Caroline Party Dress

I made this Caroline Party Dress (pattern from Mouse House Creation *affiliate link) for A’s 4K graduation.


It has some kind of a long story behind… so this post is comparably long and includes too many pictures. Just a friendly reminder 🙂

Some of you might know, I’ve been having a health issue since Feb (you can read more about it here) . I had two seizures when I was sleeping during the night and got sick all of sudden on Feb 20th. Our family’s life had changed so much since then.

After hospitalization and diagnosis as AVM, my health condition got better in a few weeks. But the biggest problem was that we were told I couldn’t drive a car for a half year by my doctor because I had seizures.

Life without a car in Alabama means nothing to do and nowhere to go (mostly). My kids can’t go to their preschool unless I drive them there. My kids can’t go to their gymnastic or ballet unless I drive them there. I can’t do my groceries unless I can drive a car.

We had to change their preschool. Luckily, one of our neighbor was a preschool teacher and we could ask her to give them rides to school and to home. We had to change A’s gymnastic and ballet class too. One of mom whose daughter was in same class gave A ride but she needed to change the date and class.

A was to perform at the yearly recital of that ballet studio and already had gotten her costume then. It was beautiful and she loved it.



Isn’t it beautiful?

Then, because we changed her class, she needed to wear another costume, because every class would do different performances in different costumes. And luckily again, I could get new costume from one mom whose daughter just had dropped off from that class. We were lucky but A preferred old costume and so did I.

Every change was stressful for my girls. I didn’t want to change their lives because of my sickness. It couldn’t help but I wanted it to be as less as possible.

I felt sorry about that old costume which wouldn’t be worn by anyone. I felt sorry for A she couldn’t wear that costume because she had to change her ballet class. And they were all because of me, my sickness.

I decided to make a dress for A using the fabric from that costume. And that dress would be worn at her 4K graduation.


The purple fabric I used for the collar came from the waist sash of the costume.


This sparkly gold tulle came from the costume too.


And this bow on the back too.

When I put this dress on A for trying, she twirled, twirled and twirled. I was as happy as she was to see her in this dress.

She was just adorable at her 4K graduation and I felt proud of her and her dress.


She graduated her preschool which she started going just after we came to the US, just before she turned two.


We’ve met some amazing people there.


Congratulation, A.

I hope she remember this day and this dress.


Happy Sewing!




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12 thoughts on “Caroline Party Dress

  1. absolutely STUNNING and I hope you get well soon (or at least get some answers) You are incredible.

  2. marisa says:

    What a lovely thing to do for your daughter – she looks so beautiful in her new dress. Although your illness and all the changes have been hard for your girls (not to mention for you) I’m sure things will improve once you’re back in Japan and they will make new friends and settle into a new routine.

    • Shino says:

      Thank you, marisa. There have been so many farewells and last-time-meetings and I’ve been kind of sentimental 🙂 I’m sure the life in Japan will be as awesome as here!

  3. Lovely dress. And I’m sorry to hear about your health issues. It’s never easy to deal with that along with mothering little kids. You’re doing a great job balancing it all though! And that little purple satin collar on the dress is just perfection.

    • Shino says:

      Thank you, Jill. I think that purple collar was perfect too 🙂 That perfectly matches with colors blended in the main fabric.

  4. Sasha says:

    Simply adorable!!! This little story is so moving… You are a very talented seamstress and an amazing mother and I hope they’ll be able to fix that nasty AVM.

  5. Froo & Boo says:

    Wow, that dress is an amazing testament of how you have so much strength and beauty as a mom. The dress is stunning. Pre-school graduation is a huge milestone–it’s so sweet to celebrate with a special handmade dress with so much meaning. Wishing you good health!!

    • Shino says:

      Thank you so much! I really loved this dress and these photos of A. This post still makes me crying. lol. Now i’m (almost) setteled safely here in Japan and enjoying humidity 😉

  6. […] Caroline Party Dress was made using her fabric for the main fabric. I bought this fabric when I was in the US on Internet […]

  7. Jenya says:

    Shino, what a beautiful story behind a stunning dress. I knew you had to change things after your diagnosis, I just did not realise how much! You are a very strong woman and a caring mum. Glad to hear you have people around who can help 🙂

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