6.27.2016

A Hummingbird Dress and Felt Flower Crown

Summer is officially here and while we lucked out with unseasonably cool temperatures for a long while, that's now a thing of the past and the sweltering heat has set in at full force.


I was in search of a simple little sundress pattern for my girls, something breezy, light, and cool.  I discovered the Hummingbird dress on Erin's feed on Instagram.


As an aside, I have to say that Instagram is where I get most of my inspiration these days, even over Pinterest.  There's so much beauty there!


I also love how interactive it is!  When I told Erin I loved the dress she had made, she shared some tips with me to help me on my way.


The first was to sew the dress based on your daughter's chest measurement and not her age.  I generally do this anyway, but in this case, the discrepancy between the child's age and chest measurement is larger than it is for most patterns.  Iris is 4 1/2 and measured between a size 18mo and size 2 for the bodice size.


Next time, I might make the bodice neckline a little less scooped and add a bit more coverage to the sides of the bodice.  But overall, I'm happy with the fit. 


Next she recommended that I use Tasha from Glitter + Wit's tutorial for joining the back bodice to back skirt and enclosing the seam.  This tutorial was fantastic and resulted in such a beautiful, clean finish.


I made this dress in a Nani Iro double gauze.  Running perpendicular to the main print on the edges of the fabric was a lace border.  I used the lace print for the back waistband.


The felt crown is a project from my friend Sanae's book : Sewing Happiness.  Her publisher sent me this book back in February but suggested that we wait to make and share our projects until after the book was released.


I couldn't have asked for a better day to receive the book.  It was just one of those days.  I can't remember the specifics exactly, but it had been one of the more difficult days I had had in awhile.


During our homeschooling year, I almost never read books during the day, because there are so many things I need to do.  And in general, I tend to favor audiobooks and podcasts these days because I can listen while folding laundry, sewing and doing the things I want or need to do.


But on this particular day I completely indulged in this book.  I sat on the couch and read it while the kids danced to music videos I pulled up for them.   After Dan came home, I ran a hot bath and finished the book while I soaked.   It was a decadent luxury!

I was so moved by the beauty of this book: the words, the photos and the projects.  It was such a gift to receive it when I did!


The felt crown was one of the projects I knew I would make from the moment I saw it.  The process ended up being a family affair, which was really, really fun.  Crafting alongside of my kids is pretty much my dream come true.  

Indigo was the first to join me.  She wanted to make her own felt flowers.  We were having such a great time that Jude felt like he was missing out.  He asked if we'd like him to cut the petals and leaves for us.  Of course we weren't going to turn that offer down!


We spent hours making our flowers.  We joked that it would be 2am and we'd still be uttering. "Just one more felt flower!"



Dan hot glued to flowers to the crown for me.  (What a guy, right?)  He suggested that the bond might be stronger if you built the flower around the wire, placing the wire and the stamen in the center of the first petal.  I would also bend the wire down onto itself, so it isn't pokey.


I purchased fabric covered wire and the fabric started to unravel at the ends as Iris took the crown on and off, leaving the wires exposed.  I plan to bend those back onto themselves and then Dan suggested wrapping the wire in floral tape.  I'm going to try that.


I bought the felt for this project at JoAnns (ours has a lot of options!) and I found the stamens in the Wilton section of the cake aisle.


When we came to this field, there were two deer grazing.  You can spot them in the background of several of the photos above.  Iris was treading carefully, hoping to get as close to them as she possibly could.  Surprisingly, they stayed nearby for most of our time in the field, until she finally pushed her luck by getting too close.  And they darted away.


Maybe we'll see them again next time.

14 comments:

  1. Such a pretty ensemble on your pretty little girl. The dress looks dreamy to wear!

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  2. I love the colours you chose for the felt crown - and that Nani Iro fabric is divine. So sweet that both your big kids were involved in making it - I can imagine how making felt flowers could become addictive :)

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  3. What a special photo-shoot :) Iris has the best facial expressions hehe Her new dress looks perfect for hot summer days! And the crown is perfect for any occasion hehe

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  4. Ahhhhh, the PHOTOS...my goodness they are incredible. With a beautiful girl, deers and the most incredible handmade items. That book sounds divine for sure!

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    1. Thanks so much, Mie! I always love your photos, too! xx

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  5. This is so gorgeous Rachel! What a dream for a little girl to wear such a floaty dress and magical crown. (And in the company of deer!) I will have to look closer at that book, it sounds inspiring.

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  6. She is straight out of a storybook with that crown and dress (and wildlife!). Absolutely gorgeous photos and a very appealing little sundress in gorgeous fabric. It is just magical.

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  7. You have a lovely back yard! I love the dress :)

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    1. Aw, thanks so much! And that field is actually not our back yard (I wish!). :) It's a green space area in our neighborhood! We're grateful to be able to have it nearby though!

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  8. The dress is beautiful and the crown is the cherry on top.
    I miss my reading but I know I will get back there again, one day.

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  9. Well you already know what I think of Dan (sigh :) ) and Iris is definitely the cutest 4&1/2 year old on the planet, so it only remains to be said that the dress and crown are gorgeous! I'd love to make those flowers and I know my daughter would be delighted. Would my bloke have hot glueing tips though?.... :)

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  10. Such pretty photos. Iris is looking prettier by the day!

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  11. It is just darling and so is she! She really looks like her big sister in these photos. Loving the highlights in her hair too ; )

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