I'm linking up with Elizabeth today to talk sewing and books!
I love those Hanna Andersson playdress/daydress style outfits but they are a little pricey and I never like the prints enough to splurge. I ordered this jersey from Hawthorne Threads in one of the Briar Rose prints and decided to sew one myself. The Briar Rose fabric is a nice weight and I'd recommend it for a first knit.
I didn't really have a pattern, just the intention to copy a Gap version of the dress we already owned. I cobbled together parts; the bodice from the Geranium dress which seems to consistently fit my baby girl, the sleeves from the crossover top from Growing Up Sew Liberated, and two rectangles for the skirt. These parts all worked together well. There are a number of ways to work with knits and I use all of them some of the time. Made by Rae has some great posts about working with knits. But it was Growing Up Sew Liberated that got me started.
I don't really feel competent enough to write up tutorials, but this is a very basic outline of what I did. I sewed strips of binding about an inch wide to the placket and necklines, flipped inside, stitched along the neckline with a stright stitch on the sewing machine with wooly nylon in the bobbin. The placket took about three attempts to look right and a single straight piece gave the nicest finish. Before adding the neck facing, I pinned a tiny loop of jersey to function as a button hole to the top of the back slit (note to self: make that slit longer next time). After the neckline was done, I stitched the arms on with the serger, then zipped down the side seams. I then stitched the side seams of the large rectangle together for the skirt. Then I used a long basting stitch to gather the top of the skirt, pinned very carefully because this is where things usually go south, and attached it to the bodice with the serger. For the hem and wrists, I used a straight stitch with a twin needle, again with wooly nylon in the bobbin. Whew! All of this went together remarkably well and I ended up with a dress as nice inside as out.
I'm still reading The Wormwood Forest and I just love it. I'd highly recommend it to anyone unschooling science at the high school level. In fact, it's the first book of its kind I've encountered to make me see how unschooling could really work. I'm eagerly studying far more than I ever did in high school chemistry. It touches on all the sciences (except maybe astronomy?) in an easy going, but challenging style. My radar for bias is dull in this book because I'm just barely keeping up. It is fascinating but slow going.