Miss Boo is so happy to have a little sister, so I decided to sew the girls matching dresses with the glut of Amy Butler fabric I'd gotten.
I didn't use an official pattern, but just followed this easy tutorial from Indietutes (link here) for a peasant dress/blouse.
(My daughter is such a ham.)
I used Amy Butler Fabric for both the main and accent portions of the dress ("Love Bliss Bouquet Teal" and something else I can't find the link for, sorry!) , and a bit of orange-y stuff I had lying around for the piping detail around the tuxedo ruffle at the neck.
I'm super happy with how cute the tuxedo ruffle turned out. When I made the basic dress it just seemed too bare, and I made the accent part on a whim with bits of leftover fabric cuttings. The buttons I'm especially pleased with. I've had them in my button bag for years (they were cast offs from an old dress that belonged to my sister Lynn when she was in high school!) and it was satisfying to finally find a use for them.
Basically I started with the flat section first, tacked on the orange piping, ruffled some more green fabric, tacked on that, and then sewed the whole three layers together. Once that was done I sewed on the buttons and finally sewed the completed tuxedo section onto the dress.
I wanted the dress to have some stability to it, so instead of using elastic around the neck I made binding tape from the accent fabric and sewed a button loop and plain button on the back as well as using the binding around the sleeves.
I'm rather pleased with how well that particular detail came out!
For the bottom section I just cut a long strip of the accent fabric, gathered it, and then attached it underneath the hem of the main section.
Miss Boo's dress has a tiny bit of waist shaping in how I cut the fabric, and I love the way it gently nips in around her middle section. I don't really care for the loose floppy look of pillowcase dresses (unless they're a nightdress).
For Baby Ella I made a matching pair of bloomers using this tutorial online.
I use cloth diapers, which are more bulky than disposable diapers, so I made the bloomers nice and poofy. (Usually the matching pants that come with dresses don't fit over her amply padded bottom, ha ha!)
Having now had a chance to use the Amy Butler fabric, I have to say I have completely fallen in love with it. The fabric is slightly thicker than the fabrics you can typically get at JoAnn's, and of a much better quality. I did take the time to give it a salt bath to help the colors set (perhaps unnecessary, but I figured it couldn't hurt). I also love how easy it was to match the different patterns. For someone like me who struggles with color palettes, it was relaxing for once rather than stressful. Despite the slightly higher cost ($8.95/yard + s/h), I'd definitely purchase boutique fabric again for anything that I wanted to last or be special.
Special dresses for my special girls!