It was Steve’s niece’s first birthday yesterday, so I made her a dress. (Because, let’s face it – making dresses for little girls is fun!)
I went to my go-to pattern for 1 year old girls – Butterick 4752. I have no idea when this is from, and I don’t have any images of the pattern cover either – I traced it off my mother’s copy of the pattern about 2-3 years ago after she recommended it to me as a good one for little girls.
It’s a nice and easy pattern to make – both front and back are the same. (After all, it’s not as though one year old girls need much in the way of shaping, is it?!) The skirt pieces gather onto the top bands, and the dress pops over the head and fastens with ties on either shoulder.
All the seams are overlocked. I turned under the hem again on the inside to make a nice, clean finish so that little fingers and toes wouldn’t accidently pull on the overlocking thread.
The inside is finished (front and back) with a facing that hides all the gathers and makes it nice and smooth against baby skin. Just like with the hem, I finished the bottom of the facing so that the overlocking is hidden away from little fingers. I then top-stitched all around the neck and armholes so everything stays down nicely (even on days when it gets worn without being ironed, because, c’mon, baby clothes).
The great thing about this style is that even though it’s sized for a one year old, it can fit a much larger child – as they grow, it just becomes more like a top rather than a dress, as it can be adjusted over the shoulders with the ties.
The other great thing about this is the fabric! It’s lightweight cotton, stripy, and has images of animals in vehicles all over it. Cats in trains, bears in planes, dogs in cars, and bunnies in boats. I love it! My mother gave it to me a while back – I’ve got quite a bit left, and some is definitely earmarked for shirts for Drake when he’s a little older.
Carrying on with the Pieces of Us project I also made a soft toy, using some of the scraps from the dress for the arms and legs.
Meet Abigail, who the dress is named after:
Isn’t she cute? I tried out a pattern I hadn’t used before, the “Polly” doll from the Softies book. (I love that book – every softie I’ve tried making from it has worked out beautifully, and they’re all so cute and quirky!) Abigail is currently waiting for Friday, when I’ll give her to the Plunket nurse when she comes to give Drake his check-up. She’ll then find a new home for Abigail, with one of the poorer families in the area. Hopefully she’ll be loved and find a new friend! It’s always a bit scary, sending one of these guys out into the world alone – will they be found? Will they be loved? Fingers crossed!