Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Cocktail (Shirt) Dress - #sewtogetherforsummer

When I made my first Vintage Shirt Dress nearly two years ago, shortly after Sew Over It had released the pattern, I ended my blog post by asking what fabric I should use to make version number two. Well, it's taken me a while to get round to it, but now I can answer that question - better late than never hey?!


The fabric in question is a fun cotton poplin print which features multi-coloured cocktails, interspersed with little hearts and stars. It came from Backstitch, but I picked it up back in the January sales so unsurprisingly it doesn't seem to be available any more. When I bought it, I did have in the back of my mind that it might become my second Vintage Shirt Dress, but I put it away until the weather was slightly more suitable for a sleeveless dress.


I was given the incentive that I needed to dig the fabric out of the stash and get sewing by the #sewtogetherforsummer challenge that's being hosted by Sarah, Monika, and Suzy on Instagram. It's a very simple challenge - just sew any shirt dress that takes your fancy and post a photo on Instagram before 21 June to be in with a chance of winning some lovely prizes! And if you're pondering sewing a shirt dress but aren't sure of what pattern to use, browsing through the beautiful dresses already posted using the challenge hashtag will give you lots of inspiration.


I was really happy with how my first Vintage Shirt Dress turned out, so I kept things pretty much the same for this version, cutting a size 14, but with 2 inches added to both the bodice and the skirt. Like last time, I again had to take a bit of width out of the side seams at the underarms - I really should make that adjustment on the pattern pieces.


The only thing I did slightly differently was to use a couple of extra buttons. If I had any complaints about my apple print version, it would be that the neckline sometimes gapes open a bit more than is ideal. It's not so bad that I've felt the need to go back and alter it, and I still happily wear it, but it's noticeable enough that I made a mental note to add another button higher up when I sewed the pattern again. It's only slightly visible in most of these photos, but my top button is right at the bottom of the lapel - when I'm wearing it, it's actually mostly hidden by the lapel.


The buttons I used are some fairly basic plain bluey green ones that are a perfect match for one of the colours in the print. I had an ambitious idea that I'd somehow manage to find a range of plain buttons which were available in all the four main colours of the cocktails on the fabric, but sadly that wasn't to be. The shop where I bought these bluey green ones also had some perfect red ones in the same range, but just the green and red together had a slightly Christmassy appearance which wasn't really what I was after. So I let go of the multi-coloured buttons vision, but I'm not at all disappointed - the greeny buttons look great!


I'm very glad that I finally got around to making a second Vintage Shirt Dress, and I think I might possibly like this one even more than my first one. This summer could become my own little season of shirt dresses because I have ideas for a couple of others that I've been mulling over - Vogue 8577 or another Pauline Alice Cami dress are currently top of the list. Have you got any other favourite shirt dress patterns to recommend to me? Are you joining in with #sewtogetherforsummer?

12 comments:

  1. A lovely dress, and while I have been procrastinating about it for awhile, you have convinced me! I just got the PDF of this pattern 👍👍

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    1. Thank you! I hope you enjoy sewing your own version!

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  2. Oh Ruth! Your dress is all kinds of fabulous; got to love a cocktail print!!! And I'm so glad you've joined in the challenge, thank you so much for the shout out. I know, shirtdresses are a bit addictive aren't they!! Looking forward to seeing your Cami and Vogue editions! ;-) xx

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    1. Thank you Sarah! And you're welcome for the shout out - happy to help spread the word! Yes, I definitely have shirt dresses on the brain at the moment!

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  3. Love it!! This is such a great pattern and your fabric is fabulous!

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    1. Thanks Lynne! I really couldn't resist the fabric when I saw it in the sale!

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  4. Such a fun dress, I love this shirt dress pattern so much, but I have quite a few of them already so I'm considering a vintage Burda one. I also own Simplicity 1880 but I haven't made it yet, and just bought Burda 6520, and I got cotton + chalk Nina with love sewing magazine last week!!

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    1. Thanks Colette! I just looked up the Simplicity and Burda patterns you mentioned - they both look lovely! I've realised that I've got a couple of other shirt dress patterns sitting in my stash already though so I don't think I should let myself be tempted!

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  5. That is a keeper - cocktail party or not! Jo x

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    1. Thanks Jo! I'm really pleased with it!

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  6. So lovely- you find the best prints. Not sure I will have time to sew one for the challenge but a sleeveless shirt dress is on the cards for the summer.

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    1. Thank you Louise! I do love a good print, as I'm sure you know by now! :)

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