McCall’s 5965 and Simplicity 4760: dressed like food


These are Simplicity 4760 (from 2004) and McCall’s M5965 (from 2009). 

I don’t even remember why I have these, they way way predate my son. 

Oh wait, I do remember: I didn’t buy these patterns in the year they were published. I bought each one new, but well after their publish dates. They were just still in print is all. Phew. Ok thanks for working through that mystery with me. 

Anyway, I’ve made both of these before. Couple times. The Simplicity as an Australian pantry-print shirt, as stripey shorts, as corduroy pants with crocodiles, and as a bunch of crazy print shorts; the McCall’s as grinch pants and as a whole mess of raglan T’s

Why do I keep making these, considering the wide world of patterns out there? Because all vintage children’s patterns are for girls. Ok that’s not true. But it’s almost true. If you’re going to sew for boys, gotta buy new. 

Plus these are nice and basic and adaptable and are multi sized unlike vintage patterns.

So there. 


So, back to the title. My husband decided on salmon nigiri, since our little boy loves the stuff and is since he’s still young enough that we can choose a Halloween costume for him. 

Which, just, sometimes California Babies are such a joke. Sushi, papadums, fish tacos, coconut water… figs that aren’t dried, same with apricots… I remember the first time I had all of these things, because I was a fully grown adult person when it happened. This kid knows how to order at restaurants, and can eat fresh figs off the tree in his yard. Lord. 

Anyway, my husband had all this fabric printed: rice for the base garment, soy sauce packet for the trick-or-treat bag, and salmon to be made into a pillow and held on with a black fabric belt. Or green. For nori. That part hasn’t been fully worked out yet. We’ve still got a week before Halloween, it’s ok. 

I can see how this might look like an insane amount of effort for a Halloween costume. But no, it is both awesome and practical: the kid gets a costume, plus a shirt, some regular pants, some pajama pants, a pillow, and a pillowcase that can provide year-round entertainment. 

Plus, I know I said that thing in a previous post about how parents shouldn’t make costumes for kids, that it’s good for kids to do it themselves; but it’s probably good to have a couple years of the parents setting a good example. Right? Totally. 


The shirt is the long sleeved version of Simplicity 4760, with brown suede covered buttons. 

The printing was done by Zazzle, on cotton, and I flatlined the printed cotton with muslin to make it heavier, warmer, and softer inside. It’s a little more jackety than shirt-like at this point. 

The button holes were done free hand. I’ve come to realize that for less than five buttons, I am not willing to set up the vintage Singer buttonhole attachment. It makes excellent buttonholes. Beautiful buttonholes. But it takes more than two steps to set up. I’m just too lazy. So instead I stitch a rectangle to mark the hole, then use the zigzag to do the long sides and bar tack the top and bottom. 

I know. 


The pants are also from Simplicity 4760, and are also flatlined with muslin. 

I added a loop so my boy can wear his keys. He will be pleased with that. The pattern is meant to be a fully functional zip-front pant, with a faced waist, but so far whenever I use this pattern I close the front and add an elastic waist, so they can be pull-on. 

The green is for nori. What you can see above is a stay-stitch in black that separates the two channels of elastic, and then a coverstitch overtop. 


The pajama pants are from McCall’s M5965, and are the single layer printed cotton from Zazzle with no flatlining. This pattern wants you to fold down the top of the pants for an elastic channel, but I cut the top down and added a white Lycra waistband to match the cuffs, and then inserted a wasabi green satin ribbon drawstring. 

You know those tiny pieces of elastic that you end up with sometimes after a project, and you tell yourself you have to throw them away because you’ll never find a use for such a small piece, but then you keep it anyway just in case? I used one of those here! The center back of the drawstring isabout six inches of elastic. This way the drawstring can remain tied all the time, and the waistband still stretches. 

The drawstring is anchored at the center back so it can’t be pulled out. That bow won’t last beyond the first wearing. Bows demand to be untied, when you are a kid, apparently. It’s ok though, there’s a square knot behind the bow. I also melted the ends of the ribbon so that nice angled cut won’t fray. MAMA THINKS OF EVERYTHINGGGGGG. 


There’s a shot of the bellows pocket on the Simplicity pants. This is the first time I’ve used that detail, of all the times I’ve used this pattern. They were fun. 

Sew It or Throw It:

Sew It. Keep on sewing it, in this case. 

The shirt took 5 hours, the pants took 4 hours, and the pj pants took 1 1/2hours. All together that’s ten and a half hours, which is a pretty big chunk of my free time, but no time at all when I consider that even Amazon Prime would take like overnight. I mean after I dithered over every single costume option before placing my order. 

