Tuesday, December 25, 2012

my favorite things

My darling angel robed in Liberty and tied up with a red satin bow! What else could a mom ask for?
Here is my fourth rendition of the Fairy Tale Dress. As before, this is a wonderful classic pattern that is well drafted with nice finishing details.  Probably many little girls are wearing some version of this dress today. I imagine each one is as unique as its creator, because there are endless possibilities to customize this pattern.
For this fabric, I wanted a more traditional puffy sleeve, so I redrafted the tulip sleeve and finished it with a bracelet cuff.  The collar would have been lost in this busy print without the tiny pop of bias around the edge. I spent a great deal of time and much hand basting to make that collar perfect, but I think the effect was well worth it. It works better here than a fully contrast collar would have.
This time, I went whole hog with the crinoline which gave just the right holiday puff to the skirt. I balanced a slightly less dramatic bow with a separate sash that goes all the way around. I wanted that pop of red in the front too. The sash is held in place by thread loops. This gentler bow is just right for a tiny girl.
Fabric is “Emma and Georgina” Tana lawn from Liberty’s fall 2011 collection. I fell completely for it while I was laid up in bed for a long lonely week and cheered myself up by ordering it all the way from London. The piping and sash are more Robert Kaufman radiance. This is my new favorite fabric! I made myself a blouse as well in this perfect Christmas red.
I used an invisible zipper this go because I couldn’t get a regular one locally and I followed Liesl’s directions to a T. The invisible zip is still a fiddly thing, but her method is very neat and tidy. I found it a little easier than other methods. I finished the zip with a hook tucked into the lining and a tiny thread loop.
Dolly’s dress also includes a crinoline and full lining! Kitty is thrilled that baby doll Chelsea has a matching red bow in back and shows everyone.
Wishing you all a Merry Christmas with piles of fabric under the tree!


  1. Gorgeous! Your daughter looks very pretty and proud. I love the collar. The braid is perfect. Happy Christmas!

  2. Great pattern + wonderful fabric + mad skills = success.

    This is an heirloom.

  3. Wow Melanie!
    This has to be the most wonderful fairytale dress - I just love everything about it!!
    The red sash works so well and your little girl is truly a fairytale princess!
    Merry Christmas to you all!

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  5. Thank you Beth and Anna Sofia, those are such lovely compliments!

  6. How pretty is that dress! The little lady is such a doll too!

  7. What a gorgeous dress! I just found your blog and I am so happy I did. I love to sew clothes for my kids but I haven't made them too much yet and don't really know what I am doing. I would love to have your talent.

  8. Thank you Christine, that's very kind.

  9. Beautiful - I love the style of dress and fabric choice. The bow just tops it off!