You have no idea how exited I was when The Ribbon Retreat started to carry Lace! Lace is SO popular right now and there are SO many things you can do with it! I am so excited for my daughter to wear this for her 1 year photo shoot! I used Brown, Pink and Off White Flora Lace and I love the way it looks together! This is a beautiful lace with a modern look to it.
The fabric I used for this outfit is a stretchy knit. I liked using a stretchy knit fabric because you don’t have to finish the edges. They just curl up a little bit. I did not have to do a bottom hem, and I only did one fold for the elastic casing at the top. Also, I wanted this to be pretty tight on my baby girl. My fabric was ribbed and I made the ribbing go vertical. It has more stretch that way.
The photo above is attempt #1. Yes, me and my Seam Ripper became very close during this project! First of all I started at the top. Who would do such a thing when adding ruffles? I’m embarrassed to say ME! Starting at the top made it very hard to sew the lace on in a straight line, the lace from the row above would get in the way… duh! I also started out using my ruffler foot. The ruffler foot has sharp teeth that push the fabric (or lace in this case) into a ruffle. These teeth were not kind to the lace. I had to put the ruffler foot into time out for this. HA
The second thing I tried didn’t work out either. I tried gathering the lace with the sewing machine and then pinning it on. The lace was a little out of control after I gathered it. I just wasn’t loving that method for some reason. (I’m definitely not an expert seamstress in any way). I know there are many of you reading this who are much better at sewing than me… try not to laugh too hard at me! If you have any advice for me I’d be thrilled to learn from you! If you are a beginner maybe you’ll want to do this the way I did. I decided to pin my ruffles in place and sew them down row by row starting at the BOTTOM! It might not be the best way but I liked the results the best.
I was thinking maybe I could shirr (use elastic thread in the bobbin) the lace onto a non-stretchy fabric next time and see how that turns out. Hmmm That could look pretty cool. It does in my head right now anyway!
First I determined the length and width of my fabric. My daughters chest circumference is 17″. I added 6″ to this measurement.
Width– Take your child’s chest measurement and add 6″.
Length – Measure from arm pit to desired length. Add around 1 1/2″ to this measurement for the elastic casing at the top (depending on the size of elastic you choose).
I had my length go a little past the knee. My fabric was 23″ wide and 15″ long for my 12 month old daughter.
First make your elastic casing by folding the fabric over and sewing it down. (This casing is width wise NOT length wise).
After your casing is finished fold the fabric in half width wise to find the center. Mark the center with a Vanishing Marker.
The casing is the top and you are going to make leg holes at the bottom.
In the center of your fabric use a vanishing marker to trace a half circle to your fabric. The circle should be about 3″ wide and 1 1/2″ to 2″ tall. I just used something from the kitchen that was about that size.
Cut out the half circle. Voila now you have leg holes! (After you sew your half circle closed that is). Don’t sew it closed until after you sew the lace on though.
I used my vanishing marker and a ruler to make a grid. If I could go back I wouldn’t do the vertical lines, they proved to be unnecessary. I was going to fold the lace on each vertical line but I liked the gathers to be more sporadic.
I put the horizontal lines 1″ apart. The Flora Lace is 1 1/2″ so when spaced 1″ apart the lace overlaps nicely.
I took the lace and pinned it onto my fabric folding it over about every inch. I cut the lace when I came to the edge of the fabric.
The photo above is how I created the folds. I made a “ripple” in the lace, then pinned it down.
I pinned the lace and then cut it when I got to the edge. That way I never had too short of a piece for some reason. I sewed the lace on row by row, working my way from the bottom to the top.
Here’s how the back looks.
Now it is time to put the elastic into the casing. Cut your elastic to the size of your child’s chest, put the elastic in the casing using a safety pin or an Easy Turner (which is what I used). They sure are nice to have around!
Take the elastic all the way though so that you have elastic poking out each side of the casing. Overlap the elastic and sew it together making sure it is not twisted.
After the elastic is sewn together, close the opening shut by overlapping the fabric and sewing it in place. (Over the elastic). Pictured below. This is one of those times it is nice to be using the knit fabric. You don’t have to worry about any raw edges.
Now put the edges together and sew them shut. Don’t forget to backstitch.
Start sewing all the way up at the casing so there isn’t a little hole.
Almost done! Now just to sew the crotch.
Pin the crotch (where you cut out the half circle). Make sure the bottoms of the leg openings match up.
Sew it shut, backstitching at start and finish.
Turn it right side out and you can be done if you want to!
I tried it on my baby girl and it didn’t stay up on her as well as I would have liked, so I decided to add straps.
I like to place clips where I want the straps to be while she is wearing it. I always seem to put the straps in the wrong place if I don’t do it this way.
I measured over the shoulder for the length of the straps and added an inch.
I cut 2 strips of fabric and lace to 7″ long and 1 1/2″ wide. I sewed the lace over the top of the fabric with 3 lines of stitching.
One on each edge and one down the middle.
Pin the straps on both sides (I put them below the casing) and sew them into place. You now have the cutest little lace petti romper there ever was!! Put this on your little girl and admire your good work!
Learn how to make matching lace bows Here.
Update: I got the pictures back from the photoshoot. Don’t you love the way this looks on? SO girly and cute!