Friday, January 13, 2012

It's Time to Vote---Here are the Designs for Boy's Week

Danielle's {My Sparkle}--Little Man Tuck

 I was inspired by so many things for this little outfit and my stamp (literally and figuratively) is on every piece. I guess I'll start with my little man, who's name is not Tuck, but whom we call Tuck or Tucka, because he just turned one, and runs around laughing, saying "tucka, tucka, tucka", instead of tickle, tickle, tickle.  Anyway, I wanted to do something that felt a little different design-wise, but was still wearable for a baby (toddler!) I started with the shawl collar sweatshirt.  I think it can be hard to add interesting design details to boy's clothes sometimes, and a shawl collar is the perfect thing to make it special, but still feel very boy. I used a t-shirt that fits well as a pattern guide, and then I drafted the shawl collar to go in it.  I wanted an interesting pattern for the main fabric, so I printed it myself by carving a paper-printing block in a herringbone pattern, and used it to apply the design. I love the way it turned out with the different gradients in color, and the look that it was actually printed by hand.

For the belt I was inspired by this piece of vintage looking red and white cloth-covered wire I bought to make a light for my little guys room. I wrapped one of the d-rings in bakers twine to kind of give it the same look. The fabric for the belt is a napkin I cut up and mixed back together showing off lots of its lovely prints to best advantage. I (purposefully placed and) LOVE that there are little pops of hot pink and even purple in this belt. I know some people will hate it, but I don't think boys should be restricted to wearing certain colors.

These pants are tiny and you'd think that would make them easier, but all those little tiny details were killer! But without the details-- top-stitching, snaps, belt-loops etc.--  they'd look too feminine.  I wanted kind of a soft chambray feel to them and realized that the reverse side of some lovely light-weight denim was perfect.  I drafted the pattern by using a favorite pair as a guide and then I added front working pockets and back pocket flaps. I also put adjustable elastic in the waistband so they can grow with him.

Please visit my blog: for lots more about how I did everything, better closeups of the clothes, and the teary eyed face of my beloved boy who's nap was cut short in the name of fashion.

Kate's {see kate sew}--Suburban Hipster

For the boy theme, I made a 2012 hipster look complete with skinny cords (with 4 real pockets, a button fly, and jean style topstitching), an upcycled button-up, skinny square tie and a faux leather satchel to finish off the look. And if it gets chilly, he can throw on his sweatshirt fleece lapel sport coat(with hidden CAR PLAYMAT!).

The coat is made from an old sweatshirt, completely redesigned. I used the existing cuffs for the sleeves, but everything else is original. I made the overcoat a little big so it will hopefully last until next winter, too. The lining of the coat jacket has a car playmat, complete with car storage pocket for up to 3 cars, little ponds, houses and driveways(suburbia!) A totally functional jacket and toy all in one! The jacket is completely lined, faced and beautiful on the inside, too. I completed the coat with a little hand-sewing to make sure there were no showing seams on the inside. 

The sport coat and pants were the most time consuming parts. I made sure all the details were perfect and really love the way they turned out. As you can see in the photos above, the pants have belt loops, a waistband, a back yoke, two front pockets, two back pockets, a button fly and double topstitching all over.  The square tie is made from knit fabric. I made it skinny and square for an edgy look. The messenger satchel is the perfect size for a toy camera or a few cars. There is a pocket on the front underneath the flap and it is topstitched all around.
Thanks for looking! You can find lots more photos with more details over at my blog, see kate sew!

Jessica's {Running With Scissors}-- Oxford Gent

I'm so excited for boy week!  I love designing and sewing for my son.

I love vintage influenced boys looks, being modern enough not to look like a costume.
 This particular little set includes:
 faux-flat front elastic waist trousers, collared waistcoat, and a long-sleeved tattersall dress shirt with elbow patches.

Because boy's clothing is pretty basic, to me, it's all about the details.
The greatest inspiration for this look is 19th century British gentlemen's elaborate suiting--without the weird billowing button-crotch pants.  I've always loved the mens' costumes in period films with their high starched collars and layered waistcoats and jackets.
CS Lewis got mixed in my inspiration here, which made me think of using chocolate corduroy and adding the corduroy elbow patches to the shirt.  A little professor vibe mixing in.

The last man that inspired me was Atticus Finch (To Kill A Mockingbird), one of my favorite literary heroes and the reason I really wanted a pocket watch to be involved somehow.  

This waistcoat has two waist welt pockets and an additional little chest welt pocket, the standing collar, and I designed it to have a the hem straight across like the Victorian styling rather than traditional pointed vests. The buttons are actually vintage from his great-grandma's button collection. 

The blue dress shirt is made with a simple tattersall plaid.  I cut the body of the shirt on grain, and chose to have the yoke, pocket, sleeves and button placket on the bias or diagonal.  My favorite element of the shirt has to be the white contrasting cuffs and again the stiff, standing collar.  The shirt also has elbow patches, which are obviously traditionally on jackets, but I thought for a little boy, it was functional and unique to have them on the dress shirt.
Altogether a classic little gentleman with some historical fashion elements.

