In addition, the pattern only comes with only puffy short sleeve options. Since I wasn't home and didn't have access to a long sleeve pattern from my stash, I opted to pleat the fullness out of the sleeve until the measurement of the curve in the sleeve was about 2 inches larger than the measurement of the armhole. Then I drew straight lines down both sides of the sleeve and cut it out. The sleeve is a bit too long, but since we wanted the dress to be able to "grow" with Abby, the added sleeve length was desirable.
The bodice, however, was perfect. Originally, I intended to make the top of the bodice and the sleeves out of just the sparkle tulle, but one brief fitting and Abby's comment that the tulle was "itchy" made me realize that if the dress was to be worn and enjoyed, comfort and practicality trumped authenticity. I ended up using the tulle as an overlay instead. It might have been better to use a lighter blue lining under the tulle to give it a more authentic look, but by then the "when will it be finished, Grandma?" litany had begun, and another trip to the fabric store just wasn't politic.
|The floor under the sewing machine while I was working on the sparkle tulle.|
And, as I mentioned above, the sparkle tulle is itchy on a child's skin, so you probably don't want to run the risk of making a dress the child won't wear. One last comment on the tulle - it is fairly fragile. Abby's mommy told me just this week that Abby has already ripped the tulle while playing outside. I think I might opt for a chiffon or other fabric in favor of the tulle.
And Grandma's efforts are being soundly rewarded - my little princess is having a blast with her beautiful dress. Her mommy said she has worn it every day since it was finished, which is, after all, the true test of dress-up greatness, right?