In the last weeks I have been thinking a lot about my signature style, or better say the lack of one. In the end, it was my fabric stash that told me what my signature style is: knit. Knits in colorful prints, I have so many different ones just laying on the shelves. Like I wrote a few times already I prefer skipping ironing (both of clean clothes and during sewing) and clothes that can be worn immediately after being washed are my favorites. Knits make perfect children garments, kids can move in them easily and the stretchiness also gives a bit more growth room (although my kids only seem to grow length wise, in which knit is not much of an advantage over woven). So for this months dress I used my knitification skills, and flipped the woven dress to a knit knot dress.
After some pattern measuring it turned out that I needed a 2T size for my seven year old, another advantage of knitification, your woven patterns can be used much longer. I lengthened the bodice to the normal waist length.
I used one yard of a Birch knit from my stash. Birch knit is amazingly smooth and relatively thick. One of the nice features of the original knot dress is the contrasting color of the lining that sometimes shows. The back of the fabric is perfectly white (there is a small bit of see through) and I thought this could create a great contrasting effect as well. Knit doesn't fray and due to the low level of vertical stretch Birch knit does not really curl. Besides a securing stitch on 5 mm from the side I did not finish my seams. I therefore had to cut of the seam allowances from the pattern pieces of the straps and neckline.
I really like the knot on the back of the original design because it means that you do not have to install a zipper. Still, I took out the knot on the back, I feared that it would make sitting a bit comfortable (my eldest is sitting in many different positions on the chair and a few of them were bound to be extra uncomfortable in case of a the back knot). Due to the fact that the dress is in knit, the knot is not necessary. The knot normally is needed to create some space to comfortably put on the dress. Although my daughter could tie the shoulder knots, she could not have tied the back knot by herself anyway. All in all the back knot had to go. I cut of the middle seam allowance of the back piece and cut is as one whole with a round hole. I strengthened the hole with the same stabilizing stitching. The photo is too blurry but you get the point.
I put in pockets, every dress should have pockets. To maximize contrast I put in the pockets inside out, having the white back of the fabric "showing".
The bottom hem I did not finish at all, I did not wanted to put a stabilizing stitching because I know my daughter would tear through them immediately (those knees...).
I usually cut my fabric very economically but due to the fact I only had one yard (which I bought at Fabricworm together with the fabric for this dress) I had to cut even more carefully. I opted for a gathered skirt like the original knot dress. The width of the skirt simply were the parts that remained after cutting the bodice parts. They were a bit over twice the width of the bodice, instead of the usual three to four times (and the pieces were not even both the same length). The knots at the bottom of the dress give a little extra width, still creating a very nice full skirt.
I made a matching hairband from two relatively large leftovers, what remained were truly scraps.
As you might have noticed I am trying to step up my photographer skills, from this shoot I learned once and for all that full sun light is not the way to go, overexposure is not my friend. I already knew that of course but let my daughter's comfort (sun meant warmth in this case) win over nicely shaded pictures. With nicer weather approaching I hope to face this dilemma less often in the coming months.