Belated Birthday dress

My daughters love home made clothes.  They wear tiered skirts made by my mother ALL THE TIME, and all year round.  They expect a birthday dress (even if it ends up being belated).  My Older Daughter’s birthday last year was at a difficult time, with lots of  hospital, moving country and house purchasing stress – just writing makes me realize, that it really was a pretty harrowing time!  Once we moved into this house, my sewing stopped while I awaited the repair of the dining table that had been damaged in the move…

Before the trip to Phuket, I was thinking about the kids summer clothes, and was worried that Older Daughter would be pretty light on summer clothes. I realised that I had this dress cut out and nearly completed. It only took 3 hours sewing (and I am a slow sewer, and did the hem by hand) to finish it off.

All photos  are taken in action in Phuket – Older Daughter is not the most co-operative model, and the dress had been packed and worn.  You get extra marks if you can spot the little bit of breakfast on the front of the dress (I only saw that when editing the photos!).

The dress is Butterick 4176.  I made size 7 (for a child turning 7) – and there will still be at least 2 years growing room! The pattern was simple and easy to follow. The fabric is Olympus Soleil purchased by the Fireman from Purl Soho while he was on a business trip to New York (I know that I am lucky that he has such excellent taste, and chooses to exercise it in my favour). I like this pattern because the dress is very cool, but still covers the shoulders.  With our family’s history of melanoma, I’m trying to minimise the risk of sun exposure through clothing when I can.

The trickiest part of making the dress for me was making the thread loop for the button.  As usual, the blogs helped out – I found instructions for making a thread loop here. Ysolda is not only an amazing knitwear designer – she helps out with sewing techniques.

I didn’t do a great job on the thread loop – the first effort at it broke when Younger Daughter was “assisting” her sister in undoing the button.  I’ll try again before the weather gets warm enough for the dress to be worn again in Sydney.


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8 thoughts on “Belated Birthday dress”

  1. That is one sweet dress! (and I love that the Fireman bought the fabric at Purl Soho – I’m pretty sure I couldn’t expect the same level of service from my husby!!)

    Breakfast? What breakfast?!

  2. Sweet dress. And thread loops tend to be fragile. Little fabric loops are fairly simple and tend not to rib. I look for info, since my sketching skills are minimal.

  3. I want to make this one for my eight year-old – and for me!! Did they have bigger sizes (8 or 9)? Yes, you are fortunate about Fireman and his good taste.

  4. Everything is perfect for this dress! If you call yourself a slow sewer then, I don’t know what I am :)! I love the pleats around the neckline much better than the elastic that is so popular in the Japanese books.

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