Laying out and cutting fabric for a child’s dress

I want to show my sewing process, with all the chaos that comes from being a disorganized artsy mom. I’m using cotton fabric that I tie-dyed to make matching dresses for my daughters, though the video only shows me working on one of them.

This whole process took about 30 minutes (obviously way sped up for the video), including interruptions.

The best part is my kitten helper.


Caped-sleeve Bolero part three


I decided that since I was going to be sewing around the armhole on a flat machine, I’d save myself some grief and hand baste the sleeve in place first.


It made it so much easier to manage the fabric while sewing.

Then a final press and . . .


Now we’re ready for Autumn.

Caped-sleeve Bolero part two

We last left off with sewing on the facing . . .

Sew it on, clip seam allowances around curves, then press.

I ALWAYS understitch my linings and facings to keep them hidden from the right side. This step makes for a much nicer finished project.

Sew up the sides, finish the armholes, and onto the sleeves.

I finished the edges of the caped sleeves with my serger, then folded down and pressed the top edge. I basted it in place with a regular glue stick, and pressed it again to seal the glue. This will wash right out in the future.

Pin the sleeves into place and call it a day.

Caped-Sleeve Bolero part one

I’ve been really curious about those Japanese sewing pattern books on Amazon for quite awhile now, and a couple weeks ago I finally ordered Stylish Party Dresses. For my first project I decided to do:

Copy the pattern onto tissue paper . . .

I decided to go with a fairly thick black fabric that I’ve had in my stash for a few years now. It will probably be too warm for summer, but I have my hopes set on Autumn. The patterns don’t include seam allowances, so I decided to trace it onto my fabric and add the seam allowances there. 

Sew shoulder seams together, chain stitching to save time.

Press seams, then finish with the serger.

Thread number four was cut, not broken. I’m using only three threads so I can switch to a narrow rolled hem without too much trouble.

Pin the facing on and quit there, before the kids start exploding.

Halloween 2013 – The Lining

I apologize for the bad photo quality. My regular camera has yet to be prepared, and since holidays wait for no man, I’ve decided to proceed without it.

I decided to make the lining first and use it as a mock-up, just in case my pattern didn’t turn out as well as I anticipated. I used some leftover heavy linen from another project that failed miserably, and so far it’s working beautifully. After stitching the bodice together, I pressed both seams to the same side then stitched them flat to give a little bit of structure to the design without making it rigid. On the right-side it looks like boning channels, and I love the effect.






I ADORE the sleeves on that shirt that I’m wearing, so I plan on copying them with some future project.