(BTW, my daughter's name is pronounced "Rill", like Bill, Phil, or Jill, not "Ryle". It came from our Australian friends. It is also a town in Wales.)
While packing up our clothes to move to our new house, my husband Nick and I had the normal three boxes: winter clothes and things we can't wear at the moment but want to keep, clothes we're packing up to put directly into the closet when we get to the house, and the goodwill box. I'm all for purging and making a new beginning with our new place, but when he put this organge button-down shirt into the box, my eyes must have really sparkled! I thought about it for a few days, then ran up this little number for Rhyl on my sewing machine.
I didn't have a pattern, but I eyeballed a top that fits her pretty well and made it about the same size. Then I embroidered a butterfly (I got the idea for the outline of the butterfly off our toilet paper--lol) in red, orange, and yellow floss on the front to make it a little more feminine. Three buttons close the back, which came off the shirt.
For not having a pattern, this dress was incredibly easy. I made the top like any basic dress or shirt top (made out of the top and sleeves of Nick's shirt--had to have two layers b/c it's lined). Then I took the hem off the bottom of the shirt for the waistband. I gathered and attached a rectangle of fabric (the bottom half of the front and back of the shirt) for the skirt to the waistband and then stitched that to the top. It's loose enough to give her some room to move in, but doesn't look sloppy. She needed some more every-day clothes to run around in and get dirty, and this is perfect b/c it's an old shirt, and free! And a little sentimental b/c it's one of Daddy's old favorites. I'm happy with it!
Cost: Free! or one old shirt