kcwc fall 2012: day 2:: mini washi dress

sew off challenge: Mini Washi Dress

mini washi dress

of all the items on Rae’s list that i narrowed down for our sew off, this is the one that jumped out as an immediate MUST MAKE. in fact, i believe i had started thinking about a mini version of her wonderful washi dress pattern around the first time i made it for myself! (here are my washis one and two)

mini washi dress

funny how a gal like Rae can finally make the leap to selling adult patterns and people immediately want to shrink it down for littles, right? well, that’s what happens when it’s SO DARN CUTE to make things in miniature.

mini washi dress

there is no washi pattern for kids, so i created one myself. and then i sewed it using the exact same methods detailed in rae’s adult washi pattern!

honestly i’m amazed and so proud that i got this to work. it feels like luck! i created every pattern piece that the original washi has – front bodice, sleeve, front and back facings, front skirt, and dress back. i started with the 3T flashback skinny tee pattern for the bodice, which i love to use as a basic pattern block for my slender little gal. i chopped it a bit shorter than i did for her amelie dress, since the washi is closer to empire waisted. i also curved it just slightly so it went up in the middle. obviously i omitted the darts. (!)

mini washi dress

i laid out my adult washi pattern on the floor and used it as a reference for how to shape the front skirt (with room for pleats) and to see how it related to the bodice. then i used the bodice and skirt pieces together to draft the one-piece back. i just kind of built the pattern up bit by bit like a puzzle. it was a super fun challenge that drew on every bit of my knowledge. sewing has such an amazing learning curve!! i couldn’t have made this dress even a couple months ago.

mini washi dress

the shirring in the back makes the front fit pretty darn well, but keeps it comfy for a little gal. the adult version has shirring too, which is one of the things i love about it – the comfy factor is off the charts!

mini washi dress

i did have trouble getting the neckline right. my daughter’s head is proportionately large for her body. i originally made the neckline too small, and it didn’t fit over her head. i trimmed it and kept trying it on her until it fit (interrupting her afternoon leaf-painting, but she didn’t mind too much). it was scary because i wanted it to pull over her head without struggle, but it was also really important that it remain appropriate for a four year old to wear and keep the look of the original washi’s neckline.

mini washi dress

it does gape a little bit when she lifts her arms, but hey – i got pretty close for my first go!

mini washi dress

best part is, she loves it! she really does! we’re calling it her “fireworks dress” (due to the anna maria horner shattered circus fabric). plus, who can resist a dress with pockets?

mini washi dress

not me, and not this girl either.

have you sewn a mini washi? i’d really love to see it! karen did! if we all rally together, i bet we might be able to talk Rae into releasing a mini washi pattern for sale one day. wouldn’t that be fun? a bunch of mini me washi dresses! πŸ˜‰

Rae made hers in actual washi fabric, and had a different solution for the large head small child problem.Β  here it is!


68 thoughts on “kcwc fall 2012: day 2:: mini washi dress

  1. Jacinta says:

    Wow, I love it. The fabric is so fun and it is definitely a Mini Me Washi! Next up you’ll have to make a Washi and mini in the same fabric and wear them together! hehe.

  2. Cherie says:

    Niiiice! It looks perfect! I didn’t really think about how much work it’d be to get this pattern right, but when you lay it all out like that – yeah, you should be proud! Definitely on my to do list. After I make another one for me, that is πŸ˜›

  3. Emily says:

    Oh my gosh that is so cute!!! Nice work!! Ansley’s head is proportionally larger than her body too. That’s actually part of the reason I got into sewing. ha. Now I seriously need to figure out how to shir with my machine.

    • kristin says:

      same here! i can fit clothes to her so much better than stores. before i sewed, i even had my mom sew an opening w/ closure into a storebought shirt because it wouldn’t pull over her head. um…Em is very smart. πŸ˜‰

  4. Connie says:

    This post gave me a giggle as I did the same thing too – get my child to try on the work-in-progress to make sure the head go through and the neckline look perfect. πŸ˜‰

  5. Tara Faul says:

    this is awesome!!! So adorable on her. And the fit is great, the fabric is great, and she looks like she enjoys it too. You’re a rockstar! You have nudged me more towards grabbing the washi pattern, yet again. Lol.
    Btw, her head isn’t big. Her body is just so tiny! ^_^

  6. darci says:

    Cute! And I love this fabric. I have some stashed but my girls aren’t interested in it. I think this dress may have convinced my 4yo to give it a try

  7. Rae says:

    oh my goodness…DYING of cute!! And I do love that you figured out all the proportions…totally great! I have a giant-headed-thing as well, so I wimped out and did a button closure in the back (pics soon!), but I LOVE the shirring in the back. SO GREAT!

