Oliver + S

Sewing for a seven year old

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    EmilyG @EmilyG

    Ladies, I need help. Give me some ideas of what to sew for my seven year old. I have sewn the library dress and she seems to still like it. But she doesn’t love the playtime dress I recently made her. Any thoughts on what your older girls like best.

    Jillls @Jillls

    I recently decluttered my seven year old’s wardrobe and let her decide what to keep and what to get rid of. The only handmade items that made the cut were an Apple Picking dress and several pairs (including hand-me-downs from her sister) of Class Picnic shorts. My girls love those shorts.

    Tamara @justsewit

    Hi @emilyg I think it would be a very personal choice. My daughter was around this age when I started sewing Oliver and s patterns for her. Alot of the things weren’t worn because I forgot one important element in the equation – to have her make some of the decisions.

    Does your daughter like relaxed outfits or does she like to dress up and go girly all the time? My daughter has gone he relaxed route and even more so as she has entered her teen years now. T shirts and shorts or trousers are the mainstay with the occasional dress but she has to make the decision on this and it changes every time. I made her two fairy tale dresses one year and only one of them was worn. I figured the reason for this was because it was sleeveless and she chose the fabric.

    She did like the book report and she loved the Icecream dress. I made the playtime as a short sleeved dress and in knit and she still wears it. But they are all in a casual style.

    The dress she most loved was the maxi t shirt dress I made using the metro t shirt pattern. You could do the same with the school bus tee. I need to make her another one as she has grown significantly.

    So maybe sit her down and go through the patterns with her and show her some photos of girls her age wearing similar styles as some children have a hard time picturing the style when they see little children wearing them.

    I hope this helps

    scgoble @scgoble

    I agree with Tamara and Jill that getting her input is the key to success. This is a difficult time for me in sewing for my 7 because she is very specific in what she wants, and she isn’t interested in anything she considers even remotely stuffy or formal. That translates mostly as no woven fabrics; almost everything in her closet is knit sportswear. I’ve made more Playtime dresses than I can count, but I make them short and without sleeves. She’s also big on fabric selection – that will make or break whether she wears something. She’s into cozy fleece right now. Tamara’s suggestion of showing her photos is helpful – we go through the Mini Boden, Hanna Andersen, Tea, etc. catalogs and get ideas that way.

    All that is not to say that I don’t purchase clothes for her. Frankly, that is the majority of her closet now. She just isn’t into handmade things like she used to be, and I’m not going to waste my time with things that won’t be worn. I’d rather sew for myself if that’s the case. 😉

    • This reply was modified 8 years ago by scgoble. Reason: grammar
    EllenMCM @EllenMCM

    My now-14-year-old has saved me thousands of dollars and countless hours of sewing time over the years by being very honest about what she does and does not want. I join those who posted earlier in saying you should always check first.

    My 8-year-old likes cargo pants and t-shirts in bright colors and fun prints. She will wear dresses on fancy occasions, but fabric choices are very important. My older dd would like me to stick with pajamas, pillowcases and quilts. I also made her a bag that she loves.

    EmilyG @EmilyG

    Thanks ladies. Where do you source your knits? She likes the hopscotch shirt, so I might try that as a dress. I am wondering if she might like the playtime dress if the bodice were knit and the skirt was woven. (I have made the whole thing out of knit but haven’t tried mixing fabrics) Has anyone tried knit and woven together?

    cybele727 @cybele727

    I was going to suggest the hopscotch. You can make a shirt or dress. You can color block. My almost 6 year old loves the two I just made. She wants them as nightgowns so comfy.

    But yes input it key. It is their ownership of the garment. But I limit choices. I present an either or Or best of 3.

    Sources: girl charlee. JoAnns. Mood on line. Etc.

    Brittney @georgeandizzy

    I agree with the above, I was making what I liked for my oldest, then getting annoyed when she would only wear it once it twice. I finally figured out that I needed to ask her opinion on basically everything.

    Her current favorites are the school bus tee, field trip Raglan and the swingset skirt. She has more of a casual style, so I always try and keep that in mind.

    Lately I have been buying a lot from raspberry creek fabric on etsy, I let my 10yo browse with me and show me what she likes, then I narrow it down. This shop is my favorite because the carry Art Gallery and Riley Blake knits at killer prices: https://www.etsy.com/shop/RaspberryCreekFabric

    Nicole @motherof5

    What a great topic, thank you @emilyg

    This is near to my heart as it is my 7 year olds sewing turn next.
    Tildy has her own Pinterest board https://www.pinterest.com/fiveandcounting/sewing-for-tildy/ and we regularly go through it together and discuss what she likes.

    What surprised me is how sophisticated her taste is. Tildy is also incredibly tactile and loves soft linens, brushed cottons and adores velvets.

    She is a very active little girl so her clothes need enough ease to play in. I am very careful not to get cross if she tears or spoils things, I don’t want her to see my sewing as ‘precious’.

    However, she is definitely getting more of an opinion about what she wears.

    Masha Richart

    My six-year-old vastly prefers knits to wovens. I make a lot of Playtime leggings for her. They are her very favorite thing to wear. She also really likes a knit dress I made for her by lengthening the Sailboat top pattern. That said, she will wear most dresses. She does not love collars but I can usually talk her into them. It’s funny, she was much more finicky about her clothes when she was 3 and 4 than she is now.

    As for knit sources, I like Laguna jersey from Robert Kaufman. I also have had great luck at Fabric Mart. They don’t often have cotton/lycra knits (the only kind I use for kids’ clothes) in stock, but whenever they do, I snap them up and they are always great quality. I have also splurged on some Euro knits (Lillestoff and Stenzo) from Etsy and they are really wonderful. They are pricey but there is a reason for that!

    Reeni @Reeni

    sewing for dd has pretty much followed the lead set by her brother: she tells me what she likes or wants, or I look at what gets the most wear (or needs replacing) when I do the laundry. I let her pick from my fabric stash and she draws the type of garment she wants out of it — she’s tiny so I’ve only had to tell her I don’t have enough a few times.
    She loves texture (velvet/velour, chiffon) and sparkly/shiny/embellished tops but not bottoms. She is into pastels now, but for awhile it was all about the jewel tones.
    My next thing for her brother and her (and maybe something for me too…) is bamboo velour pajamas, and a shirt or two to wear outside. (like lots of others, I look at Girl Charlee, but Nature’s Fabrics is where I’ll be getting the bamboo and cotton velour.) Also, she likes to do some things herself: she did most of the painting of her Halloween costume (see my blog post here: http://chefreeni.blogspot.com/2015/11/villains-but-huggy-or-costumes-2015.html), and she recently rescued a turtleneck I was going to donate, and decorated it with textile paint and fabric markers.

    • This reply was modified 8 years ago by Reeni. Reason: links
    • This reply was modified 8 years ago by Reeni.
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