Saturday, May 28, 2016

The Cat Dress

Angela and I have been taking a small break from blogging. Lots of changes have been going on (all good!) and we needed to focus our energies on our families. For my family things are finally starting to settle down, and just in time. The rain has finally subsided and the temperatures are rising so we are spending more time outdoors enjoying spring!

This week is Kid’s Clothes Week and I have been busy sewing up a storm of clothes for my little ones. This week so far I have sewn 1 dress, 1 shirt, 1 tank top, and 2 shorts. The dress above was my first project for Kid’s Clothes Week and also my May item for Sew Japanese With Mie. Petit a Petit and Family is hosting a Link Party where sewers can share clothing they have made using Japanese patterns, fabrics or inspirations.

The first item I made my daughter for Sewing Japanese With Mie was the “Side-Button Skirt” from the book “Stitch Wear Play” to go along with the shirt I made her from the same book. However this project didn’t turn out very well. Some of it had to do with me not giving myself enough time to finish the project and part of it had to do with the pattern pieces. The skirt is barely wearable due to how small the waist is and I am not sure how much wear we will get out of it.

My next project I used Japanese fabric instead and a pattern by Violette Field Threads. The dress turned out better than imagined, and I needed that. Before I sewed the side-button skirt and had attempted to make my son a pair of shorts and after assembling most of it I found out the pattern had an error and the seam allowances were missing on a few of the pieces, (Oliver & S’s Sketchbook shorts). Needless to say I couldn’t save them. If you have the same pattern Oliver & S keeps a log of errors for their patterns on their webpage (called Errata). I highly recommend checking there first before starting a project. To put it mildly, I really needed a win in the sewing department.

The Grace dress by Violette Field Threads was an “easy sew”. The scallops were the most technical part of the dress. There are no sleeves to set and the dress uses the same pattern pieces for the front and back. There are three layers for each bodice piece. Because of this, I would recommend using the thinnest possible fabric so the garment isn’t too warm.

The fabric for the dress was awesome. I have loved everything I have purchased from Miss Matatabi. For this dress I used a mint blue cat print and butter swiss dot from Miss Matatabi. Both of these are a cotton lawn and fairly sheer. For the lining I used a cotton silk voile I had leftover from another project that I had purchased from Mood. These fabrics worked really well together and my daughter had no complaints about the dress being too warm. However these fabrics frayed, especially the voile. I had to take special care when handling it and finishing the seam allowances.  The only change I made to the pattern was to add a second layer to the skirt. The cat fabric is pretty sheer and I wanted to line it. I used the swiss dot as the bottom layer, then hemmed the cat fabric slightly shorter than the swiss dot.

I love the end result of this dress! We wore it to a place called Grounds for Sculpture and were stopped several times by people asking me where I bought it, or telling me how much they loved it. Did I mention I really needed a win in the sewing department, so it did my mojo good to have these positive reactions to this dress. So thanks to Mie, Violette Field Threads, Miss Matatabi, and Kid’s Clothes Week for helping me get out of my funk and finding my sewing mojo again!

Written by: Shawna












And finally the garment only pictures!



  1. What a beautiful dress - the colours are so pretty. And that sculpture place looks amazing!

  2. What a beautiful dress and I'm very happy that I had a tiny part of you getting your sewing mojo back ;-) Thank you for lining up!

  3. Mie, I find your blog very inspirational!