The girls recently attended their first all girls birthday party where they were asked to dress as their favorite princess. You'd think this one would pick Tiana, since that's what she chose for Halloween. But of course she picked Belle and her yellow dress.
We already have a store bought play up dress that she is perfectly happy with. But Belle has been on my mental sewing "to try and make someday" list, so I ran to JoAnn's and picked up some yellow and gold, and got to work.
The dress is the Caroline Party Dress, modified. The bodice is straight from the pattern (size 4T - a little big for room to grow) with a gold glittery shawl sewn in. The shawl is a tube of fabric sewn into the back seams, tacked down at the shoulders, then gathered in the middle with a jeweled button.
The skirt was where the work came in! I took a yard of crepe fabric selvage to selvage and marked off 6 vertical lines that were then gathered to get the bustled look. To gather, I sewed 17" long pieces of 1/4" elastic down the marked lines with a zig-zag stitch as I stretched it as much as possible. I also kinda pushed the fabric though as it was getting fed through the machine (while holding the elastic taut). It was epic and I was exhausted by the end, but it wasn't too complicated. Then I just serged the bottom and hemmed it up a 1/2 inch.
The dress is fully lined like the pattern instructs (though at a longer length) and has tulle added to the lining hem. To do this, I cut a yellow and a white strip of tulle 12" x 3 yards each, then folded them in half while overlapping them to make one 6" x 3 yard strip. The strip was then gathered and sewn to the lining like the pattern instructs. The tulle at the bottom gives just enough princess poof to the dress!
It's tough to see but there are three fabrics I used. The gold glitter satin for the shawl, shiny satin for the bodice, and a yellow crepe for the skirt. The crepe is by far the best fabric to sew with of the three! To finish the skirt, I embellished it with a strip of the shiny satin - it was gathered and sewn down to each section of the skirt.
And what was her sis for the party? Well here's a sneak peek...