Wednesday, 18 March 2015

My first homemade dress!

sew over it betty dress
Hi guys, I'm baaack! You might have noticed that I've been out of action for a while on the blogging front. I'd sort of run out of enthusiasm and ideas, so I decided to have a little break and give myself some time to replenish my creative brain bank! I am happy to say that I am now brimming with ideas and I can't wait to share them with you! I hope you have all been well, let me know what you have been up to!

I'm going jump right in to something I've been really excited about today, dressmaking!  During my time away I have been following The Great British Sewing Bee with eagle eyes. I love everything about it and it has really made me want to give sewing a proper try.   Back last year you may remember I spent a lovely day at The Handmade Fair  where I bought a dressmaking pattern from Sew Over It! The pattern was for a rather pretty 1950's/1960's style dress inspired by Betty Draper from Mad Men. The great thing about Sew Over It, is that as well as the little instruction booklet you receive with the pattern, you can also view a step by step guide on how to make the dress on their blog! Perfect for beginners!
betty dress pattern - sew over it
However, in the end I didn't need to refer to their blog, as I had a little bit of real life help!  A couple of weeks ago my Dad went away Skiing, so my Mum and I, and her neighbour, decided we would have our very own Great British Sewing Bee, and each make a dress in a couple of days.  It was handy to have their help, as they were both fairly experienced in dressmaking, whereas this was the first ever garment I had attempted to sew! (Aside from a project I attempted whilst at Uni, which got halfway finished and then I had to give up through complete confusion!)

Aside from the invisible zip, and sewing the shoulder straps together, this dress was actually very easy to make! It only had 6 pattern pieces which made it pretty simple to keep track of.
cutting out the betty dress pattern
I was really chuffed with how it turned out, it is actually a wearable dress, and a pretty nice one at that! There are a couple of tweaks I could make if I make the same one again, just to get it fitting perfectly, but as far as a first attempt goes, I am super pleased with it. I was worried I would struggle and that it would put me off sewing for life! But because it went so well I can't wait to get stuck in to more!  Here I am doing the 'I'm a little teapot' pose to  show off its lovely skirt.
my first homemade dress - sew over it
the betty dress
the betty dress back
It goes well with a nice belt too. It's definitely a twirly kind of dress, so I thought I'd better demonstrate!
1950's dress pattern
This project, along with my constant watching of The Great British Sewing Bee, has really got me in the mood for more sewing! I shall definitely be sewing up a storm in the near future, so watch this space!

By the way, it was a total coincidence that I bought the exact same fabric as is shown on the drawing of the dress pattern! I didn't realise until I got home!

Laura xXx


  1. I absolutely love this!! I love how the fabric drops on the skirt! Well done.


    1. Thanks Chloe, I'm super proud :) I'm actually considering making another one in a different fabric!

  2. I like it, have you considered making a matching headband or shoe clips?

    1. Ooh, that is a good idea, I hadn't thought of that but I do have some leftover fabric so I might give that a go! Thanks Charlie :)

  3. Welcome back! You've been sorely missed. Well done on your dress- it looks fantastic, and I love that you had a mini Sewing Bee with your Mum :) xxx

    1. Aw, thanks Katie, its good to be back! I can never stay away for too long! :)

  4. Gorgeous Laura. I have to admit, I've got a few patterns and some fabric in my stash but as of yet I'm afraid to use the machine!

  5. Ooh Laura, you are so talented! I love the dress on you, its such a nice style! I have so many sewing books and a box of fabric and keep meaning to sit down one weekend and try my hand at dressmaking. Sadly haven't got the time for all my hobbies! xx


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