Style Arc Patricia Rose dress variation

front

This project has been in thinking mode for a long time! When it first came out, I bought the Patricia Rose dress because I had pinned a really pretty dress with a front and back bodice fold. The Rose seemed a possible starting point for something similar.

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My stash is pretty thin right now, but I did have a cute linen/cotton/rayon shirting I picked up on a whim from Fabric Mart. It’s called Traveling Bananas, by the mysterious Better Hawaiian Dress Manufacturer. Does anyone know who this is? Tori Richards maybe? Anyway, it’s a beautiful fabric, a pleasure to sew and wear.

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My drafting process.

Of course I wanted my back bodice fold to match up with the front fold. So I used the front to draft the back.

back

bottom 1

Next, the skirt. I’m not fond of inverted pleats in skirts – they just don’t wear well. So I took some width out of the front skirt, leaving just enough width for soft gathers. Since the bottom widths of my front and back bodice are the same, I used the same draft for the back skirt!

skirt mods

A few more sewing notes:

  • I sewed the size 8, based on my bust measurement plus some ease.
  • The pattern has 1/2″ seam allowances everywhere except the neckline and facings, which are 1/4″. That is totally contra-intuitive given the risk of stretch and ravel on the neckline bias curves. I drew my tissue with 1/2″ SA everywhere, so much safer.

facing

  • I added 1″ to the length of the bodice, just above the area of the fold.
  • And added an additional 1 1/2″ to the length of the skirt.
  • My short sleeves are based on the original sleeve.
  • I used 1 3/4″ hem allowances on the sleeves and skirt, just to echo the bodice fold.
  • BTW, my fabric was 44″ wide by 3 yards. I had enough to cut pockets and long sleeves.

Pics!

I happened to take a snap of the front before I folded the bodice. It’s actually rather nice.

before fold

Closeups of those pretty folds:

close front

close back

close side

This project was so much fun that I was sorry to see it finished! Not really the end…I have a piece of striped fabric that has me back in the thinking mode.

Parting shot: David and Preston are in Beaver Creek, Colorado, for ski week. Preston is almost 10 and has been skiing for 3 years. Amazing, my little athlete, he actually does the expert slopes (moguls this year?) with his dad!

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Bye for now – Coco

Grainline Studio Felix – redrafted!

first

I am such a fan of the Felix dress. When it first came out, I made a couple right away.

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Interestingly, I made the size 8, and it was big on me.

By the time I made my beloved pickle green version, I was holding it in the back to take a picture 🙂

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Time to rethink and redraft. I reprinted the pattern and drafted the size 4. Big difference! And it also highlighted an issue I often encounter. I’m flat-chested, and my left shoulder is 3/4″ higher than my right shoulder (scoliosis at work). The resulting bodice, with no changes, was really discouraging. Bad on Emile, worse on me.

original with pull

Having constructed the bodice, I went to work. Changes I made:

  • I lifted the bottom line of the bodice by about 4″, then realigned the base of the v-neck to allow for the shoulder business.
  • I trimmed the front skirt to have a shallow curve to match with my new bodice.
  • And I took a bit of the flare out of the torso area.

 

adjustments

Much better!!

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Last change: I did not include the pockets included with the pattern. My dress is unlined, and the original pockets do not finish nicely without the lining. Instead, I used the pockets from Simplicity 8640, a favorite, and attached them once my dress was finished.

pocket
Fabric: Floral Medley Print stretch poplin, Fabric Mart

front closeup 1

I love to sew!

BTW, I also love the JellyPop Dallas slip-on sneakers I found at Belk. I have arthritis in my instep, and conventional lace-up sneaks hurt the top of my foot. These are so comfortable, like going barefoot (3 colors now).

Ciao! Coco

Turtleneck knit maxi dress

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I’m so in love with this rayon/lycra knit fabric from Fabric Mart. It reminds me of a Jackson Pollock painting 🙂 So I held onto it for the perfect application.

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For this dress, I combined two favorite patterns: the True Bias turtleneck and the McCall 6559 maxi:

NIkko-tile

I guess I could have just used the dress version from the Nikko, but I know the McCall maxi is a perfect fit for me. Putting the two together was super easy, I just fitted the upper bodice of the Nikko to the M6559 dress.

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Both of my patterns are size 10, and I’ve sewn both many times. More pics…

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It’s cool every day now, and I enjoy the warmth of the turtleneck and the sleeves. Plus I feel a little elegant wearing this dress. So pretty.

Ciao – Coco

Is it Christmas yet? Maxi Alder

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The time between Halloween and Christmas is my favorite season. So of course I had to make a fun dress to wear!

Actually I searched everywhere for the fabric equivalent of the ugly Christmas sweater. Maybe I looked too soon, but I found this cute stripe pattern, complete with silver snowflakes, at Walmart.

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I just cut the Grainline Alder dress to a maxi length. And added a 1.25″ waistband, with elastic, for my first go at a Christmas dress.

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It took about 3 yards, but I bought 4, just enough to make a little something else…

Loving the holidays…Coco

McCalls 6559 and back to basics that work

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The nice thing about culling my closet of uncomfortable and ‘not loved’ garments is, of course, the opportunity to sew something else!

McCalls 6559 is a favorite, TNT, pattern for me.

M6559 lines

Earlier this year, I extended the shoulders for a bit of coverage and sewed it in an ITY knit:

And it’s the most comfortable and appealing dress I have. (p.s., I’ve made the tied cardigan a couple times, it’s a great pattern for same). I did a separate post on this dress (here),  but here’s a link to the changes I made to the pattern for the extended shoulder.

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I’m in the garden today, staying green and enjoying the windy and dry weather.

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This moss green ITY is from Fabric Mart, and it’s really a nice deep green, lightened for the photos.

I like this dress so much that I’ve ordered 3 more ITY knits from Fabric Warehouse Direct, all in solids. I think prints exhaust me 🙂 A plus for the purchase (big plus) is the price: $3.99/yard, 58″ wide. I can make this dress with only 2 yards of fabric in the size 10.

Last pic:

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Ciao! Coco