Thursday, July 21, 2011

Two Little Girls, Two Little Dresses

I have hardly sewed a thing this summer. Honestly, we've just been too busy, between camping and school and gardening and other summer activities. I haven't had enough free time to sit down at the sewing machine, or to pick up knitting needles.

And then I got really sad, because my kids are growing up so fast that I'm missing out on opportunities to make them cute things, and I put aside other less important things (like laundry, and mopping floors, and pulling weeds) and I sat down at the sewing machine with a stack of fabric and a few ideas bouncing around in my head.

This is what we ended up with.

Patchwork apron-style dresses with appliques on the bodices depicting the meaning of each girl's name.

Cora, derived from Kore, is sometimes used as a name for Persephone, a Greek goddess. You can Google the whole story if you want it (it's a good one), but Persephone is known for bringing spring to the earth each year - which I depicted in the form of a sunshine. It's also fitting since I always tell Cora she's my sunshine. And Cora also means "maiden" or "feminine", making pink the most obvious choice to accompany the yellow sunshine.

And Chloe, while also another name for the Greek goddess Demeter (who was Persephone's mother, and believe it or not, my choice in these names was completely unintentional), but Chloe also means "small green shoot." So fitting for all that this sweet little girl is.

The backs lace up corset style, with elastic in the back panels of the skirt. These dresses will fit for years.

The details: I used 1/4yd each of 6 fabrics for Cora's (size 4), and 1/3 yd each of 6 fabrics for Chloe's (Size 7.) I didn't follow a pattern, but didn't need one. A simple bodice shape is cut, plus the same shape for a lining. The two are sewn together and turned and topstitched. The skirt part is just 6 panels of fabric gathered a bit around the bodice with an elastic panel inserted in the back. I added ruffles and appliques and pockets because details are fun.

I love the result. Little girls in long dresses make me happy.


Kim said...

Oh my word, I would pay you for a dress like that! Seriously, how much?? I love them!!

Julie said...

Hmm... for a Katie-sized dress? I'll say $35. I haven't priced fabric for adult-sized dresses yet, but I want to do one of those, too!