Just in the nick of time as Kids Clothes Week wraps up today! I didn’t get to as many projects as I’d hoped to this week, but I certainly did meet the requirement of working at least an hour a day on kids’ clothing projects.
This dress was truly a labor of love. It’s my own twist on hey june’s Edelweiss Dress. Before delving into my version with changes, I first made a muslin of the original pattern. I don’t always make muslins, but since it was my first time sewing with the gorgeous Liberty London Tana Lawn fabric, I felt I really needed to make sure a) I was capable of completing the pattern and b) that it would fit Ellery correctly.
I’m not going to show you the muslin because, well, it’s pretty ugly. I always sew muslins with contrast stitching so I can see it easily if I need to take it apart to make changes to the original pattern, but it also tends to bring out every error and it just isn’t terribly appealing. But the pattern was easy enough to sew so I was on my way!
In terms of size, the pattern advised to go by chest measurement, so Ellery, who is 2.5, measured for a size 1 (12-18 mos). But she’s a total string bean, so even though I extended the skirt on the muslin by an inch, I still found it to be too short, so for the final pattern, I extended another inch. And the bodice on the size 1 fit her per.fect.ly. But too perfectly as I know she needs to wear the dress next month, so I added about 1/4″ to all the side seams (bodice and skirt) just to make sure it will still fit her by the wedding.
Now for the aesthetic changes, if you’ve read my previous post, you’d know I had a few different ideas. I was really drawn to the version with the big bow, but torn between the yellow stripe and the navy with white pin dot. In the end, I went with the yellow because it’s brighter and more summery.
I also added pockets to the side seams in the same yellow striped fabric, but I failed to notice on the muslin that the side seams are actually not right at the side on this pattern, but a bit towards the back. But she’s 2 years old – she doesn’t really need pockets anyway – they’re mostly for effect. If I make this version again, I’ll re-draft the pattern to move the side seams to the side.
I made the straps adjustable by adding buttonholes to them. The dress currently fits on the smallest buttonhole, but as Ellery grows, I can adjust it. Or I could also use the added length to cross the straps in the back. I forgot to add some fusible interfacing inside the bodice where the buttons go to attach the straps – will definitely do that in the future.
And finally, I had a bit of trouble deciding how to attach the bow. It’s made of quilting-weight cotton, which is considerably heavier than the Liberty fabric. I don’t want the bow to lose it’s shape in the washing machine, either, so I decided to attach it using two snaps (I may add 2 more elsewhere on the bow). That way it can be taken off for washing, and better yet, it can be taken off when Ellery is eating so she doesn’t spill all over it.
I haven’t tried the dress on her since I added the bow, so no action shots yet, although I hope to get some soon! Even though I only got two projects done, I’m so glad I got involved in Kids Clothes Week and I can’t wait for the next one…