Wednesday, November 4, 2015

New Project - Scalloped Corduroy Dress with Jacket

My latest project is this beautiful Dress and Jacket combination from Gail Doane (her picture, by the way, not mine). If you have ever taken a class from Gail, you will recognize her exquisite workmanship, attention to detail, and beautiful color combinations. This is bright, but not overly so. I'm not a fan of the current trend of loud clashing prints on little girls clothes, so this one is just right.

If you click on this link, it will take you to her Etsy shop so you can see all of her other beautiful kits.

So, after washing, drying and ironing all the fabrics, my first task is to make nine yards of pink piping. This tumble of bias strip is made with a lovely pink corduroy included with the kit.

I went out and bought a clear mini piping foot for my machine just for this project. Well, I did have it on a list to buy for some time now. I had been using my buttonhole foot, which has a channel under it for piping, but the channel is fairly large and the foot was hard to use, being metal. This clear foot has a smaller channel, perfect for mini piping, and works beautifully. It also helps to stitch very slowly.

The bodice of the dress has pleats, not ruffles, so I made the pleats with a 1/2 inch quick pleater that I picked up at the SAGA retreat in Valley Forge (more on that in another post). I can't get over how well this worked. You just insert the little fork, turn and stitch. Perfect pleats every time.

A sample of the pleated fabric.

Finished pleats sewn to the bodice front. The instructions call for making a strip, folding the fabric right sides together, pleating with the folded side out, then sewing to the bodice front with the raw edges right on the center. Then I made another strip and sewed it to the other side of the bodice front butting the raw edges to the strip already sewn on.

Then I made another strip, folded so the raw edges met in the middle in the back, and topstitched it to cover the raw edges of the pleats. There has to be an easier way to do this, so maybe I'll experiment a bit once I'm through with the dress.

The dress is pretty much completed now, but there is a storm coming in and the lighting isn't so good right now, so no picture. I forgot to take pictures of the collar construction, but I will for the jacket. It's fairly easy to get right and works beautifully. It's definitely a technique worth mastering.

Since I've been in Colorado, I've tried making cookies for my granddaughter with limited success. They all seem to turn out very flat. This is probably due to the high altitude (about 5,000 ft, 1,524 m), so I'll have to do some research on this. Does anyone out there have this problem?


  1. I hope you get a solution to your cookie dilemma. You may want to check out the King Arthur flour site. They are my go to for all things baking.

    Love this outfit and I am a big fan of Gail Doane as well. I would love to take a class from her one day.

    1. I love KAF! But funnily enough, their section on High Altitude Baking refers to Colorado State U Extension, and I've already downloaded the publication that KAF had on their website. I just need to pay a bit more attention to it.

  2. Very nice work, beautiful sewing, golden hands!

  3. It's charming. I hope there's a little girl delighted by it !

  4. Wonderful! Do you have a SAGA group in CO?

  5. What a beautiful design! I am immediately in love with that corduroy piping. I must remember that! Those pleats look very professional too. I hope you have a sunny day soon so you can show us the finish!

  6. What a beautiful dress and jacket Cynthia. With your professional finishing, it is going to become an heirloom, like most of your work.
    Thanks for the link to Gail Doane. I am tempted to purchase one of her kits.
    Good luck on the cookie front


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