The design of this gown was inspired both by some historical examples, and by the "bishop" style gown used for smocking. This is also very similar to the way that I make Ladybug's summer nightgowns. Typically I just measure, cut, and sew together for this kind of thing, but since i was going to make a few all the same time, I decided to make an actual real pattern to expedite the process. You can download and print the pattern HERE. I made these as nightgowns, but made longer in batiste or handkerchief linen, and decorated with insertion and tucks it would be a very nice christening gown.
|Three gowns from two yards of flanelette and one recieving|
Blanket. Pretty unpreposessing laid flat, but cute on the baby!
Once the sleeves are in, cut the front neckline down to a slight curve, and the back neckline to an even slighter curve. I trimmed the front neck down about an inch at the center front, and the back only maybe a quarter. Then run a line of basting all around the neck.
next, cut a piece of binding 12 inches long, and fold the ends under a half inch. Fold it in quarters and iron it to mark.
Place the halfway mark at the center front of the gown, and position the two quarter marks at the center of the sleeves. Gather the neck to fit.
sew the neckband down (I found it easiest to do this by hand with a firm backstitch) then flip the binding down to the inside and whipstitch it into place.
Then make a small button loop with complimentary thread, and affix a small flat button. This pearl button is one from the giant stash of buttons we found in the seat of a sewing chair my mom got at an auction.
If you haven't added the bottom ruffle now is the time to do it. Gather it to fit, sew it with a half inch seam, trim the ruffled portion of the seam allowance, and turn down and fell the body portion of the seam allowance to the ruffle I did this by hand with a whipstitch. If you are not doing a ruffled gown, hem the bottom to whatever depth seems practical to you. I prefer the gowns to be at least eight inches longer than her feet, so that they stay down over her feet, keeping them warm.
And here's Kitten in one of her new gowns. You can see I've rolled up the sleeves. She has growing room in this nightgown. It should fit until she's standing up in her crib and needs shorter nightclothes. This one is trimmed with an antique knitted pillowcase trim on the ruffle.