The reason I've been AWOL:

I've talked about pushing myself more with sewing, both with technique and trying new colors and designs.  Soo... a fully lined princess seam dress with pockets!  The pattern is Chloe and the fabric choice was a result of roaming around G Street fabrics in mid-July with a $50 Groupon that was going to expire in a matter of days and the fabric selection was WIPED OUT.  I loved this gray wool and the combination of red and gray, but I don't have anything remotely like this in my closet.  Tights, shoes, cardigan - I have no idea how I'm going to style this one.

The whole time I was a little insecure about the color combination but I felt like I should go for it because something drew me to it in the first place.  I was worried it would be a little too Judy Jetson (what is with me and the Hanna-Barbera throwbacks?) but I like it.


  • I used the lining as my muslin (aHA!  Yet another muslin avoided!) and learned that I needed a bigger size in the hips.  For the shell (this is crazy), I taped the little sliver of the size 8 back on the hips, and tapered it back up to the size 6 at the waist.  This thing fits perfectly.

  • Uh, I need to remember that you are 5'10" and I need to remember before I cut the pattern.  I only hemmed an inch and did my grandmother's technique of sewing on a strip of seam tape and then hand stitching that as an extension of the hem.  It's a little short (!)

  • I left off the buttons. There were supposed to be three along each seam line on the chest, and one on each pocket welt.

  • I LOVE how the pockets are sewn on (attached to each garment piece separately, and then sewn together as one continuous seam when the garment pieces are stitched together)  I realize this is probably how all pockets are sewn, but I never knew that!  This is why I'm trying to learn new things.

I've never made a princess seam dress before, I love it, but it is a little constricting because it is so fitted.  I am really pleased with Victory Patterns and they just released a bunch of new patterns - sign me up!

 And now this is going in my fall wardobe stash...


  1. Sassy T12.8.12

    Love it. Is the red, wool too? http://threadnoir.blogspot.co.uk/

  2. Twinnie12.8.12

    I loooove it. Especially the pockets :) Put it on my wish list, but remember that I am 5'10'' too! :P

  3. smunch12.8.12

    Thanks! OK, I'll add it to the wish list, along with another 2 inches.

  4. smunch12.8.12

    You know - I don't think so. It was in the wool remnants pile, but it seems like a polyester :P Thanks!

  5. Love it! This pattern seems to be a really good one, and red goes well with so many colours! I made a red and white wool jacket that I've been wearing everywhere and loving XD Need to post it but augh I'm so short on time now a days.. XS

  6. Cirque Du Bebe12.8.12

    Love it! And you are right, it is a perfect fit. I think you can definitely pull off this color combo....

  7. smunch12.8.12

    Thanks! Yes, I'm really happy with this pattern, can't wait to try more of theirs. Let's see the jacket! I hear you on short on time though...

  8. smunch12.8.12

    Thanks and thanks!

  9. katie12.8.12

    ooo thanks for pointing me to that pattern company - they have great stuff. The dress looks great; i like the colors. Just do like an open black cardigan, some opaque tights, and ballet flats. And a long pendant

  10. smunch13.8.12

    No problem - I can't wait to see what you make! Thank you! I have these ballet flats that look like a white and navy blue newsprint/composition book and I was trying to think of what color tights - I'm insane with prints sometimes so I was thinking about pinstripe tights?! You're probably right about opaque. I am weird about black too and own very little of it, so maybe that's why I'm confused by what colors to match with...

  11. This is SO cute! Perfect colour blockage. It can be intimidating to figure out how to style this though. My default is just overdose on colour - so maybe brightly coloured shoes in the summer (red shoes are a wardrobe must anyway). In the winter you could go with bright tights, or monochrome black tights and black shoes/boots. Anyway, it looks really well made and fits like a dream (although I like a snug fit always).

  12. smunch13.8.12

    Thank you! And thanks for the advice - I like the idea of bright tights, but I'm not sure what color. I don't know why I'm such a dunce about red.

  13. Beth Wood15.8.12

    Your dress looks great! I have the same problem with skirt length. I'm 5'11" so I'm always making things longer.

  14. smunch15.8.12

    Thanks. I have to remember patterns aren't made for us!

  15. Kristina16.8.12

    It looks great, I love the light grey and the bright red, especially that the red is so limited and really pops out. It also looks really well made and I'm in awe that you tackled lining :) It's something I've wanted to try for a while but haven't dared yet. I'll have to take a look at Victory patterns too. Right now I've just ordered a couple of Salme patterns and trying them out. We have to stray from Wiksten some time don't we? :)

  16. smunch16.8.12

    Thanks Kristina! The lining wasn't that bad - actually I'm glad you directed me to Salme patterns, I'd never tried them before, but those look like they are made for fabrics I'm afraid of! I guess the lining wasn't too scary because it doesn't have to be as perfect as the shell, and placing the lining wasn't hard at all. Go for it! I lined a Wiksten tank dress once and it wasn't too bad, I emailed Jenny Gordy and she told me how to do it.

    We do have to stray, but not too far, I'm sure I'm not finished with Wiksten tanks :)

  17. Kristina17.8.12

    That sounds not too scary :) I've been trying a few very very lightweight fabrics lately and should really learn how to do lining. Do you still have Jenny's email and can forward it to me? I'd love to know how to do it :))
    What fabrics are you afraid of? I've tried both silk chiffon and silk+cotton blends and have been really suprised that they aren't that hard to sew with at all!

  18. Whoa!!! This is awesome! I'm mega impressed :)

  19. smunch18.8.12

    Thank you ma'am!

  20. smunch18.8.12

    I will look for that email address. What she told me though is simple enough - sew both the shell and lining separately minus the armhole and neckhole binding. Baste them together at the armholes and neckholes, and then sew the binding with them together. Same story for this dress.

    This dress was only slightly trickier because of the lining seam at the zipper, but really not bad.

    I am mostly afraid of knits because I just don't think my machine is equipped (I was looking at buying a walking foot thought) - the silks I might find hardest to cut accurately, but you're right, maybe sewing them isn't so bad!

  21. juanita28.8.12

    This dress looks incredible. I am tempted to make something like this with a black thick knitted fabric (jersey, almost) I bought while thriftshopping...
    Thanks for the inspiration!

  22. smunch28.8.12

    Thanks - I'm so glad to inspire you! Good luck with your dress, that sounds really cute!

  23. pigsrollinginmud5.9.12

    lovely casual chic! thi spattern has been popping up everywhere, so perfect

  24. pigsrollinginmud5.9.12


  25. How lovely. I had seen this pattern before but never thought it would be so fitted. It's really nice. I love the color combo

  26. Alice Wang5.9.12

    This is adorable! I have had my eyes on this pattern for a while now, and I think you may have just convinced me to get it and make my own version! It looks so lovely on you!

  27. that is cute! i need to get that pattern and make one! it looks really sporty and expensive as well. i love it :)


  28. smunch8.9.12

    Thanks again everybody!

  29. Grace Ng7.3.14

    I love this look, it is sporty and girly at the same time. I am going to follow your blog as it is one of my main goals this year to improve my sewing as well.