Sunday, 5 April 2015

Hawthorn Lou Dress

This seems to be the year of the pattern mash-up for me, as I have made a few and have some more planned.  As the title suggests, this is a combination of Colette Patterns Hawthorn dress bodice, and Tilly And The Buttons Lilou dress skirt.

 

The idea of a purple shirt dress has been lurking in the back of my mind for a very long time, and this fabric has been in my stash since last summer when I bought it from Dragonfly Fabrics.  It's Robert Kaufman Brussels Washer, and the colour is just called Purple.  It's a linen/rayon mix, and is lovely and light and drapey.



After the success of my last Hawthorn, I immediately cut this one out.  I used my sleeve block to draft the sleeves, and am pleased with the fit on them.  I have a slight issue with the armscye though.  On the front, there is a small pool of fabric about half way down.  I was wondering if I need to remove a little bit from the cross front of the bodice, or am I straying into the dark and dangerous realms of over-fitting?! 


 

Also on the back there is a little bit too much fabric at the bottom of the armscye.  I can fix this by taking a bit out of the side seam on the bodice back.  I can live with these on this dress though. 


 

One thing that I am disappointed with is the collar.  It looks ok from the front, but it's a bit of a dog's dinner at the back.  When I attached the collar, it absolutely refused to sit flat - even after I pressed the bejimminies out of it.  I ended up having to hand-stitch it down, and it's not a pretty sight.  Luckily my cardigan and/or hair will hide it!

Good grief!!  Just, good grief!
I had the same problem with the collar on my Megan dress, and put it down to the unruly fabric.  At first I thought that I should have used a heavier interfacing on the purple collar, but now I'm wondering if it was all in how I drafted it.  I drafted it using the method in Gertie's Book For Better Sewing.  This involves slightly overlapping the shoulder ends of the front and back bodice pieces before tracing the neckline.  From my Craftsy pattern drafting classes, I have learnt that my shoulders are shorter than average pattern drafting standards, and now I'm wondering if the overlap on the bodice shoulders was just too long for my short little shoulders.  This is a pretty convoluted and specific issue!  I did make a toile (and why don't they show up every issue?!), so I'm going to try out the armcye fixes on it, and also make a collar without the shoulder overlap to see how it looks.

But before anybody thinks that I hate this dress, I absolutely don't!  I love the swishy skirt, and am delighted with how the button placket, neckline, sleeves and bodice fit turned out.  The very best thing though is the zip.

There really is a zip in that seam!
Remember how I said that I got a bee in my bonnet about an invisible zip in a side seam with a pocket?  Well, I worked out how to do it.  I will do a separate post about it, because there is a lot to explain, but it totally works!  And also bonus sewing points to me for taking the trouble to make a proper unbuttoning placket and not a faux placket, because I discovered that I wouldn't be able to get the dress over my head with undoing the buttons!

 

So in celebration, here's a photo of Luke Spookling.  He has recently been convalescing on The Blanket after spending five nights in the vets because he had an infection.  He's normally not allowed to even look at The Blanket, but if I happen to dose off under it on the sofa, I can guarantee that when I wake up, he'll be lying on it.  So he got special permission to use it when he came home, because then I knew he would stay inside for longer.  But he's back to normal now and eating everything in sight.



Happy Easter!

Lynne

52 comments:

  1. I love the colour. You're not alone in the collar situation, I'm horrendous at them. I've gone to the extremes of crazed hand stitching too -and also with back neck facings. Is it just me or are they always too full? That being said, today's collar went perfectly. Still had the issue with the back neck facing though.

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    1. Oh, thank you! I'm glad that I'm not the only person how has problems with collars! I also had trouble with the back facing, but that was entirely my fault because I drafted it. Glad your collar worked out!

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  2. I love everything about this, and would love to steal it for myself!

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  3. That colour is perfect on you! and your button placket looks lovely x

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    1. Thank you! I'm really pleased with how the placket turned out.

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  4. Beautiful! I love the colour

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    1. Thank you! I love the colour too, purple is my favourite.

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  5. Oh no, sweet little cat! So glad he's feeling better... And pretty, pretty dress :) The color is so fantastic on you, and the fit looks pretty great too!

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    1. Oh, thank you! Luke is so much better now, and is now sleeping on my other cat's bed!

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  6. What a pretty dress - it is refreshing to see something not patterned ( although I must say again how brilliant I thought your last hawthorn was)!

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    1. Thank you! I like the plain fabric too. I should really make an effort to buy more plain fabric, but the prints are so hard to resist!

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  7. And i was starting to wonder how you got into the dress ;) it looks amazing! I really love your mash up. You might have inspired me to start mixing as well. As for the collar, I had a very similar problem with my Mimi blouse. I had done a couple of adjustments and collar and facing didn't lay flat anymore. I just measured the neckline on the bodice and campsites it with the one of the collar. The collar is 2 cm longer! Maybe you have a similar issue?

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    1. Compared not campsites. Stupid autocorrections!

