I couldn’t help but add pinked-edge ruched trim to the dress to make it a little prettier for Kaelyn. I’m sure Kiki would have approved as in the movie Kiki complains to her mother about the plainness of the black dress. And ah well, as I said, I couldn’t help myself.
I used the 2 year old nightdress pattern in Making Children’s Clothes: 25 Stylish Step-by-step Sewing Projects for 0-5 Years. I changed the length a little to make it more of a dress length. But, you could use this free tutorial with some small modifications (like omitting the sleeve elastic). The nice thing about this style of dress is that it’s easy for a child to put on themselves and all the elastic along the neckline will let it fit her longer. I ripped some strips of fabric on the grain and then pinked them and then gathered them. I pinned this onto the dress in swirls and then sewed it on along the center gather line of the trim.
The bow is heavily interfaced and has elastic at the back to make it more comfy and size variable. I used this free headband tutorial! The children’s size pattern is here and the adult sized english tutorial is here. I then sewed the separately made faux bow onto the headband. I basically made my bow the same way as this tutorial here.
Wonderfully, since the dress is largely free-sized, it still fit Kaelyn a full year later!