M6913: How I did…. Part three

Final part to the lovely sailor dress pattern and how I did. The bodice is the hardest part on this pattern, and so now this is done! There are a couple of fiddly bits on the skirt part.

First there is a cut line on the front bodice pattern piece IMG_3100

You need to mark onto the fabric on both sides where this line is – giving you a V once the piece is opened out. You stitch along this line – stay stitching – and then slash inbetween these two lines so you have an open V.

The piece for the opening is just a rectangle piece, which you pin and stitch to the right side of one side of this V.

Next you turn this to the inside of the skirt and then stitch the piece of fabric onto the other side of the V, and stitch the bottom shut, giving you a V pocket. IMG_3106

Next I put two rows of pink binding onto both the front and the back skirt pieces, measuring where I felt they needed to go so they were at the same height front and back.

Next, you sew the front and back skirt pieces to one another. IMG_3140

Then you need to gather. I did this in 4 parts: 2 at the front either side of the V, and 2 at the back breaking in the middle.

I do the lazy way of gathering. You don’t get as even gathers or as good looking results with the ‘proper’ way to gather, but at the moment its good enough generally. All you do for the lazy way of gathering is to set your machine to the longest stich with the highest top tension and sew 🙂

There are 2 threads, the bobbin and the top thread, you need to pull one of these, I like to pull the bobbin thread. When you pull it properly gathers the fabric 😉 viola 🙂

Next is to attach the skirt to the bodice. I pinned and stitched the skirt to the bodice right sides together, starting at either side of the V and matching seams.

One thing I always seem to do when stitching a gathered skirt to a bodice is catch some of the bodice so I end up with this: IMG_3156

Soooo, unpicker time…. and restitch.

The pattern requires 3 buttons on the opening of the bodice. So you sew button holes onto one side of the bodice (above the V in the skirt) IMG_3157

I have been lamenting only having a automatic button hole more than normal recently. I wish that I had a 4 step buttonhole as an option, as it is such a nightmare when bulk etc stops the buttonholer working to complete the buttonhole fully. You have to unpick and restart every time, where as with a 4 step buttonhole you just select the stage you are at and continue. IMG_3161

In order to keep the sailor collar ends together there is a stitched on ‘woggle’. This is just a loop of fabric stitched between the button holes on the bodice.

And then hem the bottom

Lastly to sew these pretty pink buttons on 🙂 I did it whilst watching the great British sewing bee 🙂

And the final product, in age 1-2 years this time. I do love a sailor dress and can’t wait to see my niece wearing it 🙂

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M6913: How I did… part two

Welcome back to how I did for the gorgeous sailor dress pattern for my niece in Australia.

I’m now going to briefly cover how I did on the bodice. I say briefly because I didn’t take many photos. This was because I rather struggled so was concentrating too much to remember to take pictures! sorry :/ I am very much learning at all this 🙂

The next stage was to attach the collar to the bodice. You only need attach it by the unsewn bit around the back of the neck on the inside of the collar.

You pin this to the right side of the bodice, with the wrong side of the collar to the right side of the bodice, just the way it will be once the dress is complete. IMG_3014

Next is to make up the bodice lining, this is made up the same as the bodice, sewn at the shoulder seams. This is then placed right side of the lining to right side (so upper) of the collar. Once again stitched at the gap. Once this is turned to the inside all the stitching on both the collar and bodice should be encased between the lining and the bodice.

Clever, yes? IMG_3020

Next is the sleeves. Now, I made a booboo (again haha) with these. With set in sleeves I usually don’t sew up the side seams until after I have sewn the sleeves to the sleeve curve, it makes it so much easier. I was on auto-pilot and following the instructions on this pattern so I had already sewn up the side seams! ooops! so of course I had to do the sleeves the hard way.

Firstly I put the pink binding on, and gathered the sleeve caps

Next, I sewed up the centre seams on the sleeves

and turned them right way out. IMG_3027

Next is the hard bit – setting in the sleeves. You have to insert the sleeve into the sleeve hole, with the sleeve right side to the bodice right side (always check when its folded back out the right way it is right as you don’t want to set it in more than you have to!)

then (very slowly and very carefully) sew – if you have a freearm and its small enough to do it put the sleeve around the free arm as this makes it very much easier. IMG_3028

Once this is done turn the sleeve right side out

Bodice done! phew! in part 3 I’ll move onto the skirt – it does require quite a bit of different techniques this pattern and it took me 3 days to complete 🙂 I enjoyed it though and the end result is definitely worth it!

M6913: How I did…part one

One of my lust makes before I started sewing was a sailor dress. I absolutely adore children in sailor collars – maybe its a sound of music thing – I don’t know haha.

I saw this pattern and just had to have it. IMG_2843

It says easy, but I find it challenging (in a good way).

One day I’m sure I’ll make it up in a print, but I have only made it in contrasting solids. This time this baby blue and darker pink. The first time I made it in a taupe and a mint green.

I really liked this colourway.

I like the collar shape of the back of view C, but the rest of the dress and collar of view B. That’s what I made up.

Firstly is interfacing! I use medium weight, iron on interfacing for most things, but especially as I mainly use cotton in my sewing.

In this pattern you are required to interface the two front bits and the collar. You cut these pieces out of the interfacing and iron on according to the interfacing manufacturers instructions.

The interfacing I use asks for the iron to best on a medium heat ie wool,IMG_2961 and for the iron not to be moved, to be placed, and for no steam!

As you can see I couldn’t be bothered to get out the ironing board haha

As I like to keep all the pattern sizes for each pattern – unfortunately I don’t have the cash to splash to get a new pattern for each size. I often need to cut out the biggest size and then trace and trim to the correct size on the smaller, fiddlier pattern pieces.

Next I sewed the front bodice pieces to the back bodice pieces, at the shoulders and the side seams.

Now I put this to one side, and work on the collar. First is to sew the two halves together. IMG_2987

As you can see, you don’t sew the inside middle of the collar.

Then I trim the seams so as to (hopefully) get a crisper finish once it is turned right way out.

And because of my love of topstitching… IMG_2994

I do enjoy this next bit – applying the binding that really makes this sailor collar. First is to mark the distances on each side where the binding is going to go. I did make a mistake in this but didn’t realise until I’d finished – see if you can spot it after!

Once you have marked on the position you just pin on the binding

and sew at top and bottom edge

I think such a simple thing looks really effective (if you don’t make any mistakes like me haha – although mistakes make you better at sewing I think!) I also put some binding onto the points of the collar as I like the look of them.

That’s the collar finished!

I have had to split this how I did into several parts as there are quite a few steps to it 🙂 in the next part I’ll cover how I did the bodice 🙂