The Sugar City Journal’s Village Frock Pattern has caused quite a sensation on the world wide web since it was released in Feb 2008, and it sold like hot cakes and has gone out of print, the pattern designers have no plans to reprint it for sale. You can see how popular it is by the number of dresses people around the world has made in this Flickr Group. Many seamstresses like me have searched far and wide for it, but so far I have no luck in obtaining a copy, so I decided to try to ‘wing’ it in making one myself without the original pattern, so I present to you ‘My Village Frock Wannabe’!
I have studied the pictures online and decided that this pattern is actually an extension or has its origins from a peasant dress. Since I am really no experienced pattern drafter (from scratch, that is!), I had to start somewhere and used this peasant dress pattern from this Japanese book and modified the neckline and sleeves.
The Mizoal and Kleinerkarl’s Village Frock sewalong/tutorial helped a lot in figuring out on how to modify this peasant dress pattern to make this frock wannabe. Also, there is actually a free pattern offered by Simply Together: Simply Sweet Frock which is akin to the original Village Frock with some modifications, with no button loops and narrower sleeves without the gathers, this blog gave me some pointers too on modifying my peasant dress pattern. To use this free pattern seems like the easy way out but I think the main highlight of the frock are the gathered neckline and sleeves so I can’t simply do without it.
I made this in 2T size so this is already a very roomy dress to begin with so it is currently HUGE on my little 1 year 7 month old:-
Since my fabric choice are of Christmasy colours I think she will fit just well into it for Christmas this year :)
If I were to remake this I would make it a little more A-lined, place the buttons closer to the edge as I feel the button loops show too much in my wannabe frock, and shorten the top portion of the sleeve but lengthen the bottom gathered portion. But I think it’s not too bad for a first try! I am quite satisfied with how the neckline and sleeves turned out.
This is my first time making my own bias tape for the trim around the neckline and sleeves, really, handmade bias tape are so much nicer and cuter on garments.
If you are reading and do have the original pattern please leave me a message if you can help to send me a trace of the pattern (for trade of patterns or I can reimburse your snail mail costs), I would really really appreciate it!
Since I can’t bring her out yesterday in ‘this tent’ I quickly changed her into the 1T sized ‘Almost a Smocked Dress’ that I made a while ago.
Updated on 10 April 2011: This frock was featured on Grosgrain Fabulous’ Flickr Favs! That made my day ;)