Tuesday, August 26, 2014

First Day Of School Dress!

This week, the kids started school at their new international school here in Tokyo.  I wanted to make some back-to-school clothes, but The Boy will be wearing uniforms this year, so I only had to worry about Little Sister's wardrobe.

It's been a little tough to do any fabric shopping in the last few weeks, with family visiting and kids out of school--I don't think they'd have much patience for a trek across town on the trains to visit a fabric store--so I had to make do with what I had.  I brought one box of fabrics from the states, and I have some scraps from my fabric shopping earlier in the summer while the kids were in summer school, so lucky for me, Little Sister likes having matching outfits with mom!  Her back-to-school dress was made with a piece of knit fabric I brought from home and the leftovers from my deer-print Sorbetto tank.

My starting point for this dress was the raglan tee tutorial from Craftiness is not Optional.  Since I left all of the old pattern pieces I had drawn up for the kids back in Portland, I drew a new raglan tee pattern using one of Little Sister's t-shirts.  Then I adapted the sleeve pattern by adding extra height and flaring up the opening a little so that I could use a woven fabric for the sleeve, and I wanted to get a little flutter in there too.   When I sewed the sleeve in place, I followed the directions just like I would have for a knit sleeve, but I reeeally stretched the neck binding all the way across the top of the woven sleeve fabric to create a slight gather.

The striped piece of knit fabric that I had was only about 15" long (it came from a box of quarter-yard cuts I had ordered from Girl Charlee a while back), so I just cut the bodice of the dress as long as I could while still lining up the stripes.  Luckily I didn't need to hem the bottom since I was attaching the skirt, so it didn't matter that I didn't have enough fabric to make a full-length shirt.  I cut the neckline binding from a pink stripe using the rest of the width of the fabric.

Check out that side-seam stripe matching!

The skirt is just a rectangle, again cut as large as I could make it from the scraps I had left over!  I cut one big panel, about 30" by 12", and put the seam in the center back.  I used the selvage edge for the bottom, so I didn't have to hem it.  I just gathered the top until it was a few inches bigger than the bottom of the shirt, then lined up the raw edges (slightly stretching the shirt to make it all fit) and sewed them together!  On the inside, I ironed the raw knit edge down over the raw woven ruffled top of the skirt fabric and added a top seam to tuck those loose ends inside.  I just can't get enough of this fabric, and I'm so excited that I had enough of it to make this dress for Little Sister.

I think the scale works so well, with the wide stripe and the dainty print, and the colors matched up perfectly.  Plus it was a quick sew!

Bonus?  Little Sister loved it so much that her dad let her wear it on the second day of school too!  Pretty sure you can only get away with that when you're four.

She didn't even get any popsicle on it!

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