First of the Christmas Dresses

So, I’ve mentioned before that I’m a little obsessed with the brother/sister outfit. Which is weird, because in the past, I have ranted about how much I DISLIKED the Southern tradition of making clothes so that brothers and sisters can “match” for holiday events. But I had outfits to match my sisters–and our mom–when I was little, and now that I have more than one child, the appeal has grown. Like a wild, overfed houseplant in a sunny window.

So here we are, just a hair into the Christmas season, and not only am I making matching flannel Grinch pajamas for every member of our family, but I’ve also embarked on matching Christmas outfits for all four children. I bought some of this fabric for a Christmas tree skirt this year, and when I got it home, realized I loved it a LOT a lot, not just the little a lot I thought I loved it. So when I went back and it was 50% off instead of the 40% I’d paid originally, I sprang for four more yards with plans to make the kids some cute outfits (plus a little coordinating print for the boy’s shirt, but that’s another post).

And this is the first of those all sewn up:

I mentioned my new vintage-patterns-on-eBay thing, too right? OK, so this is one of those. A McCall’s from 1972. It’s a size 4, but a lot of these vintage patterns run a little smaller than the ones today, so I figured for our almost-three-year-old, I could probably get away with it.

I love the smooth shape and high neckline–but not the bib that was included in one of the options, so we left that off.

I love the non-puffed inset sleeve. Much cleaner and more classic than a puffed sleeve. And how many puffed sleeves can a girl have in her wardrobe, anyway?

The wrists have a little elastic in them, which makes the wide, wide bell shape of the pattern piece into a more mushroom-y bell shape on the arm.

I think I’ll add some little thread loops for the ribbon, to keep it in place while she plays.

The closure in the back is a very simple centered zip–not even an invisible.  I thought about adding an invisible, but (1) I didn’t have one on hand that was the right size and (2) I figured this would keep it looking more 70s-accurate.  It’s just 7″ long, very simple and barely noticeable.

I wish this dress was smidge shorter–I love that shortie 70s length on dresses this style. But since it’s a size bigger, and since I was a naughty seamstress and didn’t pre-wash, I figure between shrinkage (of fabric) and growth (of baby), it’ll fit OK this year and again next year.

Two years of cute Christmas pictures. Not bad for three hours of sewing today!

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  • michelle
    December 4, 2012 at 5:37 pm

    that pic with the lil hand-wave… i had to comment on it’s CUTENESS!!!

  • treen
    December 4, 2012 at 6:09 pm

    Very cute! Where’s the fabric from? Or did you buy them out? (Not that I can get more fabric right now – if I buy more before I finish my current projects, my husband will shoot me.)

    My version of the matchy outfits is to get coordinating fabrics from the same line/colorway. I let my girls choose which fabric they want out of the line-up, and I give them some options of what I could actually make and they choose that as well. So they all look different but it’s still coordinated and looks good together for pictures. I’ve only done this once so far but I liked it so much I’ll keep going with it.

  • Debbie G.
    December 7, 2012 at 6:30 pm

    OMG she couldn’t be any cuter! What a doll!