Clowning Around: Part One: The Dress Pattern

How exciting, my 3-year-old daughter is going to be on a carnival float with her dance troop. They want all the little kiddies in circus themed outfits so I’ve decided to make her a pretty little clown outfit based on this quick sketch:

To post the entire tutorial on one go would prove to be too lengthy so I’ll separate it into parts. This is part one:

Making the Pattern:

I stood her on a chair and asked her to hold her arms parallel to the floor while I did a few quick measurements. (She’s tall like her Dad so she measures larger than the standard length for a 3-year-old).

I measured down her back and front, around her waist and what drop of the skirt I’d like from her waist downwards making notes of these measurements as I went along.

The Fiber Gypsy has a great little online chart with standard children’s measurements here which you may find useful.

Then I quickly sketched out the basic shape of each of the dress panels like this:

The aim is a 1950’s style fitted dress with a poofy skirt and sleeves – it’ll be the fabrics and embellishments I choose that make it “clowny”.

Then I sellotaped pieces of A4 paper together and began measuring out my pattern (course if you have paper larger than A4 sellotape wouldn’t be necessary)

There is no allowance for hems on the patterns I have made here so when cutting out fabric I shall allow around 1/4 – 1/2″ all around for my hemlines. If you prefer your pattern to include hem allowance you’ll have to consider this when drawing them out.

If you prefer, dressmakers tracing, pattern and carbon paper is available to buy at most good haberdashery shops. Personally I don’t see the need for such a simple project but for more complicated projects paper like this would be very handy indeed.

This is probably the most basic pattern in the history of all mankind but I really don’t see the point of over complicating things if there’s no need.

Boring Measurements Info:

This is all based on exactly what you see above – measured for my daughter and will of course be subject to your own adjustments, hopefully these measurements should give you a general idea of where to go.

Front Panel:

  • Across Waist: 5.5″
  • Down Chest: 6″
  • Skirt Drop: 10″

(The angle of the skirt was drawn by sight to give a rough taper)

You will need to cut out one of these pieces.

Side Panels:

  • Armhole Depth: 5″
  • Across waist: 3″
  • Down Sides: 6″
  • Skirt Drop: 10″

(The curve of the armhole was drawn by hand)

You will need to cut out 4 of these – 2 on one side and a further two using the pattern reversed.

Breast Panel:

  • 1.75″ Wide
  • 7.5″ Long at Longest Point
  • 6.5″ Long at Shortest Point

(The curve at either side was drawn by hand and the piece folded in half when cutting out for symmetry.)

You need to cut out one of these pieces.

Back Panel:

  • Across Waist: 5.5″
  • Down Back: 9″ (with a slight curve drawn towards the middle of the back)
  • Skirt Drop: 10″

You will need to cut out one of these pieces.

Sleeves:

Use the side panel pattern piece to draw the curve of the sleeve sides, cut straight along the bottom and a domed curve across the top

  • Across the Bottom: 11″
  • Width (from widest part): 7 1/4″

———————————————————————————

Now I have my pattern cut and ready I’m off to buy some fabric!

———————————————————————————

Clowning Around: Part One: The Pattern

Clowning Around: Part Two: Making The Dress

Clowning Around: Part Three: The Underskirt

Clowning Around: Part Four: Knitted Leg-Warmers

Clowning Around: Part Five: Knitted Armbands

Clowning Around: Part Six: Bow Tie

Clowning Around: Part Seven: Hair Ribbons

Clowning Around: Part Eight: Baton with Swirly Ribbons

Clowning Around: Part Nine: Full Materials Needed Breakdown

Clowning Around: Part Ten: Final Full Outfit Images

Clowning Around: Part Eleven: The Carnival Parade Goes Live!

(Please Note: This tutorial is presently still a work in progress and not all of the parts are available yet, please either bookmark the homepage or follow us through Networked Blogs, the WordPress RSS Feed, hit the email subscription box on the right column, or add us on Facebook or Twitter for regular updates. Thank You.)

———————————————————————————

Advertisements

Crafts for Kids: Crafty Cards

Why not introduce your kids to the art of card craft early with this cheap and alternative way of creating really special and unique cards for your family and friends for birthdays, christmas, weddings etc…

The school year is almost over so today my daughter and I made this Thank You card for her teacher.

What You Need:

  • Gluestick
  • Scissors
  • Coloured Card
  • Coloured Paper
  • Envelope
  • Cut-Outs from Greetings Cards (See below for details)

Optional:

  • Sequins
  • Ribbons
  • Beads
  • Tissue paper
  • Felt Tip Pens
  • Whatever you like!

Every time we have an event that means we get lots of cards in our house when we are finished with them instead of throwing them away or putting them in a sentimental keepsake box and forget about them we cut out pieces from them. Text that reads “Happy Birthday” for example, pictures of butterflies, flowers, boarders etc etc etc (from the inside and the back of the card too!) All these pieces go into a special box and when it’s someones birthday or whatever we can have a good rummage through and decide which pieces to use to make a card ourselves. (We also use these as gift tags on presents – it’s something my Mother and I used to do when I was a child and I still enjoy deciding which part of the card would make the nicest cut out as much as I did then.)

Card craft supplies kind of have the same kind of thing only you have to fork out your hard-earned for these pieces – and although they look much more professional our method is not only free but recycled and when people know your kids have helped make the cards they are generally much more forgiving.

How to Build Your Card:

Firstly measure the envelope that you are using and ensure your folded piece of card is just a little bit smaller than this.

Use a piece of card cut to size and fold in half – we used card that is coloured on one side and white on the inside.

Using a piece of coloured paper, we cut another piece to fold in half that is even smaller than the card itself to add as the insert. (This is where you will write your greeting message.)

Once glued in place we added a message to the inside just like a bought card would have from our card cut outs box.

The front of the card is really up to you, use the pieces of card cut outs (see how we used a piece of pink spotty card as a background and added pieces on top of that). Embellish the card as you like, just make sure it’s not too bulky that it won’t fit into your envelope.

——————————————————————–

We’d love to see your card creations, send your photos to us and we will include them in our gallery. You can email your pictures to us at

lilypchic@hotmail.co.uk

or add the Lily P Chic Facebook profile to your friends list, post your pictures and send us a note.

——————————————————————–

Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

Fabric Envelopes

Clear Out Time

Egg and Dairy Free Chocolate Cupcakes!

My eldest daughter is allergic to dairy and eggs, even the smallest amount can result in a nasty facial eczema which can be rather upsetting for her.

You can only imagine then how utterly delighted she was when I came up with this recipe through a fair amount of trial and error for totally egg and dairy free chocolate cupcakes (with butter-style frosting none the less!). My friends have told me that if I hadn’t said they would have been none the wiser.

So, to make a start on the latest section to the Lily P Chic blog ~ “Recipes” here’s my:

Egg-less, Milk-less and Butter-less Chocolate Cupcakes.

What You Need:

Ingredients (for around 12 cupcakes):

(For the cakes)

  • 1 and a half cups of Self Raising Flour
  • 1/3 cup Cocoa Powder
  • 1 tsp Bicarbonate of Soda
  • 1/2 tsp Salt
  • 1 cup Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup Vegetable or Sunflower oil
  • 1 cup Cold Water
  • 2 tsp vanilla Extract
  • 2 tsp Vinegar

(For the frosting)

  • 1/3 cup Dairy Free Margarine
  • 1/4 tsp Salt
  • 1 tsp Vanilla Extract
  • 3 and a half Cups Icing Sugar
  • 3 to 4 tbsp Soya Milk
  • Food Colouring
  • Sprinkles / Silver Balls / Decorative Items etc

Equipment:

  • Paper Cupcake Cases
  • Mixing Bowls
  • Whisk (Hand or Electric)
  • Measuring Cups & Spoons
  • Bun Oven Tray
  • Cooling Rack

Method:

Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees (gas mark 5)

Sieve all the dry ingredients for the cakes into a bowl

Mix gently and then create a well in the middle where you can add your wet ingredients (leave out the vinegar at this stage)

Mix everything together until smooth and silky. Add the vinegar and stir through until mixed evenly.

Spoon out equal parts into bun cases and pop in the oven for 25 – 30 minutes.

Allow your cakes to completely cool on a wire rack before topping with frosting.

