Welcome my fellow lace-lover Linda of Elle Gee Makes to the blog today. I’m always excited to see what Linda has to sew up, and I know that her two dresses that she’s sharing for The Day and Night Dress Challenge are two examples of her beautiful work and her great eye for fabric!
I was thrilled when Elizabeth invited me to join in the Day and Night Dress Challenge again this year, especially when she announced the theme, Coffee and Cocktails. To me, those two activities are the bookends of a perfect day!
If you met me on the street in Portland, you’d likely see me in jeans or a dress, my daily outfits of choice. The dresses I reach for the most are my knit dresses. So, when it came to my coffee dress, this jacquard kit was the perfect fabric for me.
This dress is a bit of a departure for me, because when it comes to knits, I usually opt for loose-fitting oversized options. But in the winter, I’ve learned a close fitting knit dress can be surprisingly cozy!
To allow the texture and pattern of my knit to take center stage, I used a simple pattern, the extremely popular McCalls 6886, a close-fitting pullover knit dress that works best with moderate stretch knits. For contrast, I used solid jersey on the collar and sleeves.
Because this dress is close fitting, I thought a zipper at the hem/side seam might be a stylish way to add a bit of comfort.
This way, when I want a looser fitting dress, I can have it with a quick zip! Inserting a zipper isn’t hard on a moderate weight knit. I used iron-on stablizer on the seam allowance then just opened the zipper and sewed it in with the zipper bottom at the hemline. I also added an overlapping collar to the dress, fastened with a vintage button.
The sleeves are shortened to three-quarter length with a band of contrast fabric at the cuffs.
This knit from Fabric Depot was such a find. It has the perfect drape and weight for this coffee dress, and it was so easy to cut and sew. The only wrinkle to my coffee dress plan was that a snow storm kept me from taking photos in the vintage coffee shop down the street. This winter has been so strange!! It felt like Spring a week ago, and now we’re buried in snow.
I have a thing for lace, so it was a blissful moment, when I stumbled into the Mill End Store here in Portland and happened upon this lovely black and ivory lace. You know it’s meant to be when you rush over to the cutting counter without even checking the price!!
This fabric is amazing, but quite transparent, so I lined the bodice skipped it on the hem ruffle and sleeve cuffs so that the light would come through.
This dress is loosely based on Vogue 8945, a sheath dress with statement sleeves. I used the bodice pattern, but modified the sleeves, adding a unlined 8″ bell cuff. I shortened the dress by eight inches, then added a eight inch ruffle. To do this, cut swath of fabric 8 and 5/8″ deep ,with the length being 1 and 1/2 times the circumference of the hem. I gathered the top of that piece before attaching it to the hem.
The pattern is a Easy Vogue but working with bordered lace was not. Positioning the pattern pieces on the shifty lace was so challenging, I had to bring in the big guns (male) to help me to straighten and adjust the fabric. It was….crazy and, of course, we couldn’t help but think of Dustin (R.I.P.). Back in the day, he would have managed to jump right into the middle of things, which would have made us laugh and cut the tension! Miss that guy….
I’m really happy with both of my dresses! Thanks for having me as part of your second annual blog tour, Elizabeth. I can’t wait to see everyone’s creations!
Keep watching here on Elizabeth Made This and on YouTube between now and February 28th for more amazing dresses from this wonderful global crew of sewing bloggers and vloggers I’ve assembled!
Want to join in the fun yourself?
HOW YOU CAN GET INVOLVED IN THE DAY AND NIGHT DRESS CHALLENGE:
- Sew some dresses!
- Let other people know about it. Use #dayandnightdresschallenge on Twitter and Instagram and follow the Day and Night Dress Challenge Facebook group.
- Keep reading here to find out the latest. Follow Elizabeth Made This on Instagram andFacebook.
- Post a picture of your day look (coffee) and your night look (cocktail) to Instagram to enter yourself. Don’t forget to tag me @elizabethmadethis and use the #dayandnightdresschallenge.
- Grab a graphic and post it on your site and/or repost on Instagram: