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Archive for November, 2014

Recreating Sound of Music Costumes – Brigitta’s Dirndl Outfit

Recreating Sound of Music Costumes – Brigitta’s Dirndl Outfit

Brigitta's Dirndl Brigitta’s Dirndl

I love recreating historical costumes, and when rewatching the Sound of Music recently, several of the dresses caught my eye as ones I would like to recreate.  I’m starting with Brigitta’s dirndl bodice, skirt, and blouse.

I found this picture of the original costume up for auction.

I’m not too worried about matching the fabric right now.  I mainly want to get the pattern right, and then I can make it with more suitable fabric.  I’m making it in a size 7 so my middle daughter can model it.
















I made the blouse first, using a basic bodice pattern.  I simply added a few inches to the front width and gathered it at the neckline.  I cut a strip of fabric 2″ x 18″ for the neck binding, folding under 1/2″ at the back opening edges.


The bodice was more complicated.  I made the bottom half separate from the armhole and neck trim, then sandwiched the trim over it and topstitched all the way around.

brigitta 1




November 30, 20140 commentsRead More
How to Make a Dress with Licensed Character Accents

How to Make a Dress with Licensed Character Accents


I bought a couple yards of My Little Pony cotton fabric to make my daughter a dress, but when planning the dress, I didn’t want to go overboard with the ponies.  So, instead of making the whole dress out of the pony fabric, I chose some coordinating colors and threw in some pony accents.  This can easily be done with any character fabric.  Here is how to add accents to a basic dress pattern:

First, we’ll add pockets.  Outline the characters you want to use on the fabric.  Add about 1/2″ seam allowance to the edges and cut out.  Trim so that both pockets are the same size.


Fold the seam allowance under and press.


I put one pocket in the center of the bodice and two on the skirt.  Pin pockets in place and topstitch close to folded edge.


Next, I cut out sleeve ruffles.  For this size 4 dress, the top ruffle is 16″ long along the straight edge, and 3 3/4″ wide.  The bottom ruffle is 3/4″ wider and 3″ longer.


Narrow hem straight edge of sleeve ruffles, and attach to bodice, sewing top ruffle on first.



DSCF9267Finally, I added a double ruffle to the bottom edge.  My skirt front and back are each 44″ wide.  For the ruffles, I cut three 44″ long strips of fabric.  The top ruffle is 3 1/2″ wide, and the bottom ruffle is 4 1/4″ wide.


Coming soon: Complete pattern for this dress!  Check back soon!



November 25, 20140 commentsRead More
How to Make a Bodice with Pintuck Pleats

How to Make a Bodice with Pintuck Pleats


cherry dress 1


DSCF9241You can easily add a little texture to any bodice by using pintuck pleats.  There is no need to alter the pattern.  Here is how:

Step 1:  Unfold fabric and press flat.  Mark evenly spaced lines lengthwise down the wrong side of fabric.  (Tip: A gingham print makes this easy)  I spaced my lines for this dress 1″ apart.  You will need to make the pleated area at least as wide as the bodice pattern you are using, plus a couple inches.

Step 2:  Fold along each line, wrong sides together, and press.

Step 3:  Stitch close to each fold, in a 1/8″ seam.  I used red thread to accent the red cherries.


Step 4:  Find the center two pleats.  The center of your bodice will be halfway between these.  Press all pleats away from center.  So, those on the right will be pressed to the right, and the those on the left pressed to the left.

Step 5:  Now it is time to place your bodice pattern on top of the pleated fabric and cut it out.  Make sure the bodice center lines up between the center two pleats.


Step 6:  Your bodice front is now ready to be sewn into the pattern following the pattern directions!  You can add pintuck pleats to the bodice back too using the same technique.



Coming soon:  Check back soon for the pattern and instructions on how to make this cherry dress.


November 8, 20140 commentsRead More
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