Friday, January 1, 2010

Equipping a Young Padawan: Homemade Christmas Gifts for 3-Year-Olds

My three year old nephew Iain has embraced Star Wars rather eagerly: goose-stepping to "The Imperial March" and re-enacting Luke Skywalker's amputation scene from The Empire Strikes Back, and he's able to name any of the dozens of figures both vintage and modern at a glance.  And we make a lot of the gifts for family each year.  Put those together, and a natural Christmas present for this young Padawan was a hand-crafted Jedi outfit.

Several years ago, I re-taught myself how to sew when I made for myself a Jedi costume, and though it's been a couple of years since I last used either the serger or the sewing machine, I dug both out to put together Iain's gift.

I ran into a problem finding a pint-sized pattern and ended up going with an adult one, trimming an extra three or four inches from the dimensions of the extra-small size.  Back when I sewed much more often, I picked up a remnant of a nice Jedi-esque fabric, which though a bit difficult to work with, ended up looking great in the costume--and which emptied out one more bit of the many storage bins in our basement.

Using the serger made the costume something which will stand up to the many trips through the washing machine necessitated by the day-to-day wear and tear of a three-year-old, and I do have to say I did a fine job overall on the outfit: Iain's dad Wayne asked where I'd bought it.  I need to touch things up with a couple of darts in the back to take in a bit of excess size in the shoulders, and I didn't get the obi finished yet as I couldn't find my good loop-turner (the plastic belt Iain's wearing came from a Star Wars toy set I found when cleaning out our storage unit), but overall, I think the Padawan's ready to take up lessons in light saber and the ethics of the light side / dark side dichotomy, don't you?

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