Friday, 19 April 2013

Oliver + S School Photo Dress

Here's one of those things that I just wanted to make. My daughter probably won't like it, she doesn't really need it, but when I saw the fabric I just knew what it wanted to be made into. The School Photo dress by Oliver + S

I love this pattern and I've made it once before, also using a remnant. That time was a size 5 as I had only bought the larger pattern size. It's in a cupboard, waiting another 3 years or so before it fits! Of course I had to buy the smaller pattern size and make another.

The fabric was a 70cm remnant that I picked up at The Fabric Store along with all these other lovely bits of woven goodness. I tried desperately to make it fit with the pattern running horizontally but there was no way even this fabric Scrooge could do it.

I made some notes at the time about what I thought I'd do with all the rest of the fabric. I don't think any of it has happened yet. Tragically, it had been my New Year's Resolution not to buy too much more fabric (I wasn't kidding myself I could go cold turkey) and in looking for this photo, it was in the January folder, dated the 15th. Didn't last long did I?

So while I couldn't get the pattern to run the way I wanted I completely lucked out on the back with this bit of pattern matching! There's three panels there and I'm so happy with how they came together. At first I sweated on trying to line everything up, but then I realised that the panels of the dress flared in width, so if the pattern matched at the top it wouldn't at the bottom and vice versa. So I poured another glass of red and just got on with cutting it anyway it would fit, so I really can't take credit for this picture. But I am pleased all the same.

The button came from a collection that my mother in law gave me, and the dress is lined in a milky coffee coloured voile that a local shop had for $2/metre.

The pattern is, of course, superb in it's explanation and design. The little kangaroo pocket in front is lovely, and is just the kind of trick that may persuade A to wear it. Meanwhile the instructions for the invisible zipper will always be my go to reference if I need to sew one.

The one thing I remembered from the first dress is that the instructions mention serging all the straight edges first IF you're using a serger. I don't have one, so I didn't. There are very few mentions of finishing the seams allowances after that and so I assumed I didn't need to, but the lining hangs free so those seam allowances do need finishing. This time I finished all the straight edges before assembling anything. The one in the cupboard is a velveteen that I just know will fall apart if it's washed. I can't bear to go back to something that I should be able to consider finished, but I know I must...


  1. This is very cute! I love this pattern and made it once. Unfortunately neither of my girls would wear it. Hope yours does!

  2. It turned out very nice! And what great luck with the back. I think this is a great pattern but my little one needs to get a little bigger, I think it would swallow her still :)


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