Monday, April 15, 2013

Oliver and S, Family Reunion Dress

Recently, I drug out my sewing machine, that had been in storage since before Caroline was born. My original intent was to whip up some very basic curtains for our recently converted playroom. Once I had it all set up though, I decided to make Caroline a dress or two, and then I would get to the curtains.

I still have not made the curtains. Sewing for my little girl is too much fun.

First I warmed up with a pillow case dress. It is way to big for my Skinny Minnie, but a great way to remember a few things about sewing.

Then I put together a peasant dress. I cut it much slimmer so it fits her better. I don't really love the color. Online, the fabric looked buttery yellow but in reality it is more of a golden, which isn't that flattering on my blue-eyed blonde. 

Next I decided that I wanted to make a real pattern dress. A dress with actual details. I chose Oliver and S's Family Reunion Dress because I love the pin tucks and I know that their instructions are very detailed (good for a novice like me). 

I chose a pink gingham poly-cotton blend with embroidered rosebuds from Joanne's. I had a 40% off coupon so it ended up being about $6 a yard. I cut a size 3T and that ended up being perfect for Caroline even though she is tall enough for 4T's. I like this a little bit shorter on her. 

The instructions were very detailed and I found a sew-along for the dress at  There was only so much good instructions could do for me though and my dress has some pretty major flaws.

1. Sewing curves is much harder than in would seem. Let's not talk about how many times I had to unpick that front plaquet and the neck facing. 

2. My fabric was a bit slippery and that presented an extra challenge in getting the seams straight.

3. At the end I found out that the buttonhole function on my machine is kaput. No way was I going to manually make all those button holes so I decided to put snaps on the back instead. I think it is much better that way, actually. 

4. When it was all said and done, the back did not line up perfectly but that was my fault and and no one else's.


This is the way I learn though. Jumping right in on the things I want to do. If I had to work my way through tons of simple and boring projects I would lose interest long before I made it to this level. i am a lady with little to no patience. 

I do think my tucks turned out wonderfully though! Straight lines forevah!!!  I will make this dress again and I can't wait to incorporate what I learned the first time around. 

Caroline loves it. 

Next up I am making a skirt for myself. Simplicity 2052. Still no curtains. 

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