Little White Dress: Fabric Mart

This blog is cross posted on Fabric Mart Fabricista Blog. Check out rest of the Fabricista team and their creations here.

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Today is the official start of summer! It has actually felt like summer here for a few weeks and I’m excited because this is my favorite time of year. An added bonus Fabric Mart is celebrating the first day of summer with 60% off the ENTIRE WEBSITE so head on over, but finish reading first!

60summer

 

What do you think of when you think of summer? I envision warm weather, road trips, ice cream and beaches. Fashion wise I think red, white and blue, linen, challis, gingham, floral, nautical, sundresses, maxi skirts, sunnies, floppy hats, espadrilles and sandals.

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With all those thoughts I was having a hard time narrowing down what to make this month, but then it hit me…What screams summer more than a flirty, white sundress? Nothing!

white linen

Choosing fabric was a no-brainer because linen is basically the official fabric of summer. Besides I’d been trying to make up an excuse think of a reason to grab some of Fabric Mart’s designer linen for some time now. While I love Fabric Mart for their very detailed photos of each fabric but this time it was the description just grabbed my attention.

“A designer quality, 100% linen in a light-medium weight. With a plainweave, it has a natural look with thick and thin yarns typically found in linen fabrics. It has a crisp, yet soft hand and with a gentle wash, will get softer over time. It is semi-sheer when held up to the light, but does not require a lining. This is THE linen to have for all your linen garment projects.”

8136Now onto the pattern. I love dresses so I have more dress patterns than I care to admit (please don’t make me count).  Though I feel I can never have enough, often times too much of a good thing makes it difficult for me to select my next project. Several dresses have been on my “must make” list for a over a year but this recent addition won out. A sewsista gifted me with Simplicity 8136, which is actually a sportswear pattern consisting of a peplum top and shorts/capris. The top is what I really love, but already have a few peplum tops so I decided the top would be great a dress with a simple modification!

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Initially I wanted to sew up view A, the criss-cross back, but I didn’t want to deal with a potential bra strap issue so I went with view B. The top pattern features darts at the bust and the waist resulting in a close fit bodice. Though the description of the linen as “semi-sheer but does not require lining” is accurate, I decided to fully line the bodice for a couple of reasons. One because it was white (in a darker color this would be totally unnecessary) and two because the pattern calls for it. The bodice took a little time as there are 12 darts in total (including the lining). There was also some hand stitching the lining at the shoulders.

skirt

For the skirt I added 13″ to the peplum front and back piece to achieve a knee length skirt (total 23″), you could certainly add more or less based on your preference. I skipped the lining for the skirt and folded over about 1/2″ twice and hemmed. Circle skirts can be tricky to hem. My favorite way to tackle this challenge is to use bias tape for a clean edge. Unfortunately I didn’t have any white bias tape in my sewing room and I was to impatient to wait and buy some the next day.

bodice

Though I desire for the inside of my garments to be finished they do not have to be perfect. So for the sake of time I usually baste the bottom of a bodice (fabric and lining)and attach it to the skirt as one piece and then serge for a clean finish. For this dress I chose to hand sew the bodice to the waist seam for a very clean finish. This linen is so nice I felt it deserved this treatment. This was my first time inserting a side zipper which I had avoided though I’m not sure why. It was the same process as any other invisible zipper. I did like the fact that the side zipper allowed for a smooth back.

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I am in love with this dress and can’t wait for someone to throw an all white party so I can wear it!

I absolutely love this linen! It is indeed high quality and flows beautifully. So much so that I couldn’t help but twirl. The only thing to note is be careful when pinning. If you have wonder clips that would be great, I don’t so I just use sharp pins to prevent snagging the natural fibers. The fabric sewed up great. It does fray but not uncontrollably, I simply serged my free edges and had no issues. I see more of this linen in my future, most likely the red and avocado. If you were thinking about this ordering this linen, DO IT! Take a look at all the color options here

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PatternSimplicity 8136

Pattern Description: V neck peplum top with sash, and optional cross straps in the back, and cropped flare pants or knee length shorts, both with side zipper.

Sizing: 6-14, 16-24  I cut a 14.

Difficulty:  3/ Average

Fabric Used: White 100% linen from Fabric Mart Fabrics here

Does it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope? No because I made a top into a dress.

Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes they were straight forward

Likes: I love a dress that has a twirly skirt and a V neck.

Dislikes: none really

Pattern alterations or any design changes made: I extended the peplum pieces 13″ to transform a peplum into a skirt.

Would I sew it again? Yes, next time I may make the top but I could make a dress in another color or maybe a print. It’s a classic silhouette.

Would I recommend it to others?   Yes

Conclusion: I really like they way it turned out!

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