8.20.2010

Making your own Patterns with No Big Dill

I am jumping out of my seat with excitement to introduce you to my guest today.   You know every once and a while when you find a blog that you become so attached to you have to read the entire thing?  No big dill, LOL, seirously though, No Big Dill is her blog name.  Cute right?  She is an awe striking mother of 5 girls!
See that little one in front with all the ruffles.  That little dress was when I officially fell in love with Katy and her amazing skills.  And that's not the only outfit she made in the photo! Can you believe she got them all to stand still long enough to show all her work off.
It's the kind of family portrait we all wish for, but personally, this one stole my heart.
All the photos of Katy and her family are from her blog using the same techniques she is going to tell you about today on altering patterns.  You can see that post, and check out all those handmade outfits up close and personal, here.  But today, she's here! And she has some great tips and amazing photos (as always) so please welcome her!

Thank you for the invitation to be here today! MaryJanes and Galoshes always has something enthralling posted, so I was flattered to be asked to guest post.

Several years ago, someone who knew I sewed for my girls asked if I made my own patterns. I guffawed that she thought I was able to do such a thing! But, as my confidence in my sewing abilities grew over time, I am now to the point where many of the clothing items I sew are my own designs. To get to this point, I started by making simple alterations to existing patterns, which is what I'm going to show today.
A two-in-one: Pattern alteration and Fisherboy Shorts!

Children's commercial patterns often turn out too "billowy" for my taste, but instead of fighting it, I thought I would use it to my advantage. What you need:


Freezer Paper
Child's Shorts pattern (Simplicity 2627 is an example)
1/2 yard fabric (plus scraps of another color)
2 buttons (optional)
1/2 yard 3/4" elastic

I don't usually cut out individual sizes so I can use it multiple times as my girls grow. Trace the size you are going to use (I show size 4) and extend the hem 3-4" down the side seam, and extend the inside seam straight down, starting from the top corner, instead of tapering in. The amount you add will depend on the height of your child, so hold up the pattern piece where it is marked "waistline" to your child's waist. Keep in mind that we'll be adding another 1" of contrasting band.
Sew, clip and zig-zag or overstitch (serge) the center front seam and center back seam, right sides together.

Open each piece and with right sides together, stitch inner seam and side seams, clip and zig-zag or overstitch (serge).

Fold waist down 1 1/2" and press. Open and fold very edge under 1/4". Fold down again and edgestitch (1/8") all the way around. Stitch again along the inside of the casing, leaving 2" open in the back. I like to stitch my casings twice, as they seem more finished and structured than a single stitch. For proper length of elastic, fit it around your child, making it slightly smaller than their waist. Thread elastic through casing, overlap ends 1/4" and zig-zag stitch together.

For the contrasting band, cut 2 rectangles: 11" X 3". (I used these same dimensions for both a size 4 and size 2, but again, measure your child to make sure it is the right size). Fold in half lengthwise and press. Open and fold one side down 1/4", press.
Baste 2 rows of stitches 1/8" inside and another 1/8" away from first stitching line leaving the threads long around the leg opening, starting and stopping at the inner seam.
Fold each band in half, with right sides together and stitch 1/4" leaving the top edge folded down. Press seam open, turn right side out. Turn shorts inside out and place the non-folded edge of the band inside and along the leg opening. Line up band seam with inside leg seam and pin. Find center of band and pin to outer seam of shorts.


Gather edge of shorts by pulling on two thread ends until the band and shorts are the same length. Wrap your threads in a figure 8 around the pin to secure. Spread the gathered fabric evenly. Repeat on the other side of the leg and stitch 1/4" around the leg opening. Repeat process on other leg.

Fold band along the pressed fold and pin in place. Edgestitch on each side of band (stitching 1/8" in from each side). Add buttons to outer seam if desired, which, really, why wouldn't it be?

Even if you don't have fancy labels of your own, I like to put a bow or a small piece of ribbon in the back to let my little one know which way is the front and back. Tuck the ribbon inside casing and stitch to close and secure. Finished! Time to go fishing!



Enjoy!



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14 comments:

  1. Those little shorts are so cute!! Ok, I have got to make my daughter a pair now!

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  2. those pants are so lovely! I need to make some as well

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  3. Lovely! Great figure eight tip too. :)

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  4. will be making these tonight! thanks so much...LOVE no big dill!

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  5. Isn't Katy amazing?! I've been following her blog for awhile now and LOVE everything about it. Especially the pictures. I'm amazed at her skills. Thanks for featuring her.

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  6. Amazing! I got sewing lessons for my birthday & once I feel safe I am going to make some of these;) Thanks for the post!

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  7. Those photos truly made me smile. You can just see that they are a loving family just by looking at them...how cute are those girls!!!!!!

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  8. wow! super cute! great idea!

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  9. Oh these are adorable! you are soo talented!

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  10. ooh..these look so fun.
    I featured the tutorial here:
    http://sewprettysewfree.blogspot.com/2013/02/sewing-shorts-for-boys.html

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