Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Butterfly Dress And Party

  Booper turned 5 in March! As a reward for getting so old she had her first 'real' party. ;-) I started with an idea for the dress I wanted to make her this year and extended it to everything else, so the theme is butterfly with a color scheme of purple, green, and pink. I tested out a few different color ideas, and my favorite was the teal and turquoise scheme, but Booper liked this one best, so we went with it.

  I was busy with a bunch of other things and realized the week before her birthday just how soon it was going to be... so I didn't add nearly as many details as I was originally planning to, and I had to make do with what I could find locally as far as party supplies. It still worked though! The focal point was the food table, which included sandwiches, Chex mix, Skittles, cake, punch, ice cream (not in the photos because I didn't want it to melt), cups of celery and carrots with ranch, fruit salad, and a tray of sandwich toppings.

  I planned to include a whole lot more butterflies in the backdrop, but with only a few days to prepare (and trying desperately to finish the dress in time) I was scrambling to put this together, and was still tacking up the butterflies when the guests arrived. I cut them with my Silhouette Cameo, and used a combination of double-sided tape and thumbtacks to get them on the wall.

  Incidentally, the last-minute scrambling is why there aren't a whole lot of photos, and why they aren't very well-lit....I took them after the guests arrived! Next time I'll plan a little better. ;-) I suppose for putting it together in just a few days, completely by myself, it's not too bad though. =)

  I made the cake the night before... a basic white cake with basic buttercream. Honestly, I'm not all that happy with how it looked. I added too many little things, and I think if I'd stuck with a more basic design it would have been prettier.

  The thank-you cards (made using my Silhouette again) turned out darling though! =)

  The dress.... I didn't finish it in time. And since I had no deadline once the party was over and was pretty wiped out from this pregnancy, it didn't get finished at all until this past weekend! I'm really, really happy I took the time to finish it nicely though. I love how it turned out!

  I used the Georgia Vintage Dress pattern again, with a few changes.

  I added sleeves again, which nearly ended in disaster as Booper told me two days before I finished the dress that she doesn't like puffy sleeves. Luckily she decided it was beautiful once she saw the butterfly applique!

  I also swapped the gathered skirts out for circle skirts, and finished the interior waist the same way as last time. This dress is beautiful inside and out!

  I used Kona quilting cotton in Spring green for the sleeves, bib, and top layer of the skirt, as it was the only woven I could find in the right color.

  I've never used Kona cotton before, and I was surprised at how much heftier it feels than most quilting cottons! The weight almost proved to be too much for the shirring on the sleeves, but it ended up all right.

The rest of the fabrics are broadcloth found at Jo-Ann. I had to double-layer the white for the sash front- it was rather sheer!

  I used some pretty trim along the edges of the bib and white heart KAM snaps atop it. =)

  The back is also closed with white heart KAM snaps... at this rate I'm going to need to buy another pack of 100 soon! =)

  The most time-consuming part of this dress was the hand-appliqued butterfly I added... it took at least 8 solid hours of hand-stitching! I'm really happy I didn't skip it though! It's my favorite part of the dress. The antennae are embroidered using a stem stitch and black floss.

  I haven't done a lot of hand-applique, and last time (I still adore that dress) I ended up with some unpleasant bubbling, so this time I interfaced all of my pieces before sewing them together and to the dress. In retrospect, starch probably would have worked just as well. It's kind of fun how you can see the shapes of the applique from the wrong side of the skirt. The back of the applique before sewing it to the skirt was pretty interesting too... you can see it here. =)

  Booper had too much fun wearing her butterfly dress with her butterfly wings (a Hobby Lobby find) and antennae... I made the antennae with pipe-cleaners, pom-poms, and a headband. =)

  Please excuse the wrinkles in some of these photos... I took a bunch of these after a 45-minute drive to visit the grandparents. =)

  I do love the change of pace with the background!

  I think I chose a size 5 width and 7 length for the bodice this time, but I honestly can't remember for sure at this point.

There were a few more discrepancies in the pattern in this size than in the 18 month size. 

  Luckily, they were simple problems to fix and don't affect the finished garment! =)
  For some reason I was having heaps of trouble with the thread this time... it kept snarling and snapping at seemingly random moments.
   I tried all sorts of things with the tensions and bobbins, and finally figured out that it was the spool causing the problem! I ended up winding the thread off to a bobbin and using that instead of the spool, and had no further troubles. =)

  I guess the only other thing to mention is that the bodice interior is finished using this technique

  Thanks for stopping by! =)


  1. This is really cute! I love the butterfly!

    1. Thank you! It was slow going but that butterfly is worth every stitch to me. =)

  2. I love how you and your girls appreciate the importance of a good twirly skirt :)

    1. Haha, yes! Those twirly skirts are important! If Gaiw discovers that her skirt isn't twirly enough she'll pull all the dresses down out of her closet until she finds one that is!

  3. I'm so impressed with that cake! I suck at decorating cakes (trust me). That cake pales in comparison to that dress though! It's gorgeous! The butterfly is awesome.

    1. Thank you! Well, the nice thing about cake decorating is that even if it turns out awful it will still taste good! =) I've definitely had my share of flops. ;-)
      Thank you! I'm really happy with how it turned out!

  4. The dress is gorgeous! Great job!