Some time back in the 90s I used to buy Boden for the boys and the things I bought lasted for literally generations: I have friends whose younger children are wearing clothes that El Famosisimo wore more than a decade ago. I haven’t bought anything from Johnnie for yonks but he still sends me his little catalogues accompanied by small inducements to buy stuff which is no longer the kind of thing I want to spend a tenner on (for the girls) or the best part of a a hundred pounds on for me.

Previous catalogues had been consigned to the recycling bin but this season’s has been pored over by my little consumers and someone said that they absolutely must have a paddling skirt. Miss Froo is of the mind that most skirts need to be long-ish so any skirt that is short-ish will be useful for paddling in at the beach with Grandma as it won’t get too wet.

The paddling skirt she had in mind was £20 and stripy. I have stripy fabric in the form of a very 80s blue velour dress which has already been plundered for its easily usable fabric but which still has a bodice bit with sleeves. And more sripes in a polo shirt gifted by a formerly larger friend who has now lost weight and is passing on his ‘fat clothes’ to poor Mr G. The suits are welcome but the shirts aren’t so I am trying to rid them of the whiff of very manly 1980s aftershave and refashion them.

This was easy sewing and I have saved myself £40 in skirts and more in p+p.

This is kind of before and after together, what can I do with the sleeves?

Before (squished up to get it in the frame)

After, using the original hem with a pocket as requested by Miss Amoo to keep money in for when she has to go and buy an ice cream or something without me.

Sometimes they aren’t too pleased with the things I sew for them and it takes a while for the love to hit. These were love at first sight!

Did you notice some coins on the table around the money eaters in the previous post? When I tried to clear and clean the table last night I found that they were stuck down. Miss Froo was most dis-chuffed this morning!

ETA I sewed the waistbands of the skirts using this method sewing the elastic to the waistband rather than making a casing. I usually see this done with an overlocker but it works fine with either a simple or three step zig zag on my machine.


9 Comments to “Stripes”

  1. More great sewing! I’m inspired, well for at least the 2 minutes it takes to look at my sewing machine and sigh deeply.

    Just one thing. (Probably a stupid question, but I’m too old to worry about looking like a novice.) When you’ve put elastic in the waistbands of trousers, skirts etc, how do you stop it from twisting inside the waistband? Do you stitch it to the material? I’ve got several pairs of pj bottoms, tracky bottoms, etc that I’m forever having to untwist the elastic inside (especially when they’ve had a good spin in the washing machine). I remember it being an ongoing problem with the clothes my mother made/adjusted for me as a child.

    • What you can do once the thing is stitch the elastic down to the trousers at the side seams.

      You stretch out the waistband so that the fabric is taught then put a pin right through the fabric and the elastic at each of the side seams. Then you let it go and you stitch through the fabric and the elastic right where you have pinned.

      This means that your elastic is held where it should be in two places but you still have all the stretch you need at the front and the back to get them on and off.

      Does that make sense?

  2. Great skirts – you have inspired me. Boden is way out of my price range too though my son has had some second hand boden t shirts and they were good quality lovely cotton. Some of the cheap tees I have bought are such crappy quality, they don’t last for many kids. Johnnie did keep sending me catalogues though I think they may have given up now .

    • I know I’m preaching to the converted here but I’ll say it anyway! Sewing t-shirts for kids is easy once you have a good pattern – bought or self-drafted. Adult tees in charity shops are often made with heavyweight fabric that you don’t find in kids clothes and if you keep the sleeve hems and lower hem you can be done in under an hour.

      The Indie Tutes blog in my blog list has tutorials for self-drafting tees for kids including raglan sleeves.

  3. Yep. Makes sense. Now I just need to face my demon.

  4. Those are so cute. Of course they were love at first sight.

  5. Excellent stuff.

  6. Love these, so simple really but something I never do. Having just looked through your posts I’m feeling all inspired to make something. Thanks xx

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