NL6211, but barely

My 3rd and final sibling in law finally got married, and I decided that I needed a new dress. A couple of years ago I lost a decent amount of weight, and while I’ve had to work at it to keep it off, I’ve managed to do so for the most part. So I had to get rid of a lot of old clothes, and I’ve been slow to make new ones. I’ve been a fan of New Look 6211 for ages. I’ve even made it once in a woven, the way God….or at least some dude named Suede intended. But I’m more of a knit dress woman, so I made some adjustments and even did the little side cutouts (which ended up really cute, so I’m glad I did!) So if you want your own version in a knit, here’s a list of what I did.

  • FBA. Every time.
  • Took off the waistband.
  • Lengthened the skirt to make up the difference from removing the waistband (completely unnecessary unless you have the legs of a giraffe.)
  • Left out the zipper.
  • Sweetheart neckline (my hubby said he loved the neckline before he said anything else, guess it made an impression.)
  • Made facings for the neckline. Someone might know how to bind a sweetheart neckline, but that person is not me.)
  • I made a binding on the cutouts to help stabilize them. I’d do it again.
  • I added some elastic to the waist seam to help stabilize it too. I’d also do that again.

So it sounds like a lot of changes, and it is, but it isn’t. The hardest part was the overlapped skirt (that you have to partially hem before attaching at the side seams) in a shifty knit and getting the neckline to stay put with all the staystitching and stuff (I’m going to test some heat n bond on the scraps to see if I can get it to stick without messing up the crinkle texture because I wasn’t completely happy with how it laid.) Update: I did the heat n bond, and it seems to work pretty well. I applied it using steam, and held it with my hand once it got cool enough to handle to help it fully set. Still doesn’t lay perfectly flat, but it’s ignorable at this point.

The result? I LOVE it. The side cutout thingys are surprisingly flattering on an apple/goblet/rectangular body shape. The skirt part is going to be made again into just a skirt. I love how swishy and twirly it is. Plus, mullet hems are 100% cooler than mullet hair, and you’ll never convince me otherwise.

Closeup of the fabric. Very cool looking, super lightweight, and hotter than hades. The cutouts make for nice ventilation though. 😉
I did make a small error on the neckline here…my understitching flattened one of the curves a bit. But on the body it’s not noticeable.
I fill this dress out much nicer than my dressform, I promise!

Nothing worth doing comes easy

Apparently that’s my new motto, whether I like it or not. It was either that or “congrats on being an incompetent boob”. I think you can see why I chose the former.

The good news is, I managed to finish my dress, just in the nick of time. The bad news is, I don’t love it. I wore it for the whole day, (and didn’t even get too much chafing!) but it reminds me that I’m just not a lady. I’m not ladylike, I don’t sit with my legs crossed, I hate smoothing a dress before I sit down, and I hate zippers touching my skin. OK, that last one has nothing to do with wearing a dress–there are blouses with zippers too, but they just feel scratchy, and I’m not a fan, I can’t be the only person who feels this way. Also, with a fabric this light, I realized how someone actually could get their dress tucked into their pantyhose/knickers and not notice–before I was always kind of like, “how do you not feel that this is happening?!” It didn’t happen, thankfully, but I can see it now.

The dress is (mostly) NewLook 6211, which is a Suede Says pattern. Originally it was going to be all the turquoise with silver topstitching, but it turns out that even 4 yards of fabric isn’t enough to save your ass when you cut the skirt pieces and don’t take your FBA into account. I could have reused the back skirt pieces, but the front skirt pieces were a lost cause (by about 4″), and I couldn’t find any more of this odd shade of turquoise anywhere. Except on this crazy print from Joann’s. I wasn’t completely sold on the idea, not as I took it to the cutting counter, brought it home and pretreated it, and even as I sewed it up. Now that it’s finished though, I think it turned out rather pretty, even if I’m not a dress-wearer. (Seriously, where does one carry their phone, keys, and wallet when purses are a no go?)

The bodice is self fabric lined, and I used this tutorial from Slapdash Sewist to make it clean finished. I also used this tutorial from a blog I’d never heard of before for the french seam under the invisible zip (which mostly worked, but any error was probably my fault for doing it last second and rushing). Oh, and I used this tutorial from Slapdash Sewist for attaching the lining to the zipper. It’s sad she doesn’t post much (or at all??) anymore–she was/is an amazing resource and seamstress.

