2 years of handmade gift love

One of the teachers at Lucy’s school is having a baby this week.  So the other teachers are throwing her a baby shower.  And one of them called me this weekend and asked, “can we buy a gift certificate to your site?  Or could we buy something handmade by you?”

How sweet is that?  a MADE gift cert?
I wish I offered that!
The truth is, I just don’t have time to take custom orders.  But the other truth is that yes, I love to sew….and it’s fun to sew for good friends…..especially when it’s a gift….and even more-so when this person already told Lucy that she wants her First Day Dress in her own size!  (hopefully she means her own non-pregnant size).

So.
I quickly grabbed my MADE patterns and started scheming.
I thought it would be fun to sew a few items that the baby could wear over a 2-year span, so the handmade love never ends….well for 2 years that is.

First I made a Baby Circle Skirt.
And in case you’re wondering if I can make it in a fabric other than black and white seersucker?

I think I can.  But it’s hard to turn down!
Especially with hot pink elastic and a hand-dyed onesie to go along (photo below).  It’s the perfect fast, easy, no-fuss newborn project.   This skirt should last for the first 6 months of her big new life.

For the next year, we have a pair of basic KID Shorts.

I love creating/selling patterns because it’s so fun to share with you guys.  But I also love how much easier it makes gift-sewing for me (and you!)  Whatever size I need, it’s ready.
Happy 12 months old!

And for her 2nd year of life, I had to sew the current pattern I’m working on….the First Day Dress.
(new dress name in the works)

After my recent pattern grading, I was eager to try out the size 2.  And in this bright viney print (from Joanns)…I just love it!  The more I make this dress, the more I smile each time at the result.  It’s just a happy little thing.

I included a MADE postcard with washing, drying, and size instructions for each item.

And there you have it.  Four MADE pieces.
Hello little baby!   Welcome to the world.

  1. 1) Amy K

    Why change the name of the dress? I love “First Day Dress”…it makes me feel so happy to think of the excitement of that time of year…just my two cents…but I love it.

    • I agree! First Day Dress is just perfect!

  2. 3) Heather D

    Please Lord, give me babies soon so I can sew some of these ADORABLE THINGS!!!!! =)

  3. 4) Brenda

    I agree with Amy regarding the name of the First Day Dress – it’s a name that suggests so much anticipation, perfect for such a whimsical dress!

  4. 5) Chelsea

    I think they are all adorable. I love the circle skirt.

  5. I also love the name ‘first day dress’… but I’m sure whatever you come up with will be just perfect. I love the gift idea– BTW, I have that same turquoise seersucker in my stash! Maybe I need to make some more KID shorts with it. 🙂

  6. 7) nopinkhere

    I have done something similar for a friend who planned to cloth diaper. I made her five pairs of Made by Rae’s Big Butt Baby Pants in graduated sizes: 6mo-2T.

    • 8) Dana

      awesome idea! Oh I bet she loved that!

  7. I love that gift set. What a wonderful idea! And I truly just love that skirt with the pink elastic! How fun!

  8. 10) Julie H.

    What an awesome gift. Especially the dress. Not every baby gets a custom designed/sewn dress. 🙂

  9. I love this! A good friend of mine is having a baby girl (she has two adorable boys). I am totally going to make this ensemble for her. I also love the name “First Day Dress”. I am buying it the day you release it 🙂

    BTW I’ve 6 circle skirts now for my own daughter and for gifts. Next on my list of things to do is dyeing the elastic.

  10. 13) KelliO

    I just finished two circle skirts for a set of twins! The dyed onsies (with Delia’s girly touch) and those skirts are my favorite to give!

  11. I love the color combinations you put together for your posts, and everything else. So cute!

  12. I agree with the previous posts, the “first day dress” sounds like a great name

  13. perfect gift! and so thoughtful too, loved getting the bigger sizes when my kids were babies. They grow out of the tiny stuff way too fast! 🙂

  14. 18) British American

    What great gifts!

    I love the dress the best. Have you decided what size your pattern will go up to? I was so tempted to buy a cute dress for my daughter on Zulily. I liked them because they look homemade, so I decided I really should just buy a pattern and try to make one on my own. I’ve figured out how to make pants and skirts (your simple and circle skirts), but dresses scare me! My daughter is 8, but the store bought dresses she wears are a 10 or even a 12.

    • 19) Dana

      The pattern will go up to a size 10. So hopefully that works for her!
      I will include chest and waist measurements so you can see if the sizing is correct. The pattern probably won’t be ready for a month though! Sorry. These things take a while to get everything just right.

  15. 20) Angela H.

    Any idea of when you’re going to release your dress pattern? I have been eyeing it for a while, , and really, really, really want it. 🙂 Also, do you think you would have an add-on option of a collar? (Kind of like how you have all those different tutorials for your shorts?)

