Vintage sewing for kids: Butterick 2725

Earlier this year my friend loaned me this fabulous pattern from her stash-- isn't it grand? 

 I intended to sew a version with the fish pocket for my step-daughter (henceforth called the kid) but she wasn't keen on that design. Instead, she chose a great blue/white check fabric from my stash and we started with something very basic. 

Following version B, I bound the neckline and hems with commercial bias tape, which made finishing quite easy EXCEPT (there's always an except with me) that I skipped some steps and had to bind the shoulder seam. This meant I had to miter all the corners, which was super annoying. 

I've been having some trouble with the tension on my Bernina 1008, likely because I've been using poor-ish quality white thread that I got in bulk at the closing sale of a sewing store here in Portland. I'll take the machine in for a tune-up shortly, as I'm only one spool shy of finishing off the entire lot. Anyway, that contributed to wonky buttonholes and also my being out of practice. Good thing the kid won't care!

I used buttons from a tin of old buttons that my husband gave to me for Christmas one year. When sewing the buttons on, I put a crewel needle between button and fabric on the right side, which allows space for wrapping thread afterward for the all-important thread shank. That fabric is gonna lay so flat! 

Because this fabric was quite lightweight, I opted to underline the entire dress with cotton batiste. 

The kid tried on the dress and said it felt kind of stiff-- hopefully it softens up with wearing and washing. The main fabric send to be a linen/cotton blend, and I line dried it when pre-washing. I suspect the linen content because of the resulting stiffness after washing-- but I should do a burn test on a scrap to see what I find. 

I opted out of interfacing the facings, thanks to the underlining. Using the serge to finish edges was the quickest and easiest approach-- but the serger also needs some work with the tension. And final comment on techniques-- the dart stitching method is one I learned in an industry/commercial sewing course. I stitch the dart from clipped/marked edges, to about 1/16 inch past the hole marked with an awl, to the dart tip. Then I keep sewing off the edge for about 5 or 6 stitches to make a chain, then with my needle up, I bring the needle back down into the body of the dart and stitch backward/forward to anchor the dart stitches. I take care to watch the tension of the chain to prevent any pulling on th dart tip. 

And that's that! Dress is done. It was a very quick project, taking only a few hours included cutting time (really-- cutting takes forever without a proper table large enough). 


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