Tuesday, 21 May 2013

Girlie Shorts

A few weeks ago an unusually hot bank-holiday weekend got me right into the mood for sewing shorts. I whizzed up three pairs each for my niece and nephew and shared the little guy shorts (and cropped trousers) here. I promised a post about the girl to follow, but life has been a little crazy these past couple of weeks and so blogging has been on hold. But as promised, today I am sharing the girlie shorts.
CailaMade shorts
The little lady has two pairs of denim shorts and one pair of thicker jersey cropped trousers. The fabric from all three came from my refashion pile (once upon a time they were a pair of worn jeans and a mishapen hoodie). The trims/ facings came from my scrap bag. So these shorts really were a bargain project.

I made these little denim shorts using the free pattern at CailaMade as a starting point. I changed-up the pattern a little by adding pockets to the front and took advantage of the original wide jean hems. I also decided to use facing on the waistband as I was worried a double layer of denim would be too thick and bulky on a toddler's waist.
The pockets are faced with some bright pink polycotton, which I turned under to leave a thin edging of pink peeking out. I then found this lovely blue, white and pink floral polka-dot fabric in my scrap bag which coordinates beautifully with the pockets for a girlie touch.
I used the same pattern as a starting point for the second pair of denim shorts, but this time I added a tie-cuff to the bottom of the legs.

I really like the cut and fit of CailaMade's short pattern, but wanted to make it a little more exciting. This idea came to me as I was hunting through my scrap bag and found a ridiculously long but thin piece of left-over Midwest Modern - just enough for wasit-band facing and leg-cuffs. So I cut a semi-circle from the bottom of each outside leg seam and made some bias from the Midwest Modern to finish the edges. Then I made the cuffs with long strips centred on the inside leg seam.


The jersey cropped trousers were a little trickier as I had to draft a pattern for them. The original hoodie had some interesting seams, great textured applique and a lovely flower print that I wanted to make the most of. Unfortunately I forgot to take a photo before I started cutting so you will have to believe me when I say that the only way to make use of the applique was to create a curved yolk at the back below the waistband. The waistband itself was made using the rib from the bottom of the hoodie, with its original finishing. At the front, the original flower print wraps around from the back yolk to add some girlie magic to an otherwise quite masculine-coloured fabric.
Now all we need is for the sun to make another appearance so the kiddies can give their shorts a test-run.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Here comes the sun....

Since the days seem to be getting warmer I decided it was time to make the little guy some shorts... And you have to admit, there really is nothing cuter than gorgeous chubby baby legs!
I started off making some very simple elasticated wait shorts from blue checked seersucker - A nice soft and light fabric for if the weather ever really heats up. I embellished them with some ribbed blue cotton knit patch pockets and a pretend tie at the front of the waistband. The seersucker came from my fabric stash and the jersey was from a top in my refashion pile.
Whilst rummaging through my refashion pile for fabric for the pockets of the seersucker shorts, I came across a lovely blue wide-striped rugby-style top made from a heavy, soft knit fabric. It was just perfect for some comfy baby boy copped baggies. I drafted this pattern myself and added some slash pockets with the stripe going vertically to contrast the stripe on the shorts and a fake tie at the front from a scrap of the same fabric. I really love these little cropped trousers, though in future I will probably make them a little less wide (maybe by tapering in along the inseam a bit).
The final pair of 'shorts' didn't actually turn out as shorts, but are instead cropped trousers. They have a flat front and elasticated back, and there are trimmed pockets to the front. This was another pattern I drafted myself, and the original intention was to have some wide turn-ups with a lining in the contrast fabric (which came from my scrap bag, but I think may be a from the Monsterz collection, Cloud 9). Once I got to sewing I decided that the demin was a bit bulky for turning up and decided to just have a trim poking through at the bottom, as it does around the pockets.

Rather than cutting the legs down, I decided to leave them, and so the shorts became cropped trousers. I kind of wish I had cut them down now (cropped trousers on little legs have a tendency to just look like trousers that have been outgrown) but nevermind. As the demin was quite bulky, I also decided to use the contrast fabric (organic cotton) for the back waistband and as facing for the front waitband.
And not wanting the Little Guy's sister to feel left out, I also made my niece a few pairs of shorts. So pop back later in the week to see them...