Book Reviews Japanese Sewing Books Kids Sewing Patterns

Book Review – Polka Drops

August 24, 2012

So glad it’s Friday at last. Do you look forward to book reviews on Fridays? Today’s title is シンプル&デサイン おんなの子服 おとこの子服。Directly translated it’s Simple & Design Girls and Boys clothes. I am guessing the “&” is redundant here. Simple Design clothes for Girls and Boys?

This book is for sizes 90-130cm and there are 25 patterns in all. Some of them can be used for both boys and girls. For example, T-shirts, shirts, outerwear.

I bought this book in Japan but I have seen it quite often in the bookstore as well as online shops. So it should not be difficult to get. I don’t have a boy so usually I don’t buy many books that include boy patterns. Unless there are compelling reasons. This dress is the pattern that made me buy the book 😛

You can make a vest to go over the dress, or wear it on its own.

Vary the fabrics and trimmings and you get clothes for both boys and girls using the same pattern.

This is the other dress I liked but I’m not sure if my girls will like it since there are no gathers or frills ;P

Really cute foldover messenger bag. Great for the boys too!

Finally a culotte pattern! This will be great for my little one who loves her skirts but sometimes it’s not so practical to go cycling or climbing around in a skirt. It’s a 8 panel pattern, great for using up scraps or using co-ordinating fat quarters.

Poncho for rainy days. This will look great on a girl too!

A sleeveless tank top with a panel skirt. What I find interesting is that they use very “adult” choices when it comes to fabrics. More too often we get carried away with cutesy prints when buying fabric for kids. These are neither cutesy in pattern nor color, but the end result is great!

The tank is a variation of the same tank the girl is wearing above, but with a change of fabric colors and combination, it looks like a totally different shirt.

Every boy needs a checkered shirt 🙂 With rolled up sleeves. Cool.

This is another dress that I want to make. 2 layer dress with a lace border. Very sweet!

Back view of the same dress showing the gathers on the back bodice.

Patterns for knit fabric too. Very cute school girl look with a matching tote and cardigan.

3/4 sleeves tunic in knit fabric.

Vest in knit fabric.

One pattern, two ways.

Oh yes, there are matching patterns for Mummy too. But there are only M/L sizes provided.

As for the instructions, there is only one Lesson with step by step photos on how to make this cardigan. It’s very detailed, 5 pages in all.

The correct and precise way to transfer markings to fabric.

The rest of the “How-to-make”s are mostly like this, with steps in point form and diagrams. Some of the pages have colored diagrams, the rest are just black and white. But I guess it doesn’t really matter, as the diagrams are pretty clear.

Example of diagrams included.

There is also a free tag on the last page of the book. Looks digitally printed.

Comes with 2 pattern sheets.

Back Cover!

Title : シンプル&デサイン おんなの子服 おとこの子服
Simple Design Girls & Boys Clothes
ISBN : 978-4-529-04953-5
Publisher : Nihon Vogue
No. of pages : 80

 Have a good weekend and see you next Monday for the Balloon Dress Sew-Along!

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  • Reply debora August 25, 2012 at 1:11 am

    that looks great! another one to add to the wishlist 🙂

  • Reply Yeka August 26, 2012 at 12:56 am

    Hi Yifarn,

    This book is something that I’m looking for! 😉
    will try to get a copy soon, thanks for your review 🙂

  • Reply Anne Riggs August 28, 2012 at 8:51 pm


    Thank you so much for all the information on your site. Like others, I have become fascinated, possibly obsessed, with Japanese patterns for children. I have 7 grandchildren and enjoy sewing for them as well as for my Etsy site, Anne Riggs Designs.
    I have used two patterns from K Patterns that I got from Purl Soho, but they were quite expensive, so now I using more pattern books, and have become quite skilled at copying the patterns!
    I am enjoying the challenge of being totally dependent on the illustrations in the pattern’s instructions. Your sew alongs are wonderful, and I am looking forward to joining in.
    Thanks again for creating this site and all you do to keep it going.


    • Reply Japanese Sewing Books August 29, 2012 at 8:42 am

      Hello Anne 🙂 Thank you so much for your words of encouragement. It’s also very inspiring to see what you are doing with your Etsy shop. I have wondered about who I am going to sew for once my girls have grown up, but I love the craft so much I think i will stick to it. Probably will end up sewing for myself more, and one day, hopefully I can sew for my grandchildren too !

  • Reply KWC Days 2-7 : Tackling a Japanese Sewing Pattern | The Powell Family December 28, 2013 at 2:57 pm

    […] if necessary, assemble without needing many directions. It is a simple tank pattern(#10) found in this Polka Drops book, Simple Design Clothes for girls and […]

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