I’ve been sewing a lot for my daughter lately. She’s 2 1/2, and can reliably walk, run, and play while wearing dresses and skirts now. Plus, she’ll be wearing the same size more than a few months. In the past, she’s flatly refused to wear anything I make her. She also won’t wear any of the dresses from the Tea Collection (she must suspect I made it). She must sense the desperation in my eyes when I’m like “wear it, mommy needs to take a picture to show her friends!!”) When she saw this dress, she immediately said, “I don’t want it.” I said, that’s ok, I’m making it for your friend. Nooo! It’s mine! Mine! And now she loves her new “princess dress.” Hey, kid, it’s nani freakin’ iro!
The pattern is Tinny from An at Straight-Grain.com. I’ve been a huge fan of An and her blog straight-grain.com for a few years now. When I worked at the law office, I subscribed to a a handful sewing blogs via e-mail and they always made my day, and hers was one of the first. She’s pretty spectacular, and really famous. So, the Tinny had been on my bucket list for a while, but I was intimidated by the collars and the notched sleeves, both of which I had never done. I also detest printing and taping .pdfs, but with a child-sized pattern, pages that were actually numbered and diagrammed, and a little chart telling you which pages to print, made it much more palatable. BUT I finally stopped crying and made a Tinny. Because I sew fearlessly.
Seriously, it was A BREEZE. I think I was intimidated from making impressive-looking clothing like this because a) I’m self-taught and b) commercial patterns are not meant to be instructional (unfortunately) and c) I’m constantly expecting failure. But, good indie patterns like Straight Grain include color photos, step by stop information and advice, which really help me. I did not have a single problem making this dress! (Bonus, for me: no buttons. I hate buttons. Invisible zippers are the way to go).
Another contributor to the smooth process was the fabric, Bird’s Eye by Nani Iro. It’s a brushed cotton (aka flannel but without all the cheap pilling). It’s imported from Japan, so it’s not cheap. But honestly, if I’m spending my time to make her a fancy dress, she’s getting a fancy dress. It’s going to be nice. She’s wearing it to picture day and for Easter. I would pay a lot more for this at the store. The fabric is dreamy, and it was a dream to sew with because it’s so much thicker than quilting cotton yet has a wonderful drape. I used Michael Miller’s cotton couture solids in spa for the collar/cuffs. Both fabrics are in my shop now.
Isn’t this pattern sweet? Well, I’m giving away a downloadable copy of all the StraightGrain patterns!
You have a chance to win by leaving a comment on this post. Additional comments allowed if you follow me on Facebook and Instagram. The giveaway ends Sunday, March 9, at 21:00 Central Standard time. I’m also taking entries on Instragram at my account @patterncrushfabrics (there are separate rules detailed there).
I may have neglected my blog in favor of Instagram a teeny-tinsy-tiny-teeny-weenie bit but I’m whipping it back into shape. You’ll also be able to shop for my fabric and paper patterns by the end of the month on this site as well as Etsy.