KCW project #1: navy tunic with pockets


It’s Kid’s Clothes Week time again and project #1 is complete.  This is Pattern B, Dress with Square Neckline, from the book Happy Homemade: Sew Chic Kids.  I traced a size 4, shortened to be a size 6 equivalent tunic length.

Navy tunic + rabbits1

I have a couple Japanese sewing books that I’ve been too intimidated to try.  I figured this English-translation would be a good stepping stone.  Overall, I was pleased with the whole experience.  Tracing was a bit tedious as you have to hunt down the needed pieces and add seam allowance.  The directions are mostly picture-based and brief but I only had trouble with a few steps.  The binding on my back placket doesn’t lie flat and I couldn’t figure out the fancy button loop method described in the book.  So I just made the loops like an Oliver+S pattern.  Which was pretty much my entire approach: rely on my knowledge from other sewing patterns and use this book for the pattern pieces and order of assembly.

Navy tunic + rabbits1

I bought the main fabric a while ago from Dry Goods Design (maybe this?).  It is lovely and very forgiving with wonky topstitching.   I’m happy to have enough left over to make myself a bag someday.  The pockets, lining, and armhole facing are Bluebird Park Bunnies in Tangerine.  E fell in love with the fabric and kept asking me when I’d use it.  The pattern didn’t originally have pockets so I added them for a bit more color and rabbit fun.  I drafted the pattern inspired by these cute pockets here.  And then I stitched them to the back of the shirt instead of the front.  Oops.  But nothing that some seam ripping couldn’t fix.

Navy tunic + rabbits6I used french seams for the inside and decided to use covered buttons to keep the orange theme going:

Navy tunic + rabbits8I’ll definitely use this pattern book again.  It has 20 basic patterns in sizes 2-8.  I like almost all the patterns and there are patterns for girls and boys.  At less than a dollar a pattern, that’s a great deal.  As for the fit, I’m glad I added the length (and wish I’d added a bit more to get us through summer).  The bodice is a bit too wide and bunches, but better that than too small.

Navy tunic + rabbitscNavy tunic + rabbitsa

I’ve decided that the most challenging part of this Kid’s Clothes Week so far has been getting pictures taken.  Taking pictures in dark and rainy Seattle with a 3 year old who has far better things to do with her time has been a challenge.  It has involved funky lighting, umbrellas, and some jelly beans.  She does seem happy about the rabbits, though.

Navy tunic + rabbits2

Next up, some shirts, underwear, another Japanese pattern, and maybe something for O.  I’m having fun seeing all the other fun creations pop up.  How’s KCW going for you?

12 thoughts on “KCW project #1: navy tunic with pockets

  1. Beautiful! I love everything about it. I have that book too and a girls Japanese in English pattern book. I haven’t tried to make anything from them yet. I am not doing any kids sewing this week but I am enjoying seeing what everyone else is making.

    • Thanks Christine! The pattern in the book are basic but cute. The finishes don’t seem as nice as Oliver + S but they do seem to come together faster. My sewing this week is all about crossing things off my to-make list, especially things I cut out months ago. Happy knitting and cross stitching and bunny making!

  2. This is so sweet! Those pockets are great. I got that book for Christmas but haven’t been brave enough to try anything yet. I like your approach though, just use the pattern pieces and go from there. If only the pattern pieces came with seam allowances!

    • Thanks, Gail! I’ll be curious to see what you think of the book. The seam allowance thing is annoying and I’m still trying to figure out if there is some hidden benefit I’m missing. I did better tracing this time than my first attempt, but still forgot to leave enough space for adding the extra-long seam allowance on the hem. One nice thing is that the same pattern pieces seemed to be used in multiple patterns. Now I just need a better organizational system to keep track of all these pieces!

  3. Beautiful work! Those bunnies are so sweet. And I’m excited to see projects from this book. I’ve been lurking around the web, looking at these Japanese patterns for some time but have been too scared to try too. Thanks for taking the plunge – success!

    • Thanks, Inder. I’m glad I dove in and gave this book a try. There look to be some especially nice patterns for summer- easy tops and shorts. Eventually I’m hoping to be brave enough to try the non-translated Japanese pattern books. So far I’ve just spent a lot of time examining the pictures!

    • Thanks- I’d love to see your versions! It’s got a lot of simple patterns with some nice details. Good for both boys and girls, although I guess too big for Maggie still.

    • Oh, I’m excited to see Tia’s dress! Those frills look so sweet. Reminds me of the geranium pattern. Maybe I’ll make that version in the summer- I bet most of the pattern pieces are the same. And less tracing is always welcome 🙂

  4. Pingback: Happy Homemade : pull-over parka sew-along | lizzieville

  5. Pingback: Happy Homemade : pull-over parka | lizzieville

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