Thursday, August 26, 2010

There's been a discrepancy here

In our quest for All Things Prairie, the girls have requested sunbonnets. Bonnets? Sure, why not. I can make a bonnet. Because of my laziness busy-ness, I decided not to try and recreate the wheel by making my own pattern and just go out and buy one. I ditched the bow on the back and the extra neck protector piece the pattern calls for. I looked at the way Olivia's bonnet we purchased from Cracker Country at the fair earlier this year. I prefer her hand folds to McCall's required gathering. The pattern is sized for girls ages 7-10 years. Olivia is 7, her bonnet fits her so I thought that would be what I'd get; a bonnet fit for a little girl. What I got was completely different...

That's me under the monstrosity, if you can't tell.

Really, McCalls? This is sized for a child? There has been a huge discrepancy in pattern sizing which is one reason I just ditched fifty uncut patterns at the thirft store. It's frustrating for a fairly experienced sewer, I can't imagine what a novice must encounter. This hat is huge. Really, it's sizes too large for my larger than average sized head. I know I have a big head because hats. never. fit. The fact I found one good hat doesn't give way to illusions that my head is in any way, shape or form an average hat-wearing sized head.

The instructions alone are confusing and convoluted. There is even a step sewing a piece they never told me to cut out. Why sew the ties together and then curse every inch of the tubing by pulling it right side out? Why not just make them large enough to make a bias and save so many perfectly sane women from frustrated and foul tempers? Why not include finished dimensions on the friggin pattern so we can decide for ourselves what would make a ridiculous sized bonnet for our kids with normal sized heads? By my calculations, I'd have to buy the bonnet pattern for sizes 6-12 months to get a hat the right size for my five year old. Now, I'm stuck with a gigantic bonnet, wasted yards of fabric, two disappointed children and the new task of just making the stupid pattern myself which I should have done in the first place.

McCall's should be ashamed of themselves. Deluding sewers by falsely sizing patterns fit for giants. Deluding little girls intent on imagining themselves as Laura or Mary by creating ununiform patterns that won't ever, ever fit their heads. Even if they do end up with fairly large ones.


Sarah Faith said...

I really don't like McCalls either. All their clothing patterns for children have way too wide of a neckline and the shoulders fall off my kids. I have to take it in at the fold of the bodice at least 2" (total) before I even start.
Yes, I am with you. I decided pretty recently that I'm done with the commercial patterns. It's just not worth the hassle, and I find I am practically creating it from scratch each time anyway with all the alterations.

Vegbee said...

Did you call their customer lines or send an email? I remember learning to sew a couple years back and everything I made with a pattern fit so terribly badly. I was pretty sure it was me. Not so. I wonder how many people are discouraged from sewing because they use the major brands odd dimensions and, frankly, convoluted instructions?

Burda is my arch enemy, btw :D

sproutingflowers said...

I was laughing out loud through this entire post! I have literally used a 6-9 month pattern (I don't remember if it was McCall's or Simplicity) to make dresses for my daughter who wears size 4T.

I would have practically sold my soul to have a sunbonnet like Laura when I was a kid. She was my childhood hero!

Michelle said...

Hmm maybe P&P styled hats would be better? I found this while hunting for things for mine and Rachel's costumes:|202|202&pageCount=18&search=men%20costume&return=yes

Love the blog post, btw! :D I love your almost hidden contemptuous expression.