size 5 project: puppet show

The original four Oliver + S patterns (released in spring 2008) only go up to size five. They are the: Puppet Show Tunic, Dress + Shorts, Tea Party Sundress + Playsuit, Bubble Dress, and Swingset Tunic + Skirt. Being a unique group of patterns, a topic called the size 5 project was started in the discussion forums. The general idea behind the size 5 project is to make a child something from one of these patterns before they size out of them. It acts as a great motivation to sew another one before packing the patterns away forever. Play along if you’d like. To kick off the project, Brittney is starting out with the Puppet Show pattern. Today is a round-up. Be sure to stop by tomorrow for the Puppet Show Shorts sew-along. Thanks so much for being here, Brittney!

The Puppet Show pattern holds a special place in my heart, which is why I am so excited I am able to highlight this great pattern. When I first started trying to teach myself to sew, I tried many, many pdf patterns looking for the ‘right’ one. I wanted them to be easy to piece together, easy to sew, decent instructions and most of all something that would fit my kid well. I nearly gave up, but I had been bitten by the sewing bug and decided to give it one last go. I had read so much about the Oliver + S brand, but the fact that they were paper patterns and that I would have to wait for shipping kind of made me hesitate. Well, as it turns out, they had just started offering PDF patterns, the first one being the Puppet Show. I was so impressed with the PDF within a few weeks I purchased ten of the paper patterns and Little Things to Sew and have never looked back. The rare times I make something from another pattern I always think to myself, “What would Liesl have me do?” No joke. Sewing is my sanity, and I owe it all to Oliver + S, and to finding the Puppet Show pattern.


Size 5 project: Oliver+ S Puppet Show pattern


The Puppet Show shorts are a staple for summer in our house, I thought I would highlight some I found in the flickr pool that have inspired me.

First of all, you can’t go wrong with a pair made in denim.


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts in denim


Why not try some chambray, and add a little flair by using something fun for the bindings?


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts in chambray


Another way to jazz up a solid pair is with a couple of dainty bows


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts with bows


some lace


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts with lace trim


…or even by making just the pockets in a print.


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts


They look great in a large print,


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts


equally as adorable in a smaller print.


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts


I have always meant to make a pair in gingham and this pink is just so girly.


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts in gingham


Why not try a striped material? I love the subtle look of the stripes going in different directions.


Oliver + S Puppet Show Shorts in stripes


And what to do if it is still looking like winter in your neck of the woods? Why not pair them with some cozy tights and a cardigan to make this pattern work for any season.


Oliver + S Puppet Show Tunic + Shorts


I hope this helps inspire you to join us tomorrow in our sew-along of the Puppet Show Shorts for our first installment of the Size 5 project.


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  1. Melanie

    so very adorable! Where did you find the heart tights?

  2. Oh, I do love Puppet Show shorts! They work so well in any fabric. Great post, B – I shall definitely sew along this week – I have two pairs ready to go.

  3. Thank you Melanie! I found them at Target earlier in the season.

    Yay Justine! I have a few to do too:)

  4. sharon k

    darling set!! I love it.

  5. Sarvi

    Great inspiration choices!

  6. So sweet! I love the Puppet Show shorts and was so sad when my girls outgrew them.

  7. One of our favorite Oliver + S patterns….. :). Makes us sad to even think about our nieces’ outgrowing the sizes!!! Still have a winterized version on our “to do” list {but it may be next winter :)}.

  8. SShaw

    Oh no! Puppet Show, Tea Party, & Swingset are all on my “want” list. I didn’t realize they only went up to size 5; we have long outgrown those sizes. That’s a bummer, but I suppose the silver lining is that it whittles down my to-do list.

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