April 29, 2013

(Tried and True is a series that I am starting where I feature one sewer/blogger at a time who will share one of their “tried and true” patterns.  You know, that pattern that just sews up like a dream, is so versatile, (although maybe even boring), so you end up sewing it up over and over in different ways.  I know that I have patterns like that and I consider them gems so I can’t wait to find out what the sewing community’s tried and true patterns are.)

Hi True Bias readers!  I’m Kristin of skirt as top and I’m happy to be here today gushing about my favorite tried and true pattern.
I started sewing almost 4 years ago, I love to sew for my two kids, and I’m mostly self-taught – I’ve learned almost all of what I know from internet tutorials, books, and well-written patterns.  I’ve never taken a sewing class.  I think sewing has a steep learning curve, and it’s so fun to add new tools and techniques with each thing I sew.  At a certain point, I became interested in creating my OWN designs, but felt like I was flying blind and never really got the hang of the whole “find a tee that fits your kid well and trace around it” method.  BUT THEN Rae released her Flashback Skinny Tee (FBST) pattern, and that all changed.

daring fireball | super mario
The pattern is great as written, with clearly-explained methods for sewing knits that result in a professional-looking long sleeved kid’s shirt.   If you sew it from a thrifted / sale rack / spouse’s donate pile shirt, be sure to preserve those existing hems to save time and effort (my tips on how to do that are right here).  It is SO fast to sew that way (and it’s a quick sew already!).

big sister shirt
HINT: if the neckline seems a bit big once you’re done sewing, spray it with water and throw it in the dryer for a bit – it’ll shrink back to normal!

I was actually gifted  the FBST as part of a guest post for elsie marley, where Meg asked us to put our own spin on the pattern as a lead-in to kid’s clothes week.  So right from the get-go, I started remixing this pattern.  For that post, I made a little a-line dress.

skinny tee tank dress
Not long after, I realized that for a string-bean child like my daughter, the FBST is the perfect sloper.  It takes all the guesswork out of getting the proper shape for a bodice and sleeve, and has been my go-to basic bodice pattern ever since.

HINT: When using it with wovens, it’s a good idea to go up a size.

butterfly dress | two t-shirt nightgown tutorial | grape dress | mini washi dress
And because I know it fits my kids perfectly, I feel free to play around with the shape and fabric to create the garment I want.  In the two examples below, I flared out the shirt and the sleeves, and sewed it once in eyelet and once in fleece!

breezy eyelet tunic tutorial | pink elephant costume
It’s also been very helpful for film petit, my ongoing series with my buddy Jessica.  Once a month we sew outfits for our kids based on movies we love, and have a guest blogger join us.  I’ve used the FBST in four out of the eight movies we’ve done so far!

back to the future | ferris bueller’s day off | amelie | the big lebowski
Anyway, sometimes that perfect pattern comes along, and I consider the FBST an indispensable part of my “toolbox” as I sew for my kids!  If you want to get your hands on it, the Flashback Skinny Tee is available in two size ranges (12 months – 4T, and 6 – 14), and you can find it in Made by Rae’s pattern shop!  Thanks so much for having me, Kelli!  Please come visit me at skirt as top anytime.

*Made by Rae happens to be a sponsor of skirt as top, but I wouldn’t say any of this if it wasn’t my true belief*

A big thank you to Kristin for coming on my blog today.  She has a great blog and I am in awe of the fact that she has only been sewing for just a few years.  I also LOVE the flashback skinny tee and use it all of the time as a base for my kid patterns.  If you don’t already have it I highly recommend it.

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  • Reply Jessica April 29, 2013 at 8:39 AM

    I feel really ashamed that I still don’t have this pattern. I mean how are you even still friends with me Kristin? If I knew anything about cooking, I’d make some metaphor about how the FBST is the _____ of kids sewing. (Olive Oil? Garlic and onion rue? That’s not a thing.)

    • Reply kristin April 30, 2013 at 12:17 AM

      Ummmmmmmm sea salt? And I will de-friend you in 1 week if you do not buy this pattern. *shakes fist*

  • Reply Carolyn April 29, 2013 at 10:40 AM

    I can’t believe that Kristin has only been sewing for four years too! Suddenly I feel very bad about myself 🙂
    I’m glad she recommended this pattern…it is a fantastic! I don’t know why it took me so long to buy it.

  • Reply Madalynne April 29, 2013 at 12:55 PM

    Thank you for introducing me to Kirstin. I absolutely adore her film petit series. What a cute idea!

  • Reply Cirque Du Bebe April 29, 2013 at 11:41 PM

    Whoa! Nice job Kristin! I had no idea all those versions started from the one pattern….

  • Reply kristin April 30, 2013 at 12:15 AM

    Thanks again for having me, Kelli!! I knew I’d sewn this pattern a few times, but didn’t realize how many until I put this together (I even left a few out!). 🙂

  • Reply gingermakes April 30, 2013 at 5:28 PM

    What a fun post! This is a new blog for me– yay!

  • Reply Sabra April 30, 2013 at 9:24 PM

    You’re such a rock star, Kristin! I had no idea you started all those looks off with that one pattern. Amazing. And only sewing four years? Even more amazing. Also, you make cute kids.

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