And the “2016 Dress of the Year” goes to….

Thanks everyone, for all your voting this week…it was fun for me to see your many thoughts about the dresses I’ve made this past year and I hope you enjoyed seeing them all again too. It was a tough decision for some of you and I know several of you were torn between 2 dresses, but like in any contest, there can only be one FIRST place winner and that happened to be Lian, in Details Matter this time. She was such a cutie in this dress and it just so happens that this dress “cost” the winner the most of any dress I sold this year too. Maybe that’s why it won!

So just to make this a special post, all about Lian and that special dress, I’ll just show some of my favorite pictures again of it. Sorry, if you’re not into the Dianna Effner, 13″ Little Darlings, wait till tomorrow, and maybe my post will be something you like.

Here’s a look at Lian’s dress before it was constructed… I used my Amanda Jane Pleater to gather up the threads before anything begins on it. I was right in the middle of my Annual Married Couple’s Valentine Party for church when I was working on Lian’s dress. I think it took me about 2-3 weeks to complete it. I guess all good things come to those who wait.







…and here’s the silk ribbons I was considering for my flowers…


…a little of the silk ribbon flowers started…


…and this is how it turned out…

This is Lian’s Bonnet when we were trying it on and trying to get the pictures right…






…all that cuteness is why it became the 2016 Dress of the Year, I guess!

See you tomorrow,
Blessings, Jeanne

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  1. Linda Doyle says:

    Hooray! I absolutely loved that dress, and all that work justifies why it won. I did also love Christmas Rose, but this one just stole my heart, and I guess others felt the same way. This is a dress that I would NEVER attempt to try to make, which is one big reason I voted for it. Wonderful job, Jeanne!

    • Thank you Linda,
      I guess I’ll just have to make more smocked dresses this coming year… that will make it even “tougher” for voting next time… :o) I’m glad you liked this one Linda, even though you don’t have a Little Darling. If I had had my Betsy when I made this, I could have tried it on her and “tempted” you! (said Evil Jeanne…)
      Thanks Linda,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  2. Shara Smith says:

    Wonderful, Jeanne.! Your silk embroidery is stunning:) i can see why it was the winner!


    • Thank you Shara,
      I wish I could smock more often… I guess Lian’s was the only smocked dress I made this year… unless I have forgotten one…
      Thanks for your sweet compliments on it.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  3. Lian has never looked more lovely. Congratulations to her and all of the other lovely finalists.
    My list for this year includes trying out the smock/gathering machine I was able to purchase some months back. Somehow, this new knitting thing has come first though. Now if I can only get beyond row three!

    • HI Joy,
      Thank you for your sweet words on Lian’s dress and all the others. I appreciate that.
      You’ve got me to thinking about what I want to “learn” this year… hmmm….
      I hope the knitting comes along quickly… and you make it to row 4 soon…
      Blessings, Jeanne

  4. I’m glad Details Matter won the contest, but I really like Christmas Rose too. Since Joy is “fessing up, I’m in the same boat, having bought a Pullen Pleater on eBay when Lian’s dress was being made but not having used it yet, just seeing if it really worked. I had a little trouble finding the silk ribbon but is having a sale and the quantities are small enough, so I may have a go at it. I’d like to make a full slip too. The contest was fun, Jeanne.

    • Thanks Susette,
      I knew it would be hard to choose when I saw the top finalists… I put my vote in before I even started the contest and I guess maybe I had some insider insight, because Details Matter was my choice long ago. I guess making it and photographing it and seeing it on Lian and then getting that bonnet just right, made up my mind for me. I just LOVED that dress and it was hard to let go. I hope the winner loves it as much as I did. It was truly a work of heART.
      I hope you get the smocking mastered this year… you’ll love doing it when you do!
      Thanks Susette,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  5. I too love the dress on Lian. The pictures of her being fitted look so cute, especially the one with her arms up in the air. She looks like a real little girl.
    I’ve always like Lian. It looks like it will be years before I can even get on the list at Little Darlings.
    After days and days on the road, we’ve arrived at our destination and maybe now I can get back to keeping up and reading your posts.
    How spectacular it was to see all of this year’s dresses. They are all unique. Thank you!

