I had originally planned to make a traditional square yoke dress for my 2 and 1/3 year old niece for her Christmas present, but 8 hours into the half space wave full bodice smocking, I thought better of it. Instead I have made another version of "Sunshine" from Australian Smocking and Embroidery Issue 60, with my own, much less dense smocking design. I was still fancying half space waves, so I have put a little band of them at the bottom with a few bullion circle daisies.
As this top is for an older toddler, I have made a pair of knit shorts with a leg ruffle, rather than bloomers, which can look a bit too babyish on some toddlers.
My favourite part of this pattern is still the back ruffle. I wrestled a bit with the armhole curves in this version, interfacing both the facing and front, and clipping every curved seam at 3mm spacing, but although it looks fine hanging up, I can still see ripples. I am starting to think this is just what happens when you lay a curve flat. I wonder what magazine stylists do to fix this look.
I am also not happy with the colour balance of the photograph. The leg ruffle is the same colourway as the armhole bands, but looks different here, maybe it is something to do with the hot pink shorts? The little drawstring bag is the present wrapping. I am trying not to have tiny pieces of fabric lurking in my stash!