Friday, March 29, 2013

Sewing for Baby: The Swingset Tunic

Yesterday, I shared photos of my progress on the Swingset Tunic, a pattern by oliver + s that marked my first foray into sewing for our baby-girl-to-be, and this morning, I finished the dress. Levi kindly agreed to allow his doll to model it for me.
The pattern (that includes a skirt, which I didn't make) is meant for an "advanced beginner." I'd say that's a fair assessment of the skill required.  There were "new to me" techniques, like sewing a gathering stitch to make a ruffle (easy!) and constructing buttoned placket for the back (not so easy). Putting together the back yoke (lining, outer fabric) was really challenging and required a fair bit of googling. I'm a visual learner, and although the pattern was well-written and included pictures, I still struggled. It was hard to keep track of which piece of fabric was my lining, which was my outer piece, etc.
Another factor that added to the difficulty is the size I made: 0 to 3 month. The pieces are so tiny! I know that I messed up the armholes, especially when I look at photos of the tunic in larger sizes on Flickr. My mistake was sewing the the front and back yoke together and lining up the seams precisely. I think there should actually be a space between the yokes. But again, because of the size, I'm not certain that there was enough fabric to leave a space! I do plan on making several more of these - including a 12 to 18 month version for next summer - so I guess I'll see then whether the space is present in larger sizes and simply eliminated in the smallest size.
I still need to add a button to the back but I don't have a pretty pearl-like button in my stash so it will have to wait. For now, I'm thrilled to have finished my first dress for baby and am anxious to get started on another one. Any recommended patterns for baby girls?
I'm linking up with TGIFF this week. Click on over to see what everyone one finished this Friday!


  1. I didn't make any girls clothes until my daughter was a bit bigger to appreciate them - and they could be worn for longer. Littlies just grow so fast that it seemed a bit of a waste of time for the effort involved. But thats ME! I would recommend using a flat button for the back because remember they spend most of their time lying down.

  2. Its gorgeous and you picked a tricky enough pattern for a tiny tot!
    Well done you.
    I sent you a FM about a tute I put together,only if you are interested.

  3. Beautiful! I love the style and the color of that dress.

  4. I think that Cabbage Patch doll has a bright future in modelling!