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A while ago Mausi’s papa gave me this book as a present, “Les couleurs francaises” by Yoshiko Tsukiori. I’ve long admired the styles in the Japanese dress books I had seen, and this book is particularly nice as it has both women’s and girls’ patterns in one book. An Easter dress seemed the perfect excuse to finally stop looking at the patterns, and to choose one to make. Mausi chose pattern ‘Z’ at the back of the book. It has a ruffled hem and I suspect appealed most to her mood at the time.

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 The fabric is Meandering Flower Fields in pink from Sarah Jane’s Wee Wander line. Although I’m not always drawn to pink, I thought this was really very sweet, and just the sort of thing Mausi would like. I think the little peach footprints amidst the flowers are particularly sweet. I lined it with shot cotton in ‘shell’ and the bias binding and ruffled hem are both shot cotton in lipstick. I lined it not only for modesty (as it is an Easter dress) but also to add a bit of extra substance as it is still quite cool outside.

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The pattern called for sleeves…and I had fully intended to put sleeves on. The pieces were cut, and lying on the sewing table. But I got so caught up in making the bodice pieces, and then attaching them together at the front split, that I sewed up the bodice sides before I had set the sleeve in. I didn’t want to go through the trouble of opening side seams again, so I used the bias binding the finish the arm holes and made a sleeve-less version instead. I’m actually really pleased with the dress without sleeves.

The patterns in this book require that you add a seam allowance when you are tracing the pattern pieces. Mausi is such a petite 4-year old that I left the seam allowances off, and the size 100 still fits with room to spare. In fact, I am hoping it will fit next summer as well.

Despite my inability to read the written instructions, the pattern pieces were straight-forward and the dress came together quite quickly. Cut and sewn in chunks of 15 minutes here or 30 minutes there. I’m already looking ahead to the next pattern in this book, and perhaps it’s even time to sew something for myself…

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