Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Little Girls?

What is it with clothing manufacturers? For some reason, they all think that just because my daughter has outgrown size six, she should dress like she is 16 and on the hunt for attention! I've shopped and shopped, but it is nearly impossible to find "cute" clothes for little girls that still let them look, well, little.

I gave up. I started to sew. Thank God for the old Mennonite ladies that I helped one summer by hauling boxes while they sewed rags into useful clothes. Thank God for the wedding dress designer who I lived with for a year in school. Drinking tea and watching her cut dresses out of paper to plan designs, I learned things. I am not a great sewer. I am not a perfectionist who specializes in little flounces and ribbons, but I am a practical sewer with a love of fun. So far, I have made three different little sun dresses, and this afternoon, I cut a pattern off a pair of her capris and made a pair of long shorts with a slit on the side and little bows at the slits. She loved those - she's into comfort, and they were comfortable. I think with the sundress pattern, I can make a matching shirt by just putting the "skirt" part of it down just a little past the waist line, but no more. We're going to a hotter climate for the summer, and my daughter is always hot, even in the snow, so I am working on some cool cotton outfits that she can play in, but will also look nice in because... well, you know... "we have to look nice". As if missionary kids did not like to go get filthy, too.

When I get the dresses hemmed, I might post pictures of them. (If I can find my camera.) Then I am going to work on some skirts for myself, light-weight playful ones. I bought one I love and looking down at in on Sunday, I thought, "I could make this!" It is a simple pattern of a long skinny rectangle with a triangle attached repeated over and over. So I bought some fun colors and am going to make a few fun ones for me.

Speaking of fithy kids .... my boys are older now.... they've arrived at that stinky stage of getting older... oh, my... I'll have to stay on top of them for visits with people. No, you can not go running and climbing and then still smell nice. Maybe I'll get a big water gun and use it to shower them at rest stops where we clean up before knocking on our host's door. That and a course in "Introduction to Deodorant and Why YOU Need to Use It."

4 comments:

junglewife said...

Fun! I'd love to see pictures! I like to sew, although I have limited experience, too. I've been drooling over all the fabrics I find online, which is probably a good thing that there is NOTHING available here, otherwise I would be out buying fabric to make skirts, dresses, quilts, etc! In Bali we can get gorgeous batiks, but that is Bali... a LONG plane ride away! Here there are quite a few little tailor shops with fabric, but just about nothing in cotton, and if it is cotton, it's probably plain black or dark blue solid. NO fun! So, I will enjoy your pictures if you post! Good job for making your own stuff! Natalie is only 3 but when we go on furlough i will have to be looking at the next 4 years worth of clothes... maybe I will just buy fabric instead!!!

Becky Aguirre said...

I was always horrible at sewing growing up, but tried a few simple things like curtains and beanbags and handkerchiefs for the kids and really enjoyed it. I think I'm like you, not into the frills and extras, but more simple, straightforward things. Making clothes for Gracia sounds like fun! I'll have to start thinking about getting a sewing machine...

Karis said...

I don't know enough about sewing to be useful like you are. I did learn a little bit when I was 12, but not enough to get me hooked to really enjoy it. But what a great skill to have because you're so right about the clothes they make in little girls sizes. What in the world? :-)

Ellie said...

I'm thinking of, once I get the little kinks worked out of the pattern I used, posting how to do it. I rarely use a store pattern since they are so complicated and tedious. I use the ones that the Mennonite women taught me - simple shapes that you use to build anything, and then the "extras" are things you can figure out yourself simply. I want to work on the shorts pattern once more. I need to make it a little longer in the waist.

But I have about four or five shapes I draw out on newspaper and then I sew with varieties of those. It is really simple.