I absolutely love sewing clothes for my daughter to wear to school. My little first grader is growing like a weed and could use a few new skirts and tops to add to her wardrobe. When Call Ajaire asked me to participate in her Not Just a Sunsuit pattern tour to celebrate the release of her first pattern, the Paneled Sunsuit, I knew I had to try the skirt view first for Ella a new school skirt!
The Paneled Sunsuit Pattern has more options than any other pattern I've ever seen! It's insane the number of pieces and outfits you can sew up out of this one simple pattern. The instructions and diagrams are extremely thorough and detailed and a breeze to follow.
The pattern includes sizes newborn to girl's size 12 and provides not only a size chart but finished measurements for all 14 options. There is even a printing guide that shows the pages needed to print a specific option in a specific size. I really can't say enough how impressed I am with every single bit of detail included in this pattern!
For Ella's new school skirt, I consulted the size chart and chose to sew a size 8 skirt with pockets using an Essex Linen from Robert Kaufman Fabrics. While this fabric will wrinkle a little more than normal quilting cotton, the weight, drape, and feel of the fabric is perfect for making a skirt or pants.
Since Ella's school dress code requires that her pants, shorts, and skirts be a solid color of khaki, navy, or black, I opted to add a splash of color and print where allowed--inside the pockets and in the skirt hem.
First, I cut out the pocket linings in scraps of Cotton + Steel fabrics.
Next, instead of turning up the bottom of the skirt and hemming it, I created a wide hem facing using four different Cotton + Steel prints. This is Ella's favorite part! When she is sitting down at her desk or on the mat, she can see the fun, colorful prints peeking out from underneath.
Ella is tall for her age, so her skirt is slightly longer than normal since I didn't reduce the length of the skirt before adding the hem facing. The wider hem created by the facing also helps to keep the hem from flipping up.
The elasticized waist makes it easy for Ella to put it on and off all by herself which is a big plus in the mornings when we are rushing to get out the door to school!
All around, this skirt is a great fit and a fun, quick project to sew!
I completed her look by sewing a Molly Schoolgirl Blouse by Peek-a-Boo Pattern Shop. The only change I made here was to omit any piping on the collar and sleeve bands. Again, I sewed a size 8 which seems to fit her very well.
I adore the rounded collar and puff sleeve, although all those gathers on the sleeve took me longer to finish than the rest of the blouse! If you haven't guessed, I'm not very fond of gathering fabric!
This was the first time I had ever used my sewing machine to sew on the buttons, and from now on, I'll definitely be using that function when I make a blouse! I used a small piece of Wonder Tape to hold each button in place to make positioning it under the machine foot easier, and I added a little fray check to the knot on the back of each button to make sure the threads stay secure.
Next up, I plan to sew Ella a pair of pants for school using the Paneled Sunsuit pattern. I'll let you know how they turn out! I've seen a few other pair in the Not Just a Sunsuit pattern tour as well as a jumper or two that have me inspired. While the tour is almost over, you can still check out all the other amazing pieces that have been made using this one pattern. Just follow the links below!
Monday August 24th: Max California | Filles à Maman | Hey June | House of Estrela
Tuesday August 25th: Skirt Fixation | Gracious Threads | Kimmie Sew Crazy | Shaffer Sisters
Wednesday August 26th: Kid Approved | Pinkel | Falafel and the Bee | Once Upon a Sewing Machine
Thursday August 27th: Buzzmills | Pattern Revolution | Sprouting JubeJube | Handmade Martini
Friday August 28th: That's Sew Kari | Lulu & Celeste | Paisley Roots | Modern Handmade
Monday August 31st: Sew Cool for the Tween Scene | Kadiddlehopper | Imagine Gnats | Nap Time Creations
Tuesday September 1st: My Sweet Sunshine | Straight Stitch Designs | Handmade Boy | That's What She Crafted
Wednesday September 2nd: Climbing the Willow | Rebel & Malice | GYCT Designs | Two-Many
Thursday September 3rd: The Crazy Tailor | sewVery | Just Add Fabric | Delia Creates
Friday September 4th: A Jennuine Life | Conversas de Hermanas | Made by Sara | Not Sew Fast
Be sure to grab your copy of the Paneled Sunsuit pattern from Designs by Call Ajaire during the pattern tour (August 24th through September 4th) and receive a 15% discount! Join the Designs by Call Ajaire Facebook Group and have access to a coupon code for an extra 5% off!
Call Ajaire also recently added a free add-on to the Paneled Sunsuit pattern to provide even more options! I wasn't sure that was even possible! If you've already purchased the pattern, be sure to download these additional pattern pieces and instructions from Call Ajaire.
Have FUN sewing!