Oh what a busy day! Polka Dot Top for Clementine

I’m a guestie for Ms Katy over at No Big Dill today for her lovely Once Upon a Thread Series with a little outfit I sewed for Little Miss C inspired by the book “Oh What a Busy Day!” by Gyo Fujikawa, a favorite book from my childhood.

Head over to No Big Dill to see pictures from the (very vintage) book I read as a child and pictures of C’s outfit. Be sure to peruse the past contributors’ projects as well, all based in some way on a book. Amazing and so much fun to look at! I love Katy’s theme, sewing from children’s books? Brilliant! And a great excuse to make a fun new outfit! Here’s the top:

The pattern I used for the top is one of my own (sorry not available yet), a classic empire-waisted top with ruffle sleeves and pockets. If it looks familiar, it’s because it’s the same basic pattern as the one I used for this Ric-Rac baby dress last year. The fabric is the cherry dot from the It’s a Hoot collection by Moda, which reminded me of this cute little top from Oh What a Busy Day:

The capris were made with blue baby-wale corduroy and a highly modified version of the Big Butt Baby pant pattern (shortened with single pintucks in front). Just realized how few pictures I took of the capris, so I’ll post a few more shots of those later.

Here’s some out-takes from our “photoshoot” to bring you behind the scenes at our house a little bit…

someone isn’t always happy to have her picture taken
pacifying the subject with a little Richard Scarry video time
what’s in your pockets Clementine?
mini marshmallows!!!

Thank you Katy for having me over!!

32 thoughts on “Oh what a busy day! Polka Dot Top for Clementine

  1. That top is adorable! I love your stuff! I hope one day I my blog can be as successful as yours!

  2. so cute, what a sweet little outfit! I love the top, I love that style on my girls. I think I'd try it with gigantic gathered pockets, my 3 year old is a pretty big fan of her pockets lately and it would be just perfect for an adventurous little summer walk to have gigantic pockets to fill with rocks. Every time we are in the church parking lot lately she's like, "WAIT!" …bends down… "A ROCK!" 😉 Hilarious, considering it's a gravel parking lot, haha.

  3. Gorgeous top, and I can't believe how big she's getting! How much she looks like her brother! I keep getting stuck on that headband though- it's genius 🙂 Why did I never think to put looots of flowers on a headband and make a daisy crown?

  4. O my gosh! Thank you for reminding me about this book! Brings back lots of memories from my childhood too. We read Baby Animals by the same author and love it. His illustrations are adorable. And the outfit screams adorable…I can't wait to try and whip up something similar for my 2 girls! Thanks (as always) for your inspiration!

  5. Oh, I adore Gyo Fujikawa! Some of my favorite childhood books as well. (And Richard Scarry too!) Love the polka dots.

  6. Man o man – one month of boys and she's huge!! The hair finally grew – She is such a little muffin!! Oh yeah, outfit is super cute….we love Gyo over here too!!
    Fabulous job – once again. Katy's intro was so right on!! Love ya!

  7. Oh my goodness!I love this book too and read it to my little girls all the time. The crazy thing is I have often thought that I'd love to try to sew some outfits for them based on the illustrations in the book. They have such a lovely simple style about them. I love what you did with Clementine's blouse and pants. Thanks for sharing!

  8. Clementine makes the most adorable little model, even if she doesn't want to! 🙂 Love the top, too!

  9. Wonderful!!! Love the fabric and design. What a cutie your Clementine is!

  10. SO CUTE! I love the bright polka dots and the fullness of the top. I also love the marshmallow pictures. PS if you're looking for a pattern tester, I'm really interested. 🙂

  11. Oh Rae, I cannot believe my eyes! We have a book by Gyo Fujikawa as well – an vintage "A to Z Picture Book" – in a Dutch translation (*). My aunt gave us a bunch of her "old" children's books when our eldest turned two. The moment I saw Gyo Fujikawa's beautiful drawings, I was head over heels! And the clothes the children wear seem to carefree. What a wonderful idea to be inspired by them! I love how the top turned out, and C's victorial smile when she devours the mini marshmellow is priceless 🙂

    Sabine C.

    (*) Yeah, it is a bit odd to have an "A to Z" book in translation. You can see how the translators had to bend themselves backward at times to find a wordt in Dutch that starts with the same character as the original English one… With "queue", they just gave up 😉

  12. This is so sweet… I love the little capris! Glad ot see I'm not the only to bribe my girl with mini marshmallows for a photo shoot. 🙂
    – Erin

  13. We're big Gyo Fujikawa fans in our house too! The shirt turned out just lovely and your choice of fabric is perfect. And Clem's bangs are super adorable – our little ones are turning into such big girls!

  14. I have been saving a bunch of Fujikawa books in my online cart for a few months now! I love the illustrations. The interpretation is just gorgeous–Clementine is such a beauty! Love the flowers in her hair!!

  15. i love it!!! it's super cute – i'm crazy for those dots! it reminds me of this vintage pattern i have… i'll have to dig it out and make it for my little viley. gorgeous. happy packing:)

  16. I read this post last week and I kept saying to myself, those pictures look familiar… been looking around my bookshelves and just uncovered Gyo Fujikawa's A to Z Picture Book. These colors and pictures are inspiring! I'm going to have to keep this out on my worktable for a while and blog about it sometime soon myself – great idea to use a picture book as a creative jumpstart.

  17. Can I please purchase this top!?!? (I don’t sew but am planning an orange and white polka dot birthday party!) Seriously, email me!

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