Children’s Corner Gwen with lengthened sleeve ruffles.
Granddaughter Vivian Rose, 4 yo, has always had strong opinions about her wardrobe. Her taste in fashion has been less than classic, requiring bribes for her to wear many of the garments I have made her.
But now she has changed her mind!!!! She is asking for more Nana dresses!
It’s like she is recognizing her femininity, the flip side of her (Tarzan’s) Jane or Moana Strong Female persona.
I love this picture, taken when the family was on a camping trip last weekend. She looks like an Amazon girl, bringing home the 5 yo “man” she bagged!
Last week, I sent a package with Harry Potter clothes for her 8 yo brother, Alastair. This lace trimmed second-hand Rose confection was included just so there would be something for her. Better to receive something she did not like than to receive nothing at all and assume Nana didn’t love her as much as Big Brother.
Her mother was shocked when Vivi squealed, “I love it!” Hurrah! She would wear it at her school program in a few days.
When Vivi came to breakfast the next day wearing the pink smocked bishop, Rebecca reminded her that they were saving that dress for the school program. Vivi was not happy. She wanted to wear it to school that very day.
This is not a face you want to see at the breakfast table.
But Rebecca relented and Vivi was delighted, willingly posing for pictures before heading off to preschool.
The ruffle sleeve edge is trimmed with lace, pinstitched in place.
Back is closed with plastic snaps. Ribbon bows are tacked to the snaps at the end of each ribbon inserted into the smocking.
Of course, I was thrilled with this change of opinion. I was doubly pleased because the dress has been hanging in the nursery closet for some time, waiting for Vivi to grow into it. When I showed it to her when her family was here for Easter, she told me “no, thanks.”
But as she said when she called to thank me, she said, “I didn’t like it then, but I love it now!”
The same lace was inserted above the hem, also pinstitched.
The lace is one of my dearest treasures. Mr. Russell, owner of the renowned lace wholesaler M.E.Feld Co., always generously shared his wealth of knowledge about the kinds of lace and its history. He always patiently answered my many questions when we spoke on the phone as I placed my order. It was his practice to send his customers a huge box of lace from which to choose. The unwanted, or in my case, over budget items were then returned.
In one of these boxes, whose arrival usually put me into a state of hyperventilation, there was a bolt of lace, wrapped on a blue card and marked “Made in France,” just like the others. But this one said “100% nylon.” Mr. Russell explained that these were called “levers” lace (though I have since seen it spelled “leavers”) and were just as fine as the cottons, but intended for lingerie or other items which would be subjected to heavy and/or frequent laundering.
Technically a galloon with a decorative edge on both sides, it is straight enough to be used as an insertion as well as an edging. For more information about galloons, check out this post Antique Lace Galloons. You will see that other galloons have been used as edgings as well as insertions.
This is especially appropriate for a dress for Vivian Rose. Her mother’s aversion to ironing (I’m talking about my daughter–this is clearly a genetic mutation) means that not only the cotton batiste which tumbles nicely but the lace will be presentable right out of the dryer.
The dress was made about 20 years ago for our god child whose mother returned it for Vivian’s use. So I was doubly pleased for the dress to have a second chance at being worn.
FYI, Rebecca asked Vivi’s teacher for mercy with regard to the dress. This sweet lady directed Vivi in such a way that the dress came home on our rough and tumble little student from school totally unscathed and intact. It required nothing more than laundering to be ready for the school program. What a miracle!
Sigh…I am one happy Nana.