It’s kind of nuts when making it is actually faster than Amazon Prime. 

*exciting update!* Photos! 

My husband had the rice fabric for the shirt and pants printed by Zazzle, which you know already. He had the (amazing, hilarious) soy sauce and the salmon printed by a vendor he works with here in town, Trio, same guy who printed my Sew It or Throw It backdrop while at another shop, Dangling Carrot

My husband sewed the salmon into a pillow and the soysauce into a bag for candy. Really he deserves major credit for this costume: the idea and motivation, all the fabric, part of the construction, and trouble-shooting on the whole thing. 

The nori obi I made from black Mylar backed with black canvas, with a Velcro closure.


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19 thoughts on “McCall’s 5965 and Simplicity 4760: dressed like food

  1. Kudos for putting in so much effort, I live those bellows pockets; so Crocodile Dundee! I just knew there was something very likeable about you! Not only an Aussie MIL but presumably an Aussie husband too?! I remember that fabric – it was everywhere. You have to understand we are not a very patriotic bunch downunder, but we do revel in our points of difference! I had no idea Rose’s lime marmalade was Australian, always thought it was English! Oh sox, those comments should have possibly been made on your Aussie shirt post but I’ve tapped the bloody thing twice on my phone and it’ll have to stay! Looking forward to your Halloween culinary delight!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. We just re-watched Crocodile Dundee, first time either my husband or I had seen it since it came out, and it was delightful! Like, I thought seeing it with adult eyes, it would be fun but kinda dumb, since I remembered loving it as a kid and I like to think my tastes have advanced since then, but no, I genuinely loved it now too!
      Also, if my kid’s toy box has anything to say about it, you are a patriotic bunch! Or maybe it’s just the MIL. Boy’s got more wombats and echidnas than teddy bears.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. FAb! I used to love making costumes for my kids [you couldn’t buy them in those prehistoric days…] THe toughest challenge was when my lad came home from school and said ‘Mum! I have to be a pancake in the school play!’. Yep. Pancake. I did it though!

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    1. Ha! That sounds fantastic!
      I love the faith behind that request too, that the teachers just figured it would happen. “Ok, you’re a pancake, go tell your ma to get started.”
      Did he have syrup?

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      1. We don’t do syrup on our pancakes [more like crepes here], it’s lemon and sugar! lol I made two huge circles of stiffened fabric, put them on shoulder straps, like a sandwich board, and painstakingly used a felt pen to make brown edges and’scorch’ marks all over the ruddy things. Very strange. Turned out the ‘play’ was a re-write of ‘The Gingerbread Man’ so he basically ran round and round the room with a string of other kids chasing him. Hamlet it wasn’t…

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  3. Oh my I really don’t know why I didn’t know about your blog until a little while ago. This is genius and I loved looking at all of the precursor posts (love the corduroy pants especially, and the raglan tees). And brown suede buttons… I mean, I never say this, but I feel I need to go out and find a child to clothe. (I have one nephew, but his parents are very very picky about what he wears and so they won’t let me near him.)

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    1. Well I am totally flattered that you’re practically ready to go forth and clothe children after reading this!
      Funny about the nephew. I guess all parents are very picky about something. It’s not clothes for me, but I’m sure it’s something that I’m not even aware of, but that is totally obvious to everyone who has to deal with me.
      Those corduroy pants are a big favorite of mine.
      Corduroy wears in such a neat way, all the ridges of the gathers around the elastic casings and the edges of the pocket have the fuzz worn off a little now, and it just looks great, so cozy, I love it. It’s fun to look back at that post now, those pants were so bright when they were new. And the pant legs had to be rolled up in a double fold to fit, now he’s tall enough to wear them full length.
      Those pants are at a point now where I’m wondering if I should add a second layer of knee-patch-crocodiles, or if he is just going to grow right out of them first.

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  4. fantastic….. love the tip on the tiny bits of elastic (I got one of those buddy trolleys in the charity shop….and now it seems to house every odd and end…..)

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    1. I’ll see if I can get a nice costume shot. I don’t post pictures of his face on the internet, and have forbidden all of his relatives from plastering facebook with his face (oh, maybe that’s the very picky parenting thing I do, from the comment with Stephanie above, hmmm) because I have this totally anachronistic and unrealistic hope that someday he can be in control of his own image and his level of internet exposure. You know, like we were.
      On a related note: husband and I have adapted a meme, of pretending it’s the 90’s. As in, “my phone died, so I had to just sit there and pretend it was the 90’s. It was terrible.”

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      1. Yes, I 100% support this and have already noted the lack of face in your images of him. I almost included it in my comment…
        And that is a great meme ❤️

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