Geo print Ultimate Shift Dress

After the success of my dinosaur print Ultimate Shift Dress, I felt confident enough to cut into the textured geo-print cotton I bought in Japan. And the result was a lovely comfortable shift dress with a delightful 1960s feel!

all the little happy things - Geo print Ultimate Shift Dress

all the little happy things - Geo print Ultimate Shift Dress

I again opted for the sleeveless version and omitted the sleeve frills. The drape of this fabric suited the pattern much better than my dinosaur print fabric, so it looks much better without a belt!

all the little happy things - Geo print Ultimate Shift Dress

all the little happy things - Geo print Ultimate Shift Dress

The fabric is nice and lightweight, which suits the intense Australian summer, and I love the texture and the colour palette of the print!

all the little happy things - Geo print Ultimate Shift Dress

all the little happy things - Geo print Ultimate Shift Dress

I am so, so pleased with how this turned out – it’s exactly what I imagined when I spotted this fabric in Nomura Tailor! I’m looking forward to wearing this dress on many date nights and casual Fridays to come!

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Dino-print Ultimate Shift Dress

I bought a gorgeous textured geo-print cotton in Japan that has ‘1960s shift dress’ written all over it, so I’ve been on the lookout for a good, basic shift dress pattern. I stumbled across the Sew Over It Ultimate Shift Dress Pattern and immediately fell in love. My in-laws were nice enough to buy me the physical pattern for Christmas, so during my holiday break, I decided to make a wearable toile in fun dinosaur-print cotton!

all the little happy things - dino-print Ultimate Shift Dress

all the little happy things - dino-print Ultimate Shift Dress

I opted for the sleeveless version and omitted the sleeve frills. The size 8 pattern fit very well, though the fabric doesn’t hang super nicely due to the shape of the dress and the lack of drape in the fabric itself (I used a quilting-weight cotton). My geo-print fabric has a lot more drape to it, so I think it’ll look much better. I do, however, really like the way the dino-print dress looks belted!

all the little happy things - dino-print Ultimate Shift Dress

all the little happy things - dino-print Ultimate Shift Dress

all the little happy things - dino-print Ultimate Shift Dress

all the little happy things - dino-print Ultimate Shift Dress

This was a very quick make – only 4 pattern pieces, no zippers or fasteners to worry about, and it only took up about 1.5m of fabric. The pattern instructions were clear and easy to follow – I think I’m a Sew Over It convert now! I’m happy with the fit and look of this dress, and can’t wait to make it in my geo print cotton!

Double-gauze Bettine dress

My first sewing project of 2018 was also my first project with the fabric I bought from Japan – a lovely Bettine dress in snuggly blue double-gauze!

all the little happy things - double-gauze Bettine dress

The fabric was from Nomura Tailor in Kyoto, and it is just perfect for a Brisbane summer dress – so soft and light and comfortable! I’m definitely a double-gauze convert – I just wish I’d bought more while I was in Japan! I love the woodland/forest print of this fabric, with all the little houses, foxes and rabbits scattered among the trees.

all the little happy things - double-gauze Bettine dress

all the little happy things - double-gauze Bettine dress

I made the pocket skirt version, because I just can’t resist a skirt with pockets!

all the little happy things - double-gauze Bettine dress

all the little happy things - double-gauze Bettine dress

I also opted for the tab on the sleeve, finished with a couple of fabric buttons I found in my stash.

all the little happy things - double-gauze Bettine dress

The whole dress came together in about half a day, and I am super pleased with it! I really love the Bettine pattern – it’s both flattering and incredibly comfortable. I’m looking forward to wearing this dress on casual Fridays to the office!

Snow White Disneybound – yellow Clemence skirt and apple bow headband

This September, Dannii and I are heading off on holiday to Japan, and towards the end of the trip we’re spending a couple of days at Tokyo DisneySea! I discovered that we’ll be there for the Halloween special event – and this year, guests are allowed to wear Disney costumes every day of the Halloween season!

Rather than try to run around DisneySea in my full Jasmine costume and very heavy wig, I’ve decided to try Disneybounding, i.e. putting together a Disney character-inspired outfit from my normal clothes. Naturally, being me, I ended up making a couple of pieces instead of just working within my existing wardrobe… but hey, now I’ve got a sweet yellow skirt (my favourite colour!), a cute headband, and a Snow White-inspired outfit!

Snow White Disneybound

To me, Snow White’s outfit has three main elements – a blue top, a yellow skirt, and a red bow headband. I already have a navy blue t-shirt that I love, so I just needed to make the yellow skirt and red bow headband. I decided to add a little apple motif to the headband as well, as an extra nod to Snow White’s story.

