Monday, May 5, 2014

A Girl in White

Girls' 1914 Dress by Sense and Sensibility Patterns

Pattern Description: Girls' dress based on shapes and styles of the late Edwardian Era. Dress features a slightly raised waist with gathers, back closure, and has options for short puffed sleeves, capped sleeves, and long sleeves.

Pattern Sizing: Pattern includes sizes 1-10

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Aside from my changes, yes.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes, they were. But I adapted the pattern to use heirloom techniques so I didn't follow them strictly.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I liked the wide range of sizes available and the thick paper used for printing the pattern. Also, it's quite rare to find patterns like this. If you want to sew historically accurate-ish clothing for children, your primary option is to use the patterns of the era. If they aren't laid out and crisscrossed all over each other crammed into a dusty old text, they still come with the expectation that you've been sewing since you were short and can turn out a gown like Ma Ingalls before Laura's wedding. So it's nice to have historical patterns for the modern sewist.

Fabric Used: Swiss dot from Hancock's for the main body. The laces came from Martha Pullen Company, most acquired during their recent warehouse sale. I ran out of time to make buttonholes so I used lace tape from Martha Pullen Company to stabilize the edges and used Kam Snaps to close it available here.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: In addition to using heirloom techniques, I created a square neckline with mitered lace trim. I cut the cap sleeve pattern but lengthened it. I also cut a full skirt instead of one tapered toward the waist as the pattern indicated. I'd planned to taper the waist but I was headed for the homestretch and got ahead of myself. By the time it was attached, yeah, that bad boy was not going to be pulled out.

As mentioned above, I used snaps instead of buttons, again, an issue of time restraint as well as error. The pattern runs small, imo. I measured her first and chose a size based on those measurements but the fit was still rather close even without the slip. It's my fault for not doing a muslin but procrastinators do what they must. Snaps it was.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I would sew it again if asked but I can't see a need for this kind of dress for pinky. But I'd definitely recommend it to others looking for a similar style with the caveat to either make a muslin or make it a size larger than the pattern indicates, perhaps even two if you want room to grow.

Conclusion: I love this dress. Can I just say what a prideful, shameful person I am? I'm supposed to be focusing on a big spiritual day for my daughter, when she affirms her faith and becomes a member of the church. All I could think though, was DAMN THAT LACE HEM LOOKS GOOD!

It's a good thing Jesus loves me.


  1. She, of course, looks beautiful. If I ever sprinkle Lorelai, maybe you can use that pattern again for her confirmation! ;)

    1. Operative word being "if", lady lol. You need to get on it. lolol

  2. Samantha, you have every right to be filled with pride over this dress. It is gorgeous and so beautiful on your daughter. I am interested in the details of how the sleeve fits. I would love to make this dress for my Ahnalin but she is a wild girl and I am afraid she would rip those sleeves out. Does your daughter feel good range of movement with the sleeves? I love love love this dress!

    1. Thank you! I plan to do a follow up post on construction in a few days. It was my first time setting a sleeve with entredeux so I was a bit nervous. The sleeve actually don't fit all that well even if pinky has declared them her favorite part. However, I think that's a fit issue rather than construction.

      If I made it for her again, I'd adjust the pattern so that it wasn't so tight across the shoulder and both the armhole and the sleeve cap (I believe that's the technical term) were wider. With a better fit, the sleeve would be fabulous and she'd be able to move around quite a bit without stressing the seams.

      As it is, it seems to move well enough for her given how much time she spent darting around the backyard like a wild beast lol. I swear most of the pictures I've taking of her lately involve running.