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September 30, 2013 / fionamakes

Dipping my toes in

I’ve had a couple of Japanese sewing pattern books for forever but could never get up the nerve to break into them. I learnt a lot of sewing techniques from sewing Oliver and S patterns, where seam allowances are drawn into the patterns and detailed instructions hold your hand through the construction process. So when I realised that Japanese sewing patterns don’t include seam allowances and have instructions that I can’t read, I quietly put the books back on my shelf.

A couple of months ago I discovered this blog and I’ve since been inspired! I love the outfits she sews for her daughter so I pulled out my books again. I think it definitely helps that I’ve been sewing for longer and I’m more familiar with sewing techniques in general.

My girls are in dire need of some shorts so I started with pattern d, which is for a pair of culottes. This is what it looks like in the book.


This is my version, made with some gingham that I had in my stash.



I added a couple of patch pockets that I cut on the bias. Because pockets seem to be a key determinant of whether the shorts get worn or not!

I’m really happy with how they turned out! Now if I could only figure out how to make one in my size.


Leave a Comment
  1. sanae / Sep 30 2013 5:31 am

    So cute Fiona! I love the culottes and yes, pockets are a must 🙂

  2. marisa / Oct 8 2013 10:00 am

    These are really sweet, and the pockets are perfect. My daughter is very much a dress and skirt girl, but I think she just might go for gingham shorts – I’m going to give it a try! And did you know that Happy Homemade is available in English? I don’t think I’d be brave enough to sew anything with Japanese instructions!

    • fionamakes / Oct 8 2013 10:33 am

      Thanks for taking a look at my blog, Marisa! You know, when I bought Happy Homemade, it was only in Japanese! That’s how long I’ve had the book! And when I saw that it was out in English, I actually contemplated buying the English version! But then I thought that that’d be ridiculous… 🙂

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