We don't dress up a lot around here. Dresses or skirts are a given every Sunday for church and occasionally for other events but extra special occasions don't pop up very often. So I thought this would be a great reason to sew really special dresses for my girls. You know - the frilly, girly types with lots of lace or ruffles that are just darling.
My girls had other ideas. I let them look through my bins of patterns and online. Neither of them found anything they loved and anything even resembling frilly was completely ignored. Instead, my older daughter described a dress one of her friends had recently worn to church. I tried combining a Jalie top with a simple skirt pattern to match her description and came up with this:
Plan B was to slightly alter the Lady Skater pattern. I had heard great things about this pattern from other sewing bloggers and it seemed like it would be fairly simple to sew. But I made the big mistake of purchasing the adult size pattern with the intent to size it down (it was labelled for adults and teens and I was thinking teens meant not much bigger than my tween). I should have just started with the the Skater Dress for Girls and enlarged it slightly for my size 10 girl.
Long story short - after many more hours (and many more alterations) than this dress should have taken me to sew, I finally finished it. It was more casual than I would have chosen initially but my daughter loved it and it matches her style and she had fun wearing it to the dance!
Some basic details: Both the main patterned fabric and the black fabric were ITY jersey. If I recall correctly, they were purchased at a Hancock Fabrics several years ago. I added a belt to add some contrast at the waistline and to match the look of the contrasting neckband and arm bands. And for the first time ever, I made thread belt loops (using the serger) that were sewn into the side seams. This dress was sewn almost entirely on the serger and then hemmed with the coverstitch. Only the topstitch along the neckline and armbands and the ends of the belt were sewn on my regular sewing machine.