Friday, 23 November 2012

Did I mention that we have reached 3,000 dresses!

More lovely dresses have been arriving all week taking our total to well over 3,000 dresses! Amazing.Thank you to everyone who has made a dress or pair of shorts. Hundreds of dresses and shorts have gone off to new homes this month so I thought I would do a little recap to update everyone.

250 dresses were collected by a friend to be shared between projects in Zimbabwe, Pakistan and the Middle East.

36 dresses were taken to a project in Uganda

Gill from Omushana collected another 178 dresses to ship to Uganda. She updated me this week to say that 132 of the dresses will be on a shipment that leaves in December. 70 will be donated to a group called Forest Friends that supports needy children and 62 will be donated to the Hope for Orphans Group that received dresses earlier in the year. Gill will be taking the remaining dresses when she visits other projects in February.

Gill took some dresses earlier in the year that had been made by the lovely staff and customers at Space to Sew in Shrewsbury. Space to Sew have been amazing in their support of 'Dress A Girl' running workshops and teaching people how to make the dresses. They have sent lots of dresses direct to projects abroad including Uganda & Zambia. They even got a local radio presenter making a dress live on air! A huge thanks to Domini and her team. You can read their lovely blog here These are some of the photos from Gills first trip with dresses from Space to Sew. Gorgeous!

50 dresses are being distributed in Haiti in the next few weeks

150 dresses and 76 pairs of shorts are being taken to India next week to be distributed with the help of this charity

and Maria from Cordial & Grace who hosted the fabulous charity sewing day in Bristol last week has already sent off 20 dresses to Cameroon via Ape Action Africa and 10 dresses to Kenya.

I was also contacted recently by somebody who services old vintage sewing machines who wanted to donate some to projects abroad. I have put them in touch with several of the charities I have worked with previously and hopefully we might even get some vintage sewing machines out to some of these projects too!

Hopefully we should gets lots of photos back soon!!.

Dresses and shorts have arrived from Pam (6 dresses), Claire and her colleagues from Gillingham School in Dorset (22 dresses), Jill (30 dresses & 15 shorts taking her total to a fabulous 345 dresses and shorts!!), Sara (3 pairs of shorts), 25 dresses from the Cordial & Grace Sewing Day, Jackie (4 dresses), John & Sue Sprittles (4 dresses), Dorothy (10 dresses), Sue (2 dresses) Jane (4 dresses) and Guarlford WI (28 dresses). Thanks everyone. They are all gorgeous!

I have a dilemma!  The thing I love about the 'Dress A Girl' charity and why I originally got involved is that it doesn't involve money. People can do something practical to help without having to give financially. People have been very kind in sending dresses to me and I can get dresses taken to projects abroad free of charge. The only problem I am having now that the charity is so successful is the cost of transporting the dresses around the UK to the people who take them abroad. A lot of people drive to collect the dresses from me (sometimes driving for several hours to get here!) and I always try to find a way of transporting them without incurring postage costs but sometimes there is just no other option than posting. I have received some small donations previously and some charities have been able to contribute towards the cost of postage which has really helped. But as more and more dresses arrive, I need to think seriously about how this is going to work in the future.  So does anyone have any great ideas? Any links to lovely courier companies who might want to help us out? Its not a lot of parcels - a couple a month but they are often heavy!! I really don't want to
fundraise or collect money from people if at all possible. Would love your thoughts.


  1. Oh, wow - that's terrific - 3,000 dresses!

    The organisation Loving Hands are given a discount on courier charges through - perhaps it would be worth trying that company?

    1. Brilliant! Thank you for letting me know. Would def be worth a try! x

  2. Hi there, just found your blog and am now a follower! I shall definately start and sew some dresses. Can you show where I can download the shorts?
    Thank you for sharing this.

    1. Hello! Thanks. Thats brilliant. Have a look here for links to shorts patterns and tutorials.

  3. Louise, that is amazing. You should be so proud of yourself, as should everyone who has made dresses, hosted sewing days, taken the dresses out to where to they are needed. You are doing such a great thing. xx

  4. Such a wonderful organization! I made two yeterday and shall be soon posting them off to you.

    Brilliant idea.

  5. Hi Louise,

    The wonderful dresses and shorts have made it to India!! I am overwhelmed by the beauty of the dresses and the love with which all the items have been made. Please send my thanks to all the makers. I feel honoured to be able to distribute clothes to so many of the lovely children I have met over the past year working with the charity RIDE.

    With regard to postage, you could consider adding a fundraising icon to your site (see for an example). I have tried a few, and transfer 100% of the donations to you without taking any profit. You do not have to 'fundraise' as such, but i'm sure there are people who would donate a small amount if there were an easy way to do this, which would soon add up. When I saw the size of the cases I did think postage - ouch!

    I will send photos in due course.

    with love,

    1. Thanks Emma. Thats a great idea. Will investigate!

  6. Hi,
    Will you please post a link to your Blog at The Sewing Community? Our members will love it.
    Members include: Needleworkers, Clothes and Dress Makers, Enthusiasts, Experts, Groups, Clubs, etc.
    It's easy to do, just cut and paste the link and it automatically links back to your website. You can also add Photos, Videos and Classifieds if you like.
    Email me if you need any help or would like me to do it for you.
    Please feel free to share as often and as much as you like.
    The Sewing Community:
    I hope you consider sharing with us.
    Thank you,
    James Kaufman, Editor

  7. Perhaps sending a press release to, or contacting some local, and national newspapers in person about the landmark and mentioning about the transportation cost in that. The exposure may reach some useful ears?

    Congrats on the 3000 mark - incredible!

  8. How wonderful you and this idea is, so glad i found you, will gather some friends and get going!
    Until later then
    Daisy J


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