At the time I made these, Foof had a whole bunch of cute little shirts that she'd never worn because she didn't have anything to go with them. I decided to make her some quick circle skirts (also in these photos!) but I didn't want her legs to get cold. So I added some baby tights, but I wanted something more interesting than just plain tights. Hence, shoe tights! =)
I considered using Sew Much Ado's cute free footed baby pants pattern and adapting it, but eventually decided to start fresh, since I wanted a different look and fit. I took a whole bunch of measurements and used a combination of intuition and prior pattern-making experience (which admittedly is not much) to draw up the pattern... it worked surprisingly well! The ones worn with the pink shirt and black skirt are the first version, made with some knit scraps.
I was really happy with how they turned out, but I wanted to make a couple of small tweaks, so I added those and sewed up a pair with grey shoes. I couldn't find those ones to take pictures, but they weren't all that great anyway... 1/4" difference is a really huge difference on tiny baby feet, and the original proportions were much better. So I did some much tinier tweaks, including using reverse applique for the part where the tights peek through the 'shoe' instead of sewing it as an inset piece, and made a third pair.
They turned out cute too, although I think just between the first and third pair would be best! These were easier to sew too, because I split the shoe along the inner heel so I could sew it to the tights in the flat instead of in the round.
The white parts are rayon spandex leftover from the lace shirt at the bottom of this post (this knit really doesn't hold up well. It bags out and pills badly... I suspect that may be characteristic of rayon knits.)
The black for the shoes and black circle skirt is from Girl Charlee, and leftover from various other creations. I used black fold-over elastic for the waistband of this skirt, and white fold-over-elastic for the waistbands on the tights.
The grey for this circle skirt and for the disappearing grey tights (I still haven't found them) is leftover from this dress and this shirt... I did a yoga-style waistband on this skirt.
It's frowned upon, I know, but I actually used a straight stitch for the majority of the sewing on the tights, and just stretched the fabric as I went. They've held up surprisingly well! After 3 months of washing and wearing, the stitches only popped in one small spot near the ankle. I actually was trying NOT to stretch the fabric on the inset on the first pair of tights, but tiny stretchy pieces of fabric and a machine that wants to eat knits aren't a great combination, so they stretched quite a bit there.
I wish I had some better photos of these tights, because they are really ridiculously adorable, but Foof was not cooperating for photos! She couldn't sit up on her own yet when I took these (she can now) and she was mad about not being held.
I used the shoe portion of these tights with a few more tweaks to make the little pleather shoes in this post. =) Speaking of which, I recently and out of desperation tried a different leather needle from the same package in my sewing machine. It was a tight squeeze but it fit! And it sewed on one layer of leather without skipping! (I haven't tried two layers yet.) So I am really, really happy about that!
I originally made these to wear with the shirts and skirts, but I love them even more paired with little dresses. I need an excuse to make a fourth pair of these so I can get them just right... maybe I will just because they are cute! I had fun with these ones anyway! =)
Thanks for stopping by,