for the next few days we are talking about my favorite homemade gifts for various types of occasions. yesterday i shared my favorite kid toys and accessories to give as gifts and today i'm talking about making little girl apparel as a gift.
now sewing for little girls is sort of my 'thing' so i'm breaking it down into three pieces of advice.
when in doubt make casual dresses & tunics
this style always looks good and can be worn year round by mixing in long sleeve t-shirts, leggings, tights, and cardigans.
the first pattern i recommend is the the roller skate dress from oliver + s not only because it's darling and easy to sew (especially for a fully lined dress) but if you are unsure of the child's size it's relaxed fit gives you a margin for error and them wiggle room.
here is maya in a polka dot version i made for her as a tunic:
when making this pattern as a dress i always add an extra inch in the elastic so it can transition to a tunic as they get taller. (ten points to aunt maggie for thinking ahead!)
here is an example of a dress version i did for nora and etta:
in addition to being comfortable both patterns have a cut that lends itself to fun prints. which is essential when sewing for kids. here is the class picnic tunic in a lorax print for maya's third birthday:
use bright colors & prints
check out all the fun prints and colors i used for maya's winter wardrobe last year:
versus this is what aunt maggie wears on a daily basis.
nora in her poppy dress:
maya in her spunky polka dot dress:
and the put a bird on it dress:
and etta in her pink on pink polka dot playdate:
twirly skirts are always popular
recently maya, the least girly of all my nieces, requested a 'rainbow skirt she could spin in'. this wasn't surprising. if you ask any of my nieces to describe or draw an outfit they want it will feature a circle skirt about 75% of the time. example this picture i received from nora:
i made this vision happen for nora and etta in the form of the twirly dresses. which proved to be a great style for playing in the fountain after school:
exploring a national park:
and being sworn in as a junior ranger:
so there you have it, my words of wisdom for sewing little girl apparel as gifts.