More photos and info on my blog: Running With Scissors

Jessi {Sweetie Pie Bakery's}-- Play Date with Snowflakes

Projects without much direction are hard for me.  The theme was "boy week" but that makes the possibilities endless.  Do any of you feel that way?  I decided to create a look for my boy.  I wanted to reflect his personality and make something that he can re-wear.  I drew inspiration from JCrew Crewcuts. I love the style of adult sophistication with some childhood fun, so that's what I went for.

This hat was my favorite part of the outfit, actually being my starting point.  I knew I wanted a fun accessory and decided on a huge fur hat.  I have deconstructed many dress shirts so recreating one was not too terribly difficult.  Using a lightweight cotton plaid, I simplified the pattern from dress shirts I usually make for my husband.  This shirt has a continuous back and rather than creating a placket on the sleeve, I used a continuous lap. The shirt fits Ephraim perfectly and I really love it on him.  It's a bit dressy for his everyday wear but still fun enough he can wear with some shorts when it warms up.

The sweater was re-constructed from a hooded, pullover sweater that used to be mine, coincidentally from J. Crew.  I used the bottom of the original sweater to start this one, turned it into a cardigan, gave it a V neck and created the large collar from the hood of the original sweater.  Using the original hems from sweaters creates convincing reconstructions!  I wanted to add a bit of personality to the sweater and decided to go with gold elbow pads.  I painted the gold fabric paint onto felt, giving it a thicker appearance.  I love the look when it dried because it had a similar texture to leather.   The pants are made from a grey suiting fabric, with pockets lined in navy gingham re-purposed from an old crib sheet. 
Please visit Sweetie Pie Bakery for more details on this look!

Kristin's {Skirtastop}--Tiny Timber

I love living in the beautiful Pacific Northwest, and I wanted to design the perfect "under the raincoat" outfit for my one-year-old son to wear during our rainy season (translation: a good portion of the year). I wanted his look to be a mini version of something an adult would wear, but comfy enough for a mostly-crawling-sometimes-walking little guy. My husband's donate pile is the best source of fabric when sewing for my son, and most of what I used here is just that!

I drafted a warm shawl collar sweater in merino wool upcycled from my husband's sweater, which I felted. I added ultrasuede elbow patches and a little leather button to the collar to add detail. His khaki pants are also refashioned from a pair of my husband's, and are fully lined with an incredibly soft "woodsy" red and black plaid flannel. They're so comfy, it's like he's wearing pajamas! The front slant pockets are lined with the same flannel. The pockets and seams of the khakis are topstiched and include belt loops, a faux fly, and faux flap back pocket details. The pants have a flat front, and pull on easily with an elastic back waistband. To complete the look, I sewed a scarf out of the same cozy red flannel - one side pulls through a buttonhole to keep it on - and I made a fun little felt coffee cup softie for him because...well...we start 'em young around here! ;)

This little guy is comfy, stylish, and ready for a trip to an independent bookstore, lunch at a food cart, a walk in the woods, or something equally Portland-y. Come visit me at skirt as top today to see my sketch for this look and plenty more photos of my Tiny Timber!

Stef {Girl. Inspired.}--Mr. Carpenter
  I don't have boys of my own, but I do know that boys love their gear!  A place to stash Hot Wheels, rocks, tools, and dirt - that was my inspiration for this outfit.  I wanted to create an outfit that was wearable and stylish, while also having plenty of storage.

The corduroy pants have four pockets on the front, two pockets on the back, and a hammer loop on each side.  The pants are detailed with blue stitching to add a pop of color and style.  They also have a faux zipper, some cool metal accents, and an adjustable waist.  I drafted my own pattern for the pants, as well as all the pockets and detailing.  The outfit is also comprised of a long-sleeve knit shirt, accented with brown rib-knit around the neck and sleeves.  The knit is soft and on the thicker side, making it easy to work with and comfortable to wear.  I screenprinted a hammer on the front of the shirt for a fun emphasis on my theme.  For the sherpa vest, I used the same pattern that I made for the shirt, enlarging it slightly and sewing each seam wrong sides together, so that the fuzzy, sherpa lining was exposed.  I folded back each seam and topstitched it down.  The neckline and armholes are finished with brown rib-knit.  Finally, I created a little man tool belt with plenty of additional storage.  The tool belt was made from vinyl and nylon strapping and lined with a construction-themed cotton print.  It wraps around the waist and snaps together on a side flap. 
 This week was a lot of fun for me as it presented a brand new challenge - sewing for BOYS!!  I hope you'll head over to girl. Inspired. where I will be sharing more pictures and more on my inspiration for this outfit!

