Monday, March 1, 2010

DIY: Adult Dress to Toddler Sundress

So I haven't blogged in a week or so and I have a very good reason. Once I made the orange pettiskirt, I got slightly hooked on the sewing machine. I have all these great ideas for little girls and toddlers - I want to make them all! This is my first (well, actually second) project.

I have a halter dress that I never wear. It is a beautiful peach and white seersucker stripe and so perfect for spring and summer! I could just see it as an adorable sundress on my daughter. So out came the scissors and bye-bye went the halter dress. Here's what I did...

I found another sundress that I used as the basic shape. All I did was lay it out on my table and lay the other dress on top to get the width. I was able to use the front panel of the dress doubled over so I only needed to sew one seam. One thing I really liked about this dress was the elastic shirred panel (was that redundant?) in the back, eliminating the need for buttons, zippers, or any other scary things that I haven't learned yet.

This is the back of the sundress (bottom half) after I seamed the middle. Because I used the bottom of the halter dress, I didn't have to do a new seam which saved me precious t-i-m-e!

This is my pattern for the top of the sundress - impressive, isn't it? It was my daughter's colouring page in a former life. Anyway, I cut out my "pattern" and folded it in half to make sure all the edges would line up properly.

This is the fabric after I cut out the pattern and did a french hem (or is it a rolled hem? not sure on my sewing terms...) on one of the arm holes. I just folded the edge of the fabric over, ironed it, and sewed it. And then I did it again! I didn't want the raw edges showing because I can be anal like that it looks prettier and cleaner with the finished edges.

This the front panel with one of the back panels attached. I was going to attach the stretchy part in the middle of the back, so I ended up with 4 panels total: Panel #1 for the entire front, Panel #2 for the left back, Panel #3 for the middle back, and Panel #4 for the right back. Hope that makes sense. I really have absolutely no idea what I am talking about.

Here is what it looked like after I sewed all the panels together. I actually sewed a little flap on the outside of the fabric which used up a little bit of this overhang, and it was great because it hid the seam where I attached the top of the dress to the skirt part.

I had already ruffled and sewn some creamy antique-inspired lace to the inside of the bottom hem and I wanted to repeat that theme at the top of the dress. I played with a few ideas, but ended up with a bib-type of idea with several layers of lace and ruffly things.

I started out by pinning the different laces, etc., to the top of the dress, but it was getting to be too much and too think. Plus, I didn't want the inside of the dress to have several bib seams. I grabbed a piece of the scrap fabric, did a single hem, and just started sewing lace around the perimeter. And more lace, and more frilly things, and more lace. It went like this from outside to middle: wide lace in dark cream, medium lace in ivory, ruffled scraps of dress fabric, small ivory lace (same as on the bottom dress hem), ruffled stretch organza in cream, and in the middle I squashed two rough-edged sheer roses that were already on a tulle base.

To finish it up, I sewed the bib on using 1 seam on the bottom layer, and I added some straps made out of skinny ribbon bows. Presto! Insta-dress! Well, sort of! Here is a close up of the top of the dress. You can see the flap right across the bodice.

Close up of the bottom with ruffled lace peeking out.

And the whole kit and kaboodle:

Yay for me! I am so excited right now, you don't even understand!!

1 comment:

Mandy said...

Very cute! Great job!

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