My husband takes pains to tell our daughter that not every kid gets to sew her own clothes. He doesn't like to see her take it for granted that thanks to her mother's skills, she has the opportunity to design and sew (on a machine!) one-of-a-kind creations like her recently completed Recital Dress:
I love the simple Crayola-color, blue-on-blue design she created. Riding the bus to her piano recital Sunday night I realized she perfectly co-ordinated with the Bx10 bus seats:
Here she is with the original sketch:
She had originally wanted the dress to be much longer. I had to work hard to convince her that was impractical for a kid. I see lots of little-girl maxi dresses on the rack these days, but I really think they don't make sense. A long dress would get in the way when playing. Also, they will trip on that hem when going up stairs. Little girls should look like little girls, even if that means their above-the-knee hemline shows all their band-aids:
|Summer = Scraped-knee Season|
If you're like, "No way that kid sewed that whole dress herself!", it's true. I drafted the pattern, cut out the fabric, set in the sleeves and sewed the facings. I also grilled Lucy on her preferred design details because her sketch, though cute, wasn't exactly clear. I asked her about hem length and sleeve length, neckline shape, fabric type, and closures. I bought the fabric, a linen, at Mood. The turquoise ribbon is a wide grosgrain, also from Mood.
Lucy, who is nearly six now, handled the following:
1) Pre-washed the fabric
2) Cut out the paper pattern:
3) Pinned the pattern to her fabric:
4) Sewed side seams, shoulder seams and hem:
She also helped cover the buttons with turquoise lining fabric that matched the ribbon hem:
The results of her hard work, in action:
It doesn't bother my kid at all that I handled the harder parts of sewing this dress. She's still happy to take full credit for it (and I'm OK with her taking it). One day she will be able to set in a sleeve without having a tantrum. (Hey, I often feel that way myself when joining two curves).
I know what you're thinking: when is Lucy going to start her own sewing blog? And what will be the next item in her Summer 2014 collection? Any ideas on what she should make next?