The pattern is the Hanimi Dress pattern by An of StraightGrain. Just like the Serena Dress I shared recently, I first learned of this pattern on Rachel's blog. She has sewn a handful of these beautiful dresses and I love them all. Yes, I'm a blog stalker! I just love Rachel's style and especially the patterns she chooses and clothes she makes for her older daughter (who looks about the same age as Maggie). And, she's super nice and always chats with me on email about these things - thanks, Rachel. : )
Anyway, this pattern is fantastic! I believe I went with the simplest style, but An gives you loads of options...flutter sleeves, peter pan collars, shirt, dress, etc. The fabric is, of course, this gorgeous cotton/linen blend by Anna Maria Horner. I snatched some for Maggie the minute I saw it and have been saving it for the perfect dress.
One thing I did differently from the pattern is pleating the skirt instead of gathering. I was a little short on fabric widthwise for the skirt panels. I also knew I really wanted to align the pattern between the bodice and skirt (at least on the front of the dress). If there ever was a fabric to fuss with alignment over, this is it! So, to do the pleats, I referred to a Geranium top I'd sewn for Maggie. I measured the distance between the first pleats to set those and then just played with the other pleats until the front width of the skirt matched the width of the bodice. Same for the back. And, it worked quite well, if I do say so myself! That said, one of the things that is so fantastic about this pattern is the method An provides for gathering a skirt. It is super thorough and I will definitely be referring back to that. I also added some purple piping at the waist. All of these details make for a more sleek and somewhat "grown up" look that both Maggie and I love.
The back of the dress includes an invisible zipper. Another first for me sewing wise. It took a few tries, but only because I kept making silly mistakes and twisting the zipper. Again, An's instructions are fantastic. I'm happy to feel like I jumped that sewing hurdle.
See, here's the zipper in action and a peek at the lovely lining (which is this print by Anna Maria Horner).
So, enough of the dress alone...how about of some amazing photos of the girl in it. These beautiful photos were taken by my friend Mary of Where's the Zoom. She did our family photos a couple of weeks ago and to say I'm overwhelmingly in love with them would be an understatement. These are just a few that I picked out featuring Maggie in her dress, but oh my goodness, the whole shebang is just too, too good. I will be sharing more here for sure, but for now I'll leave you with these beauties.