A soft cactus dress for my birthday girl

March 08, 2016

Today I am taking part in an Australian blog tour showcasing a new online fabric supplier - Maai design. The owner, Maaike is the loveliest lady. She is Belgian but now lives in Sydney. She stocks Belgian fabric and it is divine!  She also writes a blog where she sews things for her kids and herself using her gorgeous fabrics which is a great way to see them sewn up. Her main brand is Soft Cactus. I had seen Soft Cactus fabric around the blogosphere and was really excited when I found Maaike's shop.  Maaike invited me to choose some of her fabric to make something up and share it.   I cannot speak more highly of Soft Cactus and of Maaike's shop....more on that in a little bit.

On Friday, my baby turned four! Of course she needed a birthday dress. Looking through her wardrobe, she only has around six dresses she wears, and she generally wears a dress every day...so I don't feel guilty making her more!  I think she is practising blowing out her candles in this photo!

I deliberated over the lovely fabrics in Maaike's shop before deciding on this vintage looking print.  It is called Inca sunset and is a gorgeous combination of navy, white and orange.  I paired it with navy piping - which is also from Maaike's shop and is super cheap and all done for you!  Her shop is beautifully set up and she offers ideas for combinations of fabrics and notions together and has lovely photos that showcase her fabrics. Because I made this dress with only 50cm of fabric, I needed to choose a pattern that used little fabric. I went with the Norah dress by Mousehouse creations. I really wanted to pipe the collar. It was a little fiddly, but I love how it looks. This dress is a 'short fit', ie. you could easily add an inch to the length, but I also like it short.

The beauty ad benefits of Soft Cactus fabric are many! 1/ It is 140cm wide. This means, you get more value for money, since most dress/quilting fabrics are only 110-115cm wide.  Like I said, I was able to make this dress with only 50cm of fabric!! 2/ It is super soft - it has a brushed cotton feel and is so lovely to wear; 3/ The designs are just gorgeous - you could pick any one and your project would turn out great; 4/ The price is economical for designer European fabric.  Better still, Maaike is offering readers of her tour a discount.  Just use the code: maaidesign10% to receive 10% off your order, which is valid until 26th March. So head over to Maai design to pick up some beautiful fabric!!!! You will be in love!

Thank you so much Maaike for inviting me to test out your gorgeous fabric!  I can' wait to show everyone Emily's birthday quilt too - it is backed with some more gorgeous soft cactus fabric!

Don't forget to see what  these lovely seamstresses have made with maaike's gorgeous fabrics...

March 8th - Suz from Sewpony

March 9th - Caroline from Usefulbox

March 10th - Kate from Sewing With Kate

March 11th - Allison from The Tall Mama

March 12th - Suzanne from Dressed in Pretty Little Things

March 13th - Toni from Make It Perfect

March 14th - Natalie from Sew Outnumbered

March 15th - Jenya from While she was sleeping

March 16th - Nicola from Create.nic

March 17th - Shelley from Bartacks and Singletrack

March 18th - Maaike from MaaiDesign

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  1. I hope practicing blowing out the candles came in handy ;) Oh her sweet smile <3 The dress looks super lovely! I love the piping on the collar. I was looking at this fabric to make a skirt for myself!

  2. Super dooper cute! I love the collar. Great choice of fabric! xx

  3. Love this dress! it has been on my to o list fro some time and the fabric combination and piping is just perfect. Happy Birthday big 4 year old!

  4. So funny that you love 'our' Belgian fabrics the other side of the world! I really love the collar of this dress, especially with the piping. I'm going to check out the pattern right now!

  5. Nice to see that our Belgian fabric designers have succes at the other side of the world too. You made a beautiful dress with this fabric.

  6. Suz that is perfect dress/pattern matching right there! Love this and nice job getting a dress from so little fabric. Happy birthday to your very cute model! :)

  7. This is so gorgeous Suz!! I love the use of the piping and I'm definitely a huge fan of Maaike's piping. It's such amazing quality and sooooo cheap!! I'm thinking this fabric would make a fun men's button up shirt although I think I need a bit of practice first ;)

    1. Thanks Nat. It would make a very groovy men's shirt!

  8. Absolutely stunning (although "stunning" is always perfect for your creations)!
    She's so adorable - Happy birthday :)
    PS. There's no such thing as too many dresses (that's my motto and I'll stick to it).

  9. You have made such a beautiful little dress! The piping detail is gorgeous! X Allison


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