Monday 22 July 2013

Design Your Own Pinny...

I first came across Boo! Designs a couple of years ago, when I saw some stunning appliquéd dresses on Facebook. What I really liked, was the striking combination of fabrics. This girl knew how to make a dress stand out from the crowd!!!

Pattern Revolution and Boo! Designs have teamed together together this month, to present the Design Your Own Pinny Challenge. Having seen Kristie's dresses, I had to check out the pattern. The Design Your Own Pinny PDF pattern was on sale and I'm always up for a challenge, so I've made a pinny.

As the name implies, the concept behind the pattern is that each person will interpret the pattern in their own way and add their own touches, thus making unique dresses. The pattern provides detailed instructions for several variations, as well as suggestions for further styles and additions. 

For once, I didn't deliberate for hours over my choice of fabric. I went straight to this Japanese fabric (Sevenberry), from my stash and teamed it with red. I fell in love with this gorgeous fabric and just had to buy it when I came across it. At the time, I had no idea what I'd make with it, but I knew I'd instantly know when the right pattern emerged. Some patterns and fabric are just meant for each other.

I've added white, eyelet lace to each of the horizontal red strips. The red and the floral worked well together, but the white is the go between that ties it all together.

The red band at the hemline was my own addition to the pattern. Visually, odd numbers seem to work better, for me, than even numbers and the band gave three rows of red with lace.

I chose the elastic back, but the pattern gives instructions for a zippered back. It's mid Winter here and I want the dress to be a good fit in several months, so thought the elastic would allow for a better fit over time. As you can see from the photos, the dress has room for growth, which is why in some photos the sides hang down a little.

The flutter sleeves were another of my additions to the pattern. At the widest point they are 8cm and 2cm where they join the waistband. For nice, full gathers, I've gone with twice the length of the straps. The outside edge is finished with a rolled hem. The rolled hem foot I'm using works best with zig zag stitches, but I think I'll invest in one that uses a straight stitch, or maybe I could use my overlocker.

I'm sure that all my overseas readers have worked out that a pinny is a pinafore (pinafore dress), or as you might call it, a jumper. A pinafore is meant to be worn with something underneath. Initially I thought a plain, white t-shirt would suit, but it just didn't do the dress justice, so I whipped up a little top, using the Peasant Blouse pattern by Tie Dye Diva. I'll write a separate post on the blouse.

It was a pleasure to work with the Design Your Own Pinny PDF pattern. There are no pattern pieces as such; all pieces are cut using measurements provided. Not only are there charts for cutting out (metric and imperial) and for finished lengths, but also diagrams for each variation showing the pieces required... great for visual people like me!

The instructions are comprehensive, with lots of photos. There was only one point when something was initially unclear to me (attaching the straps to the bodice), but the clear photos clarified my thinking and the straps attached easily. Looking back at the instructions now, it's painfully obvious what to do... who knows why I faltered at the time.

The Design Your Own Pinny is available here and here. No, I'm not being sponsored.

I'm sure I'll be using this pattern again and again. Next Winter, I'd like to try it in a denim or cord, minus the flutter sleeve, and perhaps with pockets, piping and appliqué, for a totally different look.

Little Miss is very happy with her new outfit and so am I!!! The photo shoot took place at a family gathering yesterday and there were lots of oohs and aahs. 

There are some amazing dresses entered in the challenge. If you want to see pretty and girlie, head on over and check out the other entries. This little pinny will be joining the 300+ dresses in the Dresses for Girls collection here on Threading My Way.

... Pam


  1. It is gorgeous, Pam. The fabric is perfect and I love the touches of white lace with the red.

  2. So cute Pam, you did such a lovely job:)

  3. Great fabric! That is a really special dress!

  4. The pinny is beautiful! You're right...that fabric is perfect for this pattern. I like how the red fabric and the white eyelet add interest to it. Very pretty!

  5. Fabulous Pam! I love all the little touches you have added, not surprised it was a big hit with Little Miss!

  6. Oh, so lovely! The fabric, lace, and the flutter sleeves...everything go well together and the pretty peasant top is just perfect!

  7. Thanks for such a lovely write up on my pattern Pam, much appreciated! You did a beautiful job of designing your own pinny! :)

  8. Extremely pretty dress! Love it :)

  9. Very pretty! I'm excited to see your workups of this in winter weather style too.

  10. It's adorable! I love that Japanese print, and it seems like she really likes it!

  11. What a pretty pinny! (ha ha) Thank you for sharing it at Tuesdays with a Twist! -Marci @ Stone Cottage Adventures

  12. super cute! thanks for the comment on my fabric alphabet :)

  13. Oh it's pretty! I've been on a bit of a sewing hiatus while I move house - but you are getting me inspired to get back at it. :)

  14. Lovely pinny! I really like the sleeves and the fabric is really pretty. Thanks for linking up at Submarine Sunday!


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