Thursday, August 15, 2013

Picnic Dress (with tutorial)

I started making this dress months ago and I had my husband make the ant applique that I wanted to use...but for some reason this project got pushed to the back burner.

I used Leila & Ben's Sweet Little Dress pattern (which I have made before) and I got ahead of myself and forgot to add elastic in the neck casing before sewing it up, doh!  I made it work by using elastic in my bobbin and sewing two rows of stitches around the neck and sleeves...I kinda like the way it came out and I might try the same method again.

The fabric was purchased at JoAnn's but I have seen it for sale at Walmart too.  If you can't find the same fabric, you can also use plain gingham fabric in your choice of color.  I used quilters cotton in black and white polka dots to make the ant.  It might sound silly but I actually shopped around for the polka dot fabric because I want a specific size and look.  To get started, here is a list of the supplies I used for this project:

  • Ant Image
  • Scrap of Iron-On Interfacing
  • Fabric Glue
  • Black Puffy Fabric Paint
  • Scrap of Polka Dot Fabric
  • Tailors Chalk or Fabric Tracing Pen
  • Scissors
  • Matching Thread
  • Small bit of Black Grosgrain Ribbon
  • Fray Check (you can use something similar to keep the ribbon ends from fraying)

1. Print out the ant image from here and cut out the circle portion of the image.

2. Using your marking tool of choice, trace around the circle body onto your polka dot fabric.  Next you can do the same with your interfacing or you can iron on your interfacing and then cut out the body (this is my preferred method).

3.  To make the legs cut 4 strips of grosgrain ribbon about 2"-3" inches long.  Use your fray check at the bottom end of each ribbon to prevent fraying when you wash the garment.

4.  After the fray check has dried, play with the placement of the legs until you are happy with the look.  Once you have figured out how you want to place the legs, use your fabric glue to baste the legs in place.

5.  Pin the applique to your garment and start sewing!  I sewed (starting at the head) about 1/4" away from the raw edge of the applique and I sewed around each one of the legs.

6.  Now that you have your applique sewn, you can create the antennas.  I recommend using a scrap piece of paper to practice making an antenna before you start squeezing the puffy fabric paint.  Allow the paint to dry and follow the product instructions when washing the dress.

Isn't the dress darling?!  Now I need to make a matching black and white polka dot diaper cover to go with the dress.  This is the perfect opportunity to try one of these free diaper cover patterns.

*The matching headband is available for sale in my Etsy store, which can be found here.

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