Thursday, March 6, 2008

the bunny dress!

After the muno dress, I was ready to do more experimenting with appliques, and this was my next project: the bunny dress!

bunny dress!

The dress itself is the "Anna" pattern from Farbenmix, it's a wrap dress that's basically two aprons attached at the shoulders -- sounds weird, but works well and will grow with her really well. And a great canvas for doing things like this! The front section is more of the pink fabric left over from the muno dress; the back is a cotton dot I got from someone I know, Emily specifically asked me to use it in her next dress.

The bunny is based on an applique design from a vintage pattern I have -- I redrew it a bit and had to totally redo the dress pattern because the original didn't fit on the bunny's body!! (I felt sorry for all the 50s mom's who tried to make that pattern work and had to go throw back a martini after a couple hours struggling with it.) I was pretty happy with this, it was my first "mixed media" attempt in sewing -- the bunny is a cotton knit, the faces (there's a little bunny face on the back as well) are all embroidered, then the dress was sewn as a flat piece and applied on top.

Embroidering the faces was interesting -- I hadn't embroidered anything in years (and I mean years) so I was totally winging it. I didn't honestly even know what stitch I was using, I just sort of did it intuitively. (It turned out to be a split stitch, which later experiments prove to be my favorite for linework.) And I used some sort of sloppy satin stitch on the eyes, which turned out okay but sent me to the computer to request a couple of embroidery books from the library (I do have some needlework books, but they're packed up...somewhere...). But I think they came out fine, regardless of my less-than-precise approach. Here's a detail of the front bunny, and here's the little bunny face on the back.

I really love the pattern, in fact I've already used it again for Emily's Girl's Day dress! I'll be taking a break from it for a bit, but I'll definitely be making more Annas. And I will definitely be doing more embroidery!! I'd forgotten how much fun it can be!


  1. Does the back 'apron' tie in the front? And what a super idea for growing kids!

  2. It does tie in the front, underneath. It is a super-versatile pattern, not only will it last forever (I've seen it used as a top over jeans when it gets too short to be a dress) but you can make it reversible so it can be worn up to 4 different ways. I'll probably be using that pattern until Emily gets so sick of it she hides it from me!

  3. Just wanted to tell you I thought the bunnies in the Ayano Tsuji video on my blog look a bit like the bunny on your dress.
    Super cute!


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