Buying fabric online is always a bit of a challenge...There's just no good way to tell how heavy or light a fabric will be without ordering a swatch (and who has time for that?). So when I ordered a floral knit from fabric.com I wasn't sure what to expect. I was hoping for something thicker to make a nice circle skirt out of but I ended up with a lightweight jersey that would be great for a t-shirt. Except I had 2 yards and no need for a floral tee.It sat in my stash for a few months until I finally found the perfect pattern to suit its lightweight, stretchy nature. Enter the Nettie Bodysuit pattern from Closet Case Files. This pattern was made for 4-way stretch fabrics and has a body-hugging fit with negative ease. In order to make it a dress I just cut my bodice pattern pieces to end around my waistline and used a previously drafted 1/2 circle skirt pattern. Even though the two pieces weren't exactly the same size at the bottom I just pinned them together in few places and held the tension evenly, which worked out just fine.responsive][/responsiveHere is the step-by-step process:1. Iron fabric and cut out pieces. I ended up folding the selvedge edges to the center of my fabric so I could use the fabric economically and cut the bodice pieces on the folds.2. RST, serge shoulders, stabilizing with clear swimsuit elastic.3. Fold binding in half lengthwise (WST), press, then sew up short edge of neck binding (RST). Attach it to the neckline using pins spaced out evenly. Raw edges should be together and the binding should be touching the right side of the bodice fabric.4. Serge binding to neckline, flip, press and top stitch about 1/8" from the seam over your serged edges.5. Attach sleeves to the bodice flat. Just try not to stretch them too much and pin evenly.6. Attach skirt front and skirt back to bodice bottom. Pin evenly, and as you're serging, use clear swim elastic to stabilize the seam and keep it from sagging.7. Hem sleeves and skirt (I folded up the fabric once and topstitched using a double needle.) I discovered at this point that hemming a circular skirt is way easier with knit fabrics than wovens.8. Serge the side seams from the sleeve hems to the skirt hems.9. Try on and adjust side seams as necessary. I had to take it in at the waist a little bit, but this might not have been needed if the fabric was heavier.[responsive][/responsive]That's it! It sewed up in about 3 hours and may be one of the most comfortable dresses I've ever made. I chose to do the medium back, scoop front and 3/4 sleeves with a 20" long skirt. Next time I may choose to do a higher neckline in the front or back because the sleeves do tend to slip off my shoulders. Another way I could work on that problem would be to extend the shoulders a little bit toward my neck. One other tiny thing: I think the weight of the skirt is pulling down the waistline a little bit so I would shorten the waist by 1/2" to 1". Technically you should also let the skirt pieces hang on a mannequin to let the bias stretch before trimming the hem to an even length again buuuut we already discussed how I'm impatient and don't have time for that. I'd rather have a slightly uneven hem and be able to wear the garment asap.All in all I'm super satisfied with my new floral summer dress!
In my sewing frenzy last night, I made a circle skirt using the tutorial on MADE. I thought I had been charging my camera battery all night, but it must not have been connected correctly because I got a total of two pictures out of the battery. Neither of which were of the skirt. So I had my fiance take a pic with his cell phone (why does picture get shortened to "pic" in my mind when it was taken with a phone?) But first Q and I waited for the fiance while he did laundry.
I am so in love with this dress! It took no time at all and it is suuuuper comfy. Will definitely be furiously sewing many more.