Secret Amy birthday presents, part i

I have been thinking about what to do for Amy’s second birthday coming up in November. I thought about making a cloth activity book — maybe miniature clothes she could button and zip (I saw one of those online once, that someone had made — very cute). But cloth books are so floppy. And so many tiny pieces.

Then it occurred to me I could accomplish much the same thing by making some clothes for Amy’s Waldorf doll, Rachel. Some that zip, some that button, some that snap, etc. And a play sling she could use to carry her around, like mama’s.

I’ve been having lots of fun in the sewing room so far. Do you think I ought to tidy it up someday?

Photo -- My sewing room's current status.

Here’s the sling. I had a squarish piece of fabric that wasn’t long enough to do a seamless sling, so I french seamed a piece at one end of a strip. I should have had that end go around the back instead of through the rings — the best rings I could find in a hurry were 1″ D rings, and it’s a tight fit especially with a lumpy french seam. I got the idea from Jan Andrea, whose pattern I used to make my own sling.

Photo -- Play sling.

Photo -- Play sling shoulder.

I had enough left of some flannel pajama pants to make this raglan-sleeve sleeper; the zipper is from an old shirt. I bound the leg holes with a bias strip from the sling fabric in order to secure the bottom of the zipper. I just hemmed the neck and sleeves, though.

I had a lot of adjusting to do as I went — the body is rather baggier than I intended and the legs rather narrower, and both sleeves and legs are a little shorter than they looked when I pinned them, especially when the doll is sitting. But I’m pleased with how I fixed the baggy shoulders with darts.

Photo -- Flannel sleeper for Rachel.

This is fun.

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7 thoughts on “Secret Amy birthday presents, part i

  1. I never fail to be amazed at your creativity!
    One idea I did for my girls (they were slightly older than Amy, so maybe save this for a year or two from now) was I went to Goodwill and bought a bunch of 2nd hand clothes for dress up and put them in a trunk for dress up play. Nurses’ uniform, ‘evening gown’, costume jewelry, probably some scarves, I forget what else. I washed everything first and gave it to them one Christmas. HUGE HIT with LOTS of long-term creative play value.
    (They are now in their 20′s and STILL shop at Goodwill, so maybe I started something.)
    I am sure Amy will love her gifts.

  2. That is really cool. I so far, have been no good at sewing clothes. My Mom made matching pajamas for me and my dolls when I was little. Maybe you can include a matching outfit? Or, even a matching piece, or sew something for the doll that matches something she already has.
    And perhaps a “dresser” for the doll… a small cardboard “trunk” decorated with pretty paper or fabric to hold the treasures. (and learn how to put things away nicely).

    And if you want to stock up on some child sized dress up you might check out after halloween clearance. Even if you put it away til next year (and combine it with what you can sew/buy/scrounge you might find some good things.

  3. Chris,

    My clothes-sewing has been pretty bad when it comes to things for myself. Having a kid was a big motivation to start again, and I’ve been mostly very pleased with the things I’ve made for her. I’m getting better with my own things, too, but still nothing I’m completely satisfied with.

    I like the ideas of some kind of dresser and the after Halloween clearance, too.

  4. Well, you made a dress. Last time I sewed for myself I attempted to make some shorts, just simple for sleeping in, from a boxer style shorts pattern. I sewed them all up. Put them on. Looked at myself in the mirror. One side of my shorts was sewn with the fabric wrong side out. Duh!

    I’ll stick with quilts and pillowcases!

  5. Not to worry. You haven’t seen the jumper that made me look pregnant, the skirt whose facing didn’t go all the way around (and which was too short for my comfort), etc. And I’m always sewing things with the fabric the wrong way!

  6. Pingback: Secret Amy birthday presents, part ii « Becoming Three

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