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    2. Thank you! Oh no to your collar! Mine is ok around the neckline, but I think I need to widen it a bit in line with the shoulder seams. I'm definitely going to try it out on my toile, because I didn't make a collar on it.

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  8. So pretty - the colour is gorgeous on you! I find comes really hard too. I think I'm not accurate enough.

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  9. So pretty - the colour is gorgeous on you! I find comes really hard too. I think I'm not accurate enough.

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    1. Thank you! At the risk of sounding weird, I'm glad that so many other people seem to have problems with collars too. I thought it was just me!

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  10. Ooo the Hawthorn is so nice with a fuller skirt! I've got the Hawthorne ready and waiting to sew up, I have for a while but still keeping my eyes peeled for what calls to me as the perfect fabric!

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    1. Thank you! I think the full skirt really suits the Hawthorn bodice. Hope you find the perfect fabric soon!

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  11. love this combination (I'm a fan of that Lilou skirt ;o), love the colour and look of the fabric too. I traced off Hawthorn last weekend and I'm wondering how I'll go with the bodice and collar!

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    1. Thank you! I think I'm becoming slightly obsessed with the Lilou skirt, this is number four, and I have another one planned! Good luck with your Hawthorn.

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  12. This is gorgeous, I love the shape, tutorial on that side zip soon please!

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    1. Thank you! I have most of the tutorial written, and took loads of photos, so I will hopefully post it at the weekend.

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  13. Lynne, what a gorgeous dress. I love this shape on you. It's great pattern combination! Inspired! I'm glad your lovely cat is back to his normal self. xxxx

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    1. Thank you! Pattern mash ups for the win! I glad Luke is better too, it was so worrying when he was sick.

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  14. It's beautiful!

    The best collar was on a pretend shirt dress I made, it had a back zipper and the collar was not all the way around... just kind of pretended to be, so sat really well. They are very hard though.

    I love the skirt! And your buttons!

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    1. Thank you! I like the sound of that type of collar! Also, I think my sister might have a top that has a Peter Pan collar a bit like that. The collar is at the front, and finishes at the shoulder seams. I was delighted with how well the buttons went with the fabric, I think they are shell buttons, and I got them in a fabric shop in Belfast.

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  15. Such a lovely colour, it's the kind of dress you can accessorise with beads, belt and scarf to give it lots of different looks. Sorry to hear that Luke has been unwell, I'm sure that snoozing on the blanket is helping his recovery!

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    1. Thank you! I think the blanket helped a lot in his recovery. It seems to have some sort of effect on him whereby when he lies on it, he can't keep his eyes open! He was not a happy camper when he had to sleep on his own blanket!

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  16. Ohh I look forward to the invisible zip/pocket post, I tried to work out how to do that a while ago and couldn't quite get my brain around it. I figured I'd just have to try and make samples but I'd MUCH rather learn from someone else's experiments :)

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    1. Thank you! I worked it out a couple of months ago, and then blindly followed my instructions on this dress. I was astonished when it worked out ok!

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  17. Such a lovely dress! I've been thinking of adding the Lilou skirt to a different bodice, and seeing this makes me want to do it even more - now I just need to figure out what bodice I want to use!

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    1. Thank you! I can recommend the By Hand London Anna bodice, and Megan Neilson's Darling Ranges bodice, because I've added it to both!

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  18. That colour looks great on you!

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    1. Thank you! What's not to love about purple!

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  19. Purple - fav colour. Don' keep us waiting much longer for the how-to zip, seam and pocket - I lie awake at night trying to figure it out.

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    1. Thank you! I'll post it at the weekend, I don't want you to lose out on any sleep!!

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  20. Very cute dress! And your cat is cute too!

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    1. Thank you! Isn't it hard to resist his wee face!

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  21. Your shirt dress looks just great, Congratulations. And me too, I like the color as well.

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    1. Thank you! I always think that it's hard to go wrong with purple.

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  22. What a sweet little dress, I love the skirt with this bodice and the colour looks great on you too. Happy to hear your cat is better, what a cutie :)

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    1. Thank you! I'm pleased with how well the bodice and skirt go together.

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  23. Lovely color and fabric for this dress. I also have issues with the collar sometimes. Good that you can hide it with your hair.

    Looking forward to that tutorial!

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    1. Thank you! It really is good to know that other people struggle with collars too.

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  24. This is lovely! I have the Hawthorn sitting in my stash but haven't found a fabric that's calling me to make it yet. Maybe one day!

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    1. Thank you! Hope you find the perfect fabric, because Hawthorn would be lovely on you.

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  25. Gorgeous colour Lynne! I really like the skirt on this one. I have paranoia about dresses that button all the way down the front so a button down bodice sewn to a plain skirt is my preference.
    I hope you work out the collar & sleeve woes for this pattern because this is such a great silhouette on you :)

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    1. Thank you! I love this colour so much!

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  26. It's a really nice dress but I'm sorry about your woes. The skirt looks magnificent. And the tutorial was great

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    1. Thank you! It's really not that bad, and a cardigan hides the worst bits!

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Thank you for reading my blog! I love reading your comments, so please feel free to leave a comment if you have the time :) Lynne.