Last month, I took Liz out to Jo-anns to buy fabric for Simplicity 3588 (PR review here), and let her pick out a fabric herself. I took her to the brocade section where she oohed and ahhed over practically all of it, but immediately liked the turquoise with lavender flowers best.
We shopped around for a bit, just to make sure, but she was very set on that brocade, and it was a very flattering color for her, so I went with it. I was very lucky to get the amount I needed for the dress for only $6.50! Heck, the invisible zipper cost almost half that much....
After nearly a month of working on it (and oodles of hand sewing!), I finally finished. Sewing with brocade for the first time was quite an adventure!
I've only used piping once before, and so I was pretty happy with the outcome of the collar, cross bodice, and home-made frog-closure.
This fabric really was a nightmare, but also a good learning experience. It was very difficult to cut (I do plan on getting special scissors for this type of fabric sometime in the future), and also hard to sew, or even to handle! I think I should have gotten a manicure before starting on this, because I felt like I caused little snags in the fabric almost every time I handled it.
I was very nervous about how the hem would look, so I did a very careful catch stitch. I am pretty proud of the finished result! There is almost no sign of the stitching from the right side.
I added about 1" or so to the skirt length and to the bodice, so Liz could have some growing room, since she is in an upward growth spurt.
I took some of the small dress scraps and made 2 matching Kanzashi blooms, which I attached to some simple hair clips. I also used the remaining buttons for the Kanzashi centers, which is a little bit Matchy-matchy I know, but also really cute I think.