I just freehanded the sweetheart neckline, and for my first try, I’m pretty pleased with how it turned out. I do wish I would have “petite-d” the shoulders a little more though–I’m incredibly short from shoulder to apex, and this pattern was drafted for a model whose boobs are quite a bit lower than mine. I also got lazy on the FBA, which was OK, but not perfect. Instead of doing an FBA on the provided pieces, I stole an altered piece from my (unblogged) NewLook 6407 that I converted to an armscye princess seam for my Adventures in Bodice Fitting series. It worked alright, but with movement it gets some “bumps” that look strange. Part of that might be that the lining isn’t tacked to the waistband though. (Mea culpa–I was rushing!!)

I’d guess you want to see this dress that I’ve so gloriously described above, eh? 😉 You’re in luck!

Easter Dress Back

Pay no attention to whatever I’m doing with my foot there…#notamodel

Easter Dress Front

It’s all about that crazy swirly skirt, but sadly, none of my twirling pictures turned out. Boo!


Easter Dress Planning, I might need some help…

You have probably noticed that I’m less on the cutting edge of fashion and more on the handle of the razor, so that is why I’m writing. I normally don’t blog about stuff that hasn’t been sewn yet, since that’s a surefire way to make it never actually occur or to be a wadder, but I thought I’d post this and see if anyone had an opinion they’d be willing to share with me.

The planned dress is NewLook 6211. I made the skirt way back when, but it was in a knit, and my current plan is to use…erm…rayon challis. 😳 In turquoise…:oops: I’m so incredibly predictable. You’ll be surprised to learn that my closet actually has other colors in it, like grey…and black…and…this isn’t helping.

Aaaanyway, my question for ya’ll is: side cutouts or no side cutouts? I kind of want them, but I realize that I’m a) not a 20-something, and b) not exactly skinny, so I’m unsure if this sort of thing is appropriate. My thoughts were that if they showed my stretch marks (TMI?) in my muslin I’d eliminate them, otherwise…

Just realized that I’d basically be copying the envelope picture, minus the ugly scarf. SMH

What would you do?

P.S. Hubby says they’re stupid and should be left out.

A skirt for a jeans kind of gal

So, as promised, here’s the update on the shiny scales fabric. I had this idea, but no idea if it would work (spoiler: it did!) to use the skirt from this Suede Says pattern:

I liked the maximum mullety goodness there in the turquoise.

I liked the maximum mullety goodness of View A. Pic from Simplicity’s website.

I wanted the stripes to be vertical in the back and almost horizontal on the front, but wasn’t completely sure how to do that, so I took the instruction page with the pattern pieces image on it to my copier and enlarged them to 200%, and tested on some scrap fabric that I had lying around. They’re kind of cute, and they saved the real fabric from potential destruction.

So then I very carefully laid my fabric out on the floor of my sewing room and cut out the piece (only one, since I got rid of the side seams). After that, all I needed to do was sew on the elastic waistband and admire. 🙂 No, really. It’s not hemmed or anything (I didn’t want to ruin the float with a hem), so it was probably 20 minutes from cutting to done. There are a few things I would do differently if I decided to do it again (and I might):

  1. The pattern has a flat edge that is meant to be stitched into the side seam, I’d get rid of it (or at least not clip the notches–OOPS! They’re not noticeable though.)
  2. I’d do the waistband tighter. I’m slowly losing some weight, and this may not fit for long, since it’s not really as snug as it should be now.
  3. That’s it! Well, unless you count maybe trying it in a woven fabric next time, instead of a slinky textured knit. 😉

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Sewing “bread”: Pajamas

I don’t know when/how it happened, but my little boy has managed to get kind of tall all of a sudden. Not bigger around (that would be too easy!), just taller, so all of his pajama pants were somewhere around capri length when 6 short months ago they were easily touching the floor. So I did what any mom would do–I took pity on him. 🙂

I let him choose the fabrics (he even chose the pattern this time), and I made them up. Note to self: next time, remember that my son is often paralyzed with indecision–narrow down the choices to 4 or 5 for him to pick from instead of the entire flannel section on! 😯


The pattern was New Look 6090, one of those companies that I’ve made a grand total of probably 1 successful garment from. Anyway, I made one of the shirts, but the rest I decided that I’d just make the bottoms, since he doesn’t always wear the tops anyway. I had a sneaking suspicion that the shirt would be too short (it wasn’t) and I opted to leave off the button opening on the back, since he dresses himself and I think that would probably be difficult for him to do. In the end though, I don’t think it’s going to get a lot of wear, and that’s fine too. I don’t love the way the shirt turned out, and quite frankly, I’d much rather just zip through a pair of PJ pants than mess around with a bound neckline and all that jazz anyway. Yeah, I’m lazy, but at least I can own it. 😉

Anyway, I’m not sure what else I can say about these at this point, so I’ll leave you with a cute kitten. 🙂

Image from Google

A lesson on measuring…

The other day I was trying to make a matching skirt for my new Burda blouse. Perhaps I should have known that this skirt wasn’t going to fit when I a) ran out of fabric and b) held it up to myself and could nearly get it around me (about 1.5 panel worth needed) and I was two panel pieces short. But, I’ve been known to make assumptions too quickly based on that sort of thing, I mentally slapped my hands away from the scissors and ordered some new fabric to get the last two panel pieces.

