Sunday, November 27, 2011

Smocked Retro "Ainsley"

This dress is based on the yoke and sleeve top of "Ainsley" by Children's Corner.  I took the pattern and rewrote it into a retro dress.

This is the original pattern cover to "Ainsley."  You can see the yoke is identical and it ends quickly after that point.

First, I smocked a cute pattern onto the navy blue pique.  

I wanted a more grown-up look for my growing daughter and used some current design elements.

The sleeves are called "lantern sleeves."  I used the long-sleeve pattern from "Ainsely" from the cap to about the elbow.  Then I cut a rectangle for the "lantern."  The width of the rectangle was 1.5 times the width of the sleeve where I stopped at the elbow.  The length of the rectangle took it close to the wrist.  I used the original cuff for the sleeve and inserted elastic.

I tried adding the belt to the original "Ainsley", but it looked dorky and I took it off.  I used the belt for the back.

To add a little color at the hem, I added two pleats and used the floss from the smocking design to make a running stitch through the bottom of the pleats.

Photos of navy blue dresses are tough to take, so I hope you can see the dress and the details.

Friday, November 18, 2011

ModKid "Isabel" for My Daughter and AG Doll

I was wondering which dress to show in my blog today, when my daughter and Rebecca (AG doll) arrived at breakfast all dressed up.  My perfect answer to the day's question:

As you can see, my dress is a close copy of the original pattern.  Sometimes, it is okay to not mess with something already cute.  This dress was made during the summer, but in a 7 year old's mind, it was the perfect choice for a November day.

As a recall, the pattern was easy to put together and then I just free-handed a design for the doll.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Stylish "School Photo Dress" by Oliver+S

So many times, I buy a pattern because it is new and I collect cute patterns (with the thought that I will eventually make them all).  I bought this pattern, School Photo Dress Pattern by Oliver+S, without a project in mind.  As I went through my winter fabric stash, this corduroy jumped out at me and I just knew it was a great pattern and fabric match.  

The dress is easy to assemble.  The instructions are great.  I did drop the cute pocket in the front to eliminate cutting this fabric into smaller pieces.  In fact, I regret not matching the prints on the front bodice and dress.  The fabric is very busy, but the perfect match for this contemporary dress.  I used a regular brown polyester lining fabric for the lining.  The collar is a WINNER.  It is so cute and different from other patterns.  I highly recommend this pattern and I want to make another dress with the pocket.

My little model had to be coaxing into wearing this dress.  It is 86 degrees outside and she wore this dress to church:

The dress is Lee from Children's Corner.  The smocking plate is one by Gail Doane from Australian Smocking and Embroidery.  

The weekend has been busy.  My older sons finished 1st and 2nd in the Texas Jr. State Championship in Tae Kwon Do.  Lots of training has paid off for them and we are proud of their accomplishments.

I also finished a digital family scrapbook.  This is my first and I can't wait to get the hard-copy in the mail soon.

This is a sample.  The embellishments are from

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Fall Smocked Top and Floral Skirt for ME

This is a great fall outfit for South Texas.  The peasant shirt is cool enough, but with sleeves to keep your arms warm.  The skirt can be worn with the matching top or a solid.

The top is NewLook 6892, View B.  I have made this before, so I felt I could pleat the top instead of gather it.  After pleating, I smocked simple stitches in cream and then copied flowers from the skirt to embellish along the front.  Instead of a turned under edge on the neckline and sleeves, I used a rolled hem from the serger.  Below are a few close up pictures.

To roll this top through the pleater was interesting.  The neckline is contoured and not on the straight grain, so don't look at the details of the smocking.  The average eye will not catch the stretching and pulling of the smocking.  This is my first smocked project for me!

The skirt is Simplicity 2410, View A.  This skirt runs very short, so I lengthened it a few inches.  My floral fabric is very busy and if I had to do it again, I would leave off the belt.  

I love the fall look of this outfit and I love the smocking details for myself!