Monday, September 27, 2010

Sewing the Feliz Dress

I found this great book in Barnes and Noble one day as I was browsing.  I wasn't intending to buy anything, but occasionally I peruse the craft section just to check the new books and look through them.  In general, I don't find much I like, but this book caught my eye:
Sewing Clothes, Kids Love by Nancy J.S.Langdon and Sabine Pollehn.  It is a great book with a number of fun clothes to sew, great ideas for combining colors and prints and embelling with ribbons and other trims.  I had a lot of fun with this book making a couple of things, a T-shirt, then a fun little jacket, the Avalon jacket.
I don't think I have ever had so much fun sewing a kids jacket.  It was easy to sew, fun to embellish, my daughter loves it, and I made it from a bunch of fabric I had left over from other projects.  Oh, and many of the ribbons came from Laura Foster Nicholson's grab bag of ribbon scraps.  The skirt is a quick sew from Leisl Gibson of Disdressed and Oliver+S.  She has a great tutorial on how to make this skirt, the Lazy Days Skirt.  My daughter can wear the jacket with this great skirt or with a pair of pants.  I keep thinking I will make myself a jacket like this soon.


After a summer off from all but handwork this  summer, I decided to sew something to go with this fish sweater that I made.  This was my first design effort, I made it about 6 years ago.  I originally made this sweater for my son, but it looked a little girly on him, so it got stashed.  In the meantime, I had another child, this time a daughter, she has finally grown into the sweater, so now she needs something to wear it with.

I took the sweater out to find something to go with it.  I finally found a mix of things from the fabric store and from my leftovers from other projects. 
 I was going to make a skirt but my daughter really wanted a dress, so I chose the Feliz dress from Nancy Langdon's book.  I decided that as I sew this dress, I will show how it is going step by step.

I first made the sashes then put together the overdress pieces with the sashes sewn in place as marked on the pattern.

The next step was to sew on the facings if you wanted them which I did, then hem the dress.  If you have hemmed a curved skirt before you know that you have to ease it in.  I hate easing a hem.  From reading the blog disdressed I learned a technique from Liesl that I will share.  You can cut 2 inch strips that follow the curve of the hem from leftover fabric and stitch it to the bottom of the skirt which I did.  To get a full tutorial on how to do this see Oliver + s's  tutorial.  I think I did mine a little differently.  So I will briefly explain here, but you should check Oliver +s  to see how Liesl did it.

First, I layed out my extra fabric from the overdress, and took my cutting wheel and cut along the bottom of the side pattern, moved the pattern up to the get the same curve and cut a 2 1/2 inch strip that follows the curve at the bottom of the overdress.  I did this for both sides and the front.

Then, I stitched 1/4" inside the inside curve, and then I pressed it to the inside.

I stitched the three bottom pieces together to form one long curved strip along the bottom of the overdress and then stitched it right side to right side at the bottom of the overdress.

Next, I pressed the seams toward the top of the skirt.

I then hem stitiched the hem facing in place.

Finally, I folded in the facings at the two sides of the dress, and blind stitched the hem facing at both edges to have a neat finished edge.

I now have the overdress sewn together.
Next, I will how how to put together the underdress.

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