Blue and White Stripey Laurel Dress

I made my first Colette Laurel dress back in the Summer – I’m a bit behind with blogging my finished makes! I say this is my first because I have already made a second, and I have plans for more.

Stripey-Laurel-2I made the size zero dress, with short sleeves. This was made from some cheap polycotton which I got as a remnant from Rolls and Rems on Holloway Road. I think I paid about £6.99 and got probably 3 metres. The fabric is quite thin, so I decided to underline it with a sheet I had lying around. This does make it quite warm, which is great for the Winter, but a bit sucky for the Summer! This was my first time underlining and I found it pretty straight forward – just cut out everything twice and sew the inside and outside fabrics together around the edges, within the seam allowances, and then sew the doubled pieces together as normal.

I used all french seams, as I usually do these days – I do like a pretty inside!

(I should really have ironed this before I took pictures!)
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I did have to make one fitting change. As the pattern was drafted, I couldn’t get the sleeves over my arms. I’ve had this with other patterns, so I think I might have big arms compared to the rest of me! I tried reducing the seam allowances to 1cm but that wasn’t enough, I still couldn’t bend my arms. I had to redraft the sleeve pattern with an extra 2cm on each side, to give me some extra room. Has anyone else had this issue? On this or another pattern (btw, this isn’t the only pattern where I’ve had this happen!).

Stripey-Laurel-6I had a 12in invisible zip in my stash so I used that instead of the 22in one requested in the pattern. I used the tutorial on the Colette website to help me put this in – I always forget how to do invisible zips!

Check out my stripe matching! I’m definitely getting better at it!

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Stripe matched side seam – not quite as good as the back.

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Pretty much invisible pockets:

Stripey-Laurel-10You can almost see here that the pockets, which I didn’t underline are see through.

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There’s a bit of pulling around the arm area, as you can see here. I needed to lower the bust darts too on the second version. I think I need to give myself more room on the arm holes as well as in the sleeves, then the pulling would hopefully go away.  Stripey-Laurel-3But in short, I love this dress!

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Gingham Colette Violet

A friend of mine gave me some fabric she had lying around and wasn’t going to use, so she gave it to me. I had it for quite a while and then thought it was perfect for a Colette Violet blouse. This pattern has been on my list to make for ages, and I’m definitely going to make at least one more in the future.

Gingham-Violet-5I love this gingham! I don’t wear red a huge amount – despite trying to wear red and knitting my Miette cardigan in red, I don’t feel like it’s super flattering on me. This fabric, though, isn’t all red, so I feel like it’s fine.

Gingham-Violet-7I made the effort to match the stripes going across (unlike for my GBSB Boyfriend shirt, where I just didn’t even think of pattern matching!). It’s pretty close across the front. I thought about trying to match the downwards stripes too, and it kind of worked on the front, but I’m out by one square in the repeat.

At the side seams I didn’t bother matching the stripes vertically, just horizontally.

Gingham-Violet-11I made a straight size 0, with no changes – I love loose fitting patterns for this reason! As long as it’s vaguely the right size, there aren’t huge fitting issues usually. The only change I did make was to use 6 buttons instead of 7 as that’s how many I already had in my stash. I spaced them at every 10cm.

It looks equally good tucked into a skirt (in this case my Navy Simplicity 2451) and loose with jeans. Cue loads of photos!

Gingham-Violet-1Gingham-Violet-2Gingham-Violet-4Gingham-Violet-6I thought the instructions were really clear and there was a handy tip for sewing the hem at the button band facing, so that it looks like the below – basically the hem goes inside the facing, rather than having to turn up the facing and have a really thick hem.

Gingham-Violet-10I sewed in one of my labels, of course.

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So this was quite a quick and thrifty make as I was given the buttons and the fabric. All I had to buy was the pattern – and if I make it multiple times, then the cost of the pattern goes down per make. I bought the patter from Ray Stitch, who stock basically all the independent pattern labels, meaning I don’t have to wait for postage when I’m feeling impatient! I currently have about 6 independent patterns I’ve bought from them that I still need to make up – I’m going to ban myself from buying any more patterns or fabric until I’ve made up a lot of what I already have!