A Sweet Finish

Today I found myself getting frustrated because I have so much I should be doing and no energy.  After a two day migraine it usually takes me two or three days to get back on track.  This weekend is a big one because my son is getting married on Saturday.  My kids all come home on Thursday which is so great.  Anyway, I felt like I should be cleaning house or doing yard work, etc and really my body is rebelling and saying I should take it easy.  So I went in the sewing room.  Time in the sewing room is often a cure-all, right??

New Look Pattern 6578 and Radiant Menagerie Fabric by BariJ

I had most of this cute little dress made already.  I started it at the beginning of August and when it came time to put the buttonholes on it (a task I dislike) I hung it up in the closet and pretended it wasn’t there. But it is so cute and it called to me this morning so I pulled it out. I wanted to make it for my grand daughter but it is late in the season so I made a size 3T in the hopes she will wear it next summer.

The fabric is called Radiant Menagerie (from Indigo & Aster) and was designed by the talented BariJ.  I LOVE her aesthetic and carry a lot of her fabric in my shop (Wild Bloom, Indigo and Aster and now Virtuosa.)  If you aren’t familiar with BariJ, she is a talented artist whose work is often quite feminine and usually features large floral designs.  Her paintings are very pretty and some are quite whimsical.  Take a look at her work here.

She has a lot of animals sporting floral crowns and I was thrilled to see her include them in the Indigo & Aster line (produced by Art Gallery Fabric).

Probably my favorite of the animals, no surprise there, right?

The fabric that features the animals is called Radiant Menagerie and is a border fabric of sorts.   Each selvage edge is lined with the various animals.

In between the selvages are stripes in coordinating colors or pink, orange, green and blue.  The stripes are actually dotted lines. So when using this piece in a quilt, it is simple to fussy cut the animals and then use the stripes as a coordinate.

I wanted to use this as a dress so I was careful to choose a simple pattern with a straight hemline (as opposed to curved.)  This enabled me to use the striped portion as the bodice of the dress and the animals as the bottom.  The back side of the dress mirrors the front with animals parading across the bottom and the colorful stripe at the top.

Front ruffle detailing.

As if it wasn’t colorful enough already, I decided to take it a step further.  Using a four inch wide strip of La Floraison Lit (another piece in the line) I sewed a tube with the fabric and turned it right side out.  Then I ran two lines of stitching down the center (with a long, loose stitch) so I could gather that tube into a ruffle.  A quick hunt through my buttons resulted in these cute, colorful buttons to add to the ruffle.  I really like the extra detail this adds to the dress..

Finished French Seams

My serger is (still!) not cooperating with me so I finished the seams with French seams.  This will prevent any fraying.  I do love French seams.  They are easy and give a really nice finished look to the garment.

Lavender facing on the inside.

Because the fabric in a nice lightweight cotton, I didn’t want to use the dress fabric for the interior facings around the neckline and armholes.  It showed through and didn’t look very polished.  Instead, I used a scrap of a lavender solid (I think a Moda Bella piece)). It looks pretty to see that lavender bit popping through.

The dress is adorable and while I am certain it will be too big for now, I can look forward to seeing it on her next spring or summer.  These little projects are so much fun.  They don’t take a whole lot of fabric and I love seeing her in something I made.

It felt good to sit and sew the bits needed to finish this little dress up.  Tomorrow I should have a lot more energy to be able to get things done for our big weekend.  I am over the moon about this wedding as I really think these two are perfect for each other. We are so happy to welcome Shar into the family! I will share more about the wedding once everything quiets down again.


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13 thoughts on “A Sweet Finish

  1. Rosemary B

    Bernie, this is the cutest dress on the planet.
    I would make one for my grand daughters.
    …or a few
    thank you for sharing this inspiration . I love BariJ
    Congratulations to these two very very lovely kids.
    Best wishes to all of you

  2. Katie

    That dress is adorable! (I wish someone had sewn me cute dresses like that when I was little, but my mom preferred lace, ruffles and frilly stuff…) Don’t fret about the housework too much. Family knows what a lived-in house looks like and doesn’t judge. Sew, recover and don’t drive yourself into another migraine for sure! Enjoy the wedding and congrats to the young couple!

  3. Wendy

    What a cute little dress, Bernie! Enjoy your weekend and family and celebrate, laugh, and dance this weekend! Congratulations to your son and his beautiful bride!

  4. B2

    Bernie – this is absolutely adorable. You’re the best grandma ever! I hope you don’t have another migraine for a very long time!

  5. Warm Quilts

    From fussy cutting that beautiful fabric, to the french seams, and the colorful ruffle and buttons – you’ve done a lovely job on the adorable summer dress. Goodbye migraine. Cheers to the bride & groom!

  6. Barb N

    It definitely is a sweet finish! Just adorable. I really like the ruffle. I’m so sad to hear you had to deal with another migraine. Maybe you’ve gotten it out of your system for awhile and can truly enjoy the wedding festivities. Our son’s wedding is the following weekend. So much fun! Enjoy yours and can’t wait to hear all about it.

  7. Roseanne

    Hi Bernie! Oh, how sweet is this little dress? I just know your granddaughter will love it. Best wishes for your son and soon-to-be DIL. I hope they have a beautiful wedding and that everyone just relaxes and enjoys it. {{Hugs}} to you – enjoy all your peeps together in one place!! ~smile~ Roseanne

  8. Yvonne from Quilting Jetgirl

    I am sorry to hear that you had a 2 day migraine. I had seen that staying off the computer was helping. Sewing can be such a calming thing to do and the dress is really lovely. That pig!!! I hope that the rest of the week goes smoothly and everyone enjoys a wonderful wedding.

  9. Mari

    This is absolutely darling, Bernie. Your granddaughter is going to look so cute in this. Fingers crossed for no migraines and a beautiful wedding!

  10. Emily

    Oh my goodness, that dress is so sweet! Those animals are the cutest, though I am sure they are no match for the child wearing it next summer.

  11. Patty Morris

    I am glad to hear the sewing room called you to it as a respit from migraine recovery. Hopefully it did the trick. You certainly worked magic on creating this gorgeous custom dress (love Barij too!). What a lucky and happy young lady she will be! Enjoy the wedding and congratulations on the new DIL. I look forward to reading about it!


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