    Also, your shorts are my go-to baby gift. I bought it this summer, and after making a handful of pairs for my kids, I then went on to make some for my friends’ babies. Thankfully, I had three babies to make them for. They are super addicting and so easy and cute! I love adding the front pockets. 🙂

    • 21) Dana

      Oh I’m so happy you’ve been making shorts for gifts! I bet your friends love it 🙂

      I hope the dress pattern will be ready in a month. I know that sounds far off, but it takes a while to get everything just right and to have pattern testers try it out. But I’m working on it as I type! (literally :))

  16. This is so fantastic! Sometimes I wish I was an individual factory, able to bust out large quantities of handmade gifts for everyone. Since that isn’t a reality, it feels even more special when I do make something! I really love how your gifts aren’t the typical pastel pink 🙂

  17. 23) Julie R.

    What a great gift! And what a good idea to give things that will last and that she will use at later times. I remember getting nothing but 3-6 months onsies for my first and then having to scramble to find something new when he grew out of them by 4 months! Thanks for sharing!

  18. Dana, yet another one looking forward to your dress release and I too have been gifting your shorts to friends kids for sleep shorts with glow in the dark thread on the hems, too cute and fun!

  19. if you need pattern testers for the dress I would LOVE to test it for you. I can do any size you need. I’ve tested patterns for straightgrain before. My goal is to become a pattern tester for all you wonderful designers in blogland. I can do quick turn around time and I’m quite through in my notes. Let me know, ThisMomMade@gmail.com

  20. 26) Maribelle

    I’m in agreement with the readers who say keep the name. First Day Dress sounds exciting. It’s perfect.
    Have to salute your thoughtfulness as well re preparing a series of outfits spanning two years.
    Paid for or not, you’ve displayed exceptional mindfulness lady.
    Rock on!

  21. oh my gosh dana you are amazing! Love this idea so sweet! Anything handmade by you is priceless! What a special gift.

  22. Soooo cute! I really love that dress. Cant wait for the pattern (or your call for testers… Hint hint). I think that is the perfect name for that dress. Im planning one for my girl for her first day of school janurary 2015! And that circle skirt is adorable!! And needs to be duplicated on my sewing machine!

  23. 30) Dkb

    Love that Joann’s print too, I bought the end of the bolt this summer. Both my girls want something made from it!

  24. 31) LeAnne B

    I heart that dress. So excited a pattern is coming. I also have that same dress fabric from Joann’s. Each time I use it up I go and buy a couple of yards because I love having it in my stash. So cute!

  25. I’m sure the mum-to-be will be delighted 😀 and I like the name “first day dress” and I also like “happy dress” 🙂

  26. can all of your posts be the gifts you make/give other people?! seriously love these posts. 🙂

  27. You are so generous with your time and talents! This is such an amazing and adorable gift bundle!

  28. 35) AmyL

    If youre looking for pattern testers, I’d love to volunteer! I have a 14 month old daughter but shes always been ahead on sizes. looking forward to the release of this pattern!

  29. 36) Karen Tham

    Hurray!!! can’t wait for you to release the dress pattern!!!! It’s gorgeous!!!! Anxiously waiting in Perth Australia for it 😉 Keep up the great work and love the fabrics!

  30. 37) kathryn

    I love the “First Day” name too – it evokes such a vivid memory, both of choosing my first day of school outfits and of siting bleary-eyed at my sewing machine just a few weeks ago to finish my daughter’s first First Day outfit.

    Very excited for the pattern. Stop reading comments and get to it! 😉

  31. 38) KatieP

    What a super sweet gift. Love all the pieces. That is an idea I would never have thought of.
    Thank you for sharing your talents and inspiring us.

  32. Okay, first, I LOVE the idea of sewing pieces to cover the first 2 years. Such a great gift idea! I also love your First Day Dress. I agree with the teacher at Lucy’s school. I’d take one in my size, too, just so I could twirl around in it. Ha! Ha! 🙂

    (The MADE gift certificate is a fantastic idea, but I do understand not having time for custom orders. So much to do and so little time. Sigh.)

  33. Dana this is an awesome idea! You’re so good. Everything is so MADE, too! 🙂

  34. 41) Sarah K.

    What an incredibly generous and thoughtful gift! I have a friend who is due any day, and I’m thinking that I need to 1) wait to find out the gender of the baby, and then 2) sew like crazy! I love this idea. Love. In the meantime, I’ll knit gender neutral fabulous teal booties this weekend. After all, one must be prepared for baby. 😉

  35. 42) Rachel Osborne

    Awww!!! I love reading this and knowing exactly who these little treasures are for! I miss everything about Ford, and seeing you! I’ll be there next Friday, hope to see you and say hi!

  36. Beautiful work and such a great idea for a gift….I can also “volunteer” to pattern test your pattern for the adorable dress. I have 5 girls and they get so excited and happy every time I make something “homemade” for them…oh I can just imagine the excitement on their faces when I’ll make these “First Day Dresses” for them 🙂 I just wish I had more time blogging like you do, I’m not very good at that lol…

  37. 44) Jess

    Lovely 🙂 I hope the “First Day Dress” will come in women’s sizes when you are able to finish the pattern. I can see this being a lovely wardrobe staple.

  38. Well, these are really factual advantages of handmade gifts and handmade gifts are really very much preferable approach. Other than being beautiful and highly attractive, handmade gifts come with added love and affection as well. While crafting a gift for anyone with your hands your love and affection for him/her is also added enhancing its beauty, so it is a preferable approach.

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