All dressed up – in a tablecloth.

Spending time in Melbourne over summer meant frequenting craft markets with my brother and his wife: Warrandyte market on Saturday, and both Williamstown Craft market and Abbotsford Shirt & Skirt market on Sunday. I’d say that is a pretty good effort for one weekend!

As we strolled around I kept wondering what it was that drew us into some stalls – totally enchanted, why we perused others from a distance with a soft ‘hhmmm’, and others still were left completely ignored…

About half of the stalls sold baby goods: mostly little dresses, cute bibs, pantaloons, headbands, hairclips and accessories for little girls, as well as blankets and knitted toys. Had I not recently attempted my very first little girls’ dress and frilly pantaloons from a 1970’s pattern and polkadot fabric my grandma had sent all the way from South Africa, and found it a simple and quick task, I would have indulged and bought an insubordinate number of little frocks to doll up my daughter! Instead, I was keen to get back and get sewing on my latest project! (okay, and maybe find out where these stall holders sourced their gorgeous fabrics from!)

Earlier in the week – before embarking on the market spree – I had been given a vintage hand-sewn table-cloth. It had beautiful embroidered detail in the corners and stains in the middle. I realised that with a bit of tweaking I could probably turn it into a lovely pinafore for my little girl… I grabbed an old tea towel (which was headed for the bin) and cut that up as a mini test run to work out the pattern. Still not satisfied, I grabbed a very old pillowcase (which was headed for the bin too), and had another go with mum’s help, and some advice from my sis-in-law [I love how sewing projects tends to become a group effort!]. We worked out a plan and I started chopping up the table-cloth into four quarters: Three for the skirt and the fourth for the bodice.

I added some vintage gingham that I found in mum’s fabric stash from a distant aunt, which I used to tie the top and skirt together and for the straps. I then added some buttons and just like that project 53 was done (in the nick of time)!


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