Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Gemstone Geranium Dress

Earlier this year, I posted about my Gemstone Staple dress, which I made out of some rayon from Cotton + Steel. At the same time I bought the fabric for that dress, I also bought some yardage in the pink colorway so I could make a "matching" dress for my daughter. After seeing countless cute versions online over the years, I was itching to try the Geranium dress from made by rae.

The pattern itself is very well written and designed, with several options for customization. I chose to use the gathered skirt from View A and the faux cap sleeves from View B, and was very pleased with the end result. The only change I would make next time would be to add in-seam pockets.

While the pattern is awesome, it is labeled as intermediate, and rightly so. For my first try, I probably should have used something other than rayon, but I had a vision and wanted to jump right in. Since I knew I was in over my head, I took it slow on this dress. (That, and for several weeks it was too hot to turn on the iron.) It took me a long time to get up the nerve to cut out the dress. Rayon sure is slippery, but I went slowly and it turned out all right. I used fabric shears, but if I had a big enough cutting mat, I would use a rotary cutter. You could totally tell that the edges of the skirt pieces weren't 100% straight, but it doesn't show in the finished dress. In the end, choosing a challenging fabric worked out, because the end project feels so nice and the skirt flows so well.

I really like how the bodice is lined, since that means you don't have to finish the seams. I also think it makes for a more comfortable dress, which is important when sewing clothes for kids. I didn't really understand the instructions for sewing the bodice sides, but I figured it out by looking at the bodice itself and applying what I already knew about garment sewing. Speaking of what I already knew, I would have liked the seam allowances to be larger on the skirt, so that I could use French seams. Instead, I just used a mock overlock stitch to finish the seams.

The last delay in making this dress stemmed from the buttons. I had sewed buttonholes before, and I had sewed with rayon before, but I was super nervous about sewing buttonholes on rayon. I waited until I was well-rested and had the house to myself before I attempted it, and I had no problems at all. My daughter picked out the buttons themselves, and I think they are really cute.

I am really, really happy with how this dress turned out. My daughter likes it, and I can see myself making more of these for her. I guess I can call myself an Intermediate garment sewer now that I've successfully completed an intermediate project. Whew!


  1. This turned out super cute and looks darling on her! Yay for you, you intermediate garment sewer! ;-) You've progressed so well!

  2. Yes, I would definitely say you are an intermediate level garment seamstress if not higher! It is beautiful!