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Our theme for week 3, Botanical Beauty, had me dreaming up whimsical, floral inspired dresses, something I could imagine that little girls would just love to wear! I decided to create two dresses and a headpiece this week, for Ellie, and her very best friend, Lily. They are both such girly, sweet little ladies, constantly lost in the world of butterflies, fairies, flowers and unicorns... so of course I had to work some of those things into this weeks creations.
I've always loved working with tulle, and decided, it was now or never - I was going to sew a flower and butterfly filled skirt. Every flower and butterfly was hand stitched on, I think in the end I sewed around 85 flowers.
I put some thought into how it would be possible to make this dress really wearable, as the flowers and butterflies definitely can't be washed. So I designed it so that the portion of the dress with the flowers and butterflies is actually a skirt with a waistband, making it completely removable. The dress can be worn as a simple pink tulle dress, or with the butterfly skirt over the top, sitting beautifully as though it is ''attached'' to the bodice. It even sits beautifully over a leotard worn as a midi skirt! on, alternating colours and sizes.
I drafted this dress pattern to have a neckline centred at the base of the neck, with straps that crossed over, and looped through the sides, creating a feature open back. The bodice and waistband are linen, and the tulle skirt was also lined with a satin with all the seams enclosed.
For Miss Lily, I used a silk georgette fabric I had been hoarding for some time. I drafted to her dress to have a centre bib, with side panels and elastic back. After sewing up my test bodice, I decided it needed a little something extra and added in some ruffles between the bib and side panels. For the skirt, I cut a slightly gathered circle skirt - the twirl factor is fantastic!
Since the girls love to match in lots of ways - I decided to create a similar back, that crossed over and tied in a bow. I also made Lily a headpiece using some of the left over flowers and butterflies, which the girls promptly swapped every 5 minutes while we were taking pics.
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