Two Little Dresses

Sometimes inspiration hits when I see a pattern and sometimes when I see yarn. About 3 months ago I came across some beautiful cotton/acrylic mix and knew I had to make a dress for a little girl.

In one of my earlier blog posts I shared  about the first dress I made for Little Ms. J that was actually a tunic – she didn’t get to wear it very long. The yarn I found this time would be for a new dress for her!

IMG_3479The yarn? Cascade Avalon Multi. The pattern? French Holiday Dress

I was so happy to find this pattern because it looked like it was going to be long enough and something that could be grown into. It also offered a flat and circular option for the pattern. I chose the circular pattern and it came together very quickly.

To solve the common problem of rolled edges the pattern called for a crocheted finishing. Well, I didn’t know how to crochet so I went to Very Pink Knits and watched and watched the Crochet for Knitters. It was so helpful, especially since I was all thumbs with my first time crocheting. As my first attempt of crochet it was a little tight, but worked pretty well and I was happy with the outcome. Little Ms J looked so pretty in it.

Then I found this yarn and a new dress was soon being put on the needles.

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Cascade Avalon again – this time solid colors.

I had knitted this pattern once so I didn’t think it would be a problem to make another one in a larger size. Ah, well, not so much.

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I was making the largest size option for a different little girl but it ended up way too small and could have been another tunic. Good thing I like to re-do and rip out. But, there wasn’t a size bigger that I could follow so I was going to have to brave it and alter some things. I used a needle two sizes larger and added about 6 inches to the length. This gauge turned out to be a much better weight because the first dress was a bit heavy.

Keeping in mind that I was making it larger than the printed pattern I didn’t take it in as much around the torso. The trick with that was to make sure it was even so I could work the front and back properly. Besides the number of stitches I had on the needle I worked the torso as written for the largest size in the pattern. One last thing I did in order to make the yarn last was work jogless stripes. This was also a new thing for me – but I was already in this with both feet so I was going to jump in all the way.

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The video from Knit Purl Hunter helped me the most. It took a while to get the jogless stripes down, but once I did I couldn’t believe how well the stripes looked. The dress length ended up just right and the top was a nice proportion.

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One thing this whole process has taught me was how much I can’t wait to learn how to make my own patterns. I know it wouldn’t be too long until that happens – I just need more practice. Some how I don’t think that will be a problem.

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