I’m all biased out.


[This is a pretty long post. Sorry]

Excuses, excuses: Chris and I got back from our Idaho/Montana trip late Thursday night. We’ve not been in one place for more than 3 days for the last 2 weeks. We’re living out of suitcases at my parents’ house. . . Therefore it’s been just a teensy bit difficult to do much of anything crafty, especially in time for Easter. I was hoping to make a big deal out of it this year with dying eggs, homemade easter baskets with sweet treats, and matching dresses (all traditions from my childhood), but it just wasn’t very realistic (just like my idea of having an elaborate party for Penelope’s first birthday).

However. . .

For the last couple of months, I’ve been thinking non-stop about making a striped skirt like the one from Anthropologie and I just so happen to have 5 yards of very similar fabric. I think it was Saturday afternoon that decided that now was the time to make that idea happen.

biased skirt

I used the skirt pattern from the Sew U book (it’s genius), and modified it just a tad. It probably took me nearly an hour to figure out how to place the pattern pieces on the fabric to get the stripes to line up just right.

high waisted striped skirt

I like the enclosure in the back with the grey buttons, I also like the light weight fabric and the look of the bias. Overall, I think it turned out ok, but Chris just might say otherwise (he’s just not a fan of the pleats in the front). So, I’d like to ask you: Should I keep the pleats in the front, or should I modify the skirt to make it flat-fronted?? I’m not sure, because it looks like pleats are all the rage, but I’m a little self-concious about it. Seriously, I need your opinions!!

striped biased skirt 1

Anyway, It turned out ok, but I’ll definitely make this skirt again so I can learn from my mistakes.

•     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •     •

Penelope’s dress turned out slightly better, but it too, has its flaws. The inspiration for this dress comes from a Martha Stewart magazine photo of a girl in a pink scalloped dress. SWOON with a capital S! This was my attempt at making that dress from a japanese dress pattern. The pattern is starting to get a little small for Penelope, so I tried to enlarge it. The proportions came out a little funny, but the dress still looks as cute as a button.

Nel's striped scallop dress

I love this little girl, and the grey stripes with the pink ribbon fit her personality just right.

Penelope's striped scallop dress

Overall, my attempts to be matchy, matchy for Easter were fairly successful, and all it took was 10 straight hours of sewing and $5.

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    1. Lillian says:

      I personally love the pleats! But I bet you’re the type of person that could pull off anything, so maybe that’s why I love it. I think they look super cute on you.

      And geez, I wish I could sew as well as you do. I would LOVE to have a unique matchy-matchy outfit with my daughter for Easter.

      Can I ask when you started sewing and if you have any suggestions or a beginner? I have a sewing machine and my mom is actually a seamstress (I know, it’s a real shame she didn’t teach me) but I don’t really have the confidence to start.

      • Melissa says:

        Thanks for your comments, Lillian!

        I started sewing when I was in high school, but I was terrible. Absolutely awful. I didn’t really give it a second try until two years ago, my mother-in-law gave me her old Bernina, and I started making square bottom totes. Seriously, that was a great way to get started. I’m still nowhere near a seamstress level, but I can now sew straight lines.

        If you want to get started, I would seriously suggest checking out the book Sew U by Wendy (built by wendy). It’s got all sorts of great information on fabric, tools and sewing techniques. It also doesn’t hurt to google sewing tutorials. Good luck!

    2. Brooke says:

      I wouldn’t worry about the pleats. It only starts looking bad when the skirt is tapered and you have pleats. I love yours though. Have you seen that skirt from Anthro (I think it’s on sale now) and it’s blue and has several pleats around it? I didn’t really care for it when I tried it on. Your pleats just make you look thinner…. if that’s possible! And those buttons! So fantastic.

    3. too cute! I love Penelope’s dress. It’s super cute.

      The skirt looks great with the pleats. I say keep ’em. It gives it a more polished look.

    4. Nicia says:

      I say, if you feel self cautious in it, you should change it. Once I feel that way, no matter what people say, it just can’t seem to change how I feel. But, when I was looking at the skirt, I just thought it looked amazing, and I didn’t even notice the pleats, to be honest. I just thought it fit you very nicely.
      As for Nelly P’s dress…..LOVE IT! Oh my gosh, she is so so cute. Why haven’t I met her yet?!!

