I started with my older daughter's jumper. She had a piano recital last weekend so I used that for an early-ish deadline. I chose a pretty simple pattern from Ottobre 3/2011. This is a summer issue and the pattern is shown as a sundress, but it worked just fine as a jumper.
I cut the bodice on the bias and added piping around the top and at the waist seam. The piping at the waist seam made the jumper stand away from her body like she had a hoop in there. Not a good look (but really good for a giggle). I took the cord out of the piping and took the jumper in a bit at the side seams. That helped, but I think I still could have gone down a size.
The buttons were from my stash and both the burgundy piping fabric and the black lining were given to me by someone who cleared out her stash. I lined the bodice only (the pattern called for facings, but lining seemed just as easy).
The pleat arrangement on the skirt seems a little different to me. On each side of center, there is one inverted box pleat and one knife pleat. The front and back are identical.
I wasn't expecting my daughter to be very excited about this jumper - she usually likes a lot more color and fanciness - but she does like it quite a lot. And it looked good with the piano at the recital!
Handmade Holiday Happiness
This season I'm finding myself being attracted to all sorts of simple handmade things. This isn't entirely new for me of course, but my aversion to thoughtless consumerism has increased in the last few months. While I've always admired handmade goods, I'm really appreciating the simpler things right now and have been trying to work them into our family's Christmas preparations.
I made these two pillowcases as a gift for my younger daughter. A few weeks ago she lamented that she didn't have pretty pillowcases like her sister did. (She's the youngest and when she moved from a crib to a big girl bed she just got the linen closet extras. When her older sister made the same move, she got all new coordinating bedding. Oh, the injustice! But, for some reason, she only felt bad about the pillowcases).
Other than the lavender solid, these are all fabrics that someone else passed on to me. My daughter admired both of the florals, so I hope that these make her happy. I didn't feel like changing the thread on the serger, so I did flat-felled and french seams. All the seams are straight and the fabric was so easy to work with that the extra steps didn't take that long.
I've never made pillowcases before, but it is a small, simple way to add a little more handmade goodness to your daily life.