I made a Christmas jumpsuit for my 14 mo. old.
Ingredients: small scale muted white/red/green plaid flannel from the Petals sale last year, pre-washed several times. Red and white gingham check pre-made piping from the Petals sale, pre-washed. Red Prym snaps.
Pattern: I modified the jumpsuit pattern from the Kwik-Sew Toddlers book. Size T2 (supposedly for 34" baby). Mine is about 32". The pattern looked small though so I lengthened the torso about 1/2" and the legs a tiny bit. I decided to use the existing 1" hems on the legs and sleeves as casings for elastic. For snap leg opening I added the suggested 1/2" at inseam and made some 1/2" single-fold bias tape out of the main fabric to face it as suggested.
I didn't like the extended shoulder T-shirt type sleeves, so I made high armpit set-in sleeves: I shortened the shoulder seams by a lot (maybe 1 1/2") and sloped them down more, brought the armscye underarm up about 1" and made it curve sharply, added a high sleeve cap with about 1" to 1"1/2 inch ease, with the sleeve cap front more curvy than the back. Lengthened the sleeve a bunch to make up for this. I was thinking of putting underarm gussets but didn't have time. These sleeves worked out fine for arm motion anyway because I did such a euro-cut I think.
Construction: Instead of using the foldover front facings and a neckline facing, I added a full torso lining (using the front and back pattern pieces with length stopping just above the front crotch seam). I put front and back placket seams on the front "fold line", stitching the fronts and backs to the lining there.
I interfaced the front openings using a nice white cotton shirting I had lying around, attaching it to the lining pieces. I didn't bother interfacing around the rest of the neckline/back because I piped the neck seam plus the lining gave plenty of stability.
I piped one continuous piece all around the neckline and down around the entire front placket. I also piped the armscyes (top only, from the front sleeve break to the back sleeve break) by applying the piping to the sleeve opening (there were two layers there because of the lining). Then I eased the sleeves and set them in, sewing from the inside as usual even though that makes it a little harder to see the line of stitching that holds the piping on the outside, so the piping was a smidge less precise there than the neckline.
The piping looks really sharp, if I do say so myself. I found the hints in the latest Threads on how to apply piping indispensable. The article has a pretty simple set of hints which I am sure those of you that have a lot of piping and cording know intuitively, but it really smoothed the way for me.
I was planning to make an elastic casing at the waistline because I like that look, but when I tried the suit on I decided against the waist elastic because the elastic reduces "grow room", the suit already didn't have as much extra length as I expected in the torso, and it looked good anyway. I also punted on the elastic at the sleeve hems and just rolled them up. Even thoguh I had lengthened the sleeves there wasn't a lot of extra room there. That is partly the pattern itself and partly one needs to lengthen a LOT when making such a fitted sleeve. I did put the elastic in the leg hems, and they look good and keep it tidy.
I used the Prym (Vario) snap setter to put regular metal circle snaps in the inseam and the pretty Prym red plastic snaps on the front placket.
Other comments: I'd rather not have the snap backs on the placket because they are right next to the skin. I didn't have buttons for this project around and I like snaps in general. Next time I might figure a way to get them inside the lining or put another flap on next to the skin or get some more low profile snap backs.
The Kwik-sew pattern sure does not have a lot of length compared to the height of the child on their sizing chart.
The allowance for room for the diaper really is not enough. This is a problem with other patterns I have seen and also the ready-to-wear. For instance in this jumpsuit the front crotch seam has a tough time with the diaper, especially the 'huggies ultratrim for "him" disposable' that puffs up in front. I might lift up my snap bias tape and add a gusset or another width of bias tape there. I was considering drafting in a crotch gusset, but I didn't have too much time and I had heard such good things about the Kwik-Sew patterns..but next time for sure.
Don't get me wrong, the pattern was a very convenient place to start, and the book had a lot of useful ideas and suggestions. However, my baby is tall and slender, and the pattern did not have a lot of room in either direction, so I consider the size chart to run small so far. Any one else have any comments on that for the other patterns in the book?
The piping is really fun to do and looks great. It's a nice detail and seems to have good effects on the seams and drape of the garment. By the way, the Threads author suggested a high-quality zipper foot rather than a pre-sized cording foot, and I had neither, so I used a big regular foot and it worked ok for these fabrics. I am sure the zipper foot would be be easier and more precise for stitching next to the piping though.