I originally purchased this polyester crepe georgette with the intention of making a blouse. The fabric was wider than I thought and I realized I had enough fabric to make a dress. While looking through magazines for inspiration I came across a few dresses with bow ties. I had not made a dress with a bow tie for myself since the 80’s. I was due for one.
The pattern has you press the skirt pleats but I chose to leave them “open”. Besides being difficult to get a “hard press” in polyester georgette, I thought that leaving the pleats unpressed would add to the fluidity of the skirt.
The back has soft gathers creating a blouson effect at the waist. The front has princess seams which line up with the pleats in the skirt. I think it all comes together to create a very flattering look. I like that the dress has a side zipper so as to not “break up” the back. I need to remember this when I’m making dresses with a zipper in the back where I would prefer a smoother look. It’s easy to move the zipper to the side if I plan for it during the cutting phase. So often I’m blindly following directions and not thinking ahead.
This style of dress is classic and a great addition to my wardrobe.
Back to Top
It’s starting to feel like fall here on the Central Coast of California. It is still warm during the day but nights are cooling down. I have not switched over to sewing “warm” clothes because I still want some new work clothes for this time of the year.
I’ve had Butterick 5672 in my pattern stash for a few years. I would take it out every once in a while and try to find fabric that would inspire me to sew it up. I purchased this rayon-Lycra at Tissus mode de l’Orme in Granby, QC last Spring. While planning my fall wardrobe I was finally inspired to make this dress when I came across this fabric. It was originally going to be a top but I’m glad I decided on a dress.
The dress is lined which I like to do even when a pattern doesn’t call for it. It was a bonus that this pattern included the pattern pieces for the lining. I used swimsuit lining to line the dress.
I omitted the side zipper. My fabric had enough stretch to slip on and off without the zipper. I also added 1″ to the length.
I think that the pleats create a flattering drape and add some interest to this simple design. I’m glad I finally made this pattern.
Back to Top
When I wrote about my last Renfrew top on my blog in November 2015, I mentioned it would not be my last. This pattern is so versatile you can’t help but revisit it every once in a while. I had a vision for this poly-lycra knit and the Sewaholic Renfrew pattern helped me achieve it.
The pattern offers three different necklines as well as three possible sleeve lengths, making it a versatile pattern to have in your stash.
I added tabs and buttons at the shoulders to create epaulettes.
I also added 2.5″ to the length to compensate for omitting the bottom band.
I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, this will not be my last Renfrew. There’s a reason there are over 200 reviews on PatternReview.com for this pattern; it’s a GREAT pattern!
Back to Top
It was 93 degrees at our house today. Summer is still around and I’m still sewing summer clothes. I’ve started thinking of fall but with this weather it’s not easy. Besides, I have a few fabrics that I don’t want to see in my stash next year. They’ve been hanging around long enough and need to get sewn up.
It’s no secret that I love a good border print. I had to have this ITY knit as soon as I saw it online at Fabric Mart. The dress was simple to sew and came together without any issues.
I like the front drape and figured it would be perfect for the darker part of the black/white print. The pattern has a front overlay which I chose to omit. I also left out the back zipper as my fabric has plenty of stretch and goes over my head comfortably. I lengthened the dress by 1.25″. I’m 5’7″ and found the original length a little short to wear for work. The back darts give it some nice shaping.
My only dislike with this pattern is that the armscye is too low. I was so anxious to cut up this print that I never thought of checking before cutting out the pattern. You can see in the picture below that it could easily be raised by 1″.
In conclusion, this is a great little summer dress but beware of the low armscye if you plan on sewing this pattern.
Back to Top
Do you ever put on a dress you made a few years ago and think “Wow, I really like this dress, I should make another one”? That’s exactly what I thought a few weeks ago when I wore the dress pictured below that I made in 2011. It was time to dig out the pattern and make another one. After all, isn’t that one of the benefits of sewing your own clothes?!!!
Vogue 1027 is out of print but it received a lot of attention when it was readily available. It was even named one of the Best of Patterns of 2008 on Pattern Review.com
The pattern is fairly simple to make. I added 1″ to the bodice. I’m 5’7″ and I often have to do this with dresses. The pattern calls for a narrow hem on the ties. The wrong side of my fabric would have shown if I simply hemmed the ties. I chose to cut out the ties as directed but folded them in half and with the wrong sides facing each other stitched to the markings on the pattern. Next, I proceeded to attach the ties as directed. The pattern also calls for cutting the skirt on the bias, which I did not do. I found this an odd thing to do for knits. I folded the pattern piece for the skirt (front & back) in half and placed the folded edge of the pattern on the fold of the fabric. Another step I changed was omitting the elastic at the waist. Both dresses stay in place very well and are comfortable to wear without the elastic.
I had this cotton Lycra jersey in my stash. I bought it last summer at Tissus Mode De L’Orme in Granby, Qc. It is lightweight and has great recovery.
I’m so glad I revisited this pattern. It probably won’t be the last time.
Back to Top
I think McCall’s 6886 is one of the most versatile knit dress patterns to come along in a while. I find myself coming back to it when I want a great-fitting simple knit dress. For this version I lengthened the pattern to create a maxi dress.
I made this dress a couple of months ago but finally got around to taking pictures. The fabric was purchased last summer at my favorite fabric store: Tissus Mode De L’Orme in Granby, QC. I just returned from another trip to the area where I visited family and friends and stocked up on fabric.
I added a contrast binding at the neck. The pattern has you turn in the neck edge with a 5/8″ narrow hem. I usually add a binding sewn to the inside but this time I decided to have it show as a contrast.
There’s not a lot to say about this dress. I had a vision of what I wanted when I bought the fabric and McCall’s 6886 came through for me again.
Back to Top
I had a very limited amount of this red/black double knit border print I purchased last summer at Tissus mode de l’Orme in Granby, QC. I wanted to use the border at the bottom of the dress as well as at the waist. I turned to Jalie 3024, a simple dress that can be sewn mostly with a serger. I made this pattern five years ago for a trip to Italy and have been meaning to sew more dresses from this pattern. With this border print I felt I had the perfect fabric to pair with this simple style.
The pattern offers a choice of necklines. The cross-over “V” can either go in the front or the back (or the front AND back). For this dress I sewed view A without the flounce at the bottom. I added a 1/2″ to the length of the bodice. The neck binding is sewn on the inside for this view.
This was such a satisfying project that I decided to keep going. This time I used a cotton/lycra jersey also purchased at Tissus mode de l’Orme.
Instead of sewing the inset as a separate piece, I taped the pattern piece to the top of the skirt to create a single piece. Once again I added a 1/2″ to the bottom of the bodice.
I chose to sew the top with the extended sleeves (View A) but use the cross-over ”V’ for the back (View B & C). To accomplish this I placed the sleeveless pattern piece (bodice for B & C) over the pattern piece with the sleeve (View A). You have to adjust the back shoulder seams to match the front (or vice-versa if you are putting the cross-over “V” in the front) but it is very simple to do by matching the center fronts/backs.
For this version I sewed the binding on the outside.
Here is a picture taken in Venice five years ago. For this dress I put the cross-over “V” in the front.
Back to Top