My oldest granddaughter Scarlett turned 8 over the weekend. She loves clothes and her mom, my daughter, said she wanted cardigans.
So I made her two from some Jalie patterns I have used to make adult garments. I used her body measurements picked a size and added about an inch in length because she is a member of this family and therefore tall.
The one thing I have learned about sewing for children is just how important feel is. The fabric has to be soft or at least cozy or they won't wear it. It is interesting to me that adults try to numb the tactile sense but in the end pick favourite clothes the same way - for how they feel on us.
Raise your hand if your go-to clothes are soft, or breathable, or somehow just comfy?
Interesting how despite this we shop for fabric by colour or if it matches what the pattern calls for not body feel. Worth turning this thought over in our heads I think.
Back on topic.
The first cardigan I made was the Cocoon cardigan
This is a wrap yourself up in it cardigan without any closures. I made it in some nice fleece that was very soft, like Minky, on both sides.
Here it is on the birthday girl:
I triple needle cover hemmed around the band/hem with the looper side out after I had serged the band on with my new Juki cover stitch machine (BTW I highly, highly recommend Sew/Sewing & Embroidery Warehouse in Winnipeg if you are looking for a serious real deal on a Juki machine- no affiliate link BTW just another one of my own bossy opinions of which I have many, all of them my own).
I felt very proud of myself for how RTW the cover hemming looked.
This was a house type cardigan and for going out to school etc. I made a second cardigan that was quite different. I used a stretch cotton knit velvet to make this one from Helene cardigan pattern in a knit Scarlett had been eyeing the last time we went fabric shopping together. The Helene has notoriously narrow sleeves from the elbow to the wrist but because Scarlett is skinny and the fabric so stretchy I didn't change the pattern for her. However note that when I make one of these for myself I always add to the sleeve width from the midpoint down- about an extra inch by the time the sleeve makes it to the wrist.
Again I also added an inch to the length:
Oh to be eight and so excited at a family dinner birthday party!
And how nice to have an eight-year-old in my life.
Scarlett's sister Heidi has her birthday in two weeks and I will be making at least one similar cardigan for her and another top, customized to her lifestyle. When these pictures were taken Heidi was out the back with her uncle shooting beer cans off a fence with nerf gun, she's less the flower crown type, so I am going to have to come up with some patterns that reflect her feisty little personality.
And I am going to be making some replacement pyjama bottoms for their little brother Billy since he apparently cut diamond shapes into the last ones I made up with some scissors.
Always something interesting going on around here. Just another one of your picture perfect blog families of course, but they are mine and I love real sewing for their real lives.
- I am a mother, a grandmother, and a teacher. But whatever happens in my life, I keep sewing. I have worked as a political communicator and now as a teacher in my formal life. I have also written extensively on sewing. I have been a frequent contributor and contributing editor of Threads magazine and the Australian magazine Dressmaking with Stitches. My book Sew.. the garment-making book of knowledge was published in May 2018 and is available for pre-order from Amazon