Snow White Disneybound

I made the skirt out of a self drafted pattern, following the directions for the Clemence skirt in Love at First Stitch. Since the shell fabric (cotton poplin) was a bit sheer, I opted to line the skirt with cotton lawn as well. It’s lovely, bright and lightweight, and I also added pockets for some extra practicality!

Snow White Disneybound

To make the headband, I measured out a length of red glitter fold-over elastic, and sewed the ends together (overlapping a little) with the zig-zag stitch on my machine. For the apple bow, I made a big bow out of scrap satin and grosgrain ribbons – I made a loop with the wide satin ribbon, pinched the centre of the loop and wrapped it with the skinnier grosgrain ribbon to make the bow shape, and then glued the ends of the grosgrain ribbon in place with regular craft glue. I drew an apple shape and cut it out of red glitter foam, then cut leaf shapes out of green felt and glued them in place. I glued the foam apple to the centre of my ribbon bow, then added a brooch back to the back of the bow so that I have the option of removing it from the headband in future. All in all, it was a pretty quick make – I think it took me about half an hour from start to finish.

Snow White Disneybound

Snow White Disneybound

I’m really pleased with how the skirt and headband turned out, and I can’t wait to wear this outfit at Tokyo DisneySea!

Snow White Disneybound

Refashioning a silk shift dress to a silk tee

I recently decluttered my closet and pulled out all of the clothes that I can no longer fit into. One of those items was a lovely black silk shift dress which I got on sale from Jeanswest a couple of years ago – a lovely simple dress that was now too tight across my hips. The top of the dress still fit me very well, though – so I decided, instead of getting rid of the dress, I would refashion it into a basic black silk tee!

Here’s what the original dress looked like:

all the little happy things - Refashioning a silk shift dress to a silk tee

And here’s what it looks like after the refashion!

all the little happy things - Refashioning a silk shift dress to a silk tee

It was a very simple hack-and-hem job. I used another woven tee as the guide for the length of my tee, and cut with a long ruler and my rotary cutter to get a straight cut. I then followed these instructions for sewing a rolled hem on my machine without a rolled hem foot. It was the first time I’ve ever tried a rolled hem or sewn with silk, and I’m pretty happy with how it worked out!

all the little happy things - Refashioning a silk shift dress to a silk tee

I’d actually been looking for a nice basic black blouse to add to my work wardrobe, and now I don’t have to buy anything new! Now all I need to do is think of something to make with the leftover silk scraps… perhaps a cropped square-neck camisole for summer…? I’m glad to have given my old dress some new life in my wardrobe!

all the little happy things - Refashioning a silk shift dress to a silk tee

Smudge floral print Bettine dress

Soooo, I made yet another Bettine dress! It’s the last one for a little while, I swear. I just wanted to make one more that I could wear in the office, and I think I struck gold with this gorgeous smudgey floral print rayon!

all the little happy things - floral print Bettine dress

all the little happy things - floral print Bettine dress

all the little happy things - floral print Bettine dress

I wore this dress to work last week, with a simple black blazer. I love that this fabric makes the relaxed Bettine silhouette a little bit more professional-looking, but it’s still incredibly comfortable. The pockets are super convenient as well. The only drawback is that the skirt wrinkles a bit when I’ve been sitting at my desk for a long time, but again, the print of this dress is pretty forgiving and the wrinkles don’t crease too sharply.

all the little happy things - floral print Bettine dress

all the little happy things - floral print Bettine dress

all the little happy things - floral print Bettine dress

Something I didn’t notice about this fabric when I bought it was how well the purple in the print matched my hair! Definitely unintentional, but a nice bonus! I feel very put-together wearing this dress, haha.

all the little happy things - floral print Bettine dress

Now that the weather is cooling down, I’m going to take a break from making Bettines – though I do plan make one more office-appropriate one, maybe just in a plain black, later in the year. For now, it’s time to give this pattern a rest and find something new!

Print Mimi blouse

I made another Mimi blouse from Love at First Stitch a couple of months ago, but never got around to taking photos until now… so here it is, finally: my print Mimi blouse!

all the little happy things - print Mimi blouse

all the little happy things - print Mimi blouse

I made the blouse with a contrast collar in black rayon, with covered buttons, and I really like the effect!

all the little happy things - print Mimi blouse

all the little happy things - print Mimi blouse

It’s a hard to see in the photos, but the fabric I used has some sparkly gold details in the print – just darling! I really love this print, and the fabric is nice and light, which suited the fit of this pattern.

all the little happy things - print Mimi blouse

While the Mimi blouse is not my favourite pattern to make (my least favourite part of the sewing process is cutting out fabric, and there are a lot of pieces to cut for this this pattern… plus I don’t love setting in sleeves, haha!), I do really like the results! I’m glad to have another blouse that I can wear to work or for a fun weekend outing – yay for versatile handmade pieces!

all the little happy things - print Mimi blouse