summer sewing project :: the dresses

there has been some making and there has been some smocking. this first dress is made with the shards fabric from Cloud 9 fabrics…it’s a part of their affordable organic line.  I have been so impressed with the beautiful fabric coming out of this small fabric company and all of it is organic.

the pattern for this dress is my own using an adaptation of the dress pattern in the Cal Patch book “Design Your Own Clothes”.     I started with a muslin following her instructions.  she uses a side zipper and my muslin came out too loose and maternity-looking. so, when I made the ‘real’ dress I adapted the back of the dress by using elastic thread to add smocking.  it actually made construction easier and the fit better. yay!!


this is a close up of the smocked section.  the elastic thread (in the bobbin only) makes smocking so easy and it looks so good and professional. as excited as I am about the smocking and my clever adaptations, I’ll admit I’m not wild about this dress.  it just isn’t very exciting and the neckline came out a bit conservative.

so I moved onto a the next one! this dress is so simple to construct!  to make the pattern I mixed things I learned from Cal Patch and a pattern in the Heather Ross book Weekend Sewing.  the back and front pieces are the same pattern and then it’s just straps…that is it for cutting.  the top of the dress is smocked, again with elastic thread in the bobbin. then topstitch the top, adding in the straps and then just hem! and done!


here is a close up of the smocking.  yes, I voluntarily took a close up photo of my chest. the sewing has obviously gone to my head.

want to know one of the best things about this dress? the fabric is vintage and was in the collection I got from my grandma! isn’t that awesome! it’s got these fantastic peacocks dancing all over it. I can’t wait to wear it this summer and give it new life.

4 Comments on summer sewing project :: the dresses

  1. cal
    April 4, 2012 at 10:21 am (6 years ago)

    YAY for summer sundress sewing! i think they both look lovely! i could use a batch of new dresses too; thanks for the reminder ;n)

    • ahappystitch
      April 4, 2012 at 10:29 am (6 years ago)

      oh my goodness! thanks Cal! I’m so thrilled with everything I learn from your book! It’s so empowering.

  2. Jennifer
    April 7, 2012 at 6:58 am (6 years ago)

    What an awesome dress, and excellent modifications the second time round. I’ve been wanting to try out smocking with elastic but haven’t found the time. I may have to give it a try now…thanks for the inspiration!

    • ahappystitch
      April 7, 2012 at 9:33 pm (6 years ago)

      you will LOVE it Jennifer. scouts honor.


Leave a Reply

%d bloggers like this: