Kids Clothes Week – Pretty Bird Dress

I fell in love with the Annabelle dress when I saw it.  Those chevrons!  It was just screaming to be made for souricette 1.  That child has never seen a maxi dress/skirt she didn’t love.  She wears only leggings and skorts to school but on weekends, she will sometimes reach for that one maxi dress I made her last year. I think the long skirt makes her feel like a princess.

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Since I finished the three T-shirts faster than I thought I would, I decided to use the rest of KCW to make this dress.  Souricette 1 picked some Michael Miller fabric I’ve had for years.  I bought it to make this dress for me. Which I never made.  I had gotten all this coordinating fabric because I didn’t think I would do a good job mixing and matching prints alone.  So I bought all that and hoarded it until I gave up.  It became a dress.  And pj pants for Mr. Mouse.  It got used for a couple flips.  There was still enough to make the dress for me.  I never let anyone touch that bird fabric!  It was mine!  But it had been years and I still hadn’t made the dress.  So I let souricette 1 have at it.  I may still make that dress but I’ll use some other fabric.

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So.  The goods.  I checked the size chart and chose the 6.  The fit was spot on.  I hemmed the dress a tiny bit shorter than the instructions said.  The instructions were good, with very clear pictures.  They’re actually very thorough so I mostly skimmed.  I don’t need that much instruction but someone with less confidence would enjoy it.  The skirt panels went together effortlessly.

There are two elements of the construction that I found a little odd however.

1. The bodice front has this optional center panel.  Instead of using the same patchwork technique as in the skirt, they actually have you cut out 2 of that center panel, sew them together, and appliqué the whole thing onto the bodice.  And since the bodice is lined, you end up with four layers right there at center front.  I don’t get it.  Next time, I’m creating a pattern piece for the sides so that I only have 2 layers there.  Even if you want to stick to appliqué, why not just cut out one center panel, turn the sides under 1/2″ and appliqué onto the bodice?  I’m really confused…

2. And this one, I actually changed.  The back has two elastic casings created by 4 rows of topstitching.  The instructions have you create the casings and insert the elastic before sewing up the side seams.  That means that, despite having a fully lined bodice, you still have seam allowances showing inside the garment.  Why?  Instead, I sewed up the side seams first.  Then, I created the casings and inserted the elastic.  I stitched in the ditch on both side seams to secure the elastic.  And there! Simple and clean on the inside.

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And the verdict? Love at first sight!  I think this one will be getting a lot of wear this Summer…

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Creative mommy at home to two wonderful little girls, trying to juggle family, sewing, exercise, family, knitting, photography, and did I mention family?

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Posted in Sewing
5 comments on “Kids Clothes Week – Pretty Bird Dress
  1. Charity says:

    Those colors are really pretty! Love the fun details on the dress. I’d probably make the same changes… that does seem like a strange way of adding the bodice blocking and elastic.

    • Thank you! I really love the skirt on this dress. The panels aren’t rectangles so the chevron pieces aren’t true parallelograms. I also love the wide straps. They’ll protect my daughter’s shoulders nicely come Summer.

  2. […] quite close fitting but not too tight.  I picked some quilting cotton from a collection that you’ve seen around these parts before.  I figured if I had to start over, it wouldn’t break my […]

  3. […] fit but with comfort and room to grow.  I did switch up the construction like I mentioned the first time I made this dress.  And added a bit of lace to the center panel.  That light yellow center was looking a little […]

  4. […] the side seam allowance on the straps (so that underarm seam) is exposed.  That’s like that VFT dress, Annabelle that had a fully lined bodice but the seam allowances weren’t encased between the bodice and […]

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