Yesterday was Katrina’s last day of school and to celebrate her class performed a circus for their parents and the other students. The roles were assigned a few weeks ago and she was asked to be a clown. This was met with some consternation at first but eventually she came around. I thought I was going to get off easy in the costume department since my siblings and I had each been a clown for Halloween at least once in our young childhoods. But, after much searching my sister, mom, and I decided the clown suit must have been disposed of when my parents moved. Knowing my mom’s packrat nature it must have been unwearable for her to get rid of it.
So, I decided to make the costume. This is easier said than done in May. With Halloween almost six months away the pattern selection was a little slim. Add to that the wearer’s requirement that the costume be a clown dress and you can see I was going to have trouble finding a pattern. So, I gave up on the costume patterns and just went with a dress pattern — McCall’s 3531. The next problem was the fabric. No bright polka dots and stripes to be found. I did like this Alexander Henry heart print so that’s what I started with. After rummaging through the clearance shelves I found a number of fabrics to coordinate. I settled on the stripe and the flowers with polka dots. The last bit was a little bit of pink to add some ruffles and brighten up the outfit — my girl thinks black is handsome and in her mind that is the worst thing a little girl can be.
Pattern: McCall’s 3531
Fabric: this Alexander Henry heart print, two other Joann’s prints, and pink cotton
Yardage: less than 1 yard each
Modifications: I split the dress down the middle to make it more clown-like. For the skirt I just moved the side hems to the front and back. The bodice had two back pieces so I cut each from a different fabric. For the bodice front I sewed the two pieces I wanted to use together and then used the seam as the fold line when cutting out the pattern piece. I added a pink ruffle at the bottom and made a pink ruffle collar separately. As usual I didn’t use the pattern pieces for the skirt, I just figured the length I wanted and used two fabric widths.