I finished making the skirt for Lydia's Four and Fabulous outfit this weekend. Unfortunately, seeing the skirt next to the "finished" shirt prompted some back tracking and re-working to better the outfit as a whole. Maybe I am obsessing. Maybe this is the reason I rarely make two piece outfits!
Let's start with the fabrics and thrifted garments that were to become the skirt. The dress was a goodwill, buy two get one free deal. I grabbed that shirt to make striped legs for sock sculptures. The fabric is home decor thick cotton.with almost a canvas weave texture.
I couldn't make the large circle print on the dress work with the rest, but it had a wonderful black polka dot ruffle attached to a full cotton slip. I cut the slip at the waist seam and used it as the starting point. I found a green and white stripe that used to be a bed skirt and made a second ruffle.
Even though I wasn't using the dark pink dot dress, I liked the shape so I made it the pattern for the pink fabric. To finish off the pink skirt,I added some strips from the striped shirt to the hem.
And then I excitedly put the shirt next to the skirt and I began obsessing. It may seem minor, but the details can really bug me when something isn't right. In this case, the ink I used on the shirt ended up being really dark and the skirt was mostly pink, light green, white, and yellow. They coordinated in style, but not in color.
I decided to start with the girl's dark blue pants. There wasn't any blue in the skirt! I had used a diagonal line to draw them and that reminded me of the diagonal green stripe ruffle on the skirt. I decided to appliqué green pants over the blue.
I ironed some "Heat n Bond" to the green fabric and peeled off the paper backing. (I am really starting to like this stuff!)
Because the fabric was thin, I could lay it on top of the original shape and trace before cutting, ironing, and top stitching the new pants in place. Next I decided to adjust some of the cars to be lighter colors. They hadn't been top stitched yet, so they were easy to peal off and replace.
That's when I had my "ah ha" moment! Instead of trying to make cars that match the original fabric design, why not just cut the cars FROM the original fabric! The biggest issue was the canvas weave of the cotton wanted to unravel at the cut edges of the appliqué. After top stitching, I applied fray check to all the edges, hopefully solving the problem.
Now that I was appliquéing with the images from the French fabric, I couldn't stop myself from adding the lady walking her poodle. I hope she doesn't crowd things too much, but I love her SO much. Besides, the little girl looked kind of lonely. Lydia took one look at the shirt and proclaimed that she was the girl and mommy was the lady with the dog. Yippy, we are both off to see the world!
Above is a comparison of the birthday shirts, versions one and version two. Below is the fabulous finished outfit. At this point, it just needs a hair-bow ( I can probably handle that) and then we are ready for a birthday photo shoot!