning new stuff right !? ¬†I fixed it by messing with the waist a bit manipulating the fabric so that it had a bit of a pleat thing, that could sort of pass as a regular fly (couldn’t explain it if I tried)

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No one will notice that zipper anyway, everyone will be checking out the fabulous top stitching in golden thread 

And you all know what matters most ! That the boy will not take them off ! He is so excited and loves them so much.

lemons are for licking

Minecrafting

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Minecrafting

Are your kids obsessed with Minecraft?

lemons are for lickingMine are !

So naturally when thinking of summer projects for them I wanted to theme everything around those blocky characters. I had a total blast doing it too. I used appliques and some painting on this project. I love the look of appliques so will give you a lot of tips in this post.

lemons are for licking

I used the Clean Slate Pants pattern from Blank Slate, size 6 in width and 8 in length, as K is tall and slim.¬† I’ve used this pattern before and it has become a go-to for me with kid pants. It you haven’t ever used one of Melly’s patterns and are on the fence, jump off and grab one. Her instructions are great! I have reached new skills as a sewer by using them. And this is my first time doing a FLY !!! Her step by step instructions and photos made it easy !

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my first working zip fly yay!

The fabrics are all from the stash, and so old I can’t remember where from (yay me getting through the stash.) The blue cord has been used before on¬†capries for E, and the accent material was originally bought to make scrubs (never happened) but doesn’t it have the best little block pattern for minecraft themed projects ūüôā

The inspiration¬†for the pants came from a google search of minecraft¬†images, I knew I wanted¬†to applique¬†but wasn’t sure what¬†might work for¬†my oldest K. He is getting a bit more particular¬†in his tastes.¬†Then I ¬†found this little gem and it all took off . I loved the idea of him peeking through.

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The creation of the applique took a few steps. First was creating¬†the Creeper, I¬†masked off a checker type grid with some tape and randomly painted the squares. Once the first pass was dry, I did a second sloppy grid so the that it wasn’t a checkerboard pattern but really random looking like in the game. I used the 2 shades of green and the white mixing them together for more randomness. Yes I did get totally OCD on the Creeper lol.

lemons are for licking

¬†Making the cut out was easier than you would think. Everything is so square it was just a matter of measuring out a grid pattern and cutting strait. I mapped it out on paper then simply used¬†the template as a guide to cut the pants. If you do something like this¬†I highly¬†recommend¬†double checking your design as you go.¬†Make sure¬†that its looking the way you want, because we all know you can’t uncut something.lemons are for lickingmccreep3

Now lets take a minute to talk about applique, it’s a¬†great quick way to make a garment totally custom.¬†The key to it looking awesome is¬†nice neat straight¬†lines and no warping or shifting of the cloth as you sew¬†it on. ¬†The tricky part is that if you have a major error your mucked up a mostly finished piece. So here are my tips…

  • try to match fabric as best you can in weight and type¬†–¬†this is not always possible but if you can it makes thing easier
  • woven non stretch¬†fabric is way easier than knits, you can still use knits and I do lots, just go slow and easy
  • speedy sewing will warp a knit applique
  • base/sew your applique¬†in place in stead of pinning, you can either rip out the stitches after or zig-zag right over them
  • OR use an iron on adhesive to hold your applique¬†in place –¬†great choice for thin rolly¬†knits
  • on your corners don’t do a traditional needle in fabric turn, take your needle right up and manually line up your fabric to get a crisp corner
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ssssssssssssssssss

 

So for my creeper I based him in place, the green knit was quite heavy so slow and steady = no major warping. I also sewed all the way around my brick cut out. The two woven probably could have been done without any shifting or weirdness but why take the chance. I also have to show you all how close I came to running out of thread while working around the cut out.

Lemons are for licking

eeeks look at that thread !

At the request of K a¬†Enderman¬†was added as a back pocket.¬†I happen to also have purple cord scraps around to use for the eyes. You can see here the quick zig-zag used to hold the eyes in place. The pocket is actually attached like the appliques, because the black material is a really heavy knit sweatshirt material so ironing and folding the corners in would’ve created way too much bulk.

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When you put it all together it looks like this.

