R loves you because of the pockets and buttons, and the fact she can jump all over her daddy, ride a bike, climb benches and simply monkey around without being restricted.
I love you because you are fun to make. You have the cutest collar and unique details. You have a vintage inspired shape. You have sleeve options that makes you perfect for every season. The fact that there are no closures makes me love you even more because my girl can get dressed by herself!
Yep. Both R and I love the Dear Prudence dress, the latest pattern released by Suz from Sewpony.
When I was choosing fabric for this project I was a little unsure if R would approve it. She has very strong likes and dislikes. Blue is not in her good books currently. "I don't like blue. Blue is boring. But I like shiny blue", she tells me.
Sometimes mama has got to make what mama wants to make! You see, I think R looks stunning in blue. This colour makes her gorgeous eyes shine. So without feeling convinced this lightweight denim would fit the description of 'shiny blue' rather than be labelled 'boring' I set to work.
This rounded collar with decorative buttons and shirring at the front are my favourite features of the pattern. I love piping and would not miss an opportunity to use it. I chose apricot (aka pink if you are four) bias tape to make piping for this dress hoping that a splash of one of R's current favourite colours would make a blue dress more appealing. If you would like help with making piping you can follow Suz's tips included in the instructions to this pattern.
It was helpful to have tips on shirring included in the instructions also. I have attempted shirring only once before. I have heard that different machines handle shirring differently. I had a practice go on a scrap of fabric and discovered that using a longer length stitch did not work well on my machine. I tried a few different lengths and was most pleased with the result I achieved with the stitch length set at 3. Stitch length on my machine ranges from 1 to 5.
To make markings for the beginning and the end of shirring lines I used an old school trick - a piece of soap. The only 100% washable tool! In fact, I just wipe it off once I am done and there are no visible marks left on fabric. I could tell you what happened when I used an air erasable marker, but I am still too traumatised to talk about it! And yes, you can spot understitching ;) This step in not included in the instructions, but I did't want white lining peeking out!
I sewed size 4 for R but lengthened the sleeves and the skirt by 4 cm, so the length is probably closer to size 5. Before hemming the dress I got R to try it on. Well, she instantly shattered my fears of the dress being labelled 'boring' as she asked to keep it on for longer. I suggested I could wait for a few minutes to which she replied, "How about thirty eight" and started jumping all over her daddy! I swear my husband got a few bruises on his back form this exercise, but R was having so much fun we could only laugh! I shared a few photos on Instagram, so if you are following me you know what I am talking about ;)
After jumping for quite some time R paused, looked at me and asked, "Are there pockets"? I showed her the pockets and explained there would be buttons on the dress later too. She nodded and went back to jumping all over daddy.
There are no closures on this dress, so independent little monkeys can dress themselves. A piece of elastic inserted between the lining and the main fabric helps the dress sit nicely at the back. This step might sound a little confusing at first, but just trust Suz's instructions. Everything works out just fine in the end.
We had the most dramatic photo shoot! To start with R was not well and did not feel like modelling. But once I agreed to let her ride her bike to our usual spot she got a little more co-operative. I am sure this has got nothing to do with me promising her a yummy Tim Tam after a photo shoot ;)
Do you know why R has a basket on her bike? So mummy would not have to carry all the treasures R finds! Yes, this big stick was declared a treasure!
If you would like to sew the Dear Prudence dress for a special little adventure seeker in your life you can buy a pattern at Sewpony Vintage with a 15% discount using code PRUDENCE15 from the 6th until the 17th of July 2015.
Today Miranda and Marleene are also showing their versions of the Dear Prudence pattern. Please visit other blog tour participants for more inspiration!