Tuesday, March 22, 2011

How Many Dresses Is Too Many?

Not for me, for my little caterpillar! Can you tell me how many is too many? Because I cannot seem to stop myself from making more, and more, and more! At the speed of one dress every other night, her closet will explode before summer. Well, frankly, I don't really care. These are the precious years that I can dress her up with whatever mommy likes, as cute as possible. Isn't that the benefit of having a girly girl? Pretty soon, she will have her own opinion about fashion and style, hopefully not too into expensive brand names, she probably won't wear any homemade clothes any more. Anyway, I will just enjoy the moment now. Here are a couple of dresses I made last week.

This first one was quite a simple fix. I bought this cute little tshirt for little caterpillar last year, for 3T. She has quite a belly, as she calls it "DaDu", so it actually fits her now, but quite long. And she has lots of tshirt already, so I just grabbed some knit fabric I thrifted 10 years ago, and added some ruffles to the neckline and the bottom edge. My original plan was adding 3 layers of ruffles, but it was way too long, almost reached ground! Oops, my bad! So, I just cut off the lower two tiers, and now it's perfect. Oh, I didn't threw away those ruffles. I will add it back on later, so she can wear it for one more season.

This one was very easy as well. I found this children knit pants (don't know the size) while thrifting, and fell in love with the fabric! What not to love? The dark teal blue background, or the bright orange and white flowers, or the very modern design? I love them all. I had a choice to make it into a pair of smaller pants for little caterpillar, but I could swear I heard it screaming to me "fun dress"! It's waist line happened to match little caterpillar's chest measurement, so I saved lots of time by keeping it. Oh, the above picture is not the real before, I already cut off the small ruffled hem from the bottom, and forgot to put it next to the pants for photoshooting. I didn't take enough pictures because I thought it was too easy. I will try to explain it as clear as I can. Anyway. I just simply cut open along the inner seam, and almost all the way up to the waistline. I am not familiar with sewing terms, so cannot tell you what it supposed to be called, just check out this picture. Then I turned it inside out, folded it so the newly cut edges are aligned on the outside. Now what you have is basically a front piece and back piece connected at waist line. Stratch the elastic a little bit and draw a straight line from just below the waist line to your desired length on both side. Sew along the line and cut off extra fabric. Cut off the extra length from bottom at the length you want your ruffle to be. Cut the extra pieces to small stripes. You can sew the small stripes together to make one long piece, but you don't have to. I just zigzagged along one side, and overlapped next piece a little bit and continued. This created some movement to the edge. Then, turn my sewing machine to the longest stitch and highest number of tension, ruffle along the other side. There are tons of tutorials out there about that, just google it. Then I just pinned the ruffle to the bottom of the dress, and sew it on. Now that basic of the dress is done, it's time to add some embellishments. I hand sewed the two original ruffle pieces I cut off the pants to the center of the top (the original elastic waist line), so I can tie a knot behind my girl's neck. And then I made a flower pin using the leftover fabric and a big pearl bead. Simply pin it right in the front, at the base of the two ruffled strips. And it's finally done! The best part, little caterpillar loves it! Oh, I am a happy mom! Oh, since I made it quite long, later I can re-sew the two straps to the side as shoulder straps, lower the chest line, so my girl can wear it again next summer. And then I can cut off the elastic waist line and just hem it or shir it, it will become a cute top for one more year! Oh, if this goes as I planned, I basically created a piece that my girl can wear for 3 summers, for less than $1! Love it!

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