Tuesday, June 18, 2013

A Pleasant Peasant Dress...

It's been a while since I've shown any finished clothing projects - mainly because I hardly ever do them.  But I've had a lingering (2 years) work in progress hanging around the back of my closet that I just finished so let me give you the backstory!

Side note:  awkward selfies ahead - proceed with caution and a sense of humor

A few months after I had my oldest daughter, I was at that awkward stage where my maternity clothes were way too big but my regular clothes were still pretty snug and an event where I needed something dressy (but not too nice) was coming up. Even though I was a new mom with an infant at home, I thought the easiest route would be to make something myself.  I'm still not sure what gave me such overconfidence that I could pull this off - but my insanity ended up paying off.

I needed something that would allow easy access for nursing but would still look like a regular dress and an elastic neckline peasant dress fit the bill.  I found some bright floral fabric at a local quilt store and bought enough for Easy McCall pattern M5039:

I realize that tastes change over 5 years, but looking at this pattern cover, I honestly have no idea what drew me in about it.  But once the dress was finished, I loved it.  It totally fit the bill and I've been occasionally wearing it ever since (even though it's a bit big around the middle).

Fast forward to Baby #2...same dilemma, so brilliant me I thought that I would make a new dress from the same pattern to mix things up a little bit.  I ended up finding this deep purple batik fabric on clearance and all the material for the dress came to $3.  Score!  This time I added a solid band of fabric at the waist.  I got as far as finishing the dress with the exception of adjusting the elastic at the neckline and completing the hem because when I went to try it on, it was a little bit snug.  It was too depressing, so I shoved it in the back of my closet, sad and unfinished.

It was totally forgotten until 2 years later as I was cleaning out my closet last week.  I tried it back on, and it was a little big around the middle now.  Now that's what I call a good problem to have!  I adjusted the elastic, finished the hem and added a couple rows of ruching with elastic thread on the back to cinch it in.

I don't love it as much as the original - something about the fabric and the solid just doesn't sit right with me now that I'm two years out from picking it - but it's still a $3 dollar dress and a finished project.  The peasants would be proud.


  1. Nice job. I really like the style of the dress. It's very flattering. I used to sew clothes for myself many years ago. I think the last thing I made was a maternity dress (yikes, 30 years ago). I notice a lot of quilt bloggers posting photos of clothes they have made with some of the new patterns available. Makes me want to get back to it.

  2. I'm learning that blogging means some giving up of one's sense of, um, personal dignity. I've done a LOT of selfie-posting lately, and it's starting to be almost fun. I think you look fantastic in both dresses. Maybe the pink is more "your color," which is why you love it more? (And are you hearing it yet?...Wa-SHI, Wa-SHI, Wa-SHI. :) )

  3. How I would love to find fabric for a dress for $3.00. The purple one is nice but I do really like the pink one. There's just something about it....

  4. You look great in both dresses!