For those of you who loved the Love Sewing Thelma Dress pattern review, it’s back again! I loved it so much the first time I decided to use it again for the basis of the dresses for my friend’s daughters’ birthday presents. Regular readers will know I’ve set the bar high in previous years by handmaking their presents rather than buying them a shop bought presents; they’ve had beautiful skirts one year and pinafore dresses last year so I couldn’t let them down now. The Thelma dress was just the ticket; you’ll see I stripped away the Peter Pan collar and sleeves – it’s the perfect classic lined bodice/yoke and gathered skirt. I wanted something easy for them to wear and fasten but that looked pretty and let them run around in. I also added a little twist…
The fabric I used was pure cotton. The white fabric you’ll remember from the original Thelma Dress – little P’s mum gifted it to me earlier this year. I went to my trusty Corner Patch for beautiful blue patterned fabric for the littler P…yes, they have the same initial! Trust me, it’s going to get far more complicated as they get older and begin getting post, assuming we still use snail mail then, as neither have a middle name!
The construction was very similar to the original make, the only differences were to the arm holes. When attaching the bodice fronts/backs to their respective lining pieces, I sewed along the arm holes as well as around the neckline and back fastening (when you do this, you’ll still be able to easily turn your bodice through – pull the back pieces through to the front when you turn it for ease. Secondly, before gathering the bodice pieces, you’ll need to turn in a few mm of fabric to hem the arm holes – simple really!
So, the little twist – part of the reason I kept the dresses quite simple was to add an appliqué detail. Little P loves tigers and Littler P loves bunnies so I decided to add a little silhouette to their dresses. If you want to do the same, a simple Google search will throw up lots of images. I went for the simplest silhouettes I could find for ease of cutting out and sewing on. I printed it onto paper to act as my pattern and cut this out from linen look fabric.
Top Tip: use Wundaweb to attach your motif to your fabric to anchor it before you sew around it.
To sew around the edge, I used a small, simple zigzag stitch but depending on your machine, you can choose from many stitches.
So there you have it. As always, I wrapped them in such a way that when I took them round, we could leave the girls watching TV/playing on the tablet so that me and my friend could sneak into her sewing room so she can have a look and we can discuss the makes, before carefully repacking them so the girls would never know! We do this every year!
If you like this idea, why not check out my Flo Dress pattern review
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