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.
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