You might have noticed that I sometimes take part in swaps on Sewing Mamas. One of my favourites is the twice yearly dress swap, there's usually one in the spring and another in the autumn. Participants sign up to make two or four dresses, the last couple of swaps we have been assigned sizes to make which has worked well I think and then we receive back the same number of dresses we sent in, in the sizes we asked for. I signed up to make four dresses for the Spring swap this year and my girls, as usual, wanted to keep them all :)
This first one uses Ottobre 02/2005 #17. It's a halter neck dress with a mock wrap closure on the front bodice and it was the first time I've made a ruffled strip to use as an embellishment, I think it looks great and I'll use the technique another time for one of the girls. The fabric is a green/yellow cross weave linen blend from my stash and the buttons come from my sister's mother-in-law's stash so goodness knows how old they are.
The front wrap detail is a nice touch, it was very fiddly pressing the bias strip for the button loops and I burned my fingers more than a few times. Next time I will remember to use my bias tape maker instead, lesson well and truly learned!
The halter straps fasten with velcro tabs and there is an invisible zipper in the centre back seam.
Now read carefully here and please don't fall off your chair. The next three dresses do not use Ottobre patterns. No, don't faint! It's okay, really. Calm down, deep breaths. Feel better? Good :)
As well as my Ottobre addiction I also have a large collection of patterns from Farbenmix. My most recent purchase from them is the Elodie dress and it has become my new favourite dress pattern. It has a peasant bodice gathered to an incredibly full, twirly skirt giving a beautiful, swooshy dress with a fitted bodice that looks so much more elegant than the usual peasant style. You will be seeing quite a few more of these in the coming weeks.
This first one is a size 6, the fabric is a purple cross weave linen blend from stash again and the pink gingham ribbon was bought just for this dress as I don't have a lot of wide ribbons in my stash.
I added a ribbon bow with a little button in the middle on the front, I don't usually take the extra time for little details like this but I really should as they add so much more to the finished item.
The second Elodie is a size 4 and this one has a velvet ribbon around the bodice that extends to tie in the back. Red/pink cross weave linen again from stash and please excuse the wonky hanger photo!
And with the skirt fully spread out, you can see just how much this is going to twirl!
The fourth dress uses the Farbenmix Anna pattern in a size 4. It's a wrap style with two apron pieces connected by the shoulder straps, one wrap and ties to the front and the other wraps and ties to the back. Orange linen from stash and the peacock embroidery is an Ottobre design.
I gave the peacock sequins on his tail instead of buttons and added some hand embroidered button flowers along the side. Poorly hand embroidered I must admit, hand sewing is not a talent of mine and this was my first attempt at hand embroidery. Passable, just.
The ricrac trim along the front and back hems has pretty orange flowers on it.
That's the lot, four little dresses winging their way across the Atlantic. I hope the recipients like them!