Monday, October 10, 2016

Bow-Back First Birthday Dress

  My littlest daughter turned one a couple of weeks ago!

  As usual for first birthdays, I cut apart a large t-shirt and used the fabric to make a little dress.

  I've been waiting for an opportunity to make the Bow Back Beauty again, after making one for my niece earlier this year, so I decided to use that with some modifications.

  I used the plain back along with the bow back piece to close up the opening, and swapped the circle skirt out for a pleated, double-layered one that fit the width of the shirt I was using.

  In addition to the magenta shirt, I used some white knit that I bought from a Facebook group last year... it was sold as 'white burnout' and was supposedly 'very stretchy' but while there's a slight burnout look to the fabric, the design is a stiff, almost-sticky white paint... and it only has 20% stretch. So I hadn't found a good use for it until now!

  Based on Foof's measurements, I used the 3-6 months size in the pattern. However, I wish I had gone up one size. It turned out a little tight, and the bodysuit portion was a little short.

  The proportions also looked really wrong to me once it was on Foof, and I wasn't happy with my wobbly sewing on the bodysuit portion (or anywhere really, but that was the worst section):

  So I unpicked the waist seam, got rid of the bodysuit section, and raised the waist seam two inches. This time I gathered instead of pleating.

  I'm much happier with how this looks:

  I also made a little headband to go with the dress, just a simple rolled-edge strip of fabric, gathered and fussed with until it looked a bit like a flower, and hand-stitched to another rolled-edge strip that fit Foof's head. I think it's super-cute, but of course Foof thinks it's a floor decoration! ;-)

  This little girl has the brightest, most sparkly-eyed smile I've ever had the pleasure to behold.
  She's a little talker, and is always proud and delighted when I understand what she's saying.

  She's fascinated with books... with or without pictures!

  Besides being snuggled, one of her favorite past-times is throwing every single book she can reach into a pile, then sitting on them and laughing.

  She adores her family, but especially her papa. She bounces with delight when he comes home from work every day!

  I love to watch Foof toddle around just doing things... there's always something going on in her busy little world!

  We just adore her!

  In addition to the dress and headband, I made a cake for her. I've had a rough time with most of the cakes I've made in the past year, so I decided to keep this one simple- it's a classic from-scratch white layer cake, with vanilla buttercream frosting. I froze the cake layers before doing the crumb coat and it really helped! Then I piped large dots in columns, and used a spatula to drag each dot out before piping the next column. I did a sort-of spiral of dots on top of the cake the same way. I had to wipe the spatula on a damp paper towel between each dot or they just looked really messy, but it was a pretty simple, if time-consuming, way of adding texture and interest to the cake!

  Then I colored most of the remaining frosting lavender, and piped drop-flowers on parchment paper. I froze them, then added them to the cake, and finally added leaves and centers with the last bit of frosting after coloring it green. (I meant to make the flower centers yellow, but I forgot to save out some of the frosting before coloring the rest green.) I'm really happy with the end result!

  And that's it for this little darling's first birthday!

Thanks for stopping by,


  1. Wow! That's a great looking cake!!! The dress is really adorable too--I really like the bow. Also--I love that white fabric. It adds just a little something to the solid. I can't believe she is one already.

    1. Thank you! I love the bow too. =)
      I love white-on-white fabrics (or most tonal prints, actually), but since it wasn't as sheer as I was expecting from a burnout, it didn't work for what I'd planned to use it for, which is why it's languished on my shelves for so long! ;-) That, and the lack of stretch. But I'm glad I had it for this!
      Me either! This year has gone by far too quickly for my taste!

  2. Oh! The dress is almost as adorable as Foof! (She's reallllllllly cute.) I'm super impressed with your cake decorating skills too.

    1. Thank you! ♥ Cake decorating is fun when it works out! ;-)