    5. stacy says:

      i love the pleats! both outfits are adorable!

    6. Julie R says:

      I adore the matching outfits! I had similar aspirations for my daughter and I…and it didn’t happen. Plus, then my son would feel left out, right? Anyway, I like the pleats, keep ’em – it’s a nice detail, along with those buttons in the back. Received the print yesterday by the way, thank you!! Love, love, love it!

    7. brandi says:

      i’m not a huge fan of the pleats… just because i don’t like pleats in general. it does something a little weird with the stripes too. besides that it is an amazingly beautiful skirt. i’m super impressed.

    8. Caitlin says:

      I vote for a no on the pleats, but it still looks awesome on you. You are definitely skinny enough to pull them off. I love the scalloped edges on Penelope’s dress!! Too cute. I think your skirt is way cuter than the one at Anthro!

    9. carissa says:

      wow! Your skirt is incredible!
      I am super impressed that you sewed it so well and the stripes look great. The pleats look great, I wouldn’t mess with it at all. It also makes your legs look super long with the lines going downwards.
      Great job!!
      the baby dress is adorable too : D

    10. L says:

      I love the pleats on YOU! Pleats add a little dimmension and most of us don’t need anything added to our hip regions, but your petite frame carries off the pleats beautifully! I really love this skirt! I don’t know how much fabric like this you have left, but could I pay you to make one for me? Seriously… PM me and let me know your going rate and if you’re interested in the job :)

    11. Laurie says:

      Those are amazing! And I loved that you were matching! I wish I could sew like that.

    12. Julia says:

      I just think you look amazing, so it looks great! After Saturday Ben said, “Did Melissa really have a baby or is she just anorexic?” :) You are a super hot mom! And Penelope is darling. I hope you get some consistency soon!

    13. Judy Grubbs says:

      Keep the pleats. Definitely more hip and up to date!
      Beautiful job on the skirt.

    14. deanna says:

      i love, love, love both your skirt and penelope’s dress! and the colors in your whole outfit is gorgeous. you look like such a model in that last photo!

    15. Ronda says:

      Melissa! It’s absolutly darling! your little girl gets cuter and cuter! I hope everyting is going well. So are you living in Utah now? If you are we need to get together!! I need my dose of crazy Melissa!

    16. Kinzie says:

      Love it, though I too am not so big on pleats. You’re skinny enough to pull off the pleats and they add a little dimension to the skirt, but if you’re going to feel self-conscious of them then just take them out. Nelly P’s is adorable too. I’ve been wanting to try the scalloped bottom- now I think I must!

    17. Nancy says:

      Sweet style, as usual. Like Kinzie said, your body type allows you to look good in pleats. The scallop on P’s dress is AMAZING! Yeah for gray.

    18. Joyce says:

      I like the pleats on you. I think it’ll be prettier than if you have it flat fronted – a lil plain.

      Love the baby’s dress.. too cute!

    19. made sweet says:

      i love the skirt! love the pleats! and love the baby dress!!! well done.

    20. tiddly says:

      oh my goodness!!! you are the cutest thing ever made! on YOU, the pleats are amazing. on me, not so much. so keep the pleats b/c you can! and little Nelly looks so darling.
      we miss you, come back to CA, you are my muse!

    21. Carrie says:

      If I’m being honest, I don’t like the pleats as much. Still a super cute skirt even with the pleats though. I’m just not a pleat person. I LOVE Penelope’s dress. SO cute. I have that same Sew U book and I agree, genius. How are you? Come see me!!!

    22. Jenn says:

      I am partial to the pleats. Yes, it’s trendy, and may not last you through the next couple of seasons, but I think it’s a good look. Especially on you, since you are very slender. If you’re going to sew a pleated skirt again, I say be even more dramatic — tighter, higher waist, and larger pleats. Again, your body type can totally pull it off! :)

    23. […] and girls to wear black dresses. I was originally planning on dressing her up in her charcoal and white striped dress from Easter, but that wouldn’t be nearly as much fun as wearing something new or […]

    24. […] so precious! It was only $17, too! Score. I had planned on making matching outfits for Easter (like last year), but I don’t think I would’ve thrown together anything nearly this cute at the last […]

    25. jen says:

      i think they’re both fantastic. well done! and i think anything on your little penelope is adorable.

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