The weather is warming up, there are magnolias blooming and it has arrived…Me Made May is here! If you don’t already know, Me Made May is a month of wearing handmade clothes and talking about it; it’s all organized by Zoe of SoZoWhat DoYouKnow and it is filling my Instagram feed with lovely handmade clothes right now. It’s a great way to connect with other garment sewers and find instant cheerleaders thrilled to see you wearing those handmade duds. My goal for this month is to wear something handmade every day but also to not buy any new fabric. I have a chest of drawers bursting with fabric; it’s just disrespectful not to use it! These days I wear my handmade clothing quite a bit but years ago when I first participated in Me Made May I didn’t and the month-long process really helped me identify how to better make clothes that I will regularly wear. One of the formulas I hit upon is classic + unique = will wear in real life. My latest, a linen datura dress is just that. It’s got just enough detail to feel special and interesting but a casualness that makes it easy to throw on any day.
This dress is off of the ‘hack nine’ list I made at the beginning of the year. I took the Datura blouse from the french pattern company Deer and Doe (which I made according to the pattern here) and I lengthened it. I know, shocking. I never lengthen things to turn them into a dress. I made it last month (and even got to wear it in California at Craftcation over jeans) but you know, life gets in the way of blogging like nobody’s business.
I’m quite pleased with how this turned out. The linen fabric is from the fabulous Maker Mountain Fabrics located in California, I am a brand rep for them. The owner, Grace, has a knack for choosing scrumptious fabric and this linen is a prime example of her great taste. I just love the way linen hangs on the body and this linen, in particular, has a wonderful soft hand. I also find linen quite cheeky and appreciate that as much as it works with a garment it also insists on showing off its irregularities and imperfections with big bold creases. You do you linen!
One of the best aspects of a lengthened Datura blouse is the sexy placket of buttons at the back. I learned a great trick while sewing these buttons actually. If you follow me on Instagram, you may already know what I’m referring to. The full story is that I saw an Instagram story from Kelli at True Bias about how she uses a glue stick to hold pockets in place before she sews them on. Genius, right? I got curious if the same would work to hold buttons in place. When I sew buttons, I use my sewing machine to attach them but I always find it hard to get them to stay in place while I am sewing, the slippery little buggers. So, I glued them in place with a glue stick and it worked beautifully! As in, I will never do it differently. Never ever. The best part is the glue will dissipate as soon as the dress is washed.
I have to say, I really think this lengthened linen Datura dress only amplifies the already great features of the blouse…the neckline detail and the buttons in the back. All of it makes me so happy.
I’m feeling very ready to take on Me Made May and plan on doing lots of sewing this month. I have some exciting things coming up in a few months but for right now I’ve got a stretch of time and I am considering not cramming it with stuff. Instead, I might just enjoy and do some sewing.
As I mentioned, I am a brand rep for Maker Mountain fabrics and as a result, I was given this fabric. I love being able to spread the word about such a great woman-owned business and I truly hope you support her great shop. My opinions about this fabric and her shop, however, are my own.
That dress is beautiful and you look stunning in it!
Melissa Q. says
Thank you so much! I’m totally enjoying it.
That dress is fantastic. I wish their sizes went a little higher.
Melissa Q. says
Ooh, that is always frustrating. You could always play around with the neckline on a different top, the technique is not that complicated. It’s just a strip of bias tape across the top to hold this together.
Lovely dress! And I really like your fabric choices for the Phoenix blouse on Adrianna’s tester roundup. I basically want to copy both versions for myself. 🙂 Where did you source the fabric?
The color of your Datura dress hack is so luscious, and it looks great on you! And you look so happy in it!