To Make the Frosting:

Cream the dairy free marg, sugar, salt and vanilla until light and fluffy. Add the soya milk to achieve a smooth consistency. Separate the mixture into a bowl for each colour you intend to make, add a few drops of food colouring to each batch and mix well.

Spread a decent spoonful of frosting onto each cupcake and let your children decorate.

My baby girls first birthday cupcake cake!

A batch I took to the Mother and Baby group on my daughter’s first birthday to celebrate. the kids loved them (and the Mum’s did too).

Later today I’ll be using this recipe to make a large cake for my Mum’s birthday – Once it’s finished I’ll add some pictures.

——————————————————————–

We’d love to see your own cakes, send your photos to us and we will include them in our gallery. You can email your pictures to us at

lilypchic@hotmail.co.uk

or add the Lily P Chic Facebook profile to your friends list, post your pictures and send us a note.

——————————————————————–

Flying Fish

Make Your Own: Towel Cake

Make Your Own: Alice in Wonderland Costume

To celebrate my daughters and mothers birthdays next weekend we’re having an Alice in Wonderland themed tea party. I needed an Alice dress for my almost 4-year-old quick!

I cut a lot of corners to make this so it’s quick and simple, and I am proud to say that it cost me nothing at all as I was able to use materials entirely from my salvage box.

Here’s how I made the dress:

Fabric Used:

  • Blue Fabric (I used an old ankle length skirt of mine – if I had purchased fabric I probably would have bought a slightly lighter blue but as far as a 4-year-old is concerned blue is blue so it’s all good.)
  • White Fabric (This was one of Daddy’s old work shirts)
  • Elastic (Taken from my older son’s boxer shorts – washed first of course)

I used one of my daughters school pinafore dresses as a template, roughly drawing around the top section to create my basic shape.

From my material I cut two of these pieces and unsure if I would have enough material left over for sleeves I hemmed the necklines and sleeve openings.

To allow enough room to get the dress over her head I created this easy peasy tie-up opening with a short length of white ribbon. Here’s how:

  • Cut a slit along the back.
  • Add another small cut to create a “T” shape slit
  • Pin a length of ribbon along each edge leaving enough at the tops to tie the garment shut when worn.
  • Add a small piece of ribbon along the bottom the keep the edges neat.
  • Sew on the ribbon as pictured.

Pin the two pieces together and sew along the sides and the gap between the neck and sleeve openings. Apologies for the image that shows the piece being pinned in preparation for this step, anyone that owns felines will understand that at some point in any project your cat will decide to do something along these lines.

Ok poser, just one more picture then you’re off so I can finish this dress…

From the biggest piece of full fabric I’d salvaged from my old skirt I cut myself a rectangle, pinned along one edges and hemmed. If you have more material than me you can use much more for a fuller, gathered effect. For a really dramatic poofed out look you could also whip up an underskirt from white netting if you have any lying around.

Sew along what will become the back of the skirt to form a large loop with your rectangle.

Pin and sew to the top part of the dress, neaten any edges, trim any loose threads and turn out.

Front

Back

For the apron I used one of Daddy’s old work heavy cotton shirts.

I cut two sections as pictured above and hemmed where the pieces have been pinned.

Since this was a salvage mission there wasn’t enough fabric to make a continuous sash to form the apron tie so I did the following:

  • Cut myself a selection of strips from the shirt all roughly the same width
  • Pressed each strip in half
  • Folded the strip out and then folded each edge into the centre and pressed again to form a strip of fabric that resembles bias tape
  • Inside the fold I slipped a length of iron on hemming tape (I could have stitched these pieces together but the tape acts a little like interfacing once cooled and creates a stiff feel to the apron tie for a more dramatic bow at the back.)
  • … and ironed it inside.

I stitched the strips together to form a generous length of material (saving a piece for the neck)

attaching the strip to the two apron pieces by sewing as shown by the pinned area.

attached the neck piece…

and we have an Alice dress with apron. As it turns out I didn’t have enough material left for sleeves, you can always add some if you prefer. Instead I popped on one of my daughters school blouses under the dress.

