My mother-in-law made my husband and I a quilt which had a fabric in it that looked just right for a little summer dress. I went over to see if she had any of it leftover, and I was in luck - she did!
I first traced around a twelve month dress she already had to get the basic shape and size. Then I cut out the pattern the way I wanted for the front and back pieces. Next I cut out my fabric and my lining for the bodice.
I sewed the pieces together at the shoulders , then sandwiched in the piping, though I like to sew on my piping to one piece to hold it secure before I sew the layers together. I sewed it all together, leaving a place to turn it inside out.
I then made strips of cloth that would be topstiched to the bodice.
The front piece I decided I wanted to be a little different so I made three horizontal pleats.
I then made my sash pieces, pinned everything together, the sash pieces sandwiched in between.
I sewed the sides together and had a very structured top piece. I forgot to take a picture of that step :( I actually had to redo it because when I tried it on my little girl, I had made the back pieces overlap too much and it was really hard to get on and off. Here is a picture of it after I attached the skirt. Just pretend that the skirt part isn't there yet.
Then I used a rectangle for the skirt- which I actually pieced together because of the limited amount of fabric I had - I made the rectangle into a tube, gathered and attached it by topstiching again. This was kind of a difficult step. It was a lot of layers and being gathered, it was hard to tell if it was even. I topstiched it on the top of the yellow piece and the bottom of the yellow piece so it would be secure.
I then did my button holes and sewed on the buttons. I don't know what happened here, but it didn't come out quite straight. I guess that's what happens when you just eyeball instead of measure. Lesson learned.
The last step was hemming and I was done! I think it came out rather well, however, I did learn a lot, and there were maybe ways I would have done things slightly different to make it easier, but overall I'm pretty proud of it.
Now the one flaw is that I think it's more of a 2T or maybe bigger. I was so paranoid about making it and then it being too small that I made my pattern a little extra big and then when I was cutting it, I even cut a centimeter or two bigger then the pattern. I also made it longer because I figured I could always make it shorter but not longer... it ended up being really long. Oh well, at least it will fit her for a while. :)
Here is her eyeing me when I first put it on her... but then I get a nice smile, so it can't be that bad.
Here is a picture of the back of the dress as she's trying to crawl away from me. It's kind of hard to get a good picture of a ten month old. There are so many fun things to explore.
I think she's happy with it, what do you think?
Bring on summer!