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I Had a Favorite Dress
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I Had a Favorite Dress

4.07 of 5 stars 4.07  ·  rating details  ·  423 ratings  ·  92 reviews
Open up a fresh and stylish story about growing up and keeping hold of your favorite memories. As the year passes, the narrator’s favorite dress goes through a series of creative changes, from dress to shirt to tank top to scarf and so on, until all that’s left of it is a good memory. Assisted by her patient and crafty mama, the narrator finds that when disaster strikes he ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published August 1st 2011 by Harry N. Abrams
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Mary Ann
I loved reading this with my 7 year old. Her comment: "It's really creative!" She was full of smiles as she realized the pattern in the story and started predicting what the little girl would make next out of her favorite dress. And then toward the end, she loved how she couldn't quite predict what she'd make next. After we read it, she wanted to go back and count all the things the little girl made out of her original dress. I also think my daughter could relate to the little girl feeling sad a ...more
Love it! This fun and funky story of a beloved dress outgrown and turned into other bits of girly clothing (including a "tassely scarf") drew my attention because of the breezy illustrations of Julia Denos (Just Being Audrey), but the text is winning as well -- poetic and rhythmic without full-on rhyming. I also appreciate the multicultural characters and the fact that Mom and Grandma are stable and resourceful. A wonderfully updated twist on the Joseph Had a Little Overcoat concept.

Favorite quo
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
A girl loves her favorite dress, but it is now too small for her. Her clever mother shapes it into new things the girl can wear. As the girl grows, the dress is transformed into a shirt, then a tank top, then a scarf, then socks, until it finally becomes a beautiful hair bow.

A nice story about using creativity to solve a problem.

“I had a favorite dress that was my favoritest dress ever. I wore it every Tuesday because that was my favorite day of the week.

But one Tuesday, I put on my favorite dre
The narrator in this picture book has a dress that she simply loves to wear, but when it becomes too small for her, her mother fashions it into a ruffly new shirt, then a tank top, a skirt, a scarf, socks, and a hair bow. At first I expected her mother to buy her something new, but I was delighted that mother and daughter found a way to turn something old into something new. I also liked how the daughter cleverly creates something from the remains of the chewed up ribbon in the end. I loved the ...more
Aug 04, 2013 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a wonderful tale that documents just how fast our little ones are growing up. Literally.

I can't tell you how many times I've said to my youngest that her pants are now too short for her. Her normal reply is that she doesn't care, but I end up sneaking them into the donation pile as soon as they are washed. Otherwise, she'll just keep wearing them and say that they are 'capris.'

So this was perfect timing for us, seeing how growing out of clothes is normal and that you can repurpose them
4 Kids Books
What do you do when you outgrow your favorite dress? Turn it into something else, of course! As our main character outgrows or tears her favorite outfit, or just needs something new, her mother does a little “Snip, snip! Sew, sew!” and changes it into just what she needs!

This charming picture book will appeal to fashionistas everywhere, but it’s about more than just pretty clothes—it’s about innovation! What really makes the book, though, is Julia Denos’ illustrations. Her unique style with colo
Lovely both inside and out. A young girl's favorite dress changes with the seasons and her own growing self to become a shirt, a tank, a skirt, a scarf and more. Boni Ashburn's story has a wonderful vibrancy to it, with the repeated refrain of "Snip, snip, sew, sew, new [insert clothing item here] hello!". I also loved the final outcome of the dress, which is sweet and simple. Julia Denos' illustrations are gorgeous and the coloring is divine. I wish I could live in this picture book. And I wish ...more
Lest anybody think I am All Boy All the Time, this great picture book about a style-conscious little girl and her crafty - in both senses of the word - mama almost made me wish I had little girl style crises in my own life. But alas. My boys will wear a pair of pants until it falls apart on them - not because they love those pants but because they have not actually noticed that their butts are visible through the holes in the seat.

Full review at Pink Me:
La Coccinelle
This is another library book that I poached from my mom's stack (the last one being Journey , which was absolutely wonderful). My mom must have great taste in children's picture books, because this one was wonderful, too.

