Erin is the last one left of this lovely group of contributors this season. She blogs at Our Family Four and sews for an adorable little girl and boy. Erin has made some seriously fabulous clothes for KCW. She has participated in the last 3 and I have to say she’s built up quite a portfolio 😉 There is no better person to tell you about all the lovely sewing details that take a garment to the next level.
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Hello KCW-ers! I’m Erin from Our Family Four and I’m so excited to be able to share with you for the Spring Kid’s Clothes Week! My sewing machine is giddy with anticipation as is my seam ripper. Let the games begin!
Sometimes I find myself sitting on my living room floor with fabric fanned out around me and a small stack of possible patterns by my side, completely unable to decide which direction to go. I have found that deliberately stopping myself and deciding what it is that will make this garment special can help me to finalize the design in my mind, and after that matching up fabric to a pattern comes pretty quickly. Sometimes it’s the details that make it.
Here are a few spring-y details that jumped out at me and can be integrated into a pattern or two that you already have to put a Spring 2014 twist on it!
I think we can all agree that we love a peplum and the top two garments put a slight twist on the trend. The addition of an open peplum skirt to that gray dress took it from a comfy jersey dress-look, to the dress worn by the coolest little chick on the block. I adore the voluminousness of the button up top. I never would have thought to add a thick ruffly skirt to such a wide top, but the effect is darling.
I love how ruffles are no longer contained to the hem of a skirt. The addition of ruffled panel on the bodice on the left and a raised ruffle along the neckline on the right are the types of details that made you take notice of these tops, and I can only imagine how gorgeous they would be on a little lady.
The more that I sew the more I realize that it’s attention to these types of details that can take a little girl’s garment to the next level: collars, trims, volume, and perfectly placed pleats and gathers. Here are a few examples of those things that are just right.
A big bow and a beautiful sleeve on the swingy dress on the left make you stop and take notice. The carmel trim around the sleeve, neckline, and hemline on the middle dress are just so classy and delicious. Peter pan collars are still an instant happy-maker on a little (or big) girl’s neckline, and I’m loving how they are trending away from a classic white, although I do love a classic white collar. But seriously, how amazing is that jeweled golden collar on those baby rompers?
We can’t ignore the fact that this year’s Kids Clothes Week falls the week before Easter, and I can’t help but wonder how many of us will be sewing up some things for our little darlings to wear as their Sunday best. But even if you aren’t sewing Sunday morning wear, will the pull to add a little bunny to your garment be more than you can take? Are we over the fox yet? Is there a new animal in town? Only time will tell. But here are a few cute ways to add bunny without it turning into a Ralphie’s Christmas morning pajamas situation. Unless you’re into that, and that’s fine too.
As for the little boys there are so many trends right now that make them look like such little dudes! Am I right? These Urban Outfitters-esq t-shirts can be a welcomed change from the cartoonish graphics that are popular in so many stores right now. The great news for a DIY/sewing momma is that we have a little trick up our sleeves that can help us to get the same thing with much less cash: freezer paper stenciling. It can be such a (relatively) painless way to kick your standard knitwear up a notch, and you can personalize it to a fad that your kid adores or a phrase that will make you laugh. It’s perfect.
If you are going in a different direction for your little guy than the t-shirt, then I think Brooke was right when she said that there seems to be a heavy nautical theme this year. (Perhaps nautical is the boys version of girls always having a floral theme in the spring?) But the more I looked around I just kept seeing bold color on bold color on bold color for the little boys. Steer clear of your usual navy or gray cuffs and necklines, and see where else you can introduce color, color blocking, or bright stripes.
If you are looking at a less casual option, the blazer seems to be the little boy no-brainer. But there are always ways to add some fun details and ensure the “this isn’t your daddy’s blazer” sort of look. You could use a less traditional material, like the knit version on the left. Also, there is the mandatory addition of elbow patches that seems to be obvious. Whether it’s with a contrasting fabric or the same fabric, this is the type of detail that matters. Plus, you can pair the colorful nautical combinations with a casual blazer and it looks amazing. Little boys can pull anything off, they’re just so cool…
Will you be using any of these details in your sewing this spring? What are some of your favorite details to add to a garment to give it that wow factor? I’d love to hear them!