I found some clearance fabric and it inspired me to sew Christmas outfits (for the first time).  Seems a little silly that I’ve never made them dedicated Christmas wear in the past…I guess I’ve just always found really cute second hand stuff and didn’t bother before.  For Charlotte, I wanted a vintage-inspired classic look, and I’ve wanted to sew a circle skirt dress for awhile, so I decided it was time.

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I started with a basic bodice pattern (drafted from other patterns I own and a t shirt that fits), added some sleeves (modified also from another pattern I’ve made in the past), and finally made a circle skirt pattern (from Dana at Made).  I also cut lining for the skirt and bodice from black kona cotton.

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It sewed up pretty quickly (aside from running out of thin elastic for the sleeves).  I added black grosgrain trim along the bottom of the bodice before sewing the bodice together (being very careful to keep seam allowances consistent so that it would match up as I went).  I used single fold bias tape to finish off the sleeve seems, and provide a channel for the elastic to gather them up.

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Big bonus for this dress….no gathering!!  Probably my least favorite step in dress making….gathering and pinning.  For the skirt, I finished the main fabric with black bias tape, and then just did a rolled hem (using the rolled hem foot on my machine) for the lining.  I didn’t have a ton of room on the back bodice for buttons so I went with snaps to make my life easier (there wasn’t much space to overlap since I really wanted the plaid to match up nicely).  Snaps are a lot easier to attach than buttons and buttonholes anyway 😉

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It seemed a little plain so I added the bow on the front.  I wish I could say this is my favorite dress ever and I’m in love with every aspect, but alas, I made the bodice shorter than I should have (poor planning, whoops) and so the skirt hits higher than I had hoped it would, and makes it overall on the short side.  Sigh.  I still love it, and Charlotte is smitten with it…especially how spinnable the skirt is, but I do wish the fit was a bit better.  I’ll have to make another with some minor changes for her….perhaps a tutorial is to come?

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Now to make Dexter something to coordinate!  Action shots to come when everything is done 🙂

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