Thursday, 24 July 2014

Simplicity 2460 - A girl's dress

I bought the fabric I used for this dress with no idea what I was going to use it for; It was £2 a metre on the market, from a stall full of £2 a metre poly cottons and £2. 50 metre viscose. Being a fan of purple, pink and creeepy crawlies  I knew my daughter would love the ladybird print so I bought two yards and a nine inch invisible zip and into my stash it went.

My daughter really loved the black and white dress

Simplicity 2460 came free with Sew Magazine last month and predictably my daughter loved the picture on the envelope and asked if I would make it for her. I was a bit apprehensive as it is an inspired by Project Runway pattern and reading the envelope it seemed very complicated with choosing 'design elements' and adding up the yardage nevertheless I decided to give it a go.

It is a very pretty dress, it has options for a pleated or gathered skirt and two bodice options. I went for the tie shoulder strap bodice and despite having never sewn pleats, the pleated skirt. I knew this was probably the more difficult option but it was the one my daughter preferred and after all she will be the one wearing it.

My daughter is four almost five and usually wears a size five to six in ready to wear clothes so I decided to cut a size five knowing it would be slightly big but I hope this means it will last two summers. This is important to me as living in the Midlands and only holidaying in the UK we don't tend to get must wear from a sundress in one year. Being a bigger busted lady it is lovely to be able to cut a pattern out and not have to make any adjustments, it is probably one of my favourite things about sewing for the children.

Having decided which options to go for and cutting out the fabric I got to sewing, to be honest I found it more difficult than I expected. At one point having stitched all the straps, midriff section and waist tie I couldn't make sense of what I had at all; holding it up it looked more like a jellyfish than a dress bodice. Setting it aside and beginning on the skirt didn't make things much better as I said I had never made a pleated skirt and the instructions just said 'form pleats' so I had a guess. I folded the pleat along the fold line and then sort of opened it out more like a box pleat than I think it should have been that said the dress looks lovely on so maybe I did do it right. I did change the zip from a standard one to an invisible as I think they look much nicer, at least they do when I insert them.

Showing my slightly different pleats to the envelope - and vintage (can I call the nineties vintage ?) trim.

A little big as you can see but that means it will last, right?

My daughter was very keen on the trim pictured on the envelope, as it turned out she also like a pink lace that had been in my sewing box for nearly twenty years since I had been bought a stocked sewing box as a Christmas present. The lace matched the fabric almost perfectly and I think finishes the dress really nicely. I love to see my daughter wearing the sort of thing I think of as a proper little girls dress.

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