A sewing blog about building a functional, cohesive handmade wardrobe, one garment at a time.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Something I never thought I'd sew

I'm actually not sure how I ended up thinking it was a good idea to try to sew some underwear for my girls.  I ran across a free pattern one evening, and suddenly I was rifling through my knit scraps and the stash of lingerie elastic I bought when I made my nursing gowns.

That was last week, and now each girl has five pairs.  Clearly it was a success because both of them reach for Mama-made first when choosing their underwear.

I am pretty proud of these because I had to do a lot of altering to make the pattern work for my girls.  My version actually really doesn't bear any resemblance at all to the original.  The pattern was ostensibly a size 5/6 and should have fit both girls, but it didn't fit either one.  The rise was too short, the width was too tight, and the crotch was way too wide.  After nine pairs following the original one, I think I now have each girl's fit down.

N's are on the left and Z's on the right. Both needed a much longer rise, which I accomplished by lengthening the crotch.  I found that for Z's bubble booty, I needed to add fabric to the back at both leg openings.  N's needed to be higher-cut so that they wouldn't show under her ballet leotard.  I actually need to scoop out the upper legs a touch more for the next pair.

I changed the pattern up, too, to be more like the Cosi swimsuit.  The original pattern calls for a back, front and two gusset pieces.  I lengthened the front piece to include one of the gusset pieces, thus only needing to cut one gusset.

Eight pairs of custom-fit unmentionables.  The other two are currently being worn.  Turns out, kids' underwear is super-fun to sew and is a great use for scraps of your favorite knit fabrics.  I used cotton jersey, cotton/elastane jersey and interlock.  The latter two worked best.

My coverstitch played a starring role, though I could just as easily have used a zigzag stitch.  

Totally unrelated, but not really warranting its own blog post, I also made Niko a Field Trip Raglan to match the one I made Gabriel during KCW.

I made a size 6-12 months using the same Art Gallery knits I used for G's raglan. It's a little long in the sleeves but otherwise fits pretty well.


  1. Awesome job on the knickers, well done on tailoring them to fit.
    Niko is adorable, love the Field Trip tee, Trixie is still wearing her 6-12months.
    xx N

  2. Sewing undies is really fun, right? It feels so virtuous to use up those little knit scraps, and they look so cute on little kid tushes. :-) Perfecting the fit on something like this really feels like, yeah, I'm figuring this fitting concept out. I dunno, is that just me?

    I remain somewhat painfully jealous of your coverstitch. Your beautiful hems are making me look at coverstitches on the net and wondering if I could maybe sell Steve's car and replace it with one of these beauties. It would be far more practical! Haha, okay, don't worry Steve, I'm just joking!

    Niko is so so cute. And seriously woman, Ottobre. They have undies and t-shirt patterns GALORE.

    1. I went to look at Ottobre mags on Etsy after your last comment. Very tempted, just haven't pulled the trigger yet! And it's not just you - sewing these undies is so satisfying - I feel like I have cracked the code on the perfect sewing palate cleanser.

      You would coverstitch the heck out of some knits. Just sayin'.

  3. I keep meaning to try knickers again and your post reminds me that I should pull out my knit scraps and give it a go. My eldest daughters rtw ones never fit her right. Bravo for perfecting the fit. I have an Ottobre (6/2013) that has a couple of good undies and thermals in it, I should give it a go.


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