Mother-daughter matching dresses.
It's funny that the craft that was the catalyst of my hand-making journey is actually the one I do the least of today. Sewing - my first true love and obsession. I remember those days from what seems like so long ago (actually only about 5 years ago!) when my exciting Friday/Saturday night was not spent being out and about socializing with friends, but rather cozied up in my sewing room, hunched over a garment in the making, Netflix playing some TV series in the background. Weekday or weekend, it didn't matter... I couldn't wait to get to my sewing machines. Especially when there was some sort of event coming up; a wedding, a birthday outing, a holiday... I always had a new outfit sewn just for the occasion.
Life is so different now (and I thought I was busy before! Haha!). Sewing is a very time consuming art and being a full time mom to two small kids, a wife, and everything else in between, it's so difficult to find long chunks of time that I could devote to sewing. Instead, I busy myself with smaller projects (as you see on my site). But, when one of my cousins recently got married I thought it would be a great idea to revisit that first love with a very exciting sewing project - matching dresses for myself and my 4 year old little lady to wear to the wedding. I always loved the idea of moms and daughters dressing in identical outfits so why not?
I wanted the style of the dresses to be mature and trendy but still appropriate for both, mine and her age. I also wanted something a little bit different and unique. After much brainstorming, I decided I would make the following dresses...
The idea for these dresses started with a particular fabric I had in mind; I imagined some sort of a dark colour (ideally navy) with a large, bold, and colourful flower print. Since we would be attending a summer wedding, I wanted the fabric to be light, breezy, and flowy. When I spotted that exact fabric at the store, I had no second thoughts about it! It was meant to be.
For the design of the dress, I decided on a sleeveless top because a summer outfit equals sleeveless everything! I love anything with a racer back, so naturally these dresses would have one too. As for the skirt... there's a bit of a story to it; I remember once stumbling across a picture of a lady wearing this fantastic summer dress, standing on a balcony, a hot beach glowing in the background, and the skirt of her dress blowing wildly in the summer breeze. But, it wasn't a regular skirt... I vividly recall it being what I dubbed a "double high-low" skirt; high in the front AND back, and low on both sides. It was such a lovely look and it really left an impression on me because when I thought about the dresses I was about to sew, I knew I would be replicating that look!
Ava loved the double high-low skirt too! She couldn't get enough of twirling and swaying it from side to side. Especially on the dance floor!
Since the wrong side of the fabric would be visible on the low sides of the skirt, I decided to add a playful dimension to the dress and line it with a complimentary solid colour. Furthermore, instead of plain seams on the arm holes and hem, I added a stripe of sea green, and a contrasting coral stripe along the hemline of the lining. Because the skirt is pretty full, the hemline is a good several meters long on EACH of the floral fabric and the lining (don't ask how long exactly, I didn't measure. I was too pressed for time to stop and think about all the sewing ahead of me!). Although it literally took me more hours to sew on the sea green and coral stripes than to sew the actual dresses themselves, it was worth the extra effort. I love the unique hem of a contrasting colour stripe.
Zippers these days are available in so many beautiful styles and when they look this pretty, they have to be showcased! Here are our zippers totally exposed and shining in rose gold (notice my favourite racer backs!)...
Matching outfits, these dresses... this is one of the reasons I love having a daughter. There is nothing cuter than wearing matching outfits, especially when you see your child sparkle with joy simply because she gets to match her Mama. It's such a special thing. And needless to say, so much fun! We received a ton of compliments at the wedding we wore these to and everyone thought it was a fantastic idea for us to match. We've only had a chance to wear it once thus far, so I'm hoping for at least another fancy occasion before Ava (sadly) grows out of it.
Light, flowy fabric in a bold floral print accented with contrasting colours, a unique double high-low skirt, racer back, and an exposed metallic zipper, this summer dress is right on point.