Sewing Clothes Kids Love: Sewing Patterns and Instructions for Boys’ and Girls’ Outfits Nancy J.S.Langdon & Sabine Pollehn. Creative International Publishing International, 2010.
Sewing for kids is a craft that has for a long time been so functional that it is easy to forget that kids clothes can be gorgeous, well designed, funky and flexible. The book Sewing Clothes Kids Love ticks all my boxes:
Hardcover with wire comb binding so the book sits still when I am using it, which cannot be understated as a feature in crafting books in my opinion, check!
Lots of explaining of the motivations and inspirations behind the techniques, design choices and projects, check!
Lots of information for beginning sewers about sewing room must haves, techniques, and fabric choices. These are also extra helpful for those of us who’s machine is a little dusty from underuse and really should be unearthed to sew kids clothes and to work down the stash of gorgeous fabrics…. check!
A section on measuring your child, and adjusting the pattern to fit. My kids range from petite to lanky, so this is very welcome information! Check!
Some great information on tracing, placing and cutting patterns, seam allowances, and fitting. It even has instructions on making a Kinderquin (think mannequin but the exact shape and size of your child). If you have ever tried in vain to have a wriggly or impatient child model stand still for just another fitting of a garment, then this is a must for you. Check!
A primer on sewing techniques, including working with knit fabric, gathers, pressing, and embellishment. On embellishment, I love embellished clothes! These patterns allow the sewer to make the clothes as basic or as fancy as you like. Check!
A range of projects that, when you look at them, are actually well designed staples of a kid’s wardrobe, including a tshirt, hoodie, leggings, shorts, tank top, skirt, trousers, jacket, windbreaker and dresses. You could make six pairs of trousers and six t-shirts, and nobody would know that they were from the same pattern. Fantastic! Check!
Size charts and fabric requirements tables for each pattern + Loads of diagrams and photos of each project + Lots of tips and options for customising each project, and including your child in the design process, check!
All of the projects are clothes that are stylish, functional, can be dressed up or down, and really importantly for me, don’t buy into the “dressing children as adults, especially little girls as teenagers or young women”. These are good kids clothes, designed for kids. Check!
Last but certainly not least, the book has a pocket with 10 full sized patterns inside, so if the mood takes you, you can just pick your fabric, measure your child, trace off the pattern and start sewing. Check!
If sewing kids clothes is something that you do, or have yet to try, or someone you know sews for your kids, or even if your kids want to start sewing for themselves, this book is a great place to start. [check out their website to find out more]
Reviewed by: Kate is a busy mother of four with many craft projects on the go, including, but not limited to, crochet, knitting, sewing, dyeing, paper making, spinning, felting and bookbinding. Kate has challenges in the areas of finishing things, saying no and craft supplies storage. She also has a very very patient and tolerant husband.