Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Toddler Girl Smock Dress

I've seen smock dresses everywhere - the ones that have an open back and just tie or button or something. I love them! They are too cute. Okay, I don't know what they are called, I can't remember. I don't think it's smock, but guess what? I'm calling it smock. Because I made it up. And I can. ;)

And so I designed one!

By accident.

My plan for this dress was not originally to be a smock dress. It was supposed to be a full, fluffy, ruffly dress.

I got all the pieces cut, MEASURED the elastic this time, and measured a length of ribbon to use as a guide for the straps.

But I had no pattern in mind. Just another "go with the flow" dress by Allie.

Once I got the elastic sewn to the first side of fabric (I sewed it to one edge, sewed it to the other, then stretched the elastic and material and sewed it down the length to make it a scrunched, stretchy top). Then I folded that over twice and sewed it down again for a nice, clean edge.

Then I looked at it.

Hmmmm....with the elastic stretched (which I didn't take into account when measuring and cutting for the elastic, go figure, lol!) it would actually fit almost all the way around her ... I could make one of those gorgeous smock dressed I always see!

I cut two four inch high strips of material from a coordinating fabric (I had three coordinating fabrics from the scrap bin at Hobby Lobby), and sewed those wrong side out, turned them right side out, and those were to be the straps in the back that tied into a bow. But still, I wasn't satisfied - I thought the back would be a big too open, or what if she undid the bow? I'm a fan of modesty for my little girl ;) Look at that nifty little stretchy strap across the back!

I took a think piece of elastic, and sewed it down a one inch high piece of fabric (the elastic was four inches long, the fabric was eight inches long). Next I sewed down the edge of the fabric wrong-side out, then I folded it right side out. A perfect little bungee strap. I had sewed an edging down each side of the dress, leaving a quarter inch of the fold from the trim so that I could tuck the straps underneath and sew them down.

Once those were in place, I cut two four inch strips from another coordinating fabric for the straps. Sewed the edge wrong side out, turned it right side out, and then attached the strips where I had - gasp - measured them to go.

So far, so good.

Now about these ruffles...well, I decided I didn't like the way the would look on the dress, and so I took one of the lengths I had cut for ruffles and made it into a trim/edge for the bottom. It was again four inches high, so I just measured it to be the same size as the bottom of the dress, sewed it down one edge (wrong side out), then down the sides, then turned it right side out, and turned in the top edges a quarter inch to make a nice, clean edging. I sewed that on, and done!

Now, I don't like my stitching - it still needs ALOT of work. But, it was not too bad. And it looked super cute on her, if I do say so myself. Paired with a cute little diaper cover or a pair of shorts, it is perfect for those hot summer days.

Be sure to tune in tomorrow for the matching pants I made...and the epic fail I had while making them ;)  Here's a hint...they were my first pair of pants I've ever made...and they were not from a pattern.

I'm submitting this to:
Visit thecsiproject.com

Have a great Wednesday!

Linking to:
The Train to Crazy
Nikki's Nifty Knacks
Bargain Shopping Paradise
Someday Crafts
Tea Rose Home
Sew Much Ado
Creations By Kara
Keeping it Simple
The Girl Creative
Today's Creative Blog
Sugar Bee Craft Edition
Me and my Bucket
A Few of My Favorite Things
Brown Paper Packages



  1. I LOVEEEEEEEEEEE that fabric! Too cute! I wish I could dress my son in fabrics that cute. But I think that would be socially frowned upon LOL.
    Thanks for linking to gettin' crafty on hump day! :)

  2. Such a cute little dress! I hope you'll link up to Make It Wear It today at TheTrainToCrazy.com

  3. Cute! Love the sweet little open back. Sewing "mistakes" often turn into new patterns at my house.

  4. this is adorable, still surfing creations by kara from last week ;)

  5. Great fabric, and your model is just adorable. Some of my favorite things have been improvised after starting, LOL! visiting from sugar bee


  6. Adorable! Thanks for linking!

    Brown Paper Packages



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