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With a Creeper creeping around in front¬†… and an Enderman on the back

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Some functional side pockets and a happy small man who will pause his video game for a quick a photo shoot !

lemons are for licking

cute little turtle pants

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These cute little pants were started as part of Kids cloths week, and were almost completed. All that was left was the pant leg hem and the front snap. And I procrastinated about a month. This pair is for my youngest E. I wanted to use up some of this great seersucker fabric I bought way back when both boys were smaller. Its so cute with stripes and little turtles. The fabric seems a bit too baby sweet for my big kindergarten boy. But little E can still pull it off. The seersucker is also nice and light, perfect to take him threw spring and and into summer.

Eturtle

The pattern was clean slate pants from blank slate patterns. Melly’s patterns are just great, I find it really easy to size both my kids with her patterns. I cannot remember what size I did these in…..oh well it matched his measurements what ever it was. There was some on the fly inspiration while sewing them up. Most likely due to all the KCW posts and shares going on. I decided to add a pull tie on the leg so the pants can become capri pants.

rolled down

rolled down

rolled up

rolled up

In thought this was pretty simple, as I’ve done it to a shirt before. I did run into a few snaggs.

I did all the work for the gathering pulls before I sewed up the inseam to the pants. Good idea right, strait lines no fighting with pant leg, wiggling it onto the machine. You get the idea.

I made the ties out of scrap. And attached a rectangle scrap to the inside of the pant  leg as a casing for the tie.

ETgather3See nice strait easy sewing. What I didn’t consider was hemming. And that is why these cute little turtle pants sat on the sewing desk for a month or so. My cool idea made serging and hemming the cuff kinda yukky. the tie casing was right in the way.¬† What I ended up doing was just serging the pant legs and not hemming at all. It felt like way too much work to move the casing or even shortening it. So next time I do this I’ll move the casing up, so that it ends an inch or so above where the hem will be, instead of right at the hem line.

ETgather2And the truth is there are a few more sewing errors in these pants. Did you notice that the turtles are upside down, on the front and not on the back, yep I messed up when cutting out my pieces. I chose not to worry about it ūüėÄ

The other alteration I did was to put in an adjustable waistband. If you have never tried this do it ! you can buy the button hole elastic everywhere. it makes flat front pants so easy to fit. I use my button hole foot on my machine for the hole in the waistband, and hand sew the button on.

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So there they are the cutest little turtle pants, mishaps and all.

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"mom is my face in there?"

“mom is my face in there?”

 

 

 

 

 

KCWC day 6 skater shorts

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hellooo,

All of the sewing today (day 6) has been on a different project than the one I am chronicling here. I finished these last night, and am so pleased with the way they turned out. Can’t hardly believe I started them last summer, but that my friends is the truth. The poor project got tossed aside in moving frenzies. Forgotten. Until last week when I was combing through my fabric stash on day 2 of KCW. I got ridiculously excited I remembered them and crossed my fingers that they would still fit at least one of my boys.

The pattern is blank slate pants. Which is just an awesome pattern that everyone should have in their arsenal (more on that later.)   It features some amazingly cute details that I never thought I could pull off. Such as welt pockets ! check them out !

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Now, I use very little patterns in my sewing. Why you ask? Well I have bought traditional patterns for work scrubs and sweaters for myself in the past; long before this blog. And the results we often ill fitting (usually way to big then my attempt to fix them would make it weirder so I was basically wasting my time and $$) or there were instructions and pieces that I just couldn’t figure out. So I’d get all frustrated and give up ūüėõ

Sewing blogs taught me how to copy cloths for my kids from their existing wardrobe. The results were sometimes odd but the material was free old t-shirts and the time spent was small. As my skills have increased I recently dived into patterns again but this time from trusted bloggers that have been teaching me over the past few years through their awesome tutorials.  Blank Slate Patterns are fantastic ! Easy to follow picture instructions laid out just like a tutorial.

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So I want to give a big shout out to Melissa from Melly Sews, Melissa is a madly talented seamstress and this pattern is great ! Lots of optional detail, and her fit charts are always my favorite. I can fit my lean boys easily in waist and length, totally customizable size wise.

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I made a size 5 to fit my slim Mr. K in the waist and went with a 7 in the length for a board short look.¬† I totally feel like a sewing rock star because I made ‘ welt pockets’ for the first time !¬† And how cute they look on this little guy’s shorts. The teen daughter was even impressed and said I should make a matching pair for lil’ E, which I may cuz i love matching them up.

I chose to do a mock fly with snap in place of a button. Brave enough for pockets but not for a zippered fly yet.

