My son is having a Beatles-themed play at his preschool, and I made the costume for him to wear. Which turned out to be kind of a disaster. Oh, where to start...
Dress rehearsal for the play was Thursday. So, maybe I should have thought about this before Monday that week? Well, I did sort of think about it. The school wanted the kids dressed up in a 60s themed outfit. They suggested tie-dye and bell bottoms, flower child type stuff. I was kind of thinking I could put together a "retro" suit from pieces already in the little guy's closet, less flower child and more Beatles mod. But it wasn’t until Monday that I actually looked at pictures of the Beatles in their suits, and I realized that the khaki jacket I had in mind wasn’t quite going to work.
That’s when I really should have just gone with tie-dye. But you know how these things work. Ideas just spiral out of control, and next thing I knew I was stopping by Joann Fabrics looking for a kid’s suit pattern and fabrics for said suit. I ended up getting this pattern for the jacket:
And I used the picture of the Beatles above as inspiration.
What went wrong? First, the pattern. I think I’ve been spoiled so far. I’ve used patterns that have been really good, and they made sewing seem easy peasy. After making the baby girl’s bubble dress, I was feeling like I could sew anything. But not all patterns are created equal. This pattern should have been called “Complexity.” I read the instructions over and over and could not figure it out. I thought I was pretty good with understanding the English language, but something was not quite right. I seriously had no idea what it was saying. Now I understand why people say patterns scare them. If I had started with this kind of pattern, I probably would have thrown my sewing machine out the window and not looked back.
The other problem was this darn fabric I got. 100% polyester. What was I thinking? Yes, polyester is great, because it doesn’t wrinkle. But it also doesn’t hold any sort of crease, so I could not iron hems and seams into place, which makes it 10x harder to sew anything. I also had to set my iron on really low to try to iron it, something I learned the hard way:
Ew. Thankfully, this was just a scrap piece of fabric.
Third problem? Maybe it was the fabric, but my sewing machine was not cooperating. The thread kept bunching up and breaking. Argh.
Fourth problem? I didn't think to get thread to match the suit. I had a gray thread, but it was a tad lighter. Not to mention, I only had a very small spool of it, so I kept switching it out with white thread if I was sewing seams that I wouldn't be showing on the outside.
Sometime on Wednesday night--actually early Thursday morning--as I was surrounded by all these pieces of fabric and still scratching my head about how to put them together, I had to decide, was I going to call it quits and tell the little guy in the morning that mommy did not have a costume for him? The costume we’d been talking about for the last couple of days. So, of course, I had to power through. I scrapped the pattern’s instructions and just put the jacket together as best I could. As a result, the collar is really, really ugly. Don't look too close.
I’m embarrassed to admit how late I stayed up. Let’s just say I saw the sun come up. *yawn* Towards the end, I was just hoping I could get it done before the kids got up. My machine finally came through for me at 6am, because I was able to make 4 buttonholes in less than 30 minutes. I sewed on the buttons and called it done:
I can’t say I love it. But the little guy was excited to wear it to school. And that’s all that matters, right? Lesson learned, though. Definitely need to start thinking about these things more than a few days in advance. :)
The suit probably needs a prop, though, like a guitar. Because my son told me after school one of the kids at his school said "something kind of mean." I asked him the kids said. “He said I wasn’t wearing a costume.”