Hoodie and Harems- Toddler capsule part 2

I made Lottie some MBJM harems as part of her mini capsule and loved them so Toby needed some in his capsule too! I’ve always been a bit unsure about the dropped crotch on harem trousers, but I think the fit on these is spot on. Plenty of room for a nappy and freedom of movement, but slim legs and cuffs so that there isn’t too much volume.

This purple sweatshirt has only about 10% stretch so it’s been waiting for ages to find a suitable use. These harems work in lower stretch fabrics so it seemed like a good option.

There is a great big through pocket in these trousers, so I thought it would be fun to tie them in with the striped t-shirts. I also used rainbow thread for the topstitching as another fun little detail.

Usually I want the seams to disappear invisibly from the right side, and that was my intention with these. When they are stretched though you can see just a hint of the rainbow overlocking, which I actually quite like!

I have already made Toby an I CAN hoodie since I tested the pattern with Lottie, but haven’t been able to share it yet. This is his second one, and as soon as I saw this monkey fabric on the Poppy Bear Fabrics Facebook group I was sure he would love it! One of his favourite animals is the monkey, and this fleece backed sweatshirt is so soft. This is the basic version without the colour blocking and the pockets so that I didn’t need to break up the pattern.

This time I didn’t have a suitable colour of bias binding, so I went for the simpler version of the hoodie where the seam allowances are just topstitched down. I also topstitched the hood seams, like I have before on some of his hoodies, because I don’t really like the way that the inner and outer hoods move around without it.

I want to save as much of the monkey fabric as possible, so I thought I would use the purple sweatshirt for the hood lining instead. It means that I think I have enough fabric left from my 1m to make another jumper in the future.

Both of these got a thorough toddler road test and passed with flying colours. They have been through toddler gymnastics, climbing on banks, jumping, leaf kicking and stone throwing. He just looked so comfortable through all of it so there will definitely be more. I’m even thinking they might be cute as shorts!


I can zip!

I recently got the chance to be part of a pattern test for a new to me pattern company-Made By Jacks Mum. I figured that it was a great opportunity to try out their pattern instructions and drafting without much risk on my part. The pattern I got to test was the I CAN Zip Hoodie which is aimed at novice zip sewists and has a pretty amazing size range of premie to 12 years! (I received the pattern for free in exchange for feedback and photos during the testing process.)

The pattern has two options for finishing the zip- a simple version or a bound edged version. Its intended as an introduction to zips, and does have some really good tips, especially recommending wash away tape to secure the zip while you sew. Both versions look very similar when the hoodie is closed, it is only if you are looking at the details inside that you can appreciate the bound edges.

I generally avoid bias binding like the plague, but I thought I would give it a go. I found it tricky, especially at the top corner where it all got quite close to the zip. It certainly isn’t perfect but I would try it again, and I do like the finish.

There is also a colour blocked version with pockets, but I thought that being as I was sewing for Lottie and she has very little use for a pocket that I would stick with the basic version. I think I will make Toby a colour block one at some point though because all the samples I have seen look really great!

Sewing wise, I was really impressed with the instructions. They have really clear photographs, and the sample fabrics have been well chosen to have a distinctive right and wrong side. It meant that I could understand the construction with a fairly speedy look through the instructions.

The pattern seems to be a big hit with children too. While I was part of the testing group, all the older children seemed to love it and barely wanted to take it off. I’ve thought about hacking the free Brindille and Twig Raglan Hooded Sweatshirt, but I think now I would just use this pattern instead.

Since the test, the pattern pieces for the hood and cuffs have been altered slightly, but I think it probably would be barely noticeable in this small size. I really like the fit. Lottie is quite long and skinny so it is a bit roomy, but I think that is probably good in a jumper and gives her some room to grow. I would like to make Toby one in fleece for playing outdoors.

I recently ordered some new size labels on Etsy and this hoodie was the first thing to get the label treatment. I’m still not sure quite how to add the labels neatly into a overlocked seam, but stitching this one under the binding was really convenient.