Tinny dress in Zebraloha from Soft Cactus

Hi. My name is Jenya. I usually blog at While she was sleeping, however today I am guest posting here on Maaike's blog.

Maaike and I first 'met' on Instagram. Photos of fabric with bright funky prints and vintage feel in her feed made my sewing heart beat faster. I became a regular customer at MaaiDesign. 

Now I am taking it one step further. Every now and then I will write a guest post showcasing some of the gorgeous fabric in Maaike's shop. 

Tinny Dress in Soft Cactus Fabric - MaaiDesign blog

Today I would like to show you a dress I made for my daughter Miss R using one of the latest prints from Soft Cactus, Zebraloha in pastel pink. When Miss R saw the print her eyes lit up! She declared she wanted a dress with zebras. The same instant I knew it had to be a Tinny dress by StraightGrain. 

Tinny Dress in Soft Cactus Fabric - MaaiDesign blog

The Tinny dress pattern offers so many options it can make one's head spin! I appreciate an opportunity to use one pattern to achieve many different looks. I have used a few StraightGrain patterns to date. I am impressed with the quality of the patterns and the clarity of instructions. I think the fit of the finished garments is great.

Tinny Dress in Soft Cactus Fabric - MaaiDesign blog

I made a Tinny dress for Miss R last year. That dress was an absolute hit! For the new dress I decided to keep it simple and allow the fabric do the talking. Together with Miss R we agreed on a simple bodice with capped sleeves, a slim Peter Pan collar and a gathered skirt. I made the bodice in size 5 width with size 6 length and cut the skirt in size 7. 

Tinny Dress in Soft Cactus Fabric - MaaiDesign blog

At first I was going to make the collar from solid white cotton I used to line the bodice, but it looked wrong. Too formal. Then I thought I would make it from the same fabric as the dress. It looked wrong again. Too busy. I had a small piece of homespun dusty pink cotton floating in my stash, and while the colour matched amazingly well, this combination still looked wrong. Too boring. Piping to the rescue! Isn't it amazing how such a small detail makes such a huge difference! All of the sudden a boring collar became a funky playful detail I absolutely loved. And since I am a piping addict I decided to pipe the sleeves also.

Tinny Dress in Soft Cactus Fabric - MaaiDesign blog

The original pattern offers a zipper closure. I altered the pattern slightly to create a button closure. These funky buttons were a lucky op-shop find.

Tinny Dress in Soft Cactus Fabric - MaaiDesign blog

Let's briefly talk about the elephant in the room. Or more precisely, mutant zebras on my daughter's back. I paid very close attention to print placement on the front of the dress. I even re-cut the front bodice piece to make sure the zebras were facing in the right direction and the print ran smoothly vertically. I thought I managed to align the print at the back also. I didn't realise I have created two-headed wonders until I started sewing the buttons on. Oops! Likely Miss R didn't care.

Tinny Dress in Soft Cactus Fabric - MaaiDesign blog

I think Soft Cactus fabric worked great for this dress. The fabric is soft to touch, it has lovely drape and just enough body. The fabric was very easy to work with. I think it offers a great value for money, which is an important factor also. 

Tinny Dress in Soft Cactus Fabric - MaaiDesign blog

Just a quick recap before I go...

Pattern: the Tinny dress by StraightGrain

Fabric: Zebralohain pastel pink by Soft Cactus

Lining: solid white cotton

Collar: dusty pink homespun cotton from my stash

Piping: aqua piping

Buttons: a lucky find from an op shop