Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Lisette Traveller Dress

I was being such a good girl, sewing only garments that I'd planned to sew, using fabrics purchased especially for that project...but this time I made something I hadn't planned to do for a while.

I recently purchased a second hand Modcloth shirtwaist dress from EBay ( breaking my 12 month clothes buying ban....whoops!) and loved the style. Whilst perusing my patterns and fabrics a couple of Saturdays ago as I always do when choosing my next project, I decided to have a go of this lovely pattern that I bought not long ago.

I bought this knowing I will never make views A or B...they just are not my style. It was View C that grabbed my attention. It has everything I want in a shirtwaist dress- cute puffy sleeves, gathered skirt, and not-too-difficult one piece collar.

I cut the bodice from some beautiful quilter's cotton and the skirt from some sage green polka dot cotton. This is the exact same fabric combo that I used for my Spring Dress last year...

Size wise, I cut the bodice as a size 8 and tapered to a 10 at the waist. I basted all the major seams to check the fit before sewing it properly. Thankfully it fit me pretty well- I didn't even have to touch the darts! 

This dress was an absolute joy to sew. I really took my time with it and it shows! I loved edge stitching the button packets and collar. Check out this gorgeous placket!

The skirt is different to any other gathered skirt I've made, with the gathers starting a few inches either side of the centre front. I really like the effect as it doesn't make my tummy look like it sticks out!

My favourite part is the sleeves of puffy adorableness. I will have to cut the sleeve band at least a size larger next time as they are really tight thanks to my workout regime. There's only about 1cm of ease in them. I left the sleeve seams unfinished in case I wanted to get rid of the sleeves, but after wearing the dress all day, I discovered it wasn't uncomfortable enough to get rid of these beauties. How flippin' cute are they?!

I'm very happy with the fit. I could probably increase the side seams a bit to get a neater fit, but I fear that may make it a bit too uncomfortable. 

The buttons are just cheapo ones from Spotlight but I love them.

All in all, I love this dress and I cannot wait to make another one!

Tuesday, September 2, 2014

New Look shift dress

Here is my latest labour of love. This was my first time making a shift dress. I thought it would be super easy to get the fit right, but on the other hand, I wasn't sure whether the shape would suit me.

I bought this gorgeous linen from Spotlight when they had their 40% off all fabric sale about a month ago. I knew I wanted to make this dress with it, so I bought the exact amount I needed for it. Another first! I'm not sure of the composition, but it's definitely a blend as it doesn't wrinkle like crazy.

I cut the top half on the smallest size, and the bottom half on the next size up. I know I say this every time, but I really need to learn to cut two sizes up on the bottom! Who knew I was so pear-shaped? Not me!

I took my time with this because the fabric was expensive by my cheapass standards and I didn't want to ruin it. I wanted to add inseam pockets, which I did, but when I tried it on with the pockets, it looked terrible. They were too low, and they made the dress puff out at the sides, giving me an Oompah Loompah effect. So I had to unpick them, under-stitching and all!

That disaster aside, it came together easily. The neck band was a little fiddly, and next time I will add the band before inserting the zipper so it will have a cleaner finish. But check out my stitching in the ditch! It's so neat, you can't even see it!

I didn't like any of the sleeves on offer with the pattern, so I added my favourite ones- the darling little pleated sleeves from New Look 6000. How cute are they?

I ended up having to reduce the seam allowance to about 5mm on the bottom half to make it sit right. I blind stitched the hem with my machine.

I really love this dress and the fabric. I think my fears of looking like Homer Simpson in a muumuu in this were unfounded!
Next I think I will make a shorter, plain black version for a super classy LBD.