One of the many perks of having a big family is that there are always plenty of children around to test pattern sizes on! When I was writing up the instructions for my Spy Top variation of Basic Tees, I made some for my nieces in Sydney to test a few different sizes.
These two can be fussy about what they wear, so I always like to check with them first and make sure they are actually going to like it. Michaela, for instance, will NOT wear anything with buttons! So funny, but Lil loves getting casts-offs from Michaela when ever she gets a new item of clothing with buttons on it! I took photos of a heap of different fabrics and emailed them to my sister for the girls to choose from. Michaela liked this Peacock Love from Lillestoff. I paired it with some striped fabric that was a perfect match. Michaela turns 7 in a few months and I made her a size 7, it fits well with plenty of growing room.
Maya is a bit quirky in her choice of clothes, she always has us laughing with her unique style and doesn’t care what anyone thinks about it! She has been fox-crazy for a long time and choose this fox fabric, also from Lillestoff. It was a tricky one to find a colour to pair it with, I had red in my cupboard but thought it might look a bit too Christmasy with lots of red trim. I ended up going with a light grey Robert Kaufman Laguna knit.
Maya is only 9 but I made her a size 10 because she prefers less-fitted clothes. She is a skinny little thing (wears a size 7 in pants!) so I could have cut the waistband a bit smaller to bring the waist in a little bit. She requested a photo with her beloved “Foxy” toy that has been a favourite of hers for as long as I can remember! Thanks Carli for snapping these pics of your beautiful girls, it’s handy to have a photographer in another state! x
I’m looking forward to seeing some of your Basic Tee Spy Tops creations – but I’m warning you now…once you start you will be addicted and won’t be able to stop at one! Next up on my sewing list is to make a Spy Top for myself…
Sharing a few more Spy Tops with you today…these photos of my niece, Poppy were taken at the end of last year. She is a little cutie and has grown up so much in the last 6 months. The fabric for this Spy Top is from Spoonflower here. I purchased the organic cotton knit, which was the only knit option avaliable when I bought it a couple of years ago. They have brought out a few more knits lately though that I would be interested in trying out because the ones I have fade so much. It is a lovely, snuggly fabric to work with and wear though.
Crazy Nancy-Noo in a Spy Top I made her last year also. This one is made from Lillestoff Summer Forest Jersey – cute print, isn’t it? She is a funny little chicken and had been digging around in the cemetery and tipping water out of as many pots as she could get her hands on when I took these photos of her!
And another for Lilsy because she is almost two big for her others. This fabric is a rose print from Stenzo. She has been asking me to sew something for her in it forever and I keep changing her mind because I didn’t think it would suit a little girl but now it is made up I really like it. If you look closely, you will probably notice that the sleeve cuffs are a bit darker than the hem cuff and cowl. I only wanted light pink for the contrasting colour and didn’t have enough of one piece around to use to used two different fabrics. I could just tell you that I wanted it to look like that and you would be none the wiser though…
It was a year ago when I started using my Basic Tees pattern as the basis to make these cowl neck tops.
Do you remember them? And do you remember that I promised to offer the instructions as a free download to use in conjunction with your Basic Tees pattern? Well, I didn’t forget my promise and am happy to let you know that for anyone who already has a Basic Tees paper pattern, you can now download the free instructions to make your Basic Tees into a super chic SPY TOP!
Spy Top?! I know it’s an odd name…but I can’t get it out of my head ever since Lil started calling her cowl neck Basic Tees her Spy Top because she can pull the cowl up over her face and spy on people without them knowing who she is! So, Spy Top it is!!!
If you weren’t around last year, or missed these tops somehow then here’s the overview…
I was short on time (after a new baby) and had an itching to sew something. It was the middle of Winter and Lil was lacking long-sleeved tops but I wanted to pretty them up somehow. After a bit of playing around I took my Basic Tees pattern and added a cosy cowl neck, long skinny arm cuffs and a hem cuff and have been addicted to them ever since! I’ve made lots for Lil and the cousins (photos to come) and am dying to have a go at making one for myself – I think it would rock!
Also, I have revised the original Basic Tees pattern and included the Spy Top variation as part of the whole pattern now. So any Basic Tees patterns which stores purchase from now on will have the Spy Top variation included in it.
AND I have just finished changing the Basic Tees pattern into PDF format so it is now avaliable as an instant PDF download – and yes, the PDF download includes the Spy Top variation as well!
Oh, and to celebrate…the Basic Tees PDF pattern is on sale for 1 week at the reduced price of $10 so purchase it now and add this classic, everyday piece to your collection! (Sale ends Friday 15th June.)
Stay tuned…I wasn’t lying when I said I am addicted to making these tops, I’ll be flooding the blog with them very soon!
I know I’m on a winning sewing project when the wearer requests more of the same. I loved making my first altered Basic Tee with cowl neck for Lil so happily jumped at the chance to give it a second go.
I love this yellow/grey colour combo. This fabric was actually bought to make something for myself, but I was happy to use it for Lil and we always appreciate the change from pink/purple “girly” colours.
I really want to make one for myeslf, but will wait until I’ve managed to shed some of the post-baby fat. Basic Tee pattern for women coming up perhaps?
I’ve already been given the go ahead to make her more of these – I think the cowl neck would look really cute on a short-sleeve or 3/4-sleeve top too for Spring.
The tradionalEaster jammies actually got finished in time for Easter this year! I know most sewers have a tradition of sewing pretty Easter dresses and ties for their kids, but for me, Easter always signifies the start of cooler weather and the kids always seem to be needing new PJs so this works for us.
Oscar has refused to wear jammies for the last couple of years and always opts for a comfy tshirt and pair of shorts. His favourite shorts by far are his Long Boards (he’s even worn holes through a few of the bottoms) so it made sense to whip him up a pair for sleeping, the ribbed waistband makes them super comfy. I didn’t bother with knee patches on these ones as they won’t get as much wear and tear so I kept them nice and simple. The tshirt was made using my Basic Tees pattern.
Tommy’s PJs were made using my Slumber Party Jammies pattern. They are big for him now, so he will easily get a couple of years wear from them. And his top was made using my Basic Tees pattern.
Lil got two pairs of PJ pants for Easter. Three years ago I made myself some snuggly flannel PJs and I obviously wore them to death because the bottoms were becoming threadbare and I’d worn holes in them. I thought it was a waste to throw them out because most of the fabric was still in good condition, so I managed to cut them down and make into PJ pants for Lil! If they were store-bought, I wouldn’t have thought twice about throwing them in the rag bag, but I couldn’t bear to throw good quality fabric that could still be put to use in the bin!
And that’s a wrap for this Easter! We’ll do it again next year!