Thursday, May 22, 2014

Dress ala Chinelo Bally is Done

The dress is done. To recap the process I used from Chinelo Bally's blog.


The fabric is a 54” wide polyester cotton material I found at Fabricland at 60% off the regular price. The lining/slip is 60” wide broadcloth that was purchased for 40% off the regular price. Both were washed and dried to remove the sizing and to allow them to shrink. I used Gutterman polyester thread in white for the project and 1 1/4” wide strips of a soft knit interfacing that I cut that width for the center back, a white invisible zipper that I cut to length.

All seams except for the center back seam were 3/8”


Using Chinelo’s information, drew the pattern onto the fabric using the child’s measurements.

The Bodice


I used Sure-Fit Designs children’s drafting pattern to help me get a good armhole. To ensure that I have enough fabric, I cut the fabric wider than what Chinelo asks you to do. I laid out the lining and used the front of the garment as a pattern.

The Skirt


The skirt was drawn onto the fabric and cut out. The front skirt was laid onto the broadcloth as a pattern when cutting it out.




The darts were drawn in and sewn in the front and back pieces of both the garment and broadcloth. The front darts were removed and made 1/8” narrower as the skirt was bit bigger than anticipated. The center back bodice was held in 3/8” from the center back skirt.

Each piece of the garment was serged except for the center back seam. I wanted to deal with it when the bodice and skirt were sewn together and the seam was trimmed to 5/8”.

The bodice and skirts were sewn together and serged.


The center back seam on the skirt was trimmed to 5/8” and serged. I then measured down 8” from the waist and marked it for the zipper. Strips of interfacing were then pressed onto the back seam the length of the zipper plus 2” in length and the seam was folded back pressed.


The zipper was inserted and I used narrow double faced tape to hold the zipper in place to match up the waist seams. Once that was done, the back seam was sewn up leaving 6” open at the bottom for serging. The zipper was shortened using a three step zig zag stitch and held in place with narrow strips of steam a seam.


Ties were cut 7” wide by a good length (40” I would guess) and folded into a pleat.


Once done, the side seams were sewn up and the process repeated for the slip/lining without the zipper and ties. I did baste sew the hem line 3/8” and serged the hem on the lining.

Bias strips were cut for the neck and arm. The width I chose was 1 3/4” and would increase that to 2” for the next time. I sewed slowly to get it on neatly around the arm holes. I pressed the ends up, trimmed off the excess, and sewed up the side seams.


The slip/lining was inserted at this time. I sewed the lining to the center back seam for a clean finish. Then the necklines were pinned together so the bias binding could be attached. I turned under the ends of the bias binding at each end and sewed it down. At the armholes, I pinned the slip/lining to the dress and turned the bias binding over both pieces. It turned out as I had planned. Stitching it down presented a couple of problems. So I did what I saw someone else do and zig zag stitched it down.


At first I thought it stood out but a short break proved me wrong.


The lining/slip went in so easily and gives the skirt a bit of extra pouf; just what a little girl wants.


And the back looks great with the ties of which I am the world’s worst bow maker when on a hanger.


I am delivering the dresses to the little girl this afternoon. Now I have to measure her little sister and make two for her.

Until tomorrow………………………..


  1. Pearl8:30 AM

    That's a beautiful dress! I'm sure she'll be happy with that one, as well as the rick rack dress.

    Can I be next in line for two dresses, after the little sister?? lol ;-)

  2. That is just lovely. I'm sure she's going to be the happiest little girl, dancing around in her new dresses! Good job, Ann!