Monday, April 30, 2018

Simplicity 8101: Solar System Dottie Angel Frock

Happy birthday to my niece, Anna, lover of planets and stars and constellations!

My brother told me that my niece is currently obsessed with planets, solar systems, stars and constellations. Saturn is her favorite! With her birthday approaching, I thought I should encourage this delightful interest in science (much better than the princess phase, methinks).

As such, I took the opportunity to indulge in some novelty print sewing in honor of Anna. Joann Fabrics had the hook-up, with probably 10 different solar system or planet prints between their novelty quilting cotton and flannel sections. They ranged from kiddie prints to fantastical purple planetary prints to this one, a quilting cotton with the planets, the sun, and many of the constellations labeled. I queried my mom and brother, and both thought Anna would like this one best. 

For the pattern, I had Simplicity 8101, the Dottie Angel frock for girls, in my stash. I thought it was the perfect simple design to show off the print without breaking it up too much. Plus that pocket!

Obviously I didn't stay exactly true to the pattern... I bound the neckline instead of using the bias tape as a facing. I also merged the pocket pieces into one and sewed two pocket to the side seams, rather than one in the center front. I used packaged double-fold bias tape from my stash. It's is a little but stiff, as you can tell, but I don't think Anna noticed.

Anna's measurements put her all over the map, but in the end I opted for a size 5 bodice, graded out to a 6 at the hip. It's also a 6 in length. I'd read that the neckline was a bit wide, so I hoped my bias binding method would bring it in a little bit. 

I love how it turned out and I'm pretty sure Anna is delighted with it, too! Check out present opening video below... and she put it on right away! A winner for sure.


  1. What a lovely idea and a wonderful dress!

  2. Love the dress and fabric, she looks great! When I first saw the main photo I thought she was swigging champagne from the bottle🤣

  3. Adorable - I love it! Nothing better than a custom frock for a birthday gift ;o)

  4. What a nice dress!! I love your idea to use this fabric! You inspired me, my 5 yo is also into planets and stars so maybe I’ll steel your idea and make one to (after my current golden pink dress project....)

  5. What a great aunt you are! She's like Miss Frizzle! Are those books still available? there is one where she wears a solar system dress.

  6. You are the best Aunt!! What a great gift and I love that dress!!