Spring Is in the Air

Reasons

Are you a fan of wearing prints? Do you gravitate towards certain ones?

I think most of my adult life I’ve worn solid colors. One memory I’ve had of wearing prints was when I wore sheer, button-ups of mixed prints in high school; Wet Seal was the place to shop at the mall in the 90’s. I also remember wearing a Betsey Johnson dress in my twenties; it was white, off the shoulder, and it had black polka dots all over it.

Reason #1

Whenever I try to figure out what to wear with my pinafore dresses I frown at my boring RTW selection of tops and t-shirts. I see so many sewists on IG who have made garments in prints that are colorful and in your face. I would balk on clicking big prints to add to my shopping cart because wasn’t there a rule that said somewhere, if you’re petite in build a large print could overwhelm your frame?

Reason #2

Have you heard of the phrase, “print matching”? As a beginner sewist this phrase is terrifying to me. I know most people wouldn’t care, but I think of my mom and other experienced sewists who would probably look at my seams and see how the print ran.

Butterick 6318

My sewing goal this year is to sew three each of patterns I’ve made before and of new patterns I will work with.

First Try

Last July I made B6318:

A high school friend of mine was getting married; her wedding had been already postponed twice due to the pandemic. I honestly debated on whether or not to go because I dislike having to figure out what to wear. In the end I decided we should go because she had always been good about keeping in touch. I looked online for a dress but none spoke out to me. I Google’d “easy dress patterns for wedding guests” and found B6318.

Now I can’t remember how much time I had to make this first version – a month or less most likely. It isn’t perfect – you can’t tell from this photo of course – but I was comfortable in the cotton broadcloth as it was a warm day in San Mateo.

Second Run at It

After the success of my M7969, I was motivated to dig out this WIP and finish it. The pieces of B6318 were sitting around for months because of the paralyzed fear of pattern matching due to me being a perfectionist and overthinking everything all the time.

Full disclosure: My mama helped me cut out most of the pieces after I had asked her to show me how to print match.

I have the bodice pieces sewn together and the sashes attached.

Modifications So Far

Waistline
The Problem

I am short-waisted because I have an hourglass figure. RTW dresses that have a fitted waistline are too long in that area for me.

The Incorrect Way

After the first version, I found I hadn’t measured my back length correctly. I had had my oldest measure from the bottom of my hairline to my natural waist.

The waist of the blue dress hits around my belly button; you can’t tell in the picture because the sashes hide it all.

The Proper Way

The correct way to measure this is from the bottom of your neck to your natural waist. I then retraced the bodice pieces and shortened them according to the new measurement.

Sashes

Originally, the pattern has you make single-sided sashes where you can actually see the 5/8″ hems on the wrong sides. I had read reviews of B6318 and one sewist made her sashes double-sided. I did this both times.

However, because I had shortened the bodice even more for this gingham version, I realized I had to take off width, not length, from them. I took off at least an inch of width from each of the long sides of the sashes. Note: I can probably take off a little more when I make a third one of this dress.

A peek at the inside of my dress.

A view of the neck facings inside. That bottom seam is 1/4″ turned under and then stitched. Like the technique I had used for M7969, I basted that measurement first and then ironed it.

Here you see the center back of the skirt. Remember the dreaded pattern matching? Not bad, huh?

The back of the skirt is in two pieces. One was laid out right side up while the other right side down on top. I made sure at the edges, the gingham lines lined up appropriately.

I’m excited that this second version will be under my belt soon. I feel relaxed while making this dress since I’m not on a deadline. I also am feeling more experienced. Yay for my feet being comfortable in the shallow end of the pool of sewing with prints!

Well, until our next chat, I bid you farewell. Take care and TTYS.

16 thoughts on “Spring Is in the Air

Add yours

  1. When seeing Instau away from material that need pattern matching. It must be why I like paisley and other willy nilly patterns. Vertical stripes work too. My mom was a master of pattern matching. You have done well with it.

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    1. Thank you. I had made E take the pic after the wedding and he was feeling self conscious about it because some ppl were staring. We had run late because I had to fix his pants last minute.

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  2. I love that second print.
    I love prints. Not too big and bold.. though I have with age and more self confidence have been picking up some of those as well.. But I am not a big fan of solids.

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  3. I think I remember seeing the first dress after you made it. I still love it! 🙂 And I love the the print in the second dress too. As we get older, and since hosiery has nearly disappeared, some of us drift away from wearing dresses for reasons the young probably can’t understand (I sure didn’t). Enjoy your dresses! 🙂

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  4. Hi Stefanie! I finally found you again! Mind you, I’ve been away from Blogger for a month or so. I love the name of your blog btw!! ☺ You are inspiring me to dust off the sewing machine. Great fabrics and great sewing on those two pieces. I am not one to wear patterns, unless it’s pj’s! All of my stuff is one-colour, and usually neutral tones. I feel uneasy in patterns, I don’t know why. Maybe it was my wardrobe as a kid (1970’s lol) that did it to me! I feel very flashy when I put on a red beanie or an orange jacket lol…

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