First up, Cheeks and Daddy J's matching tops!
These were made from this wonderfully soft and surprisingly not wrinkle prone (even though it's made of all natural fibers) candy red cotton/rayon/lycra jersey. The description calls it semi-sheer, but I'd say it's definitely opaque enough for a top!
The pattern is the Jalie Nico raglan tee. I found the sizing to be pretty on par with ready to wear. Not surprising, since this has been my general experience with Jalie patterns. I made a size 3 (G) for Cheeks, which I was afraid would end up too big but is just a bit relaxed instead. Also, take a look at how Cheeks has grown into his pull on jeans!
When J first saw the pattern, his first question was "can you make it a v-neck instead?" and my response was a negatory. He's a consummate crew-neck hater because ready to wear basic tees almost always strangle him. For his 44" chest I made a size 16 (CC), but cut the neckline at the BB line, effectively making it one size larger. For the neck binding I used size DD. The most gratifying part of these tops was probably hearing him say that the neck was actually comfortable for once. THE POWER OF SEWING!
Nico comes with short sleeves or long and offers a straight or curved hemline. I used the straight hem for Cheeks and the curved for J. The difference is very subtle and I will probably not bother with the curved hem again in the future. That all said, this is a great men's raglan pattern!
In addition to these tops, I spotted this bright and cheery cotton/lycra twill on the site and just knew it would be absolutely perfect for little boy shorts, pants, jackets: all sorts of things! As you can see, I finally settled on overalls and I see many more of these in Cheeks' future.
There also happens to be another very special event happening this weekend...
...Cheeks is turning TWO! Happy Birthday to my sweet boy! <3
My sweet boy who is starting to feel like this about the Mamarazzi...
But, back to overalls, or shortalls, as it were. :) This fabric is really great because it has just a touch of stretch. It's great comfort-wise for all people, but especially for the running, squatting, reaching and stretching of toddlers.
The thing that's not so great is matching the stripes with so many pattern pieces! Oops. My first approach was to cut pieces purposely off kilter, such as the pockets, but I quickly became painfully aware that I was going to need to stripe match in certain areas or it was going to look pretty bad. I didn't realize this until after I cut the front, and I miscalculated a bit for the back, but I think they turned out alright anyway.
This pattern is the Peek-A-Boo Patterns Okey Dokey Overalls (aff link). I had this pattern traced off in a 3T back in February, but didn't get around to sewing them until now. Such is my sewing life!
Overall, I was pretty happy with the pattern; the end result is CUTE and I will use it again. The only thing that was a little odd was the front pocket facing; it didn't seem to be drafted long enough as it didn't reach the top edge of the pocket per the photo instructions. I also had a tough time figuring out how to navigate the outseam between where the facing is turned to the inside and the rest of the pant leg.
And then there was hardware...
A snap crotch is a definite must for those little ones still in diapers. After I had Cheeks I used a manual snap setter for a while, and though it worked fairly well, I always felt like there was still a bit more frustration and room for error than I'd like.
When he was a few months old, I took the plunge and made the investment in a DK93 table press from KAMsnaps.com. The ease of use is night and day: inserting snaps with my press is effortless and always accurate. For his shortalls, I used size 16 silver open-ring metal snaps (die used to insert these snaps here). I considered also using snaps for the hip closures, but thought they may not be beefy enough and instead went with more traditional bachelor buttons, also known as jean buttons.
Have you ever used bachelor buttons? Because this was my first try and golly, none of them are straight. I'm a bit afraid they'll pop off at any moment with my lackluster application. Do you know any tricks to getting them hammered on nice and straight?
This was also my first time using these self-adjusting Dritz overall buckles. I'm not sure I really like the "pull it through and let the ends hang" idea. I may do some online hunting for a more traditional overall buckle and slide combination for next time. Suggestions for where to look would be appreciated!
And there they are! Two shirts and a fabulous pair of shortalls.
Thanks for reading! Until our next sewing adventure...