Sofilantjes down under: Nivalis dress

My big girlie prefers to wear dresses. Since I made her first knit dress last year Miss R has been asking for more dresses made from 'stretchy' fabric. In fact, she wants me to make ALL her summer dresses from stretchy fabric.

I started with Nivalis dress by Sofilantjes patterns.


Sofinaltjes patterns came onto my radar after a few of my European sewing friends shared their creations. Well, this week Sofilantjes patterns are travelling around Australia and New Zealand. In a form of a blog tour that is :)


Welcome to Victoria guys! Victoria is a gorgeous place in the south-east of Australia. Our capital city is Melbourne. In Victoria we have it all - the ocean, the mountains, the rain forests, the plains. Have you ever heard of the Great Ocean Road? Yep, it is in our gorgeous little state. We enjoy beautiful changes of seasons. Well, I should probably say that we usually enjoy beautiful changes of seasons as it feels like spring has missed the memo and is not in a hurry to arrive still!


I would have loved to make a Solis or maybe a Litore dress for Miss R. I loved Brooke's versions of these patterns. But the truth is, it is still way too cold for summer dresses down here. Maybe we should go visit Brooke to get some sunshine haha


It is now a usual practice for Miss R to be heavily involved in the process of creating a new garment for her. I only sew the patterns she approves the look of (we usually do a quick Google image search) and use the fabric she gives thumbs up to. After all, she is six and she knows everything ;) Going through a decision making process together with Miss R is actually a lot of fun!


Miss R approved the Nivalis pattern last winter and wanted a hooded dress after seeing Shelly's version. Well, now we are (apparently) heading into summer Miss R decided she did not need a hood. She also chose to omit the waist tabs.


Miss R's current chest measurement is 58 cm and she is around 116 cm tall. I decided to make a size 5 dress and lengthen it by a few cm. I added 3 cm to the bodice which I got over enthusiastic about as it is obvious I could have easily got away with only adding length to the skirt. But what is done, is done. I added additional 4 cm to the skirt past the hemline. I think overall length is spot on for Miss R. Next time I make this dress I won't go crazy lengthening the bodice. OK, maybe just by 1 cm. Definitely not three! When Miss R put the dress on the extra long bodice made my skinny girlie look super skinny! Lesson learned.


The dress was super quick and easy to make. The only issue I had was with the sleeves. I expected the sleeves to provide greater coverage. I chose to sew size 5 despite the fact Miss R actually fits into size 4 according to the size chart to accommodate for her broader shoulders, and to make sure she gets a few months wear out of the dress. Any ideas what I can try next time? Should I blend into size 6 around shoulders? Also the hem allowance on the capped sleeves is 2 cm (long and 3/4 length sleeves have 1 cm hem allowance). That did not work for me as there is less than 2 cm of the actual sleeve under the arm. Does this make sense? I trimmed seam allowance to 1 cm and everything fell into place nicely. Well, now is probably a good time to confess I hemmed the sleeves first and then sewed the side seams. So naughty, I know.


Let's talk fabric. I bought this gorgeous Paparounes Crimson knit by Art Gallery Fabrics from Brave Fabrics for myself. I have a cute little selection of printed knits and I was certain Miss R would pick something else, but she declared her undying love for this print. The flowers and the colours of the rainbow. A winning combination in the eyes of an all-knowing six year old. OK, kiddo, you can have it. Seeing you happy makes me happy. Also, I can buy more of this fabric from Erin when I run out ;) By the way, Erin is also participating in the tour, you can see her creations here. White ribbing is from MaaiDesign.


I am pleased to report that Miss R is super happy with her Nivalis dress. It has met her every criteria and now we are patiently waiting for warmer weather so she can wear this dress out and about.

Are you curious to see who else is participating in the tour? Ta-da!

Monday Idle sunshine
Tuesday Horris And Deedle
Wednesday Little Cumquat, Bartacks and Singletrack
Thursday Tea, Dust and Stitches, Brave Fabrics
Friday While She was Sleeping, Mend and Make New

And of course during a pattern tour there is a discount available on summer patterns by Sofilantjes. Please use the code DOWNUNDER to receive 15% off the patterns featured this week. The code is valid until the 16th of October 2016. Bundles are already discounted, so the code would not work for them. You are also welcome to try your luck at winning some patterns!

  a Rafflecopter giveaway

28 comments

  1. You are a better mom than me lol. I don't want to share my fabric. Her Nivalis is perfect. Thank you so much for participating!

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    1. hahaha She has a way to convince me to give her what she wants... at least when it comes to fabric hahaha

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  2. Love that dress! Can you blame your girl for having great fabric-taste?! ;)

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    1. Thank you! I am glad she is not settling not mediocre fabric hahaha

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  3. Oh how much do I love this dress!! I've had my eye on it for a while, and now I think I "need" it, haha. Sorry, but I'm no help on the sleeve/shoulder issue (I have that problem myself). It looks beautiful on her, and she has the best taste in fabric.

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    1. Thank you Emi :) I think I will try what Mie suggested and go for size 6 next time and see how that fits :) I might not be as intimidated by knits, but it is still a rather new territory :)

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  4. I love the dress and your daughter is a true trooper, modelling it in chill weather!

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    1. Thank you ! She did so well, I am grateful to her and proud of her :)

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  5. So cute. with the sleeve, id just try and extend the sleeve a bit longer perhaps? I havent got the patttern but i often just extend the sleeve to suit on many patterns.

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    1. Thank you. I did not think about this as a possible solution! Thanks :)

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  6. A lot of inspiration from your blog! Thanks!

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  7. Oh, joy of sewing for (with) a 6-year-old! :) The dress is lovely and can she your daughter is super happy!

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    1. Yes, it is an adventure, a challenge, a joy and a little bit of grief all in one, hey hehehe

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  8. Miss R. is growing up, Jenya. How wonderful that she likes to be involved. Means she's more likely to wear what you've made her. Great choice in fabric.

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    1. Yes Pam, that's the reason I get her involved in every step of the process :)

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  9. Beautiful, and so summery. I LOVE that fabric!

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    1. Thank you Marisa. I have a feeling I will have to get more of this fabric!

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  10. Oh how cute this dress is. Miss R has good fabric taste. I think I would actually advice you to simply make her the size 6 next time. Not that this is too small on her but it could totally be looser and still look amazing. That would save you all the trouble of mixing sizes :-)

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    1. Thank you Mie. The way I extended the bodice bothers me so much that I think I may and up making her another, so I will just sew her straight size 6!

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  11. This is beautiful!!! She looks so happy too...gorgeous photography!

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    1. Thank you Shelly. She is a happy gorgeous creature :)

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  12. So weird - I totally thought I commented on this already! The fabric is so great and your neckline could not look any more professional. So lovely! Such pretty photos, too!

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    1. No worries, I do the same! This fabric is sooo good I think I will have to get more!

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