    • kristin says:

      thanks thanks thanks! and thanks for the motivation to make it, too – it probably would’ve sat in my brain as “i should make a mini washi someday” for months, otherwise. πŸ˜‰

  8. Amanda says:

    I love your mini washi dress! It looks amazing! I like what you said about sewing having such a learning curve. I have taught myself most of my sewing skills and am forever learning. I had a pants fail last night and while it is frustrating, you always learn from your mistakes. Every time I “grow” as a seamstress I have some misses till I learn a bit more, then I am fine till I decide to push my knowledge further! Can’t wait to see what else you make this week!

  9. Jane says:

    Kristin, this is absolutely perfect!! I dare not show Violet these pictures…or she would definitely ask me to make her one too!! πŸ˜‰ Awesome job! And, that fabric is one of my have anna maria horner fabrics…and I always referred to it as fireworks too!! πŸ™‚

  10. rachel says:

    kristin, this amazing! fantastic! superb! I absolutely love it! you know, of AMH’s innocent crush line, this was one of the prints that didn’t resonate with me… but i see it here and i adore it. it’s perfect! i love the sharp geometric fireworks against the softer pink. you nailed it.

    • kristin says:

      thanks! i agree, actually – i bought this and it had sat in the stash for a long time without knowing what to make with it. even as i cut this dress out, i wasn’t sure if it’d work. i love it, though! huge relief.

    • kristin says:

      well…i drafted the pattern and cut out my fabric on sunday, and i had monday off work (with no kids home!) so i did spend probably 3-4 hours sewing it. i did the fitting and neckline retooling once she was home from school. this is definitely the most involved KCWC project i will attempt this week – today’s is pajama bottoms!

  11. Anneliese says:

    Nicely done! it is pretty funny about making something for kids and immediately wanting to upsize and then making something for adults and immediately wanting to downsize. Nice when the fashions cross generations that way!

    • kristin says:

      this pattern especially has the perfect whimsical design to work for both, i think! makes it fun. there are definitely kid patterns i wish i could upsize, too!!

  12. Jeni says:

    This could be the cutest thing I’ve seen in awhile. What an inspiring project! I’ve been following your blog for like a year…ish but I don’t think I’ve ever commented before now. (Selfish reader, I know.) But I love everything you create and always want to sew after I see your latest project. Thanks for sharing and inspiring!

  13. Lucinda says:

    adding my applause to everyone else who is simply floored by your mad pattern-drafting skills!! As the world’s slowest sewer (using a premade pattern to boot!), I am in awe of your ability to draft, cut and sew up this beautiful dress in the time you did. Simply amazing, and so glad that your little one loves it as much as you do:)

  14. Heather says:

    I LOVE this, Kristen. Well-done!! For the neckline, you could do a tiny keyhole opening at the back to make it easier going over the head. That’s what I will likely do, (because of course I’m going to make one for my girl too!)

  15. Inder says:

    So my Pinterest practically EXPLODED with this before I got a chance to see it on my Google Reader (I am woefully behind in reading my blogs!), so I saw it coming from a virtual mile away, but oh, my, it is PERFECT. Well done, Kristin.

  16. sewchibi says:

    Yes. I totally crushed on the fact that you had this on your list! I LOVE mini-me creations!!! Oh Em looks so stinking cute in this! I am in love with that dress pattern! So perfect Kristin, as if there were any surprise in that statement πŸ˜‰

    Azriella talks about her girl Applejack, nonstop, lol. She says she love her girl and wonders what she is doing from time to time. She is always anticipating seeing her again! Those two are definitely two peas in a pod!

    And again: I am smitten with her dress

  17. Danielle says:

    You are awesome! Great job with this. It looks just like the original! I can totally tell how much you are growing as a seamstress (not that I’m an expert…but its just obvious!). Big things are coming for you girl! I can feel it;)

  18. Veronica says:

    This is adorable, and yes, after I made my first Washi, I thought I would try to make one for my 3 year old (I just haven’t had time to try yet). I also thought that Project Run and Play would make one of their challenges a Washi dress remix challenge, but that didn’t happen (yet)! I hope Rae does come out with a mini version!

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