Wednesday, May 30, 2012

The dresses are done, man.

Hayden and Lily's birthday dresses are DONE!! Another Pinterest win for me...thank goodness I had my mother in laws help, I could not have done it without her! They may not be as good as the one we based these off of, but we are very pleased. It took us about 4 hours per dress, I am sure that would get faster with practice, and 2 sewing machines, but all in all it wasn't too bad. We do have enough left overs to make a couple more, so maybe we can improve on our time.

At the end of this post I am going to add some how to info, if anyone wants to try their hand at making their own rainbow patchwork dress :)

The inside of the dresses. Here is how we sewed in the elastic to help hold up the top and keep it fitted.
The dresses inside out. We didn't line the dresses or do anything to make them look less homemade...they are homemade so that is kinda the look we were going for LOL.

Haddie modeling the new tie straps.

The back.

We are going to have a couple rainbow cuties at their party...I can't wait!

OK here is how we did it!

We made our dresses/measurements for a 5t-6t size if you want bigger or smaller you would need to make some changes.

As I said when we went shopping for the fabric, we picked 22 different patterns/ could do more if you wanted to, to use fewer patterns over again.

-1st we cut our fabric into 4"- 4 1/2" squares.
For the purple tier we needed 20 squares per dress we used 5 different fabrics, blue needed 18 squares, again we used 5 different fabric patterns. Green took 15 squares and we used 4 different fabrics, yellow 13 squares and also 4 different fabrics. Orange was 9 squares and 3 different fabrics.

-Next we sewed the individual tiers, we sewed all the purples in a line together, then the blues, then greens and so on. We used 1/4" seam on almost all the sewing except when otherwise stated.

**You want to mark your tiers (and later your red top and elastic) in quarters so you can match up the quarters when you sew it. We folded our fabric in half and marked the top and bottom, then folded it in half again and marked the top and bottom...that should give you your "in quarter" measurements.

-Next, on the top of each tier, where you will sew it to the next tier up, we put in two "gathering stitches" they were 1/4" and 1/8"...this is to give you the little ruffle where the tiers come together, you will remove these stitches once the dress is all done, yup it is a pain in the ass LOL. Some pics of this step and getting the tiers together here.

-Next you go about attaching the tiers to each other...remember to use your quarter marks so things stay even. We started with purple and worked our way up, again all were 1/4" seams except for the orange to red seam, that one was 5/8". Also we used white thread everywhere except when sewing on the red top...though we did use white for the top elastic strip, then red for everything else dealing with the red tier.

For our dresses we used just one color red for the top, we cut the fabric to 30" x 6 3/4". We sewed in 4 strips of 1/2" elastic (we used 22 1/4"-22 1/2" lengths.) Which for us was a 2 person job as you needed to stretch the elastic as you sewed so it would constrict back but have the give when worn...if that makes any sense.

For the straps we used 20" x 6" and halfed it twice sewing the edges closed so it looked nice and clean. They ended up being 4 straps of 1 1/2" x 20" then obviously sewed 2 straps on the front and 2 on the back so they tie together over the shoulder.

All done! I may have forgotten some steps (or explained it badly, I am not the sewing pro)...this was a lengthy project done over several days, feel free to comment with questions if you have any.


Christine Roosa said...

they look great!!! I'll gladly take them off your hands when the girls outgrow them. ;)

TripMomma said...

Thanks so much! You know one of the things I like about these the most, is as the girls grow the dress can become a tunic type top to be worn with jeans or something.