Another new dress for the little girl (who insists she is not little). The dress is a very basic T-shirt dress, made by modifying an out-of-print Kwik Sew pattern (2315 - actually for pajamas).
Inspired by her beloved stuffy, I added an appliquéd pair of elephants. I'm terrible at drawing, so this is a rather modified form of an image I found online.
The braided tails were a hit, but I think they're a little long. Also, maybe I should add eyes. I didn't think about that until looking at the picture just now. It seems I have difficulty making complete elephants.
I stitched a tear-away stabilizer to the skirt piece and fused the elephant shapes on. I opted for the raw-edge appliquéd look and stitched about 1/8" away from the edge all the way around. I stitched around each shape three times to give it a slightly bolder line.
The fabric for the dress and leggings came from three XL adult T-shirts purchased from the clearance table at Zeller's. There are some advantages to this over cut yardage:
1. Accessibility - Zellers is in my town, the nearest fabric store is 45 minutes away.
2. Coordinates - The solid and the stripe match perfectly - often not the case with bolts of fabric
3. Pre-finished - I used the hem of the shirt for both the leggings and the skirt. Hemming isn't one of my favorite parts of the sewing process, so I like to have it done already.
However, there are some disadvantages:
1. Grainlines - These weren't exceptionally high-quality T-shirts, so there were some grainline issues that were hard for me to work around. You can see that the stripes don't match at CF of the leggings.
2. Limited layout options - Since the T-shirt already has a certain shape, you have to work within those boundaries sometimes being creative with what you can put where.
3. Size limitations - I was able to squeak out the leggings from one T-shirt, but had to add a separate piece for the elastic casing. The next size up would not have been an option. Making a big T-shirt into a smaller T-shirt works well, but I don't know that I'll be able to do more dresses or leggings.
4. Waste - It seems like there was more waste compared to working with yardage - a lot of smallish, un-useable pieces leftover.
I continually had the tune of "Baby Elephant Walk" by Henry Mancini in my head while I was working on this project. It was subconscious at first and it took me a couple of days to even remember the name of the song and figure out why I was humming it. Funny stuff. Thankfully, it is a fun tune because it is quite tenacious and once it's there, it is hard to get rid of!