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The Bateaux Garden Dress

Garden Dress

Part of the reason that I always seem to have the latest patterns before many sewers in Australia, is that I often put my hand up to ‘test’ the pattern.  For those of you not in the sewing world it is a process where someone is chosen to sew each size (sometimes more than once), to check the fit on a model of the size  ( or close to the particular measurements given on the chart) , clarity of instructions and general process.

The most recent pattern that I tested was the Bateaux Garden Dress from Winter Wear Designs.Summer floral dress


I love it when designers make patterns that include older girls sizes. I always figure it is those girls that are missing out. As many of you know I don’t have any daughter’s, but I do feel for the mothers that have to buy clothing for any girl over the age of 6. It’s terrible! You can still find cute classy clothes for younger girls in the stores, but it goes drastically downhill for the tweens and teens. I’m not prudish or conservative by any means, so I’m not going on a rant about showing too much skin. Even the fabrics and prints used are usually awful. Offering clothing for 8 – 16 year old girls is high on my to- do list.Floral Dress Twirling

The Bateaux Garden dress by Winter Wear Designs is perfect. It’s fun, pretty, classic and comes with several options (different backs views, lengths and skirt types).  DSC_3417

kylabat2The pattern is available to purchase from the wonderful Suzanne at Winter Wear Designs:

Or as always the complete garment can be purchased made to your measurements at my Etsy store:

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Princess Anna Costume – Frozen

Frozen Anna Dress
Princess Anna coronation dress inspired by Frozen
Frozen inspired Princess Anna dress

So this is my gorgeous niece, well step niece (is there such a thing?) if we are going to be pedantic.  She models for me at least a couple of times a month and you are likely to see her on a regular basis on this site.

Princess Anna Coronation inspired by Frozen
Princess Anna dress

When I first started making the Elsa dresses she was putting on the ‘I’m too old to dress up as a princess’ act (seriously no-one is ever too old). However, as soon as  an opportunity arose to dress up as Anna, she was only too keen to volunteer.  I had made this outfit for a friend to hire to dress up as Anna at her little girl’s Frozen party. I happened to have the costume in the car when I payed a visit one day. Kyla wasn’t in the best of moods, so we did a quick hair makeover, put on the costume and instant smiles.

Frozen Princess Anna dress back
Frozen Princess Anna dress back

The bustier is made from sturdy cotton (although I wish now I had done it in a velvet) with boning to give shape. I used the trusty Brother Innovis to embroider the pattern on the front. The skirt was a prized find in a op shop. An old pair of curtains that were hiding behind some old duvet covers – I nearly squealed when I saw them – I knew they would make the ‘perfect’ Anna skirt.  – Yes you can call me Maria haha I was humming ‘a few of my favourite things’ whilst I was sewing 😉 anna3