    • Thanks Paula,
      I’m so glad you made it safely to ___. Enjoy your time there.
      I wish the wait list for the little Darlings wasn’t so long so everyone who wanted one could get one.
      Thanks for your compliments on Lian’s dress. I’m glad you liked it.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  6. Lian’s dress was truly lovely and I did love the smocked bodice. I really like the LD dolls and would definitely be into them if someone would give me one and a wardrobe for her, there cost is WAY above what I could spend on a doll. For you, they’re easily justifiable because with a few dresses at best you can recoup the cost of the doll. Therefore, I always tend to gravitate toward what you make for the AG because I can relate to them better.
    Just curious, did you ever make a smocked dress for a PC/AG doll? I have a couple of Polly Flinders smocked dress that both I and my daughter wore and now are carefully stored away.
    Well, Felicity’s return is about a month away. Did to see the discussion on PT about the new boxes/ clothing packaging. I’m kind of wondering how that will look if Felicity’s items come packed that way. I know the boxes with the tissue paper really seemed special, like a present would be. I’m glad a number of my sets are stored in the original boxes with tissue and the Pleasant Company cardboard bands around them.

    • Thank you Laura, for your kind compliments on Lian’s dress set. It truly was a joy to make and she definitely was the perfect model for it.

      I think I can only remember one smocked dress for the AG dolls and it was for Molly. Guess I’ll gave to work on that this year.

      I haven’t seen the way the new packaging is going to be. From what I saw of the new Felicity doll… I think AG had better work on the doll’s looks instead of worrying about her clothing and the way it’s presented. I was NOT impressed at all. But that’s just me…
      Thanks Laura,
      Blessings, Jeanne

  7. Linda Doyle says:

    Laura, I loved those Polly Flinders dresses too, and my daughter, who is about your age, had one for her first Christmas! It was a darling red dress, with long, puffed sleeves, with a little white cuff and collar, and then the smocking in front. I loaned it to my sister for my niece and never got it back, but I just loved that dress!
    Yes, Jeanne, you need to make more smocked dresses for AG and everyone else!!

    • Hi Linda,
      I remember seeing Polly Flinders at Thrift shops and always knew they were special dresses.
      I WILL make it a goal to do some smocking for the AG dolls this yesr.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  8. That dress and Lian are really amazing. If it weren’t for those super pretty dresses I voted for, this would have been the one…you worked so hard on it Jeanne, and it turned out so very beautifully. I’m so glad it won. Lian was a great model for this lovely confection.


    • Thank you Becky,
      I so appreciate your kind words about the dress. It really was a fun one to make and I’m so glad it was voted as dress of the year for 2016.
      Thanks for all your sweet comments last yesr, Becky. I’m glad to have you as one of my daily readers.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  9. Anne Johnson says:

    Congratulations to Lian for winning the hearts (and votes) of so many! She is a true little darling in your lovely “Details Matter” creation. And congratulations to you, too, Jeanne, for all the heARTfelt work you put into this dress. The smocking is beautiful, and your ribbon and pearl embroidery is exquisite. Polly Flinders doesn’t have anything on you! It was so much fun to see all your charming dresses again and weigh in with our favorites. Thanks for giving us such an enjoyable and entertaining way to end the year. (I hope Lian doesn’t mind sharing her accolades with you). Here’s to a new year of darling dolly designs — I wish you many happy hours in your sewing studio!

  10. Thank you Anne,
    I appreciate alL your kind words about Lian’s dress set and am so glad you en j oyed viewing all of last year’s dresses. I hope I can make some this year that are just as pretty.
    I totally hope you are right about being able to spend more sewing tome in my sewing studio this year. I’ve got to get my room straightened up and take pictures of it for a final reveal…that I never have shown yet.
    Thanks so much Anne,
    Blessings, Jeanne

  11. Yay for Lian and Details Matter! And for Jeanne for creating something so lovely! That dress was just so sweet. Honestly, though, Jeanne… I think you could put Lian in a burlap sack dress and she would make it look adorable. Looking forward to what you will do in 2017.

    • Thank you Theresa,
      What nice things you said about my dear Lian. She is a little photo hog and whenever she gets the chance to model she gives it everything she’s got. I just love her.
      Thanks so much and I’m looking forward to seeing what I do this year too.
      Blessings, Jeanne

  12. Even though it wasn’t the dress I voted for, the fact that “Details Matter” sold for the most money probably confirms that it deserved to win. I’m sure Lian is bursting with pride!

  13. All the outfits deserve a prize. They are all different, and they are all yours. You should be proud of them — and of your talent. Three very different dresses every month, and endless mending, making, altering, helping others, working on sales — I think you can say 2016 was a year well spent.
    A friend wished me this: “a peaceful new year full of good health, strength and love.” I’m passing it on to you, your family, and your lovely faithful readers.

    • What Marilyn said is so true. All your outfits deserve a prize. Jeanne, you are blessed – you have a wonderful talent. I really enjoy your beautiful work and dolls and precious little Liam which I dream of having one like her some day. I really enjoy your blog everyday. BLESSINGS to your and your other readers for 2017. Your fan Ingrid.

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