Huggable Happy Homemade Hoodie

Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids - S

As promised earlier this month, I have made my daughter pattern S from Tuttle Publishing's Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids book. The book calls it a Pull-over Parka but to my British ears that suggests more of a coat than the cute simple hooded sweatshirt it is.

Pattern S has three-quarter length sleeves, a drawstring waist and a loose hood. I used a lovely bright floral fleece for added huggability. It was a very easy make and I will definitely be sewing more versions of this – perhaps with full length sleeves and an added kangaroo pocket next time.

Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids
Pullover Parka pattern diagram

I can report that the Happy Homemade hoodie has been thoroughly tested climbing trees in Homefield Park! It more than passes muster and is currently her favourite thing to wear.

Happy Homemade Hoodie
Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids hoodie

New Ivy Arch telephone and typewriter lavender bags

Ruby Star phone lavender bags by Ivy Arch

The run up to Christmas is the busiest time of my lavender bag producing year and the soothing sweet scent of this herb permeates my house. 
   According to folklore lavender is a favourite scent of the elves, which is why it is sometimes referred to as Elf Leaf. Some incredible properties have been attributed to it including the power to ward off depression (by simply gazing at the plant) and the ability to maintain peacefulness at home (by scattering lavender flowers around the house). It was also recommended to smell the plant as often as possible to guarantee a long life.
   While I can't promise that my lavender bags have magic properties they do smell great and make ideal Christmas gifts. I've added two new lines to my Etsy shop today, new telephones and typewriter lavender bags in Melody Miller's Ruby Star fabrics for Kokka, Japan.

Ruby Star telephone and typewriter lavender bags by Ivy Arch

If only this was smell-o-vision I could share the gorgeous scent with you on this blog too! Go here for a closer look and to buy.

A Happy Homemade girl's Gudrun Sjödén dress

Happy Homemade Gudrun Sjoden

Like many DIY dressmaking fans throughout the land I'd been eagerly awaiting the release of Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids so of course jumped at the chance to review Tuttle Publishing's forthcoming title!

This is my first look at a Japanese childrenswear sewing book. Sew Chic Kids contains 20 designs by Ruriko Yamada for children aged between 2-8 years – several girls dresses and blouses as well as shorts, trousers, a shirt and a hooded pull-over (suitable for boys and girls). All simple, elegant designs. It follows the same format as its mother title Happy Homemade Sew Chic and has a thorough section devoted to basic sewing techniques, sewing machine tips, how to draft a paper pattern and advice on pattern placement.

My daughter was delighted that these Japanese clothes would fit her instead of me! I asked her to choose an outfit she'd like me to make and after half an hour of ruminating she managed to narrow her choice down to 9 garments. We finally agreed on pattern J, a v-neck dress (and I've promised to make the pull-over parka next).

Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids
Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids: V-neck dress J

I thought the clean lines of dress J would look good in Gudrun Sjödén's bold, bright Solros fabric. It's 100% organic cotton and is printed with large scale multicoloured flowers – a sturdy fabric great for this autumn/winter dress. 

Girls dress in Gudrun Sjödén's Solros fabric
Happy Homemade dress J in Gudrun Sjödén's Solros organic cotton

I fully lined the dress in another Gudrun Sjödén material – a soft airy cotton voile printed with her Krokus design. The finished dress feels lovely and silky inside. Here's what it looks like inside out:

Dress lined with Gudrun Sjödén's Krokus fabric
Inside out: dress lined with Gudrun Sjödén's Krokus fabric

We went across the road to Homefield Park to take our photos amongst the dishevelled leaves and fallen branches of trees struck by St. Jude's storm.

My daughter loves her very first Happy Homemade Gudrun Sjödén fabric dress!

Happy Homemade Sew Chic Kids is published by Tuttle on 5th November 2013.
Gudrun Sjödén's fabulous fabrics are available by the metre from her webshop and in store at her boutiques.