Ellen Baker of The Long Thread has a new line of fabrics out for Kokka this summer, and I gleefully volunteered to take some yardage off her hands and play with it. Double gauze, which comprises about half this collection, is one of my all-time favorite fabrics to sew with–it’s really just two layers of loosely-woven cotton that are stitched together with teeny little catch stitches, to make a double-layered fabric that’s breathable yet opaque, perfect for summer garments.
And could these prints be ANY cuter? The aqua here is called Sitting Geese, and the chartreuse is Broken Plaid. The colors are bright and clear and spring-like and joyful, and the drape of the fabric is so great for summer garments (but equally awesome when used in a summer-weight quilt).
This little tunic is for my not-quite-eight-year-old, who is rapidly growing out of her clothing and approaching the age where we’ll be forced to select from the various “tween” fashions available–most of which suck so completely that I am at a loss for words. I wanted to make her something that was a little less “little,” but that still let her be little. I know, that’s not really a diagrammable sentence. But you moms totally smell what I’m stepping in.
Because she’s not a little adult, but she’s not a little girl anymore, either. She’s something in between, but twenty years ago, she wouldn’t have been–how did that happen? She could have stayed a little girl with little girl likes and dislikes a little longer–and not come home with stories of mean girls in second grade and singing song lyrics about popular girls and the boys who like them. Gag. It makes my heart hurt to think about it too much. So the least I can do, as her mom, is to provide her with clothes that remind her that it’s enough to just dance and play and jump and be silly for a few more years yet. That give her room to create an imaginary outdoor laboratory and collect specimens from nature, or to be a queen and rule her subjects mercilessly (both of these scenarios took place the afternoon these photos were shot, so I’m pretty sure my plan is working).
Especially important to me was the idea that this tunic (1) be a tunic that could be worn over shorts or leggings or jeans and with a tee under or by itself–sort of like my Pinafore design, and (2) that it have super deep pockets. Because girls should have treasures that they carry with them, and room in their clothes to take their dreams from place to place.
It’s still a prototype–the “collar” was a bit of a Bob Ross “happy accident,” where I meant to turn the bias tape under but it narrowed the shoulders too much, so I left it un-stitched and sorta love the mod feel that gives–but I’m working on refining it to make a bunch more for her. As far as I’m concerned, she can live in these this summer, over her swimsuit or with shorts, and collect shells and pillbugs and flowers and dreams in her great, big pockets.