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The length did work out ok even this a winter of growth spurting between the start and the finish. I do tend to cut things long by a few inches whenever I make something, and it worked to my advantage, even rolled they are an ok length. I do think they are so cute, the fabric is this crazy woven stuff I picked up with scrubs in mind. They checks give a nice subtle sophistication. We could almost pretend its suiting material.

some serious pouting going on

some serious pouting going on

So far K hates these pants, he believes that it is to early for shorts. It took much convincing to get him to wear them for hem placement fitting. And almost a melt down to get him out in the april sunshine for a few photos. Hopefully he will like them by the end of may.

 

 

Cargo Pants

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New pants for K !

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yes he is wearing a pajama shirt, we had lots of jammie days over christmas

Its really about time the boy has just been growing faster than my sewing can keep up. So all the poor boy has been sporting is store made jeans although cute as all get out, not that comfy for a growing busy boy. Every one needs comfy pants to run and climb in.

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I used the Cargo pants pattern from Oliver and S. This is the second pair of pants I’ve made with the pattern (check out the first one here,) I adjusted the fit a bit as K is so tall. He is actually taller than the pants pattern but still on the chart for waist. So I added length to the pants at the tops and bottoms of the light brown pieces, hoping that the knee patches would fall in the right place. They came out a bit longer than needed.¬† I’ve decided not to hem them shorter because I’m sure he will grow again in the next 4 days lol

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What does drive me a bit nuts is the rise seems a bit too long, you can really tell in this photo. I don’t remember that from the other pair I made, its kinda weird. Also that like every thing the boy wears, except for extreme skinny jeans, his new cargoes fit baggy and wide. Since his waist measurement fit with the pattern I didn’t adjust for his slightness. Next time I will. After cropping the photos today I started thinking that I should re- sew the waist. Bringing the waist a bit lower might improve the fit correcting the length and possibly helping him fill in some of the bagginess…? I’ll let ya know if I do.

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The fabric is all from the stash, I’ve used the light brown interlock knit in a few other projects and actually forgot where I got it. I’m almost positive it was a remnant of some kind. The black is left over hoodie that was first up-cycled as part of the great Green Lantern Hoodie. Because of the weight of the fabric I omitted the flap on the cargo pocket. I also hid some cute little race cars in the pocket lining. Also to K’s great delight I used his favorite thread its a variegated blue green metallic.

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All in all I like the pants and how they turned out. He finds them comfortable and they look cute.  And great for silly dancing !

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Green Lanturn hoodie

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Since I haven’t been at the machine in weeks and it looks like more weeks will pass before I sew anything, I thought I would post an old project. Now it was blogged on a previous site¬† (i changed the name of my blog in Jan) but better a re-do than a no post.

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I made this hoodie for K last fall, and he was all excited to wear it to school this past week.¬† I love when the littles enjoy there home made designs.¬† I’m also gonna post this in the sew geeky pool too. if you don’t know what that is please go check it out its so awesome. I am a geek who sews and just love this series by Max California and Sew Chibi.

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The fabric is all up-cycled hoodies and T-shirts. It was my first attempt at a jacket so naturally I added the complexity of lining it. If ya look close you can see the imperfections. BUT Mr. K loves it ! Who wouldn’t love a Green Lantern Hoddie. It’s based on this Green Lantern costume from the newer Justice League. Which was a bigger decision than you may realize. He has had many costume variations over the years.

Green-Lantern-Justice-League-New-52-action-figure

The pattern was some old 80’s pattern¬† inherited from a somewhere. I’ll never use a kids pattern from the 80’s again working the fit was yukki, it was so big and baggy in ways I’m not used to. So save yourself the trouble and just use an awesome blogger’s pattern !

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I do confess it became a bit of a me against the garment kinda roller coaster project. Sew feel great…try on have it be too big, feel sad…. rework fit….rip out again….sew feel great….add zipper ….hate zipper…mess with lining….question why I sew… see progres….feel encouraged….

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The applicae was hard. I was really worried about it matching up right so I did it after the zipper. Not sure if that was a good idea, working close into the zipper was tricky. It does line up nicely. At the end of it all I got a complement from my lovely teen “Its nice Mom, you can tell its homemade, but it looks home made in a good way.”

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I learned a tone from this project and again K loves it. which is the point of it all right. Cool custom stuff that they love and will wear. The lining makes the jacket stretch from fall into winter here on the rainy west coast so it has seen a tone of wear over the past year and is still in one piece.