My apologies for this small image. It doesn't show the detail at all on this exquisite 1940s-era Misses' blouse pattern. For greater detail, click here.
This size 16 pattern is just $12 at www.woodlandfarmsantiques.com. I already own this particular pattern, so when I saw it again at the Woodlandfarmsantiques site, I began to wonder again: Should I give smocking a shot? I mean I've never ever tried it. Those smocked children's dresses always looked too intimidating, like they take 300 days to complete.
Then again I wouldn't make an embroidered frock for a child. If I'm going to do any kind of time-consuming hand-stitching, I'm going to do it for the person who will appreciate it the most: me. Besides, most of the patterns are too frou-frou for my taste. I wouldn't want to inflict that on any child even if those patterns are considered classic or heirloom. Most children I know who wear these smocked dresses only don them for special occasions and tear them off at the first chance for a t-shirt and shorts or something else more comfortable.
Enough of that. Back to the pattern. I'd make a short-sleeved version of it in a purty chartreuse chiffon with a flaming fuschia thread for the embroidery. The reverse, chartreuse stitching on pink, would be cute too. And I think it's a great starter pattern for some simple stitching. Just two small parts of the bodice. Easy-peasy. Right? I might prick a finger or two at most - what's a little blood for great art? How many of you like do smocking on your garments - either for yourself or loved ones? Do you do it by hand or by machine? One inquiring mind wants to know.