If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.

Monday, September 23, 2013

Sweet Baby Gift

I am so excited about having a new grandchild!  I have been inspired to do a bit of sewing.  I've made some receiving blankets.  They were part of the Projects because...It's a boy! post.  I've also crafted some sweet outfits our little grandson.

When folks have a baby boy, I usually stitch together something using a Children's Corner Baby Bubbles pattern.  I started to use that same simple pattern for this little man.  Then, I realized that with an October due date, the weather would soon be cool.  So, I measured one of the little outfits that I had found when I was Digging Into History.  I sketched out a new pattern using the Baby Bubbles pattern and making it have pants legs to the ankles.

I decided to make one a sweet and simple white outfit for church.  I hand-embroidered the initial B on the yoke in a soft blue color.  (I would have stitched a monogram with all three initials, but the little man doesn't seem to have a first name selected for him, yet!)  I also had a piece of soft blue batiste.  I first thought I would pleat it up and smock it.  However, the little man's hard-headed father seems to be a bit picky about making sure that he wears ultra-masculine clothes.  Never mind that when he was a wee man he wore lace on his collar and short pants till he was in first grade and it doesn't seem to have emasculated him!  So, I decided to simply applique on the yoke.
Since I used the same pattern, both outfits are somewhat similar.  Both of them feature a front yoke and pleats.
On the white suit I first pressed and stitched a series of tucks on either side of the center section for the yoke.  I embroidered a simple B in the center section.  I attached some sweet baby-cord piping to the neckline and the sleeve cuffs.  I attached tiny little baby entredeau at the bottom of the yoke to connect the pleated pants part to the tucked yoke.  I stitched the front pleats down to about the waistline.  Then, just left them to blouse out for the legs.  Simple but sweet.
I think the little man's mother was inspecting the sweet little church suit but in the end gave it the stamp of approval.

The other suit features appliqued fish on the yoke.  I had to do a little bit of adaptation to the yoke part of the pattern.  I dropped it down a bit to make it more like a girl's jumper yoke.  I surfed the net to find a cute fish applique pattern as my inspiration.  I found one at Appliques for Kids and adapted it to work.  What I really liked was the use of three different prints with one for each fish.  I decided to use a couple of linen prints and a tan cotton check print.  One print is a chevron print with soft tans and light blue stripes.  The second linen is a light blue and cream paisley print.  Both were scraps from pillows and cushions that I had crafted.  The tan cotton check is a scrap left from a quilt my mother created for Mike and me.  I added baby rick-rack at the seam joining the pleated pants to the yoke.  I thought this made it look a bit more polished and hinted a suggestion of ripples like water.  This outfit buttons at the shoulders and I chose horn buttons to give the soft blue fabric a bit of earthy contrast.
I was lucky enough to have plenty of time to work on these sweet little outfits and simply worked on each one for about twenty minutes a day after school.  The only difficult part proved to be adding the snaps at the crotch of each outfit.  On one, I simply cut up some pre-made snap tape that had snaps embedded into some twill tape and stitched each snap on one-by-one.  On the other I used grommeted snaps which had to be hammered together.  At one point I stabbed myself with the little prongs and didn't realized I was bleeding till there were spots on the outfit.  So, I had to take time and wash the sweet little suit before I could even bestow it as a gift.  (By the way, hydrogen peroxide does a great job of removing blood from a poly/cotton blend batiste if you treat it shortly after it is spotted!)
I believe it holds up to the inspection by the future mother, too.  So, the sweet little man should look snazzy on trips to church and cute and rough and tumble for his dad as well!