Project Run & Play: Week 2: Off the Grid

By ari - January 18, 2013

Edit: You can find the Project Run & Play entry for this look here

Week 2. 

Ermahgerd week 2! 

What can I say? I made it through the first week! That was my biggest goal, not to be the first one to leave. And here I am, in the second week for the competition!

The voting is now open, so cast your vote here on who you think deserves to make it through this second week! You might not think it's me, but I hope you do!

This week's theme was Stripes & Polka Dots. Let's break down my entry first eh? Then I'll show you my attempts and ideas that didn't happen, and my mega mega craft fail!

I named it '"Off The Grid" because it was giving me this Tron-esque vibe {I know, you probably don't see it, but just check out the rest of the pics!}. It originally was supposed to be a small nod to Beetlejuice, but then things spiralled out of control while trying to incorporate polka dots and what resulted is a bit cyber-punk.

Motorcycle Vest
I used the Basic Blazer* by Blank Slate Patterns and modified it to make this vest. It was the first time using this pattern. It promised to be easy, and after the last blazer I made I was ready for easy! The Basic Blazer has a lot less pieces and much simpler instructions! I've got a black blazer cut out in this pattern, but I haven't got around to finishing it off yet {or even starting it?}!

I left the sleeve pattern pieces in the packet, and when I traced out the pieces in 3T I altered it a fair bit. I brought the shoulder part of the armhole in a cm, dropped it a cm at the side seam and re-drew the armhole curve. Since it won't need set in sleeves, it can be a different shape. Instead of the rounded lower corner of the blazer at the front and the curved collar piece, I made both these straighter and pointed.

The pockets aren't actually pockets! Just zips. They open up so that he can put his hands in the pocket of the shirt underneath. It makes me a bit of a dork to be totally stoked about this idea. I made them like a welt pocket, then pinned the zips to the inside of the vest, stitching them on. I used brass buttons to do up the front, and to pin the front lapel collars back.

I lined the vest in black and white polka dot fabric from Spotlight. Australians will know this fabric well! The spots & stripes range has probably been used often in our sewing! I used the stripes fabric of this range A LOT for Vin's pirate party.

I decided to use the selvedge as part of the design, stitching the name of it into the lining. This way I can remember that this little vest was once part of something pretty epic! {Mmm like I'd forget something like being a part of Project Run & Play?}

These were the original base for the whole look. I couldn't get striped pants out of my head, and I instantly thought of my favourite combination of stripes: black & white. Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice, Beetlejuice!

These jeans. Ugh can I just say that at the moment I don't want to look at them for a few weeks! They did my head in. I used Freezer Paper and made stencils to paint the black stripes on the white pieces I had already cut out. First I used poster paint.


I don't even know. I have no idea why I picked it up, I have no idea why I used it, and I have no idea why I get goosebumps every time I touched it. Needless to say I had to go buy more white drill and some nice black acrylic paint and fabric medium {my local has every coloured fabric paint under the sun. Except for black. Nice one.}

Anyway I used the Skinny Jeans* from the Peek-A-Boo pattern shop which are one of my staple patterns for making clothes for Vincent {after this comp I'm going to do a post about what my go-to patterns are for this kid}.

The stripes I painted on are different lengths, and some of the lines are staggered/broken up. The stripes on the pockets go horizontal to mix it up a little. All pocket linings are in the polka dot fabric that lines the motorcycle vest.

The back pockets are circles with zips. Below is a pic of the first pockets I did {with the poster paint}. I drew a circle, segmented it then added seam allowance. I sewed the linings onto the outers and then stitched the zip as an exposed zipper over the top. I stitched bias binding around the pocket and then stitched that onto the back of the jeans before I sewed them up.

They have an adjustable elasticated waistband, but I changed the way it was done in the pattern, and did it the way I have seen in Vincent's store-bought skinnies. It has a buttonhole that  the elastic goes through so it is easier to get to the button. Well to me it is easy, next time I make this pattern up I will probably follow the pattern's way of doing it.

Circle Pocket Tee

The tee is a raglan-sleeved shirt that I self-drafted.

The circle 'polka dots' on the shoulders are reverse appliqués. Originally they were circles zigzag stitched on, but I didn't love them at all. I like this much better. It's a lot neater and looks rad.

The circle pocket was pretty fun! I cut two circles, one from the main fabric, and one from the polka dot lining {which I interfaced} and stitched around them. Then I cut a strip of the black stretch fabric and stitched it around the circumference, before folding it over and stitching it again {like a bias binding type deal}.

I pinned it to the shirt and marked where I wanted his hands to be able to go, before I stitch the top to the shirt, and then the bottom 'pocket' part. It works like a kangaroo pocket.

There are so many photos in this post and I'm sorry, sort of. There are so many photos I took NOT in this post. Which I might use when I write a tutorial for this look. Because they are SO CUTE


Here's what went wrong for this look while trying to get it all together!

