My next sewing project was the Spencer kjole, a simple pinafore dress. I used a Liberty print corduroy from Truro fabrics ( Kingly Cord -Lauren in pink multi, £15.00 per metre), the pinafore took less than half a metre of fabric. The Kingly cord is very soft and fine wale making it ideal for baby clothing. The pattern is self faced to about waist height but in future I think I’d extend the facing to a full lining using a cotton fabric. It is a quick And easy make with few seams and two buttonholes which could be replaced with poppers to make it even simpler. For now it can be worn with a long sleeved t-shirt and tights but as the weather gets warmer it can be worn with a blouse or even as a sleeveless dress. I photographed it with the blouse but as it began snowing as I finished the dress I did think a long sleeved t-shirt and a cardigan would be more appropriate!
Apologies for the poor photography, the daylight isn’t being very cooperative at the moment and it’s snowing so the sky is very overcast!
A new bundle of Citronille patterns arrived this morning so I should have some more baby clothes to show very soon and my little granddaughter’s wardrobe will be getting full!
Minikrea 10450 Buksedragt or Playsuit.
A Danish pattern this time, the Playsuit is a relatively quick make, MiniKrea patterns are well designed and include the basic model plus ideas and templates for some alternative styles.
I chose to make the basic version in a lovely soft baby corduroy from Truro Fabrics. The Playsuit has just two buttons to fastenat the bib, if I was making it again I’d alter the crotch seam to open to make nappy changing easier. The multisized pattern comes drawn out on paper, once you trace off the required size you need to add seam allowances, 1 cm is recommended but I added 1.5 cm simply because I’m used to using that amount and knew I’d probably forget to use the smaller allowance once I got to the sewing machine. What do I like about the MiniKrea patterns, they are simple classic designs with interesting ideas included to make variations. Patterns include a few different sizes in each package. The instructions are clear and include photographs. I can read the instructions in Danish but English translations are available online at MiniKrea’s website (www.minikrea.dk) in pdf. format. What would I change? Just the lack of easy access for nappy changes.
Underneath the Playsuit is another Broderie Anglais blouse, from a 26 year old Woman’s Weekly pattern, made in the final piece of 26 year old fabric left over from my son’s cot quilt.
I have been looking forward to sewing for my little granddaughter, I loved sewing clothes for my son and had a good collection of basic patterns but had given them away when he grew up. Looking at the patterns available now I didn’t feel very inspired, most seem to be either for stretchy fleece or jersey clothes or for rather frilly fussy dresses. I began looking online for patterns for classic practical baby clothes and found a few interesting independent companies including Ottobre a Finnish company, MiniKrea a Danish company and Citronille a French company as well. I could not master French at school, I had little interest in the subject and the teaching was uninspired. I preferred Latin, that’s how uninspired the teaching was! I had no plans to go to France and saw little merit in learning it. If only someone had mentioned the Paris fashion houses, the wonderful fabric shops and Citronille patterns I might have applied myself a little more. However with the help of a French/English dictionary and many years of sewing practice I completed my first Citronille pattern today. Colombe is a simple dress or top with an inverted pleat in the centre front, rounded collar, long or short sleeves and a buttoned back.I made the long sleeved dress version using pink Vichy (gingham) brushed cotton bought at Truro Fabrics, http://www.trurofabrics.com . The dress took approximately half a metre of fabric for the 3 month size. The pattern is multisized, all sizes are drawn together on the pattern sheet so you trace off the one you need.
The instructions are clear and easy to follow.
The dress was fun to sew and looks pretty. I added 5 cms to the length to make the dress version. It is still quite short but will be fine with tights.
What did I like about this pattern? It is a simple design with plenty of room for an active baby to wriggle about. It is a quick make, I spent no more than 2-3 hours sewing even though I added French seams to make the inside of the dress comfortable and tidy. It is adaptable, I can already see a version in white linen for the summer and fine corduroy for cooler days. As a blouse it would work well under pinafores and dungarees and in the summer the short sleeved version would look lovely with shorts. The sizing seems accurate although I have heard it can be a little on the small size for some patterns.
Citronille has a selection of lovely designs for babies, toddlers and children as well as a few designs for adults. I have already chosen a couple of other designs to try.
Citronille’s website can be found at http://www.citronille.fr