Last week, a few days before I headed out of town to visit one of my daughters, I asked her if there was anything I could make her cute little girl. She immediately sent me a photo of this dress she'd had her eye on:
This beautiful toddler dress has a soft cascading ruffle down the front and was refashioned from one of my old shirts I no longer wanted.
For the pattern, I used a free pattern designed by Shwin and Shwin called the Black Bird Tunic. The pattern was the perfect size for this toddler and it had the same neckline as the dress my daughter wanted.
I started this task by cutting up a shirt of mine that looked like the one my daughter is wearing in the photo below when she was pregnant with her little girl. Instead of turquoise, my shirt was almost the right color combination as her requested dress. The shirt definitely looks like a maternity top, I realized once I wore it, and so it had to be eliminated from my wardrobe. So glad I got to create something so cute and feminine out of it.
The part of the dress that stumped me a bit was the ruffle on the center of the dress. I learned that this ruffle is called a cascading ruffle and after asking advice from one of the sewing groups I belong to called "Sewing For Children" on Google, I was given two useful explanations on how to make it. Using every scrap I could from the sleeves of my tunic, I was able to get the ruffle cut out, but not the facing. So for the facing, I decided to use a little sturdier fabric and I cut up a white linen shirt I had purchased from a thrift store.
This light weight cascading ruffle dress will be perfect for wearing on a hot summer day, like it was the day I visited my daughter and her family. I encourage you to go to Shwin and Shwin which will direct you to a site called Craftsy where you will be able to download a free pattern for this tunic.
Lengthen the tunic, like I did (I needed the finished length to be 18 1/2 inches), and make a light weight summer dress for your little one. I'm sure they will feel cool and comfortable in a dress just like this one.
Look at the back of this dress and how the top layer of the dress flows over the bottom ruffle.
I'm glad I was challenged to make this dress. According to my daughter, it's her favorite thing I've sewn to date. I call that successful sewing! xoxo Grandma
Interested in joining Craftsy? Just tell them xoxo Grandma sent you.
Linked to: Creating My Way to Success