The first circle pocket tee made him look like a carebear. The sleeves were way too short and the pocket way too big. He loved it though, so not a complete miss?

The Jeans were TOO SMALL. I could not get it over the junk in his trunk. I took off the waistband and sewed in an extra piece on both sides of the legs. You can't even tell. Then I made a new waistband {3 times}.

My model was less than impressed to try stuff on for me AGAIN

And let's not talk about the biggest miss of them all. Painting them in POSTER PAINT before having to redo the whole lot.

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  1. Amazing!! Awesome interpretation of the theme :-)

  2. wow, I already loved most of the other entries, but i think your's is the best. it's just so different and you've really put your signature to it...

  3. Sewing for your son is your jam, huh? LOL! I love it. You did a great job on this outfit. So full of personality. It all comes together nicely.

  4. Such a fresh look -love the circle pockets and the circle shoulders.

  5. this tee is fantastic!
    love the circle cut outs on the shoulders.

  6. I may be on my way to blog fangirl ;) This is such a fun look. While my little guy sports less of the edgy look your stuff is so easily adapted to our style and really interesting!-Rachel

  7. that looks like it took you FOREVER. it came together amazing..your little guy is too cute.

  8. Maxits a brilliant look. You worked hard and it really shows. After looking over all of this weeks entries I once again voted for you. I really think you are going places girl! Good luck :)

  9. this is an awesome outfit and I think you nailed it!

  10. The model AGAIN face is precious - but what fun he ends up with! His outfit is creatively fantastic and so is his Mum :)

  11. How awesome! Your little man is the coolest little dude ever. Love the striped jeans. What a clever idea to paint on the stripes.

  12. OMG yes! This is a brilliant outfit for a little boy. Every element of it. Completely inspiring. I can't wait to steal some ideas for my little man. And I had never heard of run and play before. GOing to vote now!

  13. I love love love this look! That last picture brings it all together. You can tell how much fun he has in those clothes! The polkadot shirt is so cute! I love the idea of the kangaroo pocket. It is something I myself would have loved as a kid, and matching the vest with it was inspired. You know I love my cyberpunk, and I am loving the shirt. I also love what you've done with the jeans. Yeay stripes!!! The whole look is rocking!

  14. I love love love this look! That last picture brings it all together. You can tell how much fun he has in those clothes! The polkadot shirt is so cute! I love the idea of the kangaroo pocket. It is something I myself would have loved as a kid, and matching the vest with it was inspired. You know I love my cyberpunk, and I am loving the shirt. I also love what you've done with the jeans. Yeay stripes!!! The whole look is rocking!

  15. All the details! Holy cow! And thanks for sharing all the mistakes you made along the way - for those of us newer to sewing for our kids, it's great to hear :) Good luck!!

  16. Cute! I definitely voted for you, and not just because I like you and your blog, but because yours was the most creative out of all of the other entries.

  17. I think I've left this comment all over...but dude, so cool! LOVE it. Well done!

  18. i just gotta tell ya Max, I will so be trying your pock-a-dot pockets, i love pocket details and those are great!
    thanks for the inspiration

  19. First time following PR&P- today was my first vote ever. I voted for the cyber punk beetle juice pants. The pockets are so adorable...cutest tush ever. I'm rooting for you!!!

    Amy from

  20. you are too too cool. this is just awesome. go max!

  21. What a great look! I see where the Beetlejuice went a little Tron-ish but it looks great! And I love that you show the "misses" as well...seeing so many of these intricate PR&P looks and no one saying anything about what it might have took to get there has always made me wonder if it really just flows perfectly for some people or if they have sewing/sizing etc. faux pas like I generally do lol me and my seam ripper are best friends to say the least! Everything really came together so wonderfully for this outfit though-great job!
    Bonnie MS

  22. The pockets on those pants are out of control! AmAZZZING.

  23. Great job, Max!!! Such a fun outfit. I love the reverse appliqué on the t-shirt and agree it looks much neater than zig zag would. And the polka dot pockets with the zip... fabulous idea. Congrats on making it through Round One. I knew you would.

  24. I just can't get over those circle pockets. They are adorable! I love this look. :D

  25. My favorite part is the circles on the t-shirt! The idea is so original.

  26. You totally killed it this week. You are a freakin GENIUS!

  27. excellent job of incorporating stripes and dots into your design !
    hats off to you for thinking outside the box !

  28. OMGGGG I want those pants in my size! Giant Beetlejuice stripes and circular zippered pockets?! Be still, my heart!

  29. Such a cool look, so many incredible details. Love it all but especially the circle pockets. I can't wait to see what you do for boy week.

  30. I loved your outfit!! I'd wear it (yes, I need a big circle around my belly). No, but I'd put my kids in it =)

  31. Just wanted to let you know- you rock!!!! Thank you for the inspiration and you are the reason I'm sewing along... I cannot wait for friday already!

  32. wwwooo!! love this trousers, so cool!!


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