The Green Silk Dress

September 11, 2013

I can say the green silk dress because I’m fairly confident I won’t be making two of these.

ohhh hiiii!! check out my handmade silk dress. nbd.


thumbs up!

This is my first time sewing with silk, so I’m awfully proud of myself right now. There are tons of issues – it’s already snagged (thanks cat!) and the front wrap is totally off-grain, but WHO CARES! I made a silk dress. With PLEATS. Despite those concerns, the dress can and will be worn in public, so I count it as a success.

Pattern: Vogue 1344
Material: silk georgette in jelly bean green and silk habotai in peppermint green for the lining. It’s still too sheer and needs a slip.
Modifications: I added an inch to the bodice and the skirt. It’s still short. I used the pattern’s finished measurements to determine my size. I went with a 6. The bodice gapes – it’s totally pinned in the photos – but otherwise seems to fit. I also omitted the ruffle.



The hem was kind of a nightmare. Instead of following instructions, I opened the (french-seamed) sides back up then used my roller hem foot. It worked surprisingly well on the georgette, but not so well on the habotai. That’s a hidden hot mess I have to learn to live with.

I really like the pattern even though it’s a bit more feminine than what I normally wear.

Gretel Braids + Ikat Dress

August 6, 2012

You talked me into it. I need a lot of hairspray, but this braiding thing is kind of fun! If I’m completely honest though, next time I leave the house in this dress it will be paired with Chacos and a messy pony. That’s just who I am.

I started this dress when I was still in Utah and had to set it aside when we started packing. I fully intended to rip out that waistband and cut a new one once I was settled. It’s not centered and there’s more black on one side than the other. I had already hand-sewed the waistband facing in and installed the zipper. I decided it wasn’t worth it and pressed on. From the photos I don’t think you can really tell. And if you can, you would probably be too polite to say anything to my face. There’s nothing too exciting inside. Just some serging and an excessive amount of edgestitching. My usual.

Fabric: B&J ikat. It’s an epidemic

Pattern: Simplicity 2497 by Cynthia Rowley

Mods: Size 8 top, size 10 waistband. Because I had a limited amount of fabric (maybe 1.5 yards? I don’t remember), I cut two rectangles with what I had for the skirt. I think the proportions would look better if it was longer. In fact, the maxi dress version would be super cute. I think I also raised the neckline a bit.

Whew! It feels good to finish one of my WIP’s.

Finished: Chevron High-Low Hem Dress

May 2, 2012

pattern: The bodice is from Simplicity 2497.


  • lengthened the bodice CF 2″ and the CB 1″
  • added 1″ to the CF neckline
  • created a skirt by lengthening the bodice sections
  • slashed and spread the back skirt piece to make it fuller – adding 6″ total to the hemline.
  • sewed the skirt and bodice pieces together then made a casing for elastic.
  • totally made up the high-low hem. I think there’s a difference of 5″.

fabric: cotton from Nuttall’s. I’m not sure it’s necessarily an ikat, but the stripes are woven, not printed.

Soooo, I like this dress. It only took a few days to complete, it’s finished nicely and I’ll wear it often. The part that I don’t like is the elastic casing. It tends to shift around and I feel like I’m constantly adjusting the waist. Next time I would sew a waistband and create a fuller skirt.

Which is exactly what that Simplicity pattern consists of…

I was so excited about the french seams and pretty finishings that I forgot to sew in the pockets! They’re still cut out on my desk. I’m a huge fan of pockets because otherwise I’m not really sure where to put my hands. Shootz.

My love for edgestitching OBVIOUSLY has no bounds.

I have so much to show you guys that I’m kind of freaking out about it – two more dresses, a dyeing project and can someone please tell me how to sew crepe de chine?? I’m working on a Tiny Pocket Tank in the most amazing silk fabric and there have already been tears. Do I need a stabilizer? THANKS.

WIP: High-Low Hem Tank Dress

April 30, 2012

My personal style is changing rapidly. I don’t know if it’s age or circumstance or season, but I’ve gone from wearing mostly jeans to mostly dresses. They are a millions times more comfortable! How was I not aware of this before?

I’ve been looking at my Pinterest boards trying to draw inspiration. I wanted to pair these two dresses for a simple high-low hem tank dress.

I used the bodice of Simplicity 2497 and made it into it dress. After making all of the alterations and a quick muslin, I laid the pattern onto the fabric I wanted to use – a black and white ikat from B&J Fabrics. I was INCHES short and couldn’t bring myself to change the pattern at all.

But I’m glad that happened because it forced me to dig through my stash! I found a striped cotton that I prefer for this dress anyway.

I used my walking foot to help with the chevron alignment. The bodice sides and all of the center seams are about spot on.

It’s all done, so I just need to get pictures. YAY!

Finished: Darling Ranges Dress

April 26, 2012

She’s done. Finally.

Pattern: Megan Nielsen’s Darling Ranges Dress

Mods: A whole bunch. See here. I over-fit the bodice. That top button is strained.

Fabric: cotton/silk blend from Fabric Mart Fabrics. Underlined in organic cotton batiste from Fabric.com.

I love this dress. There are fit issues for sure, but it’s still really cute. I took my time with finishing and think it looks as nice inside as out. It took me a ridiculously long time to complete mostly because I put off steps that I thought would be hard. Like buttons. I have FEET for that! It’s automated! Soooo, I’m learning to dig in and not be afraid of basic techniques. It has to be done at some point, right?


I’ve been sewing up a storm, so I’ll see you folks SOON.


WIP: The Darling Ranges Dress

April 6, 2012

That’s it. I’m making a sloper.

I’ve made five bodice muslins to get this dress to fit. It has nothing to do with Megan’s pattern and everything to do with my really weird upper body. The front is seriously almost an xl and the back is an xs. WTF?!?!

Here’s what I did:

  • lengthened the back strap pieces and shortened the front straps.
  • lengthened the front side pieces and shortened the back to balance out the above mods.
  • lengthened the bodice by 2″ (later took out 1.5″ from cb and 1″ from cf)
  • increased dart length and did an fba
  • raised the neckline 1″ (I’m going to lower it back down…)
  • created another dart for a better fit
  • shortened the skirt
  • probably did a few other things that I’m forgetting.

So here’s the bodice that I was fairly happy with until I attached to the skirt. Lengthening the bodice was unnecessary. It looks better shortened. I also need to end the darts sooner. Maybe 1/2″ each way?

Okay, this one is definitely too short, but you get the idea. I’ll probably add two inches to the skirt because right now there’s nothing to sit on. Whoops! I’m also going to bring the neckline back down an inch. I’m nothing if not immodest.

Aaaand, here’s the fabric:

A silk/cotton blend from Fabric Mart Fabrics that I’m going to underline with cotton batiste. I’m a bit worried about the stripes and lining everything up correctly, but if I do it right I think it’s going to look really nice.

Honestly, I’m a bit burned out on this pattern, so I may finish something else before I cut into this fashion fabric.

Your thoughts?


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