Flower power

Sewing machine.... ✔
Fabric, matching thread, button, lining fabric.... ✔
2 ancient zippers... ✔
Screwdriver... ✔
Pliers... ✔
Permanent marker... ✔
First Aid kit... ✔
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It was one of those projects. It started innocently enough. Despite my good intentions to use up more of my stash before doing any more fabric shopping, I found myself in need of cheering up beyond the powers of chocolate and the next thing that I knew I was at the 'good' fabric shop. I was behaving myself, keeping to the cheap rows, but then I caught sight of this blue floral fabric (Lil' Plain Jane by Michael Miller) by the door and had to have it. Far too many others had thought the same thing, as there was barely any left on the bolt (and no other bolts to be found - believe me, I stalked all the other customers, checking their trolleys. Yes, I am that person at the fabric store...).
So here's the pattern I put together. The fabric was half an inch (just half a bloomin' inch!) too narrow to be able to make the back in two pieces with the flowers matching up, but three pieces could be squeezed out. This is my first attempt at a proper zipper (using this tutorial) and a sewn button loop (using this tutorial). The full lining is plain white and most likely there is an easier way of putting in a lining in a zippered dress, but for some reason I forgot about internet search engines and just made up my own way. The topstitching shows up on all the flowers, too.
Sewing the zipper went well: it turns out that my sewing machine came with a zipper foot - who knew? But ancient zipper #1 decided to wait until it was sewn in before the metal zip bit broke into two pieces. No, I don't know how or why, either. So, that's where pliers, screwdriver and permanent marker came in handy - removing the zip bit off ancient zipper #2, then bending it into place on the installed zip, then colouring it to match. I thought that that was this project's swear words allocation used up.
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Until I burnt my hand on the iron. Please ignore the creases in the pictures...
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Translation of the day:
UK English: trolley = shopping cart in US English
UK English: tram = trolley in US English
UK English: off one's trolley = crazy / insane / silly in US English
UK English: tick = ✔ = check in US English

35 comments:

  1. Adorable! I'm sure you are relieved that it fits and is cute after all that trouble. Now if you could just get her to stop growing so she could wear it to prom ...

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  2. Way to squeeze the most out of that lovely fabric! Your zipper also looks fantastic, after all that trouble. Way better than I've ever been able to do.

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  3. It's very cute and clearly well worth the swear words!

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  4. Very well done :)

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  5. It looks great ! I love the back in 3 parts. It was really woth it.
    Cecile

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  6. Love this dress! And well done for getting the most out of that gorgeous fabric!

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  7. lol - loved reading this post - the dress is adorable :)
    I've yet to sew my first zipper - thanks for the tutorial links - cheers, Kris

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  8. What a wonderful dress, such a pretty, summery fabric and great job on the zip.

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  9. I am very impressed with the print matching. It's perfect! I hope you've recovered from the traumatic experience, the results seem to be worth it ;-)

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  10. The dress is just gorgeous!!
    It's not fair - you seem to have far more fabric over there than we do in the UK!!!!

    Gill

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  11. Adorable dress, looks great, and it seems to suit your daughter to a T! (Very mod with her short haircut!)

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  12. Oh, it's lovely! I really need to get on with our summer dresses before summer ups and leaves us ...

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  13. I bow before your pattern matching skills.

    And good thinking with the marker, Batwoman!

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  14. I love this dress and the fabric. Great pattern! The zipper and the back in three pieces look great! Well done!

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  15. i would have fall for the flowers too....sooooooo jealous !!!!the dress is great !!!

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  16. It's beautiful!! I only wish I were as talented.. I'd never be out of the fabrich shop! x

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  17. precious! I'm a fabric stalker too :-)
    Surprised you didn't give us any naughty word translations given your day!

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  18. Awesome dress, pattern matchy goddess. Love that fabric too, but cannot see any justification for spending hours on the internet hunting it down...

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  19. I think you could chalk this one up to "no pain no gain"! It looks great and fits her perfectly.

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  20. Ooh, I love this dress. Hope your hand's ok!

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  21. that is so cute, and no one ever pays attention to the backside, right? I think it looks great and I want some of that fabric too.

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  25. Sweet Nelly!! This little dress packs so much personality, makes me wish I had a little girl! Just curious - does any sewing project come without swear words?? At least none of my do.

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  26. I just found your blog and I love the girls clothes you make, wher do you get all your patterns from?

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  27. Make me one it's gorgeous !!!
    twiggy x

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  29. Love the dress! Despite all the pain (and swearing) it looks worth it.

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  30. That is absolutely adorable and I love how the flowers match in the back! Well done.

    BTW, I am in LOVE with your farmhouse bag!

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  31. This dress is so beautiful, Dawn!
    Congrats on the zipper. The three pieces in the back are cool. I love making things work with what is available.
    The dress reminds me a lot of my childhood.

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  32. This just made me wish it came in adult sizes!!! Do you think we could beg you to do a tutorial for the pattern? :) (Hopeful smile)
    Totally gorgeous!

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