21 June 2012

I Need More... Cute Kid Clothing [dolman sleeve shirt]

Why is it that little girl clothing in stores for four to five year olds is still designed as if they are either: 1) still 2 years old, splattered with unnecessary glittered butterflies (I so hate butterflies) or 2) way overpriced for just how quickly little kids grow of their clothing (Crewcuts... I'm looking at you)?

Why is it that I hoard ideas for fashionable childrens' clothing, am a fairly experienced seamstress, and yet my daughter's wardrobe still comes from the store?

Okay.  Thanks for playing therapist for a moment.  Now back to the creation at hand.  Let's start with just about the easiest piece of clothing to sew.  Ever.  Kindergarden - meet the dolman sleeve tshirt - because my daughter will be wearing one of these babies every day.

A basic tshirt that your kid wears now as a rough pattern
Jersey knit fabric (unwanted adult tshirts work beautifully for this)
Sewing machine, thread, scissors, etc.


1. Lay your child's tshirt on top of your new shirt's fabric as a guide.  Cut around the existing shirt, allowing some breathing room.  A dolman shirt should be a bit roomy.  HINT: To get a perfectly symmetrical shirt, cut half of the shirt and then fold your fabric in half to cut the remaining half.  Wildly helpful!

Cut out an accompanying waistband, 4-inches wide and a few inches shy of the bottom of your shirt's measurement.  This will rely mostly on how stretchy your fabric is.

2. Serge (or zigzag) the necklines and sleeve openings, fold under about 1/4-inch, and hem.  Be gentle here, you're working with knit.  Too much tug and you have a ripply mess; too little and every time Janie puts on this shirt your likely to have a seam pop.

3. With right sides together, serge the shoulder and side seams.

4. Sew waistband fabric into a tube and then fold in half.  Turn your shirt right side out and pin waistband piece to main shirt.  Serge.

5. Pat yourself on the back.  You are so done!

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