Friday, November 14, 2014

Pink Pleats

Today I have the pleasure of being a part of the Betty Skirt tour! The Shaffer sisters have been good friends for a while now, and I'm delighted that they have designed such a cute, versatile pattern. This is the second Betty Skirt I've sewn... the first one is here. =)

  Now I'm going to be perfectly honest here... this isn't normally a pattern I would buy. Even with all of the options, it's simple enough to figure out with some basic math and a good idea of proportions. That said, it is really nice to have a range of sizes available in case you don't have someone handy to measure. This skirt goes from newborn to 16X, plus a doll-sized version.

  For this version, I sewed up a straight size 3T, which is on par with what Gaiw fits in ready-to-wear. I chose the large pleat version this time... I was hoping to make a small-pleat skirt too, but as usual didn't end up with enough time to finish it. =)

  I followed the instructions for the most part, but I made a mistake in marking the pleats the first time (I marked the right side of the front piece and wrong side of the back piece, instead of the right side of both) and had to iron all of the back pleats twice. Since I only have a tiny ironing board, that was definitely not the most fun I've ever had!

  I made two other changes. The first was to leave a couple inches un-sewn on each part of the hem near the side seam instead of sewing the whole hems before the side seam. That way the side seams were tucked inside the hem, which I prefer.

  The second change was edge-stitching the top of the yoke before inserting the elastic, so it would be less likely to roll.

  Gaiw loves this skirt. She saw the fabric while I was cutting out and started begging for a skirt. =) Since that was what I was making anyway, I was happy to tell her so. She hung out around me the entire time I was sewing the skirt up, eyes bright, and started dancing when it was finished. =)

  I love how twirly it is! I was expecting the pleats to be perfectly continuous all the way around, but there is a small bit of extra width at each of the side seams. That does make sense with basting the pleats down before sewing the side seams though.

  I like how the hem is pressed before the pleats, so the hemming doesn't mess them up. Next time I might mark the bottom edge of the skirt for the pleats, as well as the top, so my pleats are straighter.

  I have to admit I was expecting this skirt to be more difficult, judging by the disclaimers in the instructions. Even with re-pressing my pleats it was a quick sew.

  If you'd like to check out a few more stops on the tour, they are linked here as they are posted. If you'd like to buy the pattern it's available here, and it is 30% off during the tour with the code BETTYTOUR.

Thanks for stopping by!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Grey Corduroy Dress

I actually made this dress in... I think it was February. However, I only got one photo of it, and it was soon too hot here to photograph such a wintry garment. Besides which, it was just plain too big. Now that it's not 90 degrees out every day, and Booper has been wearing it constantly, I thought it would be a good time to share. =)

  It's pretty simple, but sweet and cozy. I used a fine-wale grey corduroy from Joann's to make it.

  I can't remember what bodice pattern I used, but it came out quite a bit larger than I'd intended... the armholes are particularly oversized, as you can see here:

  The sleeves are self-drafted to fit the bodice, and the skirt is just a gathered rectangle. At the time that I made it, it fit like a nightgown:

  Now Booper is a good 5 inches taller! It's not nearly so night-gowny now. =)

  I had plans to make the younger girls matching dresses, but with different colored snaps in the back and coordinating sashes, but when the first one wasn't what I'd pictured I put the rest of the pieces away and haven't pulled them back out.

  Maybe I should see if they'll still work! =)

  I wanted to keep the dress lightweight, and didn't have any thin grey fabric, so I lined the bodice with white.... that would have been fine, but I didn't under-stitch, and the white peeks out around the neckline.

  The bodice is finished the same way as usual.

  I made a casing on the sleeves after sewing them up and hemming them and slid some elastic through the casings.

  That's the only part that fit perfectly when I made the dress, and now they are uncomfortably tight on Booper... but it's nothing I can't fix!

  The back snaps up with pale blue heart shaped KAM snaps. I love those snaps! I think I've told you all of the details on this dress now. =)

  I'm working on Christmas gifts most of the time right now, so I'm not posting much.... but hopefully I'll be back with my daughters' gifts in a week or so.

Thanks for stopping by,