Those of you who have followed my Instagram for a while, will know that I love simple, clean designs. Not a problem if I’m sewing for me. But when I’m sewing for my girls, especially for my baby, I often find it a challenge to find patterns that are practical, pretty and will sew up into something that doesn’t look too “handmade”.
It was whilst searching for a pattern for a basic baby romper, that I stumbled on the Katia website. They had exactly the pattern I was looking for and I was thrilled. I was having some trouble placing my order so I contacted them through Instagram to see if they could help and to my complete surprise and delight they suggested a collaboration! They would send me the pattern and some of their fabric free of charge in exchange for some photos and a blog post! I mention this in the interest of full disclosure, but the truth is, I would have bought the patterns anyway had I not been offered the collaboration!
I was lucky enough to be able to choose two patterns, the Romper for my 4 month old and the Overalls for my 4 year old:
I choose this grey Jersey melange to make both items in as my eldest just loves twinning with her baby sister:
I made the Romper first. It was described as an intermediate sew and at first this surprised me as it’s a simple garment consisting of 4 pattern pieces (excluding the facings) so I would have thought of it as beginner friendly. However, as I was making it I realised that the reason they were described as intermediate was that the instructions, although clear to me, were on the short side. Small details like reminding you to clip curves or finish edges were omitted which is no problem for someone who has made clothes before but a novice sewer would not know that they need to take these steps to get a professional looking finish. On a plus note the instructions do come in 7 Languages: Spanish, English, German, French, Italian and Dutch! The Romper sews up very quickly especially since all openings are closed with snap fasteners which, once you get the hang of inserting them, go in very quickly. I sewed a size 3-6 months for my average sized 4.5 month old and they fit perfectly. Were it not for the fact that every, 10 minutes I sit down at the sewing machine are a struggle, (and I invariably end up sewing one handed with a baby on my lap!) I’d already have made another 4-5 of these cute rompers. They are so versatile and perfect for hot summer days.
Next up were the Overalls for my four year old. The fact that she chose a pair of overalls over a dress should in itself be taken as a huge compliment to the pattern! Again, the pattern was classed as intermediate although I’d say it was even easier to sew than the Romper, with just 3 main pattern pieces. The upper edges are all finished off with self made bias binding whilst the leg openings have a casing through which you pull an elastic band to create an elastic leg cuff. The hardest part of the pattern are the two buttonholes that are needed to attach the suspender belt to the back waist opening. My four year old is only about 102cm tall so after measuring the pattern pieces I decided to size down considerably and cut size 2-3 as I wanted a more fitted look. I also omitted the elasticated leg cuffs, as I wanted a straight leg and left out the front pocket to make the overalls look a bit more “grown- up”. I love the fact that they can be worn with nothing underneath on really warm days or paired with a T-shirt underneath on those cooler days. I love it so much that I briefly even considered grading up the pattern to make a version for myself as well😂
As I mentioned, I used the grey Jersey melange flamingo print to make both garments. You can see from the photos that the grey is quite a bit darker than on the website photo. I committed the cardinal sin of not pre-washing the fabric just because, as usual, I was so excited to start sewing that I cut into the fabric literally the moment it arrived! Luckily for me, it’s of exceptional quality and hasn’t shrunk at all – and let me tell you both items have been washed several times since being finished! The stretch and recovery of the jersey is fantastic and although the polyester content is higher than I would usually go for, it makes the fabric hard-wearing and durable, which I’m happy about because, have I mentioned (?!) I live doing laundry!
It took me a while to figure out that Katia Fabrics were part of the well known Katia yarns family🤦♀️ and I’m glad that they expanded out into the sewing world as there are some really nice patterns and fabrics in their range. I’m already eying up some of the lovely poplins in their collection!