01 October, 2007

The reluctant seamstress

There are a few theories floating around to explain my disdain for sewing clothes. For one, I am not good at following instructions. I design almost all my own quilts. I rarely follow a recipe exactly. Step-by-step directions and I don't get along, unless I'm assembling a piece of IKEA furniture.

The other thing I always thought I hated about clothing was how precise you had to be. That really makes no sense if I am a quilter. To me, however, the precision of quilting is liberating. The precision of clothing is stifling.

And finally, I was never good enough at making clothing to get truly creative. I don't think I'll ever know how to build my own pattern or makes lots of alterations. With a quilt I am willing to experiment and just wing it. I simply don't have that confidence with clothing.

All that being said, I made my first article of clothing in 9 years. When I was pregnant a friend gave me an old issue of Martha Stewart Baby. In it there was a great pattern for this kimono. I finally got motivated to make it, in part from the inspiration on so many blogs. It is a simple pattern, but I must admit that I found the instructions a bit confusing. Once I started ignoring them a little and building it intuitively it got easier.
The outside is made of that gorgeous green boiled wool. My Monster has hazel eyes (green/grey) so the color looks wonderful on her.
The kimono ties inside and with the shoulder ties. I ended up making it a bit bigger than I anticipated, but it should carry her through the rest of fall, chinook days in the winter, and into spring.

I made the whole thing double layered, with one of my favourite Amy Butler fabrics as the lining. It is so soft and makes wearing a wool coat bearable for a toddler.
Now I have to keep an eye out for a purple scarf, toque, and pair of mitts. Alas, knitting is also something I've never mastered.


Elea said...

Oh it's lovely! And oh so appropriate.. this weekend I decided to make my own dress of my own invention for my little one. Needless to say after hours of cutting, sewing, measuring... I made the waist a whole 1/2 inch too small.... Glad you had better luck!

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