I've been sewing the girls' Halloween costumes. You can see the beginning of Norah's Princess Leia costume above. But being around all those great fabrics and patterns in the store inspired me to make Avril a little dress for the winter. I've been meaning to learn at least one simple pattern that I can use again and again to bang out some clothes for the girls when they need something new but when we may not have the money to shop or be able to find something we like in the stores (which seems to be happening more often these days since clothes for little girls are getting more and more mature and provocative, even within just the last few years).

This pattern seemed like a good choice because I can make minor changes to the length of the sleeves or the dress itself and have simple dresses, shirts and even nightgowns. And, depending on the choice of fabric, this pattern will work for winter or summer clothes alike.

I've lacked the confidence to try anything with sleeves till now, but I felt like it was time to force myself to learn the skill because it's pretty critical to sewing garments. I used fabric from an old twin sheet and quick stitched the pattern, learning and making and then fixing all my mistakes as I went. (I sewed the sleeves with the hem on the outside on my first try.) But once I learned what to do/ what not to do, I made the dress again right away with the fabric below. This time I took time to iron as I went, reinforce the seams, serge and trim all the inside edges, etc. I also added an inch to the length and took off an inch from the sleeves, making it a better fit for Avril's frame.

I am very proud of myself and feel as if I have opened up a whole new world of possibilities for myself now that I can sew things with sleeves. This dress is a soft flannel (thick enough not to need a lining), so Avril will be able to wear it through the winter with some thick tights and boots. I've been thinking about making another dress or two like this because there are several adorable fabrics in the store right now and it would be an easy way to get her better prepared for cold weather. But I really should get back to making Leia and Yoda costumes, at least for now, because Halloween is only five days away!


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