Cinderella Pinafore

Laurel with gentle old LeRoi

Right in the midst of her princess phase, Laurel turned three.  At DisneyWorld, she had seen Cinderella and knew that was what she wanted to be when she grew up.  Of course, the theme of her birthday party had to be princesses.

We had such fun preparing for this party. Laurel was decked out in an easy care Imperial broadcloth pinafore/sundress.


Each of her guests, prince and princess alike, received a flowing satin cape, made royalty worthy by virture of the  almost precious gem closure at the neck.  In fact, this was any one of my gazillion old rhinestone buttons stitched onto a Velcro closure.  For safety reasons, it is important that the neck open with just a very light tug.   Laurel is shown with her cape below.

L cape R

The pinafore back was smocked in a geometric pattern.

In addition to the cape, each guest was given royal headgear, elegant jewelry and a satin goody bag embroidered with a crown and his name,  such as “Prince David.”

Little Prince Robert

For parties, Robert always gets a matching brother outfit.   Here he is in his matching brother “Prince Robert” Jon-Jon suit.  They were both precious.

sewing details:

PINAFORE PATTERN:  Laurel~Little Sunday Dresses

One of the things I like most about this pattern is the way the wide square armholes are drawn up to size with ribbon.  Button loops at the side seam support the ribbon which is then drawn up and tied in a bow.   Except for the little bit of lace on the shoulder ruffle, the garment is wash and wear.

The thing I like least about it is the “lined” smocking.  The designer professes that this keeps the smocking from stretching out.  But it also reduces the freedom of movement which, in my humble opinion, is one of the reasons English smocking is so suitable for children’s wear.  The way the pattern is designed, you need the lining in order to finish off the armholes.  So after finishing that, I cut the lining away behind the smocking and turned a shirttail hem on the raw edge.

JON-JON PATTERN for Robert~from the book, Martha Pullen’s Favorite Appliques

The thing I like most about this pattern is that it is soooooo quick and easy.  The basic pattern, without embroidery or any other embellishments, can be made in one hour.

SMOCKING PLATE: Cinderella by Gwen Milner  Instead of smocking the wheels, I used two old pearl buttons.

Picture smocking is my least favorite kind of smocking.     It is, however,  my grandchildren’s favorite kind.   And so, like so many other Nanas, I picture smock my sometimes-arthritic fingers to the bone.  We’re  always working for those rewarding hugs and kisses.

fabric: blue Imperial broadcloth

Imperial is always my first choice for easy care batiste and broadcloth.

lace:  English edging lace



This is a sweet little lace, E-23, available here at “A  STORE” for $1.80 per yard.   Not only is it tiny, just over 1/4″ wide, but the holes above the points look like entredeux.  Often, I weave embriodery floss through these holes for a touch of color to coordinate with smocking or embroidery.

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