First Day Dress and Triple Tiered Ruffle Skirt

I have two garments to share today, one for each child mostly because I am trying to be really diligent about using up remnants.

The first make is the First Day Dress from MADE. The inspiration for this dress came from these two dresses (1), (2), I had pinned on Pinterest from late 2013 when my daughter was just born. I had bought these fabrics way back then as well, obviously eager to sew her something and finding no time. I couldn’t find a wide striped fabric and went with some thin black and white spot and stripe cotton (100% cotton) instead, and for the skirt I used some cherry broadcloth (100% cotton) with white top poplin (80%polyester/20% cotton) for the lining of the entire dress. I decided to try the First Day Dress because I liked the available variations in the pattern and the large size range. According to the measurements my 3 1/2 year old measured a size 4 but I really wish I had cut a 5 as I don’t think she will get much wear out of this at all. It’s not as lose as shown in the photos.

first day dress front

first day dress back

The PDF pattern went together really well and I followed the well written instructions exactly. I opted for the sleeves and chose not to add the front placket as I didn’t want to disrupt the stripes but once the dress was made I think a nice white ruffle placket would have been fun. I have added belt loops at the waist so the belts stay put.

I had a perfect flower button in my stash for the back opening. I also think my daughter feels a bit restricted due to the high neckline and in future I will definitely lower it when making other versions.

first day dress back closure

The end product turned out just like the pattern but I think it would have been better if the skirt was gathered like my inspiration pictures. Unfortunately I didn’t have enough fabric to change it to a gathered skirt  but I also didn’t want to make the fabric belt bow like my inspiration and then be left with tiny scraps that would be useless.

triple ruffle skirt front 3

dress twirl

Instead, with the remaining fabric scraps I was able to get a triple tiered ruffle skirt for my youngest. I followed this tutorial from The Crafty Cupboard. As I wanted to use up all the scraps I decided on 2 red layers and 1 stripe layer.

The skirt in the original tutorial was made for an older child so I guestimated the measurements for my 1 1/2 year old. The waist tier I cut 46cm x 1.5 inches, the ruffle tiers were just the length of the fabric remaining (102cm) x 3.5 inch wide and the middle tier was 69cm x 3 inch wide.

I hemmed my ruffle tiers prior to construction with a rolled hem and then sewed each of the tiers into circles individually prior to assembly otherwise the ruffles would have been caught in the back seam if it was done at the end. Then each layer was sewn in the round in the order described in the tutorial. I ended up using 40cm of 12mm elastic for the waist.

triple ruffle skirt

Now my girls have co-ordinated outfits and I have no scraps left. I also made two matching hair bows. I was left in a bit of a bind after making this skirt as we didn’t have a top to match. I found a plain white t-shirt that hadn’t been worn in a while and made a fabric flower using red and black ribbon and a white flower button all from my stash and sewed it on. I applied some fusible interfacing on the inside to avoid irritation from the thread.

dress and skirt together front

I’m very happy with this effort and so were the girls and with lots of twirl factor it’s a hit. The colour appears much brighter in the photos and in real life is more a deep cherry colour as described.


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