About nine days postpartum, I snuck out of the house to buy some new clothes. I couldn’t stand the thought of wearing any of my maternity gear (not to mention that most of it was borrowed, and I didn’t want to get it covered in any more bodily fluids than absolutely necessary), and I sure couldn’t fit into any of my pre-baby clothes. I went to Old Navy and bought everything on sale that had a stretchy waistband.
Yep, it's over-edited because half of it was in pitch black shadow.
I mean, whatever, it’s fine, and I ended up wearing it a lot. But I’m really not much of an Earth Mother, cloth diapering aside, and it’s hung unworn in my closet since about October. So, I chopped it up and made three new garments: a knee length skirt for myself, and a dress and a skirt for Abby. Here’s the dress:
We can't quite stand by ourselves yet.
Very simple: I used the existing hem, sewed it in a tube, shirred in a spiral, and then made some folded straps because I didn’t want to fuss with turning them.
Of course she immediately got strawberry on it, but a little timely Shout took care of that.
I haven't quite figured out how to deal with a high armscye when the bodice top goes straight across.
Hooray for refashioning! I love sticking it to the man.
A few weeks after giving birth, when I realized that I was not going to fitting back into my size 26 jeans any time soon, my sister gave me some lovely James Jeans that she had shrunk out of. Four months of swaying back and forth while holding a crying baby later, those jeans had giant holes in the thigh area.
Snicker snack! I kept the outside seam but couldn’t keep the original hem, because the legs were too narrow.
These came together pretty easily, despite the fact that I was using them to recover from the frustration of a professional rejection. I used a needle for heavy fabrics, set my tension high, and crossed my fingers. It must have worked, because my cheap-o sewing machine survived.
The insides could be neater–but who’s looking?
Mods and notes: The jeans had a pretty significant fade, so I cut the bottom insert from the darker bottom and the legs from the faded thighs. Instead off a bulky casing at the waist, I chopped off a few inches and added a knit waistband, tutorial here. You can see the waistband in the second picture. (Let’s be honest: they look a little like maternity pants. But they sure are easy to get on and off.)
Now I can’t decide what to do about the hems. The long strips in the top photo are for a bound hem, but I kind of want to leave them cuffed for a while so she can grow into them. Maybe I’ll hem them at the beginning of next summer, if they survive that long. She seems happy for right now!
Pattern: Big Butt Baby pants, of course
Fabric: Upcycled James Jeans
After deciding that we’d be sad if, twenty years from now, all we have of Abby is blurry iPhone pics, Chris and I splurged on a fancy camera. We’re going to have to be extra-thrifty to make up for it (for like, YEARS), so I’ve been mining the nearest Goodwill for “fabric.” Abby and I happened to be matching yesterday: the perfect time for a pants-into-pants photoshoot. I know the photos aren’t great for showing off the pants–we’re both new to this photography thing. But they show off the baby just fine!
The pants Abby is wearing used to be from H&M. I repurposed the lace on the waistband into a butt-panel:
And then the front seemed a little plain, so I cut out a flower from some patterned linen in the stash and zig-zagged it on:
The side seams were supposed to be the pant’s original seams, since the pattern I used (from the genius Made by Rae) doesn’t use a side seam. Unfortunately, I’m a spatial idiot and cut out one pants leg backwards so that the seam was on the outside. I ripped and re-stitched, and I must say the new seam looks pretty nice!
They garnered two unsolicited compliments at the library this morning, and Abby seems to like them, too: