I based a whole coat on the buttons.
I'd been pondering this vintage McCall's coat pattern and these buttons that I purchased from howbeadyful since last summer, but had an a-ha moment when I read this post at the Sugar City Journal blog.
The Sugar City gals lined their coats with embroidery and a scene inspired by Little Red Riding Hood. I took Little V's vintage Little Golden books and printed her favorite scenes onto iron-on transfer paper. Now when she's bored waiting in line at the grocery store with me, she can tell me her version of The Store-Bought Doll, Dr. Dan The Bandage Man, Frosty the Snowman or The Three Little Kittens. That is if she can stop fondling the buttons.
This 1940's era photo inspired the hat. I modified the McCall's pattern (several times over) to make my cap a separate piece rather than attach it. I was hoping for more of a pilot's cap, but this version turned out okay too.
The hat and coat are decorator-weight linen. I used cotton to line the coat. Ugh - I nearly suffered an aneurysm trying to sort out the instructions, so finally I cut out the pattern pieces and winged it from there. There are lots of little mistakes in the sewing, but I'm totally in love with the coat. I think I'm crowning it my favorite work ever.