Happy Handmade Birthday

By far, FAR, the most search engine hits this blog gets is for people looking for “handmade birthday present”. So far we’ve done a gift for a two year old boy, and a four year old girl. When one of the cutest babies I know was turning one, I knew I had to figure something out. What do you give a one year old girl who has a big sister? She has all the toddler toys she needs. She has all the hand-me-down clothing she needs. Obviously, it’s time to make something just extra cute, and stop worrying about her “needs”. Everyone should have a pretty new dress on her birthday. And maybe a little purse. With very short handles since the birthday girl is still young enough to think putting something around her neck would be a good time.


Ooh! I just realized that Madam’s skirt is going to coordinate w/ this gift nicely. It’s like I totally planned that when I asked her to hold the bag.


I really enjoy making these little bags. They take me no time, and I think they’re a cute way to “wrap” a small gift. Plus, both of my kids (yes – the boy child, too) really liked to carry around little purses at that age. The act of putting something into it, then carrying it to another room, then pulling that something back out? SO ENTERTAINING! They were constantly moving socks and binkies and little people from room to room via small tote bags. So I figured the birthday girl should have one, too. A pink one.


There you go. Check out the skirt next to the bag lining and contents. Ha. Thrift store sheet that I got on bag-sale day and have since turned into A) a circle skirt that Violet wears at least twice a week B) her nightgown C) the fabric parts of the crown/tutu set I made for her friend and D) this kiddo’s dress. Pretty soon the whole base will be full of little girls wearing this rose fabric. The thing must’ve been a king because I still have tons left. Circle skirt, anyone?


Action shots coming soon.


I started with this tute and went from there. The fabric I was using was way too thin to go unlined, so I used the bottom part of an old, soft cotton nightgown for the lining. Which worked out real well because I was able to leave the gathered ruffle at the bottom there without actually having to do any gathering. (Yes – I realize you don’t really see any ruffles. Trust me, it’s there. Maybe I’ll catch it in the action pics.) Then at the last minute I decided to keep the top layer open down the sides, so it was more fluttery and less boxy. I want it to move when she walks (toddles 🙂 ).

I had to guess at most of the measurements, as the birthday girl was nowhere near my sewing machine and I have nobody even CLOSE to a petite one year old in this house to try it on in her stead (my two year old weighs 35lbs. Yeah.) So they’re coming over this week (if I can manage to go a day without an ER visit, that is) for me to make sure it fits her (and take many, many pictures for my huge blog following Mom to see.)

I love the fabrics. I love how light and floaty it is. I love that little appliqué heart. I love pink and brown. I love the puffed sleeves. I really, really hope it is at least close to fitting her. Close enough that I can make it work. Although, if it is way too completely never going to work WRONG, Violet has graciously offered to let me open up the sleeves and neckline and give it to her as a blouse instead. And it’s hard to say no to this –


Could you say no to that?


So, will it be a toddler dress? Or a big girl shirt? Am I done? Or do I need to go shopping for a book and a stuffed animal after all? Tune in (whenever I get around to it) for the exciting conclusion of : Give Handmade! And Stress About It For Way Longer Than It Would Take You To Buy A Freaking Present! 😉


5 responses to “Happy Handmade Birthday

  1. I read both your blogs every couple of days, and I must say, I am jealous. My sisters are 10 and 14 and already as tall as I am, so I can’t make quick little elasticized cute things. Even more taunting is that the newly born in the family is a boy (my nephew) so I have to be satisfied knitting manly little hats and quilting manly Irish blankets (his mom and dad are both in the Natl. Guard, and he is definitely not going to be a little boy I can put my costuming skills to good use with 😦 ).

  2. The dress is gorgeous! The birthday girl looks just darling in her dress, purse in hand. Your thoughtful effort is both touching and much appreciated. Indeed, action shots are needed!

  3. I’m so rude! I totally forgot to tell you I think they’re adorable 😀

  4. Alyssa – yes, I was thinking “Hey! Where is the “they’re so adorable!” part of her comment! 😉

    (Also – my son has a father in the armed forces, and he dresses up all the time. )

    Emma – glad you guys liked it. 🙂

  5. Love the little purse and that dress is too darn sweet for words!

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