I’ve put together a tutorial for you and I’ll give you the measurements that I used. The pictures and instructions correspond to a second dress that I made, hence the red skirt; this one is about a size 5. (I actually didn’t like how the second dress turned out – the prints on the fabric were too similar in size – I separated them and ended up with the cutest shirt for Olivia, and I’ll sew the red dot into a skirt.) This is going to be an “adjust for your child” sort of sizing, okay? I’m estimating that the circus dress turned out to be about a size 12-18 months and I’ll give you the measurements that I used to help you guesstimate your own sizing.
Yes I did. I chopped up one of my hardworking man’s old dress shirts and turned it into the cutest little dress for Grace. My interest in such a project was piqued by others in blogland and by a darling little dress I saw in the kids Garnet Hill catalog. I didn’t take pictures along the way because I did it at night and I honestly wasn’t sure it would turn out. But if you want to give it a go, I scribbled some lines on a photo for you. If you try it and get stuck, shoot me an email and I’ll tell you what I did. Here’s the basic rundown:
- remove upper collar, topstitch lower collar closed again
- remove pockets
- chop up shirt into basic A-line dress, leaving collar and buttons intact (be sure to cut front and back together, they’ll be connected at the top)
- use sleeve fabric to cut out two new sleeves – here is a great little tutorial on how to sew a puff sleeve and here is a standard sleeve pattern that you can download and use that tutorial to sew for this dress.
- sew front to back along side seams
- hem bottom
- attach new sleeves
- sew rows of shirring across front; I sewed 9 rows about 1/4 inch apart each – be sure the two sides of shirring match up when the shirt is buttoned closed
- sew on cute bows (or not!)
|late afternoon at Great-Grandpa’s|
I don’t intentionally dress my children in clothes that I’ve made. I get kind of embarassed. But I also try not to persuade them one way or the other and Liv and Addie selected home-sewn outfits. I was glad that Grace was wearing a store-bought dress when we initially set out for my Grandpa’s this weekend, but then she found her “summer dress” buried in the car and put it on after splashing in the little pool. Fun for a late afternoon photo….