Sewing for Miss M

I saw it coming …

Almost three years ago I decided to sew most of my daughter’s wardrobe.

The main reasons were: 1) I was eager to learn more and this was a great way to practice, 2) sewing for a little girl is both fun and inexpensive (not too much fabric involved) and 3) I could sew her (or try) to clothes that I really love (but that are often too expensive or hard to find) using designs that suited her age and good quality fabrics (like cotton, law, linen and wool).

I think it went quite well.

My sewing pieces were nicer than expected (lots of time perfecting some techniques and lots of pattern testing), none felt apart (so far) and all withstand the test of time (and toddler playing). Often, she gets asked where she got her clothes from (if she’s not in the mood, she will say her dad sew them for her, but most time she will say mummy (and me) made them, lol) and she feels really proud to wear then (and help selecting buttons and trimmings).

Then, this year at school all the girls are wearing wear sweat pants, jeans and store-bought clothes with glitter and TV characters. While she also wears jeans and sweat pants (ok, sweat pants, not that often), I mostly sew her dresses and skirts (and there’s really no glitter involved).😦

So, when I show her the Croquet dress started late this summer (her fabric picks), she told me she didn’t like it anymore.

Yeap, apparently this dress now looks like a nightgown (and just for the record, she only wears pajamas like her brothers. She will often add a tiara and maybe a tulle skirt over it).

Why does this looks like a nightgown, you may ask (I know I did)?

“Because of the bow”. The most cute and adorable bow ever on a dress in my humble opinion  of course, (floral from the Children at Play fabric line) seems to be the thing to blame. I’m pretty sure she said it as an excuse.

Nevertheless, it’s been hanging in her room for over 1 month. She only wore for taking the pictures. She won’t wear it outside the house (and not even to sleep).

I do need some tricks!!!

A few sewing notes:

1. Following some great advise from other sewing friends, I cut the skirt a bit longer (size 7). The bodice is a size 5 (she could probably use a size bellow, but I only had the bigger size). She tried it first with the shorter hem length, but it was really too short for my taste. I lower the hem and now it fits much better.

2. I also added a few inches to the waist elastic. The recommended measure was too tight for her and the dress didn’t drape nicely. After a quick adjustment, the drape is now much better (it’s a low waisted dress, and doesn’t look nice if too fitted around the waist).

3. I used a very sheer seersucker, so I also added a lining to the skirt. It gives a nice body and drape.

4. And finally, I also made a fabric loop for the back. Just because it was much easier for me.

(Note: The following pictures were taken after the modifications (added length, lining and looser elastic at the waist). The pictures above were taken before making the modifications)

The dress, as all Oliver+S patterns was a dream to sew and I could definitely sew some more, yet for the time being I don’t see this will happen soon.

She still won’t wear it🙂

At least, I’m glad I made a larger size.

Next year, I know she will love it🙂

(keeping my fingers crossed, lol)

16 thoughts on “I saw it coming …

  1. Oh no!
    We have not had a ‘jump’ refused yet but I am sure it is coming!
    I think it is delightful.
    xxx Nicole

  2. Oh, I’m so sorry. It’s disappointing that she won’t wear it; the dress is absolutely beautiful. Perhaps you could persuade her with some pink glitter or lace leggings underneath? I think I’ve seen some legging tutorials out there…

  3. It’s lovely! But it’s so hard when people reject the things you sew! (Even little kids — especially little kids!) Are you following Rae’s round up of kids’ clothes that she hasn’t posted about yet in anticipation of the KCWC? There’s a beautiful dress she made for her daughter that isn’t getting worn either: http://www.made-by-rae.com/2012/10/exhibit-5-new-pattern-preview/

    Boys clothes are sometimes the poor cousins of home sewing because there’s just so much more out there for girls, but I suppose the advantage of sewing for little boys is that the home sewn stuff looks basically like everything else they own.

    I hate that character stuff though. The pre-school years are great for not having it around.

  4. I have been there! My 3 year old wears whatever I put on her but not my 7 yr old twins. Both of the twins love when I sew for them and want me to but one of them rarely chooses the dresses I make for her. We have a difference in opinion of what is cute. We don’t agree on what is cute at the store either. Most clothing in her size looks more appropriate for a 16-18 year old and I choose to not let her wear clothing like that. For now we have found some middle ground and I hope we can keep finding it as she gets older. I am involving her in the project by choosing fabric and pattern. Your croquet dress is very pretty! The bow is my favorite Children at Play print.

  5. I hear you. We have an adorable Ice Cream Dress that’s yet to be worn, several weeks later. With mine, I can usually predict what will entice her, but sometimes it’s just random. Most recently, she has refused to wear a store-bought shirt because there are tabs/buttons on the sleeves. WTH?

  6. This is such a pretty dress and it looks divine on her- I’m sad she won’t wear it – but I too know all about sewing clothes to only have them adorn a wardrobe….sigh….

  7. That’s too bad. It is a beautiful dress! Your daughter looks beautiful in it. You have such good taste, isn’t surprising that your daughter would have a strong sense of style. I entice my daughter with shoes- we both love shoes. I have had similar responses from my daughter. She doesn’t like the sailboat pants pattern because there are no pockets- the front flap makes a sort of faux pocket.

  8. Oh that is heartbreaking! I hope she changes her mind and wears it next year. My girls will not wear pants so I now stick to making dresses and skirts.
    Their main criteria is “the twirler the better!”.

  9. Your daughter is so pretty in her dress! I am sad for you that she doen’t like it😦
    I have no answer to your problem, sometimes they love a garment, sometimes they don’t… But I have noticed that it’s really important to involve your child in the process. You can go to the fabric store with her, you can let her choose her favorite buttons, you can even let her sit on your knees while you are at your sewing machine. I also let my daughter play with the fabrics scraps. She draws patterns directly on the fabric, then we cut it and we try to assemble them to form a garment for her favorite doll.

  10. I don’t know what I’m going to do when my daughter realizes other kids are wearing store-bought clothing! Hopefully she will understand that her clothes are extra special, but I have to expect that she will go through a phase where she wants to wear what everyone else is wearing. At that point, I will ask you for advice.🙂

  11. I made cheerful, happy colored clothes for my son until he one day came to tell me he really only liked plain, earth colored things (at about 12 I think). Well what can you say?
    Happy to see that he now (at 20) is back to extravagant colorful stuff:)

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