Do you know what is one of our favorite things about selling fabric? Shopping our own stock, of course! We also love sewing for our family. Every year in the spring, I get the itch to sew dresses for my girls. I let them choose the fabric out of our stash of fabric bolts and the pattern from my personal stack. This year, they chose Simplicity 1670 and Bari J’s Petal and Plume fabric, with Lily Ashbury’s Gypsy Girl for the yoke, sleeves, and faux piping. We love mixing and matching fabrics from different lines and designers. The variation of the pattern that we chose is essentially the purple dress in the drawing on the pattern.Although I hate cutting out all the pattern pieces, there are a few things that can make it easier. I like to use my rotary cutter and mat when I can, especially for the straight lines, but you can also kind of “draw” along the curves with the blade. It is a bit tricky and takes some getting used to, but it saves a lot of time if you can manage it. The other thing I do when I can is layer fabrics. These dresses are lined, so a lot of the pattern pieces had to be cut multiple times. Save your sanity and layer all of the fabric so you only have to cut each piece once, instead of four times! Also, as a side note, do you see that pink pen? It’s a Sewline mechanical fabric pencil, with three different lead colors (black, white, and pink). We bought ourselves some last fall, and they have been so nice because you can just click between colors to use the one that shows up the best. (aff. link)Another trick I love is chain piecing. It’s not just for quilting! If you can stick something else in without having to cut your thread, it saves so much time and keeps all the thread tails from getting out of control.While these dresses turned out amazing, I do have to admit that it was quite an investment of time and labor. Making three of the same thing is tedious, but I figure I had better do it while they still want to all match each other!I just love how these look! Art Gallery fabric has such a nice drape and feels so soft. It really is one of our favorite brands (and we bought all this fabric ourselves to prove it!). Here’s a closer look at the front, as modeled by my oldest:And here’s the back, on my next oldest:I did a size 3 for my youngest girl, size 5 with a size 6 skirt for my middle, and size 7 with a size 8 skirt for my oldest. I probably could have kept to the regular hems for the older two, but I want them to be able to wear these for as long as possible. I made the smallest one first, so after she tried it on I thought I could lengthen the other two. There is a bit of hem I could let out for her next year.Happy spring, from us to you. We can’t wait for the warmer weather and beautiful flowers that will be showing up soon. Now we want to go sew up something for ourselves!