January 26, 2013

Carly Bubble Romper

Every now and again you find a pattern that really works for you. Zoe is always moving at the moment, and while I love little dresses and swing tops and all things cute like that, for a baby who is spending most of her time dragging herself along at a tremendous pace on her hands and knees, tummy or bottom, I have found them to be unpractical at this stage of development, and I rarely dress her in them. I have been on the hunt for some cute rompers and was appalled at how much the cute ones in the shops cost - and naturally it is the expensive ones that I like. So I went on the hunt for a pattern so that I could make some myself.

Most romper patterns for babies out there are cute - lots and lots of ruffles, but they all have these open backs with straps that tie at the neck like a halter neck. I wanted something with a bit more coverage, and I personally find halter necks uncomfortable (maybe it is because I only ever wear them when I am in my swimmers), so I wasn't too keen on the whole halter neck option. Plus my bubba is a readhead with fair skin and we live in Australia, where even in the middle of winter, that UV index is way higher than anywhere in the northern hemisphere. I need to keep her back and shoulders covered as much as possible, or it is just melanoma waiting to happen. I can't quite remember how I stumbled on this pattern over the internet, but I'm glad I did. It's a Sis Boom pattern called the Carly Bubble Romper, and it is sized from preemie to 24 months.

The link is here for anyone who wants it.
I had whipped a few up for Zoe in no time.

I generally as a rule of thumb have to size up with downloadable patterns unless it is from one of the big commercial companies. I originally made Zoe the 12-18 month size and was secretly delighted when it was too big! Always a sign of a good pattern. I will get plenty of wear out of the bigger suit I made first, we have at least another 2 months of really warm weather ahead, and the start of April isn't generally cold either. So I made her another three of the 9-12 month size and they fit perfectly.
The instructions on this pattern are very thorough, and while I wouldn't recommend you print them all out, because there are alot of pages, it does make this pattern suitable for a beginner who knows the very basics, or if you are a more experienced sewer, you can just do a quick  scan of the instructions and it will all make sense.

The pattern actually makes a fully reversible romper - I decided against this as I think two layers of quilting weight cotton would just be too hot for our summer. Instead I just finished the seams on the inside with the overlocker, and bound all the raw edges that were left. I really couldn't be bothered making my own bias tape and sewing it on - I wanted something faster, so I raided my stash of fold over elastic. FOE is so easy to sew on and comes in so many cute colours.  I used it around the legs instead of doing a casing to thread elastic through, the elastic is easy to strecth as you sew. And you can use your leftovers to make a matching headband.

The suit closes at the back with a cute tie (how fast and easy is that with a baby on the move), and also has buttons or snaps or whatever you want to apply on the crotch so that you can change your baby easily.

My niece and Zoe's partner in crime came to visit a couple of weeks ago. I made Georgie a few matching suits, you would have seen them in this post. I skinnied Georgie's down a little because I knew she would not be as chubby as Zoe (I have chubby chubby babies). 

These suits are perfect for those all important moments of picking up tiny flecks of dirt in the grass (that only a baby can see) and for finding leaves,

or for rolling around chasing pom poms

And for showing mum all the fabulous things you have just found

or for just sitting there and looking sweet.

And best of all, I can make and sell handmade items from this pattern, so I will definitely be making a few up for our online shop when we get it going, and for a few of the handmade markets we plan on attending this year.
Happy Australia Day everyone, wherever in the world you may be!

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