Thursday, 4 February 2016

The Shirt Dress That Wasn't

Okay so the idea of this project was to make a shirt dress, no your not mistaken that's not a shirt dress, that's just a sleeveless shirt. Here's what happened, I accidentally forgot to extend my pattern pieces and didn't realise until I'd cut the pieces out.

The pattern incidentally is the same Burda one I used for my I shot bambi shirt. I didn't add seam allowances again, but this time is was an actual decision and not just because I forgot. I was pleased with the fit last time so I just added a seam allowance to the collar and stand so I'd have a bit more room to work with.

I also added waist ties to make more of a drawn in shape. The ties are just tubes of fabric top stitched and inserted into the side seam. [which I did twice because I put them too low the first time]

To be honest I think its a good job I didn't extend the pattern pieces because I wouldn't have had enough fabric, as it is the button placket and the underside of the collar and collar stand are in a contrast fabric. The main fabric is a ditsy print cotton and was given to me by my lovely pen friend.

Here's the back, I love the high low hem detail, I like wearing it with leggings as I don't feel like my bum is on display [oddly enough I never worry about the front just my bum?] and I think it might look cute with shorts in the summer.

The sleeves and hem are finished with bias binding which I also made from the contrast fabric. And the front button placket is pieced due to me not transferring my original alterations to the pattern piece for the placket [yes I have written it on now so I won't be caught out again!] 

I like that the ties give it a more ladylike feel however when I first tied them, the shoulder and bust area looked very square, so I added a small tuck at the bust on each side, and that cleared up the problem. I think if I had sleeves I wouldn't have needed it but because of the width of the shoulder it looked square.  

I will say though, that this is some of my best top stitching. I came up with an ingenious was of making sure I take my time with stitching, quite simply I turned down the speed on my sewing machine. I know right, how has it taken me this long to realise that slowing down my machine would give me a neater top stitch. I also interfaced the collar properly this time and made sure to give everything a good press at each stage. I think it all helps to create a clean finish.

The buttons don't all match, they are all the same size but some have a matt finish and some have a glossier finish, you can't tell when its done up though. In fact I didn't even realise they were different until after I'd sewn them all on. 

All in all I think it looks pretty cool, it's not my usual style but I think it looks pretty cute and I'm looking forward to wearing it more when it warms up. I wasn't sure also the colour of the fabric at first seen as I have an aversion to all things pale but I think it looks okay and it looks even better now Iv'e accidentally dyed in in my washer. Note to self always check the white wash for stray socks! Its  now a slightly pink colour which is nice.

In fact now I'm completely convinced by the pattern I think I might give a shirt dress a go!!!

Much Love 




  1. Looks super! Would also look great when you make a dress version X

  2. I have a shirt dress cut out but haven't tackled it yet. I need a contrast for the collar and button band. Yours looks great and really wearable in lots of different ways. Jo x

    1. I think I used a fat quarter for the contrast, but I think I had to piece the button band x


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