Monday, January 18, 2016

Christmas Dresses

  I've been spending most of my spare time sewing and crafting instead of posting lately! Which is why I haven't shared these dresses until now... but here they finally are!

  For the three older girls, I started with the Georgia Vintage Dress pattern, but heavily modified it. I swapped the gathered skirt out for a circle skirt with a continuously bound back placket. I'd never done one before so I tested it out on some scraps first. I decided to hand-stitch rather than top-stitch for the second pass for these dresses. I love the results!

  I moved the shoulder seam in or out as necessary for each child so that once sewn it would land 1/2" inside their shoulder points, then added gathered sleeves. The sleeves narrow at the elbow and flare out again toward the wrist, then are gathered with elastic thread at the wrist. I did a double-fold hem on three of the dresses' sleeves, and did a bias facing on the fourth... next time I'll use the bias facing on all of them!

  I sewed the sleeves and bodice this way, and slip-stitched the waist seam down. I French-seamed the sleeve seams, and the seams of Booper's skirt (hers was longer and wouldn't fit on the fabric in one piece). I added a back seam to Booper's skirt too, but realized later that it was totally unnecessary and only served to add bulk at the point of the vent.

  I kept the front sash piece, but sewed it on differently, and altered the necklines for all of the dresses. For Boopers, I widened and scalloped the neckline:

  The center back scallop should have been curved a bit more gently, but at least it lines up at the top!

  Here is the whole front of Booper's dress... I also added flat piping to the front sash on all of the dresses.

  And the back... I really love the contrasting sash! Especially when it's been starched and pressed. I originally planned on interfacing all of the sashes but didn't have nearly as much interfacing as I though, so didn't end up adding it to any of them.

  And here it is on Booper:


  For Gaiw's, I squared the neckline and added a ruffle. I wish I'd thought this through more thoroughly though... I would have bound the neckline after adding the ruffle instead of tucking it into a seam, because of course it wants to stand up even after pressing it vigorously.

  I also clipped the ruffle in one spot when I was grading the neckline and it pulled out of the seam when I washed it... so that's going to have to be repaired. =(

  Overall it's still cute though!

  And Gaiw loved the unruly ruffle.

  Gaiw managed to grow quite a bit between when I measured her and when the dress was done, so it's shorter than I meant for it to be, but not too much.

  Back view:

  I added a flat-piped yoke to Becker's dress.

  From the back:

  I really love how this one turned out!

  I think I need to make more yoked dresses. =)

  Here it is on Beckers:

  And from the back:

  Foof's dress was made using the free baby Geranium pattern, but heavily modified. I added a sash, added sleeves, made a circle skirt, and brought the sides in by about 1/2" to make it more fitted. Of course I failed to take into account how fast babies grow, so by Christmas it was quite short and a tiny bit tight in the chest, but still pretty cute!

  I also converted the front to a crossover.

  I had a hard time wrapping my brain around how to sew this one so the insides would be nicely finished, but in the end I made it work!

  I love the giant sash, even though it's not exactly practical on a baby who can't quite sit up on her own yet!

   I made a matching headband for Foof, and bows on clips for her sisters, using a combination of sewing and (ick) hot glue.

    I seriously love that sash!

  After making and photographing these dresses, I had a lot more fabric leftover than I expected, so I made a coordinating shirt for me... the first time I've sewn a non-stretchy garment for myself in quite a long time! I don't have worn pictures of it yet, because my schedule and the weather haven't been cooperating with each other.

  This fabric is Moda Let it Glow Metallic Slate Berries, bought from the Fat Quarter Shop. It appears to be gone there, but I've also seen it at and a couple of other quilting fabric stores. The red is Moda Bella Solids Country Red, and the flat piping is made from Moda Bella Solids U Brown.

  The owner of the Fat Quarter shop was wonderful, and helped me pick the fabrics that coordinated best. =)

  The gold KAM snaps were some I bought last year, but they matched the gold glints in the fabric beautifully. =)

  And that's it for these dresses! Now to get photos of the shirt I made myself! =)

Thanks for stopping by,


  1. How cute are your girls! I love how corrdinated but non matching they all are.

    1. Thank you! I really love coordinating them, but it doesn't happen often. They were even more excited that I made a coordinating shirt for myself than that their dresses were. =)

  2. They are so wonderful! I love all of the details that you added to the dresses. I do my plackets differently, but I love how neat and finished yours looks with the hand stitching. When you fix the ruffle, could you add some trim to the top so that the seam of the ruffle can go upwards and still be hidden? Does that make sense? Great job on all of the dresses!!! I love the fabrics!

    1. Thank you! I've tried a couple of different plackets before, and so far I like them all for different things. This one is my favorite so far for an opening without any closures, although I probably won't hand-stitch every time.
      Yes, that's what I was thinking I'd try to do! I'll probably unpick the whole neckline do that. =)