The monkey skirty has come a long way from the first time I made it! It looks nothing like the first one now. I started by changing the way I did the waist band and the cord. I now do all my waistbands the same way, but I perfected it on the sock monkey skirty.
Then I bought an Embellish Knit and that completely revolutionized the way I do drawstrings. My sister didn't like the cord on the original. She said it frayed to easily. And well... the lovely little i-cord mill seriously cuts back on time. The next thing I did was change the eyes. The first ones I just embroidered on and didn't really know what I was doing. Then I had the bright idea to crochet little buttons! Way easier and more uniform. It now takes less than 5 minutes to make and sew on a pair of eyes.
After the eyes, I changed the skirt so that now it attaches different. It's been through several iterations, and now I think I've really got it where I like it most, which involves knitting it separately and grafting it on, but I don't mind that. I added a little diamond motif detail at the waist of the skirt (where it attaches) to make it lay flat and have a smoother join so that it doesn't look like an afterthought.
After the eyes and before the skirt, I added ribbing around the legs, which just makes it look much more finished, and keeps prefolds from leaking better.
Last of all (surprisingly) I've FINALLY settled on an absolute formula for the face. It's taken a while to really perfect the placing and construction of the short rows to get the smile and the eye band just right. I think it actually is to the point that I could write a pattern that someone else could make it off of. Maybe when I get sick of making them (not likely) I'll publish the pattern. Maybe. I'm very proud of this one. Mon chef d'oeuvres, one might say.
I just couldn't resist adding this las pic of my niece and nephew wearing matching monkey skirties :).