Monday, 1 March 2010

Baby Makes

Baby dress with fawn applique

Yesterday, in between ferrying a small girl to her first ballet exam (she got honours!) and a celebratory trip to the cinema, I put the finishing touches to my make-a-month for February. Buttonholes were stitched, buttons sewed on, and the floral facings hand-hemmed into place. This pattern is from Ottobre kids design, January 2008 and is full of those pretty little details that always make Ottobre patterns stand out, like the cute fawn applique and piping and facings in pretty floral cottons.

baby dress detail
Dress detail

The Japanese fabric Joanne gave me is perfect for a project like this too, as it's double-sided, so it's nice to get a glimpse of the checked side on the inside of the dress instead of it being hidden behind a lining. I loved the Japanese feel of the original design, so tried to replicate this with the polka dot linen/cotton mix fabric and floral cotton for the details and facings.

I had the tiniest remnant of the fabric left after finishing the dress so I decided to make a pair of baby shoes from Cotton Time magazine (January 2009, no. 82).

matching baby shoes

As I neither speak nor read Japanese, I had to rely on the illustrations of the steps, but as I've always found with Japanese patterns, these were really clear.

Japanese pattern from Cotton Time

The one thing that I couldn't work out just from the pictures was seam allowances - so a quick google of 'Japanese sewing terms translated into English' and I came across this really useful list over at Moving Hands now bookmarked for future use!

All in all, this was a good bit of stash busting - hoarded fabric and buttons - and using of purchased but neglected pattern books! Hoping to carry on the good work in March with some makes for my boy and girl.

There was also a bit of baby knitting this week. Having had to abandon my ravelympic Veyla gloves as the yarn I had chosen was just too fuzzy to show the pretty lace, I cast on instead for a baby hat and bootees (junior category). I was sent some craft books to review by Quadrille, one of which was the beautiful Natural Nursery Knits by Erika Knight. I immediately fell in love with the garter stitch bonnet and matching bootees and cast on hastily a couple of days ahead of the finish line.

baby set

This make involved acquiring stash (Rowan fine milk cotton yarn) but also allowed me to delve into my haberdashery collection for the pretty vintage embossed buttons. I made it to the finish line just in time to collect my ravelympic medal!

I'm planning to review Natural Nursery Knits in my next post and give away my copy, so do pop back if you're interested in winning.

It's as if I've turned a psychological corner in making these little baby things - suddenly I'm calling the baby 'she' instead of 'it'! It's taken a while - I've known since our scan back in December, but somehow making these things has made it a bit more real.

22 comments:

  1. Perfect! It's lovely and those little shoes.... just lovely.

    and thank you sooooo much for that precious link! Maybe now I can do something from a Japonese book I have for ages.... perhaps a make for March who knows?

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  2. The dress is adorable and shoes to match!

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  3. I love the dress and shoes - now you can look forward to seeing your little baby wearing them.

    I've just subscribed to Ottobre, and am eagerly awaiting my first copy. This has whetted my appetite!

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  4. The dress and shoes are just beautiful - The polka dot fabric is right up my street!

    Almost there with my Feb offering for a make a month, better late than never!!

    Natasha x

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  5. Well done to your little ballet star! The dress is adorable and with a perfect pair of shoes to match too!

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  6. Helen - what a lovely dress, and shoes to match! When your Japanese glossary web page faild you, please let me know and I am happy to help you. Chloe Patricia

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  7. lovely dress and shoes:) I have the similar Japanese pattern but haven;t got around to try making it ^_^

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  8. Hi Helen,

    Wow, I love the baby dress and knitted hat and booties. They are so cute.

    Thanks for the Japanese dress-making term translations. I've got some Japanese clothes patterns which I want to try out,so this will definately come in handy.

    Congratulations to your daughter on passing her first ballet exam!

    Mary

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  9. hello again. Just to let you know I have nominated you for a sunshine blogger award, the link is over on my blog.
    R

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  10. Beautiful work! Well done to your #1 daughter too for her honours!

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  11. oh, hurray! I love the dress and shoes. Well done.

    x

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  12. oh, hurray! I love the dress and shoes. Well done.

    x

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  13. So, so pretty!
    I didn't get as much done is February as I would have liked, but am hoping March will be better. Herniated discs and sewing do not mix well sometimes!

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  14. Oh that little dress is wonderful. I wonder if The Baby Brother would mind wearing a dress now and then if they were as lovely as that?! Coz I'm not having a 4th!

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  15. Beautiful pieces all of them. I love the little jumper. You must have like the best dressed children around.

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  16. I admit...I'm a lurker :) But I enjoy your blog very much. I wanted to let you know that I've given you the Beautiful Blog award. You can check it out at www.sweetbeebuzzings.blogspot.com.

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  17. wow - such pretty makes. This little dress is the kind of thing that your daughter can keep and give to her daughter in years to come. so sweet.

    Monda
    x

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  18. Oh, I think that might be a little too much cuteness for one post. You have me thinking crazy thoughts like 'it would be nice to have a little baby to make things for'...

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  19. Love that top - this is one of my favourite patterns - I should make some more of these.

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  20. I found you through flickr. I thought I leave a comment on this post since I've finally made the same pair of shoes from Cotton Time. I hesitated about the seam allowance, although I had the link you provided. I just added .25 inch all around the pattern. I think the shoes I made looks bigger than the on the Cotton Times. Yours look so polished!

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  21. Those are beautiful makes. I'm sure she'll look lovely in them

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