Sewing for the Girl: Feliz Party Dress

mad mim_feliz party dress

I was feeling so nostalgic bordering on emotional today. We found out this morning that we’re having another girl.

Isn’t that exciting!?!?

I’ve always been wrong guessing the genders of my babies (0 for 3 now!!), but I’ll admit I was happy to discover I have a sweet little girl kicking around my womb  (not that I wouldn’t have been completely thrilled with a boy). But a girl! A sweet little sugar lump to dress up and sew for!

It makes this whole baby thing about a kazillion times more real, and for some reason I looked at my kids today with a different perspective today (enter emotionalish here).  I’m seeing them both as older siblings now, and it’s making me kind of want to cry and just spend all day snuggling them (which unfortunately was impossible because they were up WAY too late last night and were as crabby as crabs cakes).

Ah! But it’s time to be a movin’ on!

To this happy dress I made my Juicy Fruit. I decided that I prefer to sew things for her openly rather than in secret (I mean rather than having it be a surprise) because it’s so fun to have her be a part of the design process and for her to watch and become excited as it comes together.  Very rewarding.

This lovely pattern is from an incredible book I got for Christmas Sewing Clothes Kids Love by Nancy J.S. Langdon & Sabine Pollehn. I mean, yowzas.  I like a good sewing project-book just as much as the next sewing-obsessed-mom, but this book goes beyond “oh that’s cute” to completely inspiring. First of all, it’s changed the way I look at making clothes for my kids. They talk about how clothing for kids can and should be magical–something that they love and feel completely special in.  And to sew for them, meaning choosing colors and patterns and styles that they love, even if that means putting them in something that’s not trendy or that heaven-forbid you don’t like.  They talk about focusing on the special little details, and just enjoying the process of creative sewing for those you love. And the book comes with amazing basic patterns like t-shirts, leggings, pants, dresses, etc., but each are amazingly versatile and they leave the design process largely up to the sewist. It  has projects for both boy and girl (although a wee bit more for girl), and the only thing that would make this book better is a good shorts pattern.  It’s really a great book, and I recommend it enthusiastically.

Sewing Clothes Kids Love by Nancy J.S. Langdon & Sabine Pollehn

This dress is the called the Feliz Party Dress, and I used some Anna Maria Horner scraps that I’ve been hanging on to for a couple years. I barely SQUEAKED it out of the fabric (using some sneaky piecing under the overdress, as well as  jazzed up some plain turquoise fabric  for the sides by using scraps from the bottom print and appliquéd them on with heat bond).  The small details that really make the dress magical are the ribbon ties in the back, the ric-a-rac along the bottom edges and the eyelet lace along the hem.

I’m satisfied that the girl really loves it, because she’s worn it several times this last week–nothing says approval like over usage.

mad mim sewing_feliz party dress mad mim sewing_feliz party dress mad mim sewing_feliz party dress

Oh and Ps. Happy Valentine’s Day!


Amy Morby

oh my goodness, congrats a bajillion times over!!! I must admit I’m jealous of the girls–5 nephews is wearing on me! But that’s so exciting. And this dress is just absolutely perfect. Jo looks so cute in it!


Mim, it turned out great! I love the fabric combo! It was so fun being there while you were figuring this all out! It really is a magical dress, I’m so glad she loves it!

Emily Balling


I LOVE this dress. It is a mix of LITTLE GIRL, Little girl fun, NEW, rhetro, its great! What fun spins. I love dresses that don’t look like a grown up dress, shrunk. And, every girl needs a spinny dress to fulfill girl-hood. Your new site looks great!

Lenore Turck

My mom used to make cute dresses when I was a little. And now I’m continuing her hobby. I also like to design and sew for my little girls. I mostly add quilts on the dress, because my daughters love to draw and I make the quilt pattern from th pics they made. So, it would not only be special but also personal for them.


Leave a Reply