Have a handful of sewing patterns that you reach for again and again? How great would it be to combine your favourite elements of each pattern to create the ultimate, oh-so-dreamy garment?! This was the inspo behind Simple Sew Blogger, Becky’s skater dress hack. Find out how she combined three of her favourite patterns to make her dream dress!
Hi everyone, Becky here from Notes from the Sewing Room.
This month I was delighted to be asked to review the skater dress pattern by Simple Sew. Having made this pattern before, I decided that to create a dress that I will really love and want to wear a lot of, I would join three of my favourite patterns together to make one party dress (not that I’m going anywhere at the moment).
I joined two Simple Sew patterns – the Skater dress and the Grace dress on to the bodice of the Betty dress by Sew Over It.
Skater dress hack: Why did I choose to hack the patterns?
I decided to join the three different patterns to create my perfect dress. I have made each of the dress patterns before so I used my favourite parts of each to make a completely new outfit.
I used the bodice from the Betty dress which is very similar to the Simple Sew Skater dress bodice, although it has a slightly lower neckline which works better for me. I also prefer the fit of the bodice overall, even though the two patterns appear to look similar on paper with the same darts and back shaping.
I like the three-quarter length arm patterns pieces from the skater dress and think they are ideal for this time of year. I chose to use the pleated skirt pattern pieces from the Simple Sew Grace skirt as I love the shaping of the box pleats. Box pleats are really flattering and remind me of 1950s fashion designs.
How did I join the patterns?
In order to join the Betty bodice onto the sleeve pieces I had to change the shaping of the arm sockets on both the front and back pattern pieces.
I used tracing paper to firstly copy the betty dress bodice (front and back pieces) and then placed the skater dress bodice pieces on top of my new drawings. I then copied the shaping of the arm sockets on the Skater dress on to my new traced pieces so I knew the arm pattern pieces would fit into the sockets comfortably.
I also re-drew the arm pieces to have a little extra volume at the top (I added around 2cm onto the centre / top curve). I wanted to create a small, gathered area when I sewed it onto my bodice. This worked well and allowed the sleeves to have a more on-trend look for 2020!
The final change I made to the sleeves was to add an extra 1cm to each long side of the sleeve pattern pieces. I previously found that although the size 10 arms from the Skater pattern fitted me okay, I thought I would be more comfortable with slightly more space to move around.
The Grace skirt is a dream to sew-up and fitted onto the Betty bodice nicely. I didn’t make any changes to the skirt apart from adding one inch onto the length as I’m tall and didn’t want my finished dress to be too short.
I used a berry-coloured triple crepe from Guthrie & Ghani to make my dress that I bought ages ago. I used two metres of fabric to make my new outfit and found that the material had a beautiful drape as well as enough structure to show-off the best bits of my dress including the bodice darts and skirt pleats.
I’m sure I will get lots of wear out of this project so I would recommend joining the different patterns together and using a similar fabric to the one I chose.
I used the size 10 Betty bodice, the size 10 Grace skirt and the size 10 Skater sleeves (with a minor change) to make my dress. I’m really pleased with the overall final fit. I have plenty of room inside my dress to move around and eat a large Christmas lunch, so that works well for me!
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Until next time, happy sewing.
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