Simplicity 1121 first dress for a new year

Happy New Year! We were  up early and hit the cinemas to see the new Charlie Brown, it was such a sweet movie and I think the 3 year old and adults loved it best but we all loved it. OK I might have been the most excited to see the movie. See if if you’re after something that the whole family can watch together. Not too long either and our little guy was yelling out ‘go charlie brown’ and killing himself laughing. It was just a gorgeous family movie.

Anyway I’m talking about this lovely dress that I made yesterday. The pattern is Simplicity 1121 and I had my eye on it for a while. An hour with just my big girl and the baby at Spotlight was a nice way to spend the morning of New Years Eve and we came home with some sewing supplies. My big girl chose the pattern and fabric herself.

She measured a 7 but we went up to an 8 because I like to get at least 2 summers out of it. The pattern instructions and construction of the dress were very straightforward. Thank goodness for that. I found them very clear and really like the way they attached the shoulder ruffle so that it was lovely and neat. Often I make vintage patterns and there is some hand stitching here or there or vague details on how to attach ruffles but this pattern was better. However you’ll want to have some experience reading patterns as a few details weren’t made obvious like making the other strap which required positioning of the ruffle on the other side of the strap. In fact I don’t think the pattern even tells you to make the other strap but obviously you will. And the straps are adjustable as they tie through the loop on the back so it’s a dress that can grow over seasons.

We bought enough fabric to make option c which is the long chevron dress on the pattern cover but we ended up doing option b without the lower ruffle to make it a bit more grown up for her.

The fabric was on sale so the total cost of the dress comes in about $20 and I’m happy with that. Now trying to get photos of this girl modelling are now hilarious as she wants to act the whole time.

Overall I think this is such a great pattern for both the little and big girls. It would suit a confident beginner who has done gathering stitches and can read a pattern and it’s not too complicated, no zippers or buttons or anything too fancy. The instructions really are step by step with good pictures alongside but I would say to make sure that your back before the elastic goes in matches up to the front finished bodice, mine didn’t and I’m still not sure what went wrong but on my 2nd dress I’m sure I’ll work it out. Make the elastic channel for the top elastic on the back just a teensy bit wider as mine was a tight squeeze and before you sew the elastic ends in measure on your child as I could have made the elastic a bit tighter. Oh and the little tab for the straps to go through was a teeny piece of fabric that I couldn’t pull through so I doubled the width, pressed in the ends and then folded on itself and sewed a seam. So much easier than mucking around trying to pull a narrow strip of fabric right side out. Trust me on that one.

And that’s the last bit of sewing for last year and a new dress for a new year. Now the girls are lining up patterns and their choice of fabric for some pjs and shorts so I think my night times will be at the machine!


  1. What a lovely dress and it suits your little lady perfectly. This will be the year that I learn to sew clothing. It’s as good a resolution as any, right?

  2. Happy 2016, Corrie!

    May the new year brings joy and peace to you and your family.

    Hardly comment nowadays, but still enjoy reading your blog all these while. Your humour cheers me up:)

  3. What a gorgeous dress. Happy New Year to you Corrie. x

  4. Lovely dress! I’m so impressed with your skill and efficiency 😊

  5. fabulous pattern ,cant wait to sew again,Im getting there,another month or so,Im neary done with the quilt I bought the fabric from you a while ago

  6. Gorgeous dress. I’m always on the lookout for more patterns that suit older girls and don’t look bad. I hate the fashions in the stores and so does my little one.

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