Saturday, December 28, 2013

Playtime for Mummy

Now I must admit to feeling a bit of a dicky-doo-dah.
When I first saw the Oliver+S Playtime dress, tunic and leggings
I thought it was cute but very 'little girly'.
A screen shot from the Oliver+S website
I don't think I am the only one who misses the hand painted portraits that used to grace the patterns.
I do understand that new customers were confused and thought they were dolls clothes but I loved those little girls( and boy) so. 
from the oliver+s site
from the oliver+s site
from the oliver+site 
(But you can still play with them)

I also found it a handy tool when showing the patterns to my older girls.

They could 'see' the design in the painting and that with the line drawing gave them an idea of the garment.

Both Twins flat out refused to look twice at them once the photographed children covers patterns were released.

I also wondered if was a bit too much of an 'easy' sew.
Now, I don't mean to sound obnoxious, but my children are all in school now. They just don't need that many casual clothes anymore. So I like my sewing for them to be a bit of a challenge.

The Twins badly need a couple of neat comfortable 'travel' outfits.
We do a lot of driving, often returning quite late at night. The Littles are happy to wear their pyjamas but the Twins are a bit old to do that.

Elsa wears her Book Report dress so often I thought I would have another look at Oliver+S.

Zara's measurements still worked within the size 12 sizing so I decided I would try the biggest size of Playtime dress.
If it was too tight it would do for my niece for her birthday gift.

Elsa and Zara both flipped over the Seashore dress I made for said niece for Christmas.

And as I still have a good 20 metres of this gold printed denim left I figured it was a fairly safe choice.

I drafted the size 12 with no modifications. Again, I was suitably impressed with the PDF pattern. So easy to put together with scissors and a glue stick.

I thought the dress would be an easy sew, possibly a bit dull but I was so wrong.

The dress has facings which edge stitched and then topstitched in place with the aid of a separate template.
I used a gold thread but it was a nightmare to sew. 
I think I will save it for hand embroidery.
The kimono style sleeves are eased and fitted in place.
The pockets are well thought out and also topstitched in place.

Lots of different details, none of them hard but it is certainly more involved then I predicted and certainly not a boring sew.

Said dress has not yet been tried on.
Father Christmas brought the Fab Five a pingpong table and that is taking up all spare time.
But it has been given the thumbs up.
So, if it fits, it will be worn.

I promise to show you modelled piccies soon!

xx N
PS I drafted the leggings too, I am hoping they may fit if made up in a very stretchy lycra/cotton knit.
I will let you know.


  1. I can't wait to see it on! My girls are quite a bit younger than yours and I thought the same thing as you but I knew my 5 year old would love it (and she does). I recently made a linen version for my 8 year old and she was pleased with it and it looked great. Hopefully she wears it again but you never know! I've used the leggings pattern several times for both of them.

    1. I popped over and had a look at yours Mel. Super cute, how gorgeous in linen. What a good idea!

      I still have not pinned Elsa down to try it on but hopefully tomorrow!
      xx N

  2. I miss those little dolls too. Love this one, very grown up, I can't wait to see it on. I haven't bought this one or any of the new patterns, first time I haven't purchased them on the release day. Missy just doesn't like dresses, I'm hoping for a turn around one of these days, I'm a bit over shorts.

    1. I really miss the paper dolls Peta, I do understand the reason behind it but I just loved them so!
      I want to try the tunic for Tildy. I think it has a 'Japanese pattern' feel but with readable instructions.
      Thank you.
      xx N

  3. Great dress. My summer holiday memories are always of the family Ping Pong tournament at the beach house. have fun with the new table.

    1. Thank you Shelley.
      The table has been a hit.
      Our old one was 40 years+ old and the cat had taken to scratching its claws down one side.
      When we moved it out, it collapsed. I sort of understand how it felt.
      xx N

  4. I used that gold thread for cross-stitching and it was annoying, it can be sparkly and fun, but a pain to work with...

    1. Did it keep snapping Rachel? I had it far from my machine on a tension extender but it still didn't sew well.

      Live and learn....

      xx N

  5. Oh, I love the playtime dress ever since it was released - I have been looking everywhere for a similar pattern that would sew nicely and didn't look homemade. I knew Liesl would be able to deliver this :)
    It's definitely my favorite of this season (I still need to tackle all the others, of course) and I'm so glad to see it works for older girls (obviously, your flawless fabric selection also helps).

    1. I adored your tartan versions Ana Sofia. I was very pleased with the sewing experience of making the dress.

      I am so glad you 'approve' of my fabric choice. Sometimes when I pick up such huge bolts of fabric (25 m+) I get a bit over whelmed.
      Thank you
      xx N

  6. I also used gold topstitching on my green playtime dress and it snapped so many times, I avoided doing the pocket topstitching.
    I was worried about it looking girly too but the stitched on Peter Pan collar is very on trend at the moment and my daughter loved it on her navy version. She looks quite sophisticated in it too, which is a relief. Bang on some beads and pretty ballet pumps and it looks perfect!

    You deserve a sewing rest, but I know you won't take one! Those Tea Party dresses are beautiful and I have bought the PDF just because of them!

  7. That is so funny (and makes me feel better) that Rachel and yourself both had the same problem.
    I did the round neck version but you are right. Elsa later said she would have happily had the Peter Pan collar.

    I am so glad you got the Tea Party pattern. I do love it so. Liddy is still wearing her size 5 (with lots of length added)
    xx N