My daughter has a Jubilee Party at nursery today and the orders were to dress in red, white and blue. I wanted to make her something that she could remember wearing on this special occasion. It may mean something to her in years to come that she celebrated this event, even if she wont remember it too clearly.
I wanted a simple dress that she could play in yet feel dressy so I used a Simplicity pattern that I have used in the past and altered it slightly.
The pattern is for a simple toddlers pinafore dress that fastens at the shoulders. Pattern 6578.
The version I have only goes up to a size 4 (have I really had it that long!?) so I spent a tedious half hour altering the pattern size up to a size 6. Then with my pieces cut out I cut the bodice off at the waistline as I wanted to put a band around the middle.
I wish I had taken some photos of the process but I was concentrating on getting the dress finished for today and with only nap time to get it done, I wasn't about to waste precious minutes with photography!
I had previously sketched out my design which was to have a Union Jack on the bodice with appliqued red and blue patches, and a red waist trim to finish it off. I wanted it nice and simple and befitting a small child. The last thing the world needs is another Spice Girl ensemble! So putting all thoughts of Geri Halliwell aside I started stitching on the colours.
The bodice was easier than I thought to put together. I just hemmed and topstitched it on before constructing the rest of the linings and sewing up the side seams. The skirt is where I hit my first snag. I thought I would just be able to attach the rest of the pattern piece onto the bodice but (and this may have been my pattern re-sizing) when I looked at the pieces they were not going to be full enough for what I wanted and also the bottom hems were a few inches short of each other. So.... I made a simple selvedge to selvedge tube and gathered it at the waist. It gave me the fullness I wanted and I was able to add a bit more length on.
The waist band was added on last once everything was assembled. It finished the dress off perfectly and also added a bit of interest to the back of the dress which would otherwise have been a very boring plain white.
I really like the end result. It is obvious what it is without being too gaudy and she looks really sweet in it. Maybe I will get it out again to cheer on our athletes later on in the year!