Surprise! Lila is here!

I love surprises. No, I LOVE surprises. Oh, sorry. Please let me start again. I LOOOOOOOOVE surprises! 

A couple of months ago Marte of Compagnie M sent me an e-mail asking if I would be interested in pre-testing the Lila dress and jumpsuit pattern, a pattern she has been working on in collaboration with Sylvia of Lily & Woody. Marte wanted to keep her involvement a secret. The proposal sounded intriguing. First, I loved the dress and I felt I have been given a perfect excuse to sew for my baby girl. Second, the pattern Marte and Sylvia were working on was designed for knits. I am developing a serious addiction to soft, comfy and hugabe knit fabric. Third, I am a huge fan of Marte's work. Of course I agreed to participate in testing and made the smallest size of the Lila dress.

For the first pre-test version I cut two old tee shirts and made a colour blocked Lila dress. Marte has not drafted a pattern for babies and toddlers before and was a little worried the pattern could end up being a 'flop'. Well, she did not need to worry. The fit of the pre-test version was great. The bodice pieces were perfect. The dress was easy to put on and off. I felt Marte allowed perfect amount of ease for the bodice. The armholes were spot on. The only issue was the length of the skirt. It was too short, so the dress ended up being a cute little tunic. I totally messed up the flap, but it did not stop me from dressing my sweet baby in this tunic often.

The above photos were taken at Ocean Grove during a quick family trip. It was not an intended photo shoot. It was just a perfect day with my little family. I find myself smiling looking at my little girl in these photos so I thought I would share them with you. 

Back to the dress though. After the first test we knew that the bodice did not require any adjustments, however the skirt needed some work. Marte suggested to lengthen the skirt pattern pieces by 5 cm. That is exactly what I did for the second test dress. The length was perfect for my sweet little girl.

I used generic knit fabric I had left after this project. I am constantly amazed at how fabric choices can change the look and feel of a garment.

After taking these photos I realised that babies are not easy to photograph! While my big girlie is not the most willing model, I can negotiate with her. How do I negotiate with a baby? I tried my best to take a few photos that would allow you to see how the dress fit my baby, but her legs did not stop running, so the skirt kept on moving up. I have not been successful capturing her smile either. Baby L is a really happy and chatty girl, but as soon as I point a camera at her she puts on a serious face!

It is hard to see in these photos, but I nailed the flap this time! It kinks up because I pressed the seam towards the skirt instead of the bodice. Oops! Let's pretend I did this on purpose so you could see the pleat ;)

I absolutely love this pattern. Lila dress and jumpsuit pattern has a few views that makes it very versatile. How versatile? Well, how many garments can one make having two bodice and three skirt options, a standing collar piece, an option to make a jumpsuit or a fully reversible dress? Add to it pieces for a flap, pockets and a bow and keep in mind that some views can be sewn with woven fabric. Possibilities are amazing. During further testing a few ladies made jumpsuits for boys using this pattern, and they looked super cool!

I will definitely be sewing a new Lila dress for my baby girl soon. If you want to make Lila dress or jumpsuit you have an opportunity to purchase the pattern at a discounted price. Simply use the code LILA 10 at checkout to receive a 10% discount. The code is valid until 11:59 pm (CET +1 timezone) on the 10th of January 2016. Every day Marte and Sylvia will run give-aways on their blogs.

I have recently signed up to Marte's affiliate program. This means that I will get a small commission if you choose to purchase a pattern through a link on my blog. I feel I need to mention this and stress that I genuinely admire Marte's work.


  1. She looks so cute in that dress!

  2. OMG your daughter is so cute ... those eyes, that smile ... she is a beauty, oh and your liladress also :-) x

  3. I love your baby pictures a lot! She's so cute!!! Thanks Jenya for helping us with this pattern test and for your humour! If you ever feel like following a Dutch course, let me know! ;)

  4. Oh Jenya, what a perfect dress you've made! It's so pretty and makes me wish I had a little one to sew for. That said, I have to admit I am having a hard time focusing on it because of your cute little baby!!! <3

  5. I may have missed it, but . . . how large do the sizes go?

  6. Ooh your baby is soooo cute !!! Totally in love xxx Sarah

  7. She is just too cute!! Very sweet tunic/dresses you've sewn up!

  8. Darling baby & new clothes. xoxo Grandma


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