I must confess that a guilty pleasure of mine is to watch the home shopping networks. Instead of resorting to trying clothes on at the local stores, I get a glimpse into what fashion is selling to people who choose to shop from home. It intrigues me to see how women buy pants online or TV. I like to see what styles, colors, and trends are making their way into homes all across the country. As a apparel sewer, I am inspired by some of the designs and feel fortunate to be able to replicate these items while incorporating my own twists.
This particular dress came from a QVC designer, Susan Graver. She sold thousands of this style dress..and for good reasons. If this dress is anything like the two I just made, it very comfortable. I was lucky to find this green cotton French Terry at my local mill end store. It has the sweatshirt-like feel we all know and love, as well as the heft needed to wear this without show-through. Susan’s version is out of her own manufactured cotton French Terry and offers shorter sleeves, rounded side slits, and patch pockets. It looks like this. To find out more about this dress click here:
My version comes from Vogue 8951, which offers woven tops, but had a similar neckline and it could be extended into a dress length.
I chose not to include the hood, although that would have been a cute option if I used hoods more often. The sleeves were lengthened to 3/4 length, and I also chose not to add rounded side slits. Basically, my dress is View A with longer sleeves and more than 34″ added to the length from the side seams. I added more to the length so that I could try the dress on and have plenty of material for the hem. I settled on the hem being just a bit above the knee.
The kangaroo pocket is very comfortable, hold a cell phone and/or keys, and disguises my tummy pooch. It also adds to the very casual look of the dress.
Second version out of a stable knit and longer in length. I prefer this dress at this time of year because the knit is lighter weight for our hot desert summer weather.
One thing to note: This pattern calls for wovens, not knits. I added about 1/4″ around the shoulders, bust area, sleeves and armhole just to be sure it would have some ease. I also added quite a bit to the side seams so that it wouldn’t be too tight around my rear. I tapered it at the waist and flared out at the hips. It took trying on and off multiple times, trips to the mirror, trips to and from the sewing machine, but I got the fit just the way I wanted.
After making the first dress, I knew I would be cranking out a few more. I have one more cut out out of another stable knit.
Why make duplicates of the same pattern, you ask?
1.) The second item takes less time to complete.
2.) The kinks, alterations, and design changes are worked out.
3.) Different fabrics provide variety and change the look of the original pattern.
4.) Success is addictive! If one is good, more is better.
Once a pattern has been a success, it becomes a Tried and True (TNT) pattern. Do you have some TNT’s in your wardrobe?