Buttons & Birds Dress
Project Run and Play season 14 is here! Actually, it has "been here" for about a week, but I just finished my first outfit to enter into the sew-along today.
The first week's challenge was to create an outfit using buttons to highlight the look.
To start my creative process, I started digging through my box of patterns. I found this McCalls M6982 pattern, never before cut to size. My daughter has recently grown taller, and several of her church dresses have become scandalously short, so I decided she needed a new dress.
I took stock of my fabric stash, and found a beautiful bird fabric that I bought from the remnants section a while ago (I don't remember how long ago or from what store), and the pink gingham that I used recently. I already had a bunch of buttons, trims, elastic, and zippers in my notions stash, so I did not need to go to the fabric store for any supplies for this outfit. Yay for staying out of the fabric store for another project!!!
Using the options on the pattern envelope, I drew a design for the dress I thought I was going to make. I have made enough projects now to realize that my designs always change during the process, so I expected my design to change as I was progressing. Sewing and designing is always a journey for me, even when I have a pattern to follow.
This is how it turned out, and I am so happy with how it looks! I decided to leave off the button-clad peter pan collar, because I was worried it would crowd the design and take away from the simple beauty of the buttons on top of the trim.
I decided to extend the pretty trim all the way down to the waist, and add evenly spaced buttons to the top of it.
It was very important to me that all the buttons were placed the same way, so I used a little secret trick to keep them in place while I sewed them on.
Ta-da! Nice, even buttons. The birds seem to like them, too!
(...maybe I've been looking at this fabric a little too long...I seem to be going a bit crazy...)
I love the full gathered skirt. It makes the dress so much more fun and twirl-able.
Here is the back. I decided to add the sash for both aesthetic and practical reasons. It gives visual interest on the front, and helps tighten the waist a little. I made sure to make the ties long enough to tie a pretty bow.
Once it was dress-up time, I had a very happy customer! Birds are my daughter's favorite animal, and pink is her favorite color, so this is the perfect dress for her. She is already looking forward to wearing it to church on Sunday.
She loves bows too, and was very happy to have a nice big bow on the back of the dress.
Yay for bows!
Unfortunately, the dress was a little too big for her around the neckline, so I needed a creative solution. I folded the neckline over on top of itself on each shoulder, and carefully lined it up. I made several discreet stitches, and now it fits perfectly! When she grows again and needs a larger neckline, I can take a seam-ripper to these stitches and let it out to the right size for her.
I am so happy with how this project turned out, and I am so excited for her to have a pretty new dress to wear to church!
If you haven't heard of Project Run and Play before, the sew-along group is open to anyone who sews a children's outfit that fits the themes, and has either a blog or Instagram account. If you want to join in, please do! The more, the merrier. :) I have tried to sew along for the past several seasons, and even when life is too busy to be sewing I like to see what everyone else is making. The contestants have made amazing outfits for this round, and I'm excited to see what the rest of the season will bring!
Oh, by the way, I recently joined Instagram! If you would like to follow me, here is a link. I'm still figuring it all out, but I am amazed at the sewing community on there! There is so much inspiration, and so many people are making stunningly beautiful things.
I hope you have a great day, and thanks so much for stopping by!