Sunday, July 19, 2015

Op shop gown to birthday dress

Is it really almost the end of July already?

Apologies for sporadic posting. I noticed I had some actual followers on Bloglovin (yay and welcome!) so I thought it might be nice to post a project for a change.

Life has been kind of getting in the way lately, as it tends to do. This afternoon I am meant to be editing a manuscript, but since I am instead watching my sick little boy lie on the couch and my brain is currently nowhere to be found, a blog post will be a nice easy way to pass the time instead.

Before: a not-too-bad dress from Yass opshop - in fact, a pretty fancy $14 one that I waited for the right week for yellow tags to be half-price, so only $7. Since as soon as I saw it I thought "ah hah! A dress for my daughter" and would be cutting it up anyway...

Ellie loves peacock feathers and prints so it was a no-brainer. She has no going-to-parties dresses to speak of, so for her 9th birthday I thought to honour the occasion with one.

Here's a closeup of the fabric. Not sure exactly but has a fairly floaty gauzey chiffony feel. The dress was lined as it is quite see-through.

After: I went for a pretty simple idea, using a bodice pattern (Simplicity 7610) and just gathering the original skirt to fit. 

Umm. Did I say simple? Everything that can possibly go wrong with gathering two layers of fabric and sewing it to a bodice, went wrong. First I sewed it to the wrong side. Then I unpicked and regathered the whole skirt with no thread in the bobbin. Then I sewed it with the inside layer on top. Oh boy, I did not have luck that day. But I finally got it together:

Using the hem offcut, I also made a scarf to drape dramatically around one's neck (though she prefers to tie it around the waist like a pirate sash).

I was very proud of my topstitching effort and the keyhole back. The button loop broke the first time she put it on, but I resewed it with more thread and it is fine now.

Here she is wearing it (with the season's fashionable accessory of a fox hat from the dressup box, naturally). It's a little big around the waist (like, about four sizes) but she does have a size 4 waist with a size 9 height so I forgive myself. Also too long, but she loves it that way.

So far the dress has seen a total of zero fancy parties. She was wearing it on the trampoline the other day. Most of the springs have parted ways with the trampoline mat, and it has morphed into a half-trampoline half-slide complete with mud pit at the bottom where they slide off the hanging edge. 

I said, "You know honey, that dress is for fancy parties."  

"Well, we don't go to any fancy parties, do we?!" came the reply. Fair cop. At least she was getting some wear out of it! 

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