Finished Projects

Sommer Easter Dress Challenge

March 31, 2016

I have been on a sewing spree. Like I found my sewing mojo again, I’ve been sewing non-stop ever since I got my new machine. It’s wonderful not to have to battle with uneven stitches on the back, lumped up thread, fabric-eating (feed) dogs. I can’t say it’s been completely smooth-sailing since with every new machine there is a learning curve, but I have been sewing faster than I can take photos of the finished products. Let me count off the top of my head, I have sewn 3 tops for myself from the book Couturier Sewing Class, a new bolero for my 8 year old (pattern from Cucito magazine), 4 nightdresses (and 4 more to go) from Kurai Muki’s Lock Machine clothes for kids, 2 new lunch bags (to fit in larger lunchboxes now that they are staying in school for lunches on certain days). And I’ve been quite slow on the blogging end because I just keep having new things to make. My girls need new aprons for art lessons, new totes for tuition classes, and my oldest is carrying her running shoes to school in a plastic bag because she lost her shoe bag on the bus. So I guess a new shoe bag is needed as well.

Anyway, I got my act together and took some photos for the purpose of showing you this new dress I made using the new fabric range called Sommer from Sarah Jane Studios. Those of you who have followed my other blog Cotton Candy, may have seen some of my creations using Sarah Jane fabrics. I can’t quite remember how long ago this started, but I have been a fan of Sarah Jane’s illustrations since 2008. That was way back before any fabric collection, and she was only selling prints, stationery, embroidery kits and some jewellery featuring her illustrations. Luckily, Etsy has a record of my first purchase – April 2008! That’s 8 whole years ago!


My first purchase. I love this piece. A song pops in my head everytime I see this. The Burl Ives version of course. Not the modern day Cinderella version.


This is my sewing space. The picture hanging right above my computer is a Summer Tea Party print by Sarah Jane. See the stack of fabric waiting to be sewn in front of my serger?

Fast forward to 2011, when the first fabric range was launched, and I was hooked.

I also made a couple of dresses using her fabrics (

My favorite piece was this!

Unfortunately, my little girls are not so little anymore, and they won’t wear these girly or empire waist dresses anymore. It is quite sad for me too, knowing that very soon they will outgrow most of my girl sewing books which are usually up to 120-130cm in size. It was about the same time that I overheard them fighting to wear an old Gap shirt dress that they both love, though it was much too small for the older one. So I volunteered my services to make new ones for them. And coincidentally enough, I found a shirt dress pattern in the very same book the tiered skirt dress pattern came from!


My trusty Kurai Muki book.


Here’s the shirt dress pattern. It is an A-line dress though, so I used the pattern for the bodice, and added a gathered skirt to the bottom. I had to trace the largest size 130cm for my 8 year old. For my older girl, I had to grade the pattern one size larger (140cm) in order to make it fit. So yes, she has officially outgrown this sewing book! 🙁


and here it is!




To the back waist, I made use of the top edge of the back skirt to add a casing with an elastic band. This helps to create a more fitting look at the waist. I have a second dress waiting to be made, using painted Gingham in Robins egg. I’ve only got the pattern pieces cut out so far, so I can only hope there is time to sew it tonight and finish it soon!

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