Thursday, April 03, 2008

My first Ottobre dress!

Using some gift money, I recently subscribed to the Ottobre magazine, and I finally got my first issue this week! Excitement! Ottobre is designed in Finland, and I just love the pattern designs. I received lots of encouragement from the ladies on the Ottobre sewing list and the Ottobre Flickr group. Thank you!

This pattern is called the "Rose" dress from the 1/08 issue, and I made it for Emily using fabric and buttons from my stash. The only notion I had to buy was the velvet ribbon. I already had the matching flower that I put at center front.

Changes I made from the original pattern:

  • I used a bias band on the sleeve edge instead of elastic.

  • I sewed a back placket and made a button opening instead of using a zipper.

  • I added a bias band at the hemline with the same coordinating fabric as the neck and sleeve bindings.

  • I made a matching panties cover with the coordinating fabric. (Little girls this age always pull up their dresses--well, at least my little girl does).

  • This dress is a size 98 lengthened to size 104. It's a bit longer than I like on Emily, but she is growing like a weed.

I really like the front gathers on the dress, but it was a bit finicky to get them just right. I think it was a bit more difficult because I changed the method of sewing on the ribbon. Instead of sewing separate pieces of the ribbon to the front and 2 back pieces before sewing the side seams, I first sewed the side seams and then used one continuous piece of ribbon around the dress. I like the finished results a lot better doing this my way, but it did take a bit of playing around and measuring everything correctly.

The dress seems a bit wide through the chest as several people on the Ottobre discussion group have mentioned. I tend to think of this as a design element, but yes, the dress is somewhat wide through the bodice. This would work well on a chubby child, though.

Overall I am very pleased with my first sewing project from Ottobre Designs. Emily didn't want to take the dress off after I took her pictures, so I guess that means she likes it too!



  1. Ruth,

    I love the dress. I have often wondered about their patterns...but I've never even seen their magazines. You did a fantastic job...and the fact that she did not want to take it off....that's always how I gauge whether it is a success or not!!!

  2. I made one of these dresses already and have plans for another one. Yours turned out wonderfully! Enjoy the patterns!

  3. Absolutely lovely. Makes me want to sew.

  4. Beautiful dress and beautiful subject!

  5. Beautiful! I applied the ribbon the same way, once the side seams were sewn. I think I might trace the smallest size now for my youngest. I like the contrast hem too.

  6. Your daughter is adorable, and of course the dress is too. :-)

  7. Ruth,
    The dress is beautiful. It looks so cute on Emily. Love the hairdo too! :)


  8. Such a darling dress.

  9. It turned out beautiful. You are inspiring me to get out my Japanese girls clothing books and dive in. I used to use the Burda magazines when they only came in German and that wasn't too scary because I can read German...I have no clue with Japanese! LOL I have wondered about Ottobre but wish I could find some place to actually look at it and see if there was more than one thing I would want to do.

  10. So pretty!!! I love the matching panties! Oh how I miss my subscription to Ottobre. . .

  11. Ruth.... the dress and your daughter are absolutely lovely!

    Pam from ~Off The Cuff Style~

  12. Ruth,

    Her dress is so beautiful!! You did a fantastic job.

    Love, Heather

  13. The dress is adorable... So is your daughter! You did a fantastic job!

  14. I love both dresses. Especially the pink one. Love the touch with the bias binding on the sleeve and hem. It just jazzes up the style of the dress.

  15. This dress is absolutely beautiful! Wonderful job.

  16. Thank you for the comments! I appreciate you all! You're so encouraging.

  17. I cannot decide what to compliment - your daughter(s) or the dress. Both are very pretty. I also like your blog.

  18. Ruth,
    I made that same dress. Since it was summer I added a daisy trim, and lined the dress. To complement the dress I added a pair of bloomers. The dress seamed a bit short for her, even though she is rather petite. I love the fabric choices you made.Your daughter looks cute in the dress. I'll send pics if you want, or maybe I should start a blog spot to show what I've been sewing.