Mabel’s Christmas dress

This dress took forever to make (2.5 weeks, in between time spent on Sudoku or blogging or, just occasionally, childcare or housework,) but I knew it was worth it when Mabel came into my sewing room yesterday. She looked up at the nearly-finished dress hanging on a hanger and her jaw dropped and an expression of wonder came into her eyes. (It was so dramatic that at first I thought she was doing it on purpose to please me, but she wasn’t.) It is really a treat to me that she likes it so much. Today she told me that if she got to sit next to Jesus, this is the dress she would want to wear. (I can’t imagine higher praise, can you?)

The dress is Vogue 7989 with a couple of modifications — I added some length so we could get two years of wear out of it, and since red silk is prone to bleeding, I made the sash separate rather than sewing it into the side seams, so it can be washed separately. (Unfortunately this means the sash is always riding up; I haven’t figured out what to do to fix that yet.) The yellow gingham is silk I bought at an outlet in San Francisco last year. I wish I had enough to make a matching dress for Rose since she is a little jealous (however, thanks to hand-me-downs from Mabel and dresses loaned from cousins, Rose has LOTS of dresses, and she was content to put on dress-ups while I took pics of Mabel today.) Anyway, on to the pictures:

(Note: I’m kind of annoyed because Picasa automatically resizes pictures for me and they only give three size choices — I’d rather custom resize pics, but I haven’t figured out a way around that yet. Oh, well.)

(2nd Note: The reason this took me so long (other than the internet/child interruptions) is not because it’s a difficult dress — it’s just because I’m slow, and picky (there is not one single exposed seam on the inside of this dress — even the armholes are bound,) and I tend to try out new things that take me a while to figure out.)

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This entry was posted in My kids actually are funny (and sweet and wonderful), Sewing. Bookmark the permalink.

8 Responses to Mabel’s Christmas dress

  1. danithew says:

    Zina, I like the stitch work you did on the collar. That’s really amazing work. I doubt there are a lot of Moms out there that could do this kind of thing.

  2. zstitches says:

    Thanks! For several years I’ve been member of a very active sewing forum on Delphiforums for “heirloom sewing and smocking,” and in that group this kind of work is just average — there are some very gifted needle artists there who do some very elaborate work. But I agree that in general, fine hand embroidery is a rare art anymore. (Knitting and crochet and some types of sewing, on the other hand, have enjoyed a big rise in popularity in recent years.)

  3. What an absolutely gorgeous dress! I love the length, I think little girls look so cute in long dresses! She is a beautiful little girl, and that is a beautiful dress! What a talent!

  4. zstitches says:

    LOL, Kate. Thanks! I think you can’t afford me, though (although a cushion and strawberries, sugar, and cream go pretty far towards keeping me happy.)

  5. Pilcrow says:

    I would like that dress for myself. I think I am a size two. Will it scale correctly? Oh and the fabric will be white, oh aren’t I just wicked who am I kidding I daren’t wear white.

    I am trying to distract myself while I wait to hear about how the show will be cast. On Wednesday or Thursday.

    Until then, I want to die. And be buried in that dress.

  6. infamousqbert says:

    you could put a couple of loops of fabric/thread on the sides to hold the sash in place. i have a couple of adult party dresses that employ that tactic and it works nicely. i’m sure the kids version would work as well.

    great blog, btw. i stumbled upon it from the wordpress dashboard and love it so far!

  7. zstitches says:

    Thank you! I did end up sewing on carrier loops — I used red perle cotton single-crocheted — and it is working pretty well.

    I wish I had more sewing projects to show off on my blog — someday I hope to!

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