Of course no Alice costume is complete without an Alice Band…

It took me about 10 minutes if that to knock up this quicky one:

  • Fold over a rectangle of fabric, stitch together, turn out and press so that the hem falls along the middle of the back.
  • Do this again with another piece but not as wide.
  • Thread your elastic through this smaller piece.
  • Stitch the fabric and elastic together keeping the elastic pulled tight so that you create a gathered effect on the fabric once the tension is released.
  • Gather together the top piece and stitch the two pieces together.

Here’s my daughter wearing the dress (which, even if I do say myself, she was delighted with)…

All together now… “Not pink, Not green, Not aquamarine, We’re painting the roses red!”

——————————————————————–

We’d love to see your creations, send your photos to us and we will include them in our gallery. You can email your pictures to us at

lilypchic@hotmail.co.uk

or add the Lily P Chic Facebook profile to your friends list, post your pictures and send us a note.

——————————————————————–

Fairy Toadstools

Ladybugs

Flying Fish!

Versatile and fun fish to help your child with number recognition.

What You Need:

  • Colourful Card
  • Pencil
  • Felt Tip Pens
  • Scissors
  • Hole Punch

Optional:

  • Paperclips
  • Small Magnet
  • Laminator

Create your own fish template to draw around or use the ones below (click on each image to open a new printable version)

Cut out 10 fish, using the felt tip pens write numbers 1 to 10 on them. Include the corresponding amount of spots if you like.

Get your kids to colour them in.

Suggestion: Sequins and other such bits and pieces glued on would look great on these aswell.

If you have a laminator to make the fish more durable you could laminate them – it also creates a nice shiny finish. It’s not necessary if you cannot get hold of one however.

Punch a hole in the top of each fish.

Once the fish are made you can attach a paper clip to each one and using a small magnet tied to a piece of string play number fishing games.

You can use the fish in conjunction with rhymes to help your child with number recognition:

One, Two, Three, Four, Five,
Once I  caught a fish alive.
Six, Seven, Eight, Nine, Ten,
Then I threw it back again.
Why did you let it go?
Because it bit my finger so.
Which finger did it bite?
This little finger on my right!

For my daughter’s bedroom, I strung the fish together to create this fun and lively fishy bunting.

——————————————————————–

We’d love to see your own fishy creations, send photos of your finished pieces to us and we will include them in our gallery. You can email your pictures to us at

lilypchic@hotmail.co.uk

or add the Lily P Chic Facebook profile to your friends list, post your pictures and send us a note.

——————————————————————–

Clear Out Time!

It’s that time again when I realised dispite being overflowing with clothes, theres nothing in my baby girls draws that seems to fit her. She’s only gone and grown again! So, I have a good sort out and invested in some nice new summer clothes for her first birthday.

Yesterday evening I turned this lovely pile of old clothes…

Into this!

With nothing but a stitch picker and a pair of scissors…

I couldn’t believe how much ‘d salvaged. I have zippers, buttons, elastic, sequins, pockets, buckles, poppers, bias tape, ribbon and all this wonderful fabric which I’m sure I’ll do something interesting with when the fancy takes me.

I have plenty of birthday presents to wrap over the next few days so I may end up using some of it for beautiful and eco-friendly gift wrap:

Recycling is so satisfying…

Crafts for Kids: Handprint Keepsakes

Create quick and simple handprint pictures with your children that become treasured keepsakes.

What you Need:

  • Colourful Paper
  • Poster Paint
  • Paint Brush
  • Sequins
  • Glue Stick
  • Pen and Paper

What to Do:

  1. Pour some poster paint onto a plate or tray, paint the childs hand and get them to make a print on the paper (they have more work to do so you have a perfect excuse to ask them to wash their hands now if you prefer) .
  2. Allow them to decorate the rest of the paper by glueing on sequins.
  3. Write out the poem below onto a seperate piece of paper (or print it out on your PC if you prefer):
  4. Glue the poem onto the finished piece and once it’s fully dried it’s fridge worthy!

This is the hand

You used to hold

When I was only

(Childs age) months / years old.

Suggestion: Laminate the picture or frame it to preserve it and give to grandparents as a gift

——————————————————————–

We’d love to see your own handprint pictures, send photos of your finished pieces to us and we will include them in our gallery. You can email your pictures to us at

lilypchic@hotmail.co.uk

or add the Lily P Chic Facebook profile to your friends list, post your pictures and send us a note.

——————————————————————–

Next Newer Entries