Thursday, October 24, 2013

Sofia the First Dress

I love making beautiful fancy princess dresses. (Now you all know my secret--shhhh!) I like the colorful fabric and the sparkly trim, the big poofy sleeves, and special little touches you can add with no fear of it ever being "too much".

To put it simply; these dresses are just plain fun. With that in mind, here's my take on one of the newest Princesses, Sofia the First.

'Sofia the First': Who's Who | Photo 1 of 8 |

Starting out with my reasearch photo, I headed to my favorite local fabric store (with my friend Lori) and picked up some purple satin, a few strands of pearls, a nice piece of white eyelet and some ribbon. I also decided to paint the motifs on the skirt (rather than applique) so I picked up some white fabric paint as well. Armed with my supplies, I went home and got to work.

The first thing I did was lay out a long rectanlge of fabric for the skirt. Using the waist measurement of the little girl, I cut out a long piece about 2 and a half times her waist size. This will give a nice, full skirt. Once I had the length and width right, I used a big salad bowl to trace around and cut the bottom of the skirt into a scallop shape. (No photo of this, sorry.) 

Using the bottom edge of the skirt as a guide, I created a freezer paper stencil to paint the motifs on the skirt. I just drew the shapes by hand, kind of making it up as I went.

Once the stencil was cut out, I laid my skirt fabric out on my cutting board, got some foam brushes, a paper plate, and some tumbtacks to help hold it in place and started painting.

I put on 2 light coats of paint, one at a time, with drying time in between.

Until the whole skirt was finished. I left this piece on the table to dry while I worked on the bodice and underskirt.

I used my favorite bodice pattern for the top, making the neckline higher and a simple curve. On the lower front, I added some light purple organza to create a slight contrtast on the top. Then I added a purple and white rope trim along the edge.

I used the same organza on the sleeves, gathered them along the top and bottom, (love those poofy sleeves!!) and added them to the top.

Next, I took the white eyelet fabric, measured and cut it to the same length as the overskirt and added a wide purple ribbon just above the bottom edge. Then I gathered the top and set it aside.

By this time, the overskirt was completely dry. To create the "pearls" along the bottom of the scallops, I sewed white ball fringe along the edge of the skirt.

I added a lining piece to the overskirt to help finish the whole piece off. I sewed some lightweight white lining fabric to the skirt, right sides together, along the bottom edge, making sure that all the ball fringe was facing toward the skirt.

Once that was sewn together, I trimmed away the excess lining fabric and turned the skirt right side out and gave the edges a good press. 

Now, it's time to assemble all the pieces. First, I sewed the 2 skirt pieces together at the top and gathered them together. I also stitched the center back seam about 2/3 of the way up, leaving an opening for the zipper.

Then, I sewed the finished bodice to the skirt, and after a fitting, sewed a zipper in the back. 

Here is the dress finished!

I added a strand of small fake pearls around the waist as a finishing touch.

What do you think?? I think I got it pretty close and the owner of the dress sure agreed!! She makes a beautiful princess, that's for sure!

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  1. The Sophia Dress came out fantastic!! The model is adorable as well!

  2. I wish I knew how to sew :(. It looks so cute! I can already picture in my mind a short skirt with a lot of tulle and using that painting technique would look amazing!


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