Andrea's {The Train To Crazy}-- The Peddler

The peddler 2

For boy theme I couldn't help but be inspired by Caps For Sale by Esphyr Slobodkina. I started with these gray pants. They are wool, lined, front and back pockets, and pieced knees. The waistband casing is knit rib as well as the ankle cuffs. There is a false fly to give them a more grown up look while still allowing a comfy waistband.

The Peddler collage 1

The sweater is refitted from a reclaimed adult sweater. The appliquéd chevron patches on the sleeve help bring the outfit into the modern era.

The peddler 3
And no Caps For Sale theme would be complete without the caps! I made 9 caps in the signature tweed, gray, brown, blue and red from the story. What I discovered was that the original peddler in the story must have had some serious talent to keep all his hats balanced. Try keeping 9 hats balanced on a 3 year old!

Stop by The Train To Crazy to see more details and photos!

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  1. Amazing work ladies! There are some beautiful looks in the real competition and the sew along! ~Stephanie

  2. Nooooooo!!!! This is for real impossible to decide. I want my little boy in all of these outfits!

  3. This is sooo hard. All the outfits are great!

  4. i'd love to see a photo collage at the beginning or end to helps us choose our final favorite... all the outfits side by side. love looking at everyone's designs!

  5. Danielle! Consistently stunning work!
    Kate: impressively creative car play mat idea inside the coat.

    Well done ladies.

  6. These are all great! It was hard to pick but I think I was won over by the coat/car placemat how perfect for a bored kid. Having to be dressed up somewhere as then h e to sit quiet!I want one!

  7. This is one of the best ones yet - the boys outfits are so "boutique" - they look so high-end. Greatjob!!!

  8. These are adorable! :) Makes me want to have a boy next. lol

  9. This was the hardest thing to decide! They are all SO cute, and these are some talented sewing women, I'm telling ya!

  10. Absolutely fantastic and unique designs, love them's so hard to choose the best one ...

  11. See kate sew suburban hipster. Definitaly the most creative! Super well done and cute too. Cant get enough!

  12. I LOVE every single one of these outfits!!!!!

  13. This is such a hard decision to make! All the boys outfits came out adorable...I'd put my little man in them! Such a creative group! I desperately wish I had the time to make my sewing projects so elaborate.

  14. I am always so Excited to see what your designers have come up with... Last weeks was Junebug remix was so VERY Amazing and this week is NO different... They all turned out Amazing!! This is going to be hard.. for sure :)

  15. Oh wow - what an amazing week!! All the designers have done a fabulous job!!

  16. Wow - these are all amazing. I must say, though, I have a real soft spot in my heart for classic picture books, and Andrea's "The Peddler" is so perfect. How amazingly cute!

  17. "The Peddler" would have to be my favorite...its one of my little man's go-to choices on the book shelf and I'd love to see him that outfit lol.

  18. So hard to pick one. They are all cute and creative and I could see myself putting my son in something similar to all of them.

  19. Honestly it is really hard to choose. Is it possible to vote more than once? (This is probably covered somewhere but I can't remember)

  20. Ok, found it, one vote per computer.

  21. They are all fantastic! I voted for Sweetie Pie Bakery, I love colors and the furry hat!

  22. The looks are fantastic! So hard to choose just one. I never thought sewing for a boy would be so much fun. I'd love to have a little man just to replicate these looks!

  23. These are WAY to cute! How am I ever going to choose one to vote for??

  24. Seriously? How am I supposed to vote for just one? They are all amazing!

  25. Amazing looks, all of them! "Caps..." is one of our family's favorite books and I adore that "Peddler" outfit... the secret car mat coat is super fun... ack, so hard to vote for just one! However, I am 100% Oregonian and really do love the Tiny Timber look so it gets my vote this week. yay, Skirt As Top! I'm especially digging that coffee cup softie!! hehe ;)

  26. this is crazy! I don't know who to vote for again because everyone did such a great job.

    funny thing, I just checked out "Caps" from the library and read it to my girls for the first time tonight, and afterward I thought what a great inspiration the colors and the peddler's outfit made. haha

  27. Ooh tough choice but My Sparkle gets my vote because she printed the fabric herself. Very creative.

  28. Oh my goodness, you are ALL AMAZING!! And can I just say these boys are so stinking cute, too?! Tough decision...

  29. Running with scissors I think you are great!

  30. I seriously love them all. This contest is so fun to follow. I just love all the beautiful pictures and impressive talent!! :) Fabulous work ladids!!

  31. All were so cute and inspiring. I reverse my opinion that boy's clothes are so boring. :-) Maybe my son (7) out of jean and t-shirt only wardrobe.

  32. The oxford gent is too cute, but for practical, wearable (and yet still stylish) clothing, I have to say the playdate with snowflakes outfit is my favorite. The little boy's shirt is just perfect.

  33. Love the oxford gent! and the play date!

  34. Picking just seems mean, they are all worthy. I can't do it.

  35. Suburban Hipster! So cool the Coat with the playmat inside! Though everyone's is just. so. cute.


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