Monday, September 2, 2013

Frannie Dress is Finished!

Wow, a finish! Doesn't finishing a project make you feel good? It certainly does for me, especially as I started this in April. Now my granddaughter will have a nice dress to wear to school. This is actually called Frannie's Big Sister. I mentioned in the previous post the pattern comes in three size groupings, however, I was mistaken, it comes in two sizes, 6M to 4 and 5-8. I made the size 5 thinking that she was this size, but as I found out when making the Flower Girl Dresses, she is actually a 4. You can buy the pattern from Chadwick Heirlooms or from the Sew Beautiful store, but for some reason Chadwick only carries the largest size. I made this in a size 5, so it should fit her for some time.

Closeup of the smocking. I started using a couple of rows from an old AS&E smocking plate, but made it completely different so I guess you could say it's my own design. The bullions match the butterfly fabric, but if you look closely you can see that the green I chose for the leaves matches the green fabric a little too well so they pretty much disappear. I have since washed out all of the blue markings.

A closeup of the skirt fabric, note the darling horses, castles and I think there is a unicorn somewhere. It even has butterflies to coordinate with the bodice.

This was not a particularly easy pattern, but since I made it as part of a class with the pattern designer, Lyn Weeks, we had some expert advice. The pleating is done on a curve, and it doesn't go from end to end, which is somewhat tricky. Attaching the bodice to the skirt is also difficult due to the curves in the seam. I made all the piping myself as it would be very hard to find piping in a color to coordinate with both the skirt and the bodice, but as it happened, I had the perfect choice. Making your own piping isn't nearly as difficult as you would think, and it gives you great color options.

We will be seeing our granddaughter in about six weeks, so I hope to take some pictures of her in it and will post them. In the meantime, please check out this post by Saint Nolt Sews, she made the dress in a size 8 as a top. I will be posting a review for this pattern on Pattern Review shortly.

Now, which UFO to tackle next?

Happy Sewing and I hope all of you have a great Labor Day! We will be smoking salmon on the charcoal grill and making kebabs (not from the salmon), with lots of tomato salad from the garden.


  1. Your smocking is just beautiful and the dress is lovely! Your granddaughter will be dressed like a princess when she wears this to school. I love it!

  2. This is devine, Claire. The details and fabric/color choices are perfection.

  3. It is fantastic, Cynthia, I could see right away that it is a difficult design to make. That bodice! But your construction is perfect, and the roses are just the right finishing touch.

    Is it quilt-weight cotton? I ask because I bought some very similar green fabric with just the butterflies for a future project.

    What's next, indeed! This one is a hard act to follow. :)

    1. Thanks! Yes, it is quilt weight cotton and if you look at my review on Pattern Review I list all the actual fabrics. I think I'll make a matching bow for my granddaughter's hair, so I'll do a short post on that and will list the fabrics again.

  4. I love this! Just last week I stacked that pattern on my cutting table to start on soon, so I really appreciate all your tips about construction. You did a wonderful job on this pretty dress.

  5. I love your version of Frannie. It's so soft and pretty!


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