The message about not making mountains out of molehills and learning to adapt and let go when it comes to change is a good one, and it's nice to see it in a picture book for young children. Unlike Maybe: A Little Zen for Little Ones , which I reviewed recently, the message in I
Quite similar to Joseph Had a Little Overcoat, except instead of an older Jewish man doing the repurposing, it's a chic African American pre-tween and her mother who keep getting the most out of a favorite dress. Might be fun to read the two books together.
When a young girl's dress gets too short, voila!, it is made into a shirt. And when that shirt's sleeves get too short, voila!, a tank top ... and so the story goes until nothing remains of the dress. A excellent story showing how one things can be used many times and you shouldn't freak out about things, but figure out a solution.
Cathy Blackler
I love books that have a sewing component, recalling all the times my Mom sewed things for my sister and me.This charming story is a great testament to problem-solving. What happens when your favorite dress gets too short? Creativity and a willingness to make the best of a situation will resonate with readers.
"Just enough to make a story" with a fashionable twist. Stylish and fine.
adorable! Love the illustrations! I want her wardrobe :)
I read a similar Jewish story about a boy wearing a blue coat which ended up being a button, then a story. Anyways, it was fun reading this in a different situation which was a dress. I am a girl, so I can understand the sadness when I have to throw away my favorite dress(for my case, maybe... a t-shirt). Julia Denos is my favorite illustrator. She uses many materials in variety of methods and her illustrations are wonderful.
The genre of this book is a picture book. The age group of this book is 4-7. This book is about s girl who had a favorite dress and she wore it everyday of the week. The plot of this story was about a girl who had a favorite dress she liked to wear everyday of the week. But her dress did not last so her mom would think of creative ways to change the dress around so she can still wear it throughtout the week. Her mother mad a skirt, two shirts, socks, scarf, and a bow out of her favorite dress. T ...more
Feb 06, 2014 ↜ƈɦǟռ☂ɛℓℓɛ↝ rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Yes
Shelves: y-childrens
I Had a Favorite Dress by Boni Ashburn

A cute story about a girl that wants to hold on to her favorite dress. It is like her security blanket, it makes her feel happy and safe. But as she grows and it becomes worn out, creative measures have to be taken to keep it useable.

My daughter loves this book. She repeatedly checks it out of the library.
I gave this book to my friend who has a baby daughter and a fashionista/crafty wife. I was pleased to see an image of a little girl of color and her mom and it was really cute to see how a little girl's favorite dress could evolve and change as she grows.

Amanda Snow
Review originally posted at

A little girl with a favorite dress discovers what can be made of clothes when we outgrow them. No need to get rid of her favorite dress, she can make it into a t-shirt! And then a tank top, a skirt, etc. If you have a budding fashionista in your house, this is definitely a book to check out!

The illustration are unique, with the artist using a collage-type medium with pencils, paints, and 3D elements and a fun to just look at...I discovered n
This was a cute book! I loved the idea of recycling/upcycling that was carried throughout. The pictures by Ms.Denos are beautiful and carry the words wonderfully.
A very cute book about making the best of things as well as the "use it up, wear it out" mentality. Perfect for any dress-loving girl!
It's hard to let go of our favorite things. Here, the daughter gets something new from what she's outgrown.
Such a cute book about re-using and recycling!
Wish my mum had been like this with all my clothing!
Too similar to Joseph Had a Little Overcoat but not as quirky.
Sandy Brehl
This is a modern day twist on the traditional "Joseph Had a Little Overcoat" (Simms Taback) or is "Something From Nothing" (Phoebe Gilman). An exuberant young girl adores her frilly pink dress, but eventually outgrows it. In a repeating pattern her mother helps her salvage parts of the dress with a celebratory "snip-snip, sew-sew, new ______, hello!" to its new incarnation as a blouse, tank top, scarf, etc. The lively twist at the end of this version shows the creative girl using the final scrap ...more
Brittany Nethers
Adorable book about a girl being attached to an item she's outgrowing. I think we've all been there.
Such a sweet story of a girls metamorphosis into a young woman. One day a girl (the story is told through her perspective so she always says "I") realizes her most favorite dress has become too short. With the help of her mothers sewing skills the dress makes several changes of its own. From dress to shirt, to tank top, then several more before ending up a hair accessory. I loved the way that her outfit was repurposed again and again. Her mother teaching her creativity, resourcefulness and thrif ...more
Dec 17, 2013 June rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: librarians, parents, teachers & the Fancy Nancy fans
A "Joseph Had a Little Overcoat" story for the ballerina girls featuring a Mama trying to convince her daughter to "make molehills out of mountains;" not the other way around. 9/24/11

I had an older girl for PJ Story Time and this was the perfect story. Her father brought up Joseph Had a Little Overcoat, which she didn't remember so we read that too.
This fun and funky story of a beloved dress outgrown and turned into other bits of girly clothing (including a "tassely scarf") drew my attention because of the breezy illustrations of Julia Denos (Just Being Audrey), but the text is winning as well -- poetic and rhythmic without full-on rhyming. - Becky, Teen Librarian

Reserve a library copy!
We love that this book recommends reuse and repurposing instead of just buying more. And it also promotes staying calm when something we love is somehow unusable for us.
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Boni Ashburn is a children's book author who spends more time reading and writing children's books every day than she does breathing. She is the author of Hush, Little Dragon, Over At The Castle and I Had A Favorite Dress, as well as several other forthcoming books. Boni lives in the Upper Peninsula Of Michigan with her four children and too many bookshelves to count.

*Please note: I give 5 stars t
More about Boni Ashburn...
Hush, Little Dragon Over at the Castle The Fort That Jack Built Builder Goose: It's Construction Rhyme Time! I Had a Favorite Hat

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