I cut and sewed the thing together last night (along with the world’s ugliest zipper insertion….I guess I’m only good at installing invisibles?) and here’s where I am today:

New Look 6900 (OOP)

It’s approximately 4″ too big around the waist. So, I’m going to try using 5/8″ seam allowances on the seams and see if that makes a difference (the pattern pieces say to use 3/8″) though I’m wondering if I won’t need to do 3/4″ seams on a couple–the sides, perhaps? One step at a time though, hopefully this will be a cute skirt when it’s all done. And I’ll try to remember to do a better job of measuring the pattern pieces before I cut….I’m so horrible at remembering to do that.

Can I just go back to bed

And start the day over? I was all excited about getting started on my HP pattern–UNTIL I noticed that there were a couple of holes in the fabric. No biggie, I thought, I can work around them. I decided to look my fabric over a bit closer, and lo and behold, there were little holes everywhere!! 😡 Then, to make it even worse, (as though it could get any worse) I thought, “well, I’ll just use it to make a muslin, the holes won’t matter that way”……so I laid out the fabric, and for the life of me couldn’t get the patterns and the grainlines to match up…..GRRRRRR!! 😡 It was printed off grain! And the grainlines are all wonky too. So now it’s residing in my trash can. 😦 Bummer.

After that, I thought I’d just move on to my next project, New Look 6407. Um, yeah. Look at this picture and tell me if you can see what is wrong–here’s a hint: there’s no glare or a problem with the lighting.

Apparently they were low on toner or something when they printed my pattern. 😦 I think I’m going to see if I can exchange it–except I’m not sure where I bought it. Wal-Mart? Jo-Ann’s? Hancock’s? I’m not sure if it even matters if I’m exchanging like for like? ❓

I guess I’m going to be done sewing for a few days. 😥 Guess I’ll be pushing even harder to get my Easter clothes done in time for Easter. 😦 I’m scared to even look at my charity sewing pile–I don’t think anything is going to work out for me today. Guess I’ll go do some much needed housecleaning.

Jalie 2561 Update

So I’m totally finished with the pants now, even with the hems! (Blindhems scare the bejeebus out of me for some reason. :oops:) I was also having some trouble with getting the hook/eye closure that I used in place of the buttons, but I had to ask for help, feel really stupid, and then have one of those “Duh” moments to get it all finished up. Now they look really nice. They fit well too, as long as I make sure to wear my control top pantyhose (which I planned to do anyway), otherwise they don’t slide on as nicely as they could. They are plenty long, as you can see, but that’s my fault…I didn’t read, I just added 2″ that I didn’t need. It’s OK though, the extra deep hem makes them hang nicely. 🙂

So anyway, enough rambling. On to the good stuff! Pictures! 🙂

I’m so proud of these because they look almost as nice on the inside as they do on the outside. 🙂

Front View:

Up-close of the waistband: (They are unfastened, not crooked–I promise!)

I traced off the pattern pieces for the HotPatterns Once, Twice, Three Times a T-Shirt pattern. I was trying to whip it up so that I could wear it today for St. Patrick’s day, but it didn’t happen. I don’t think it should take more than a couple of hours to make, if I could just get a couple of uninterrupted hours of sewing! Ha! 😆 I should have it done tomorrow, and be well on my way of doing the New Look 6407 I mentioned the other day that I plan to have done by Easter. After that, I have to get to work on my sewing for charity, because Lent is almost over and I haven’t hardly started! 😮

New stuff for me!

I’m like a kid on Christmas morning when I get packages in the mail. So you can probably imagine my squeal of delight when I saw that I had not one, but TWO packages on my porch this afternoon when I got home! 😀 First up, I got some shoes–these shoes had given me fits in an effort to find them, but I’m SO glad that I didn’t give up, they are super cute!

Sofft Nova--darling, no?

While I won’t be receiving this next pair in the mail, I’m actually supposed to be getting these sometime this week (assuming they fit, feel, and look right):

Born Dream--too cute!

Anyway, the second package was from, containing my anniversary present. 🙂 Hubby is really starting to get the hang of buying gifts for me. :mrgreen: It had some pretty black knit with silvery rose outlines on it (which I LOVE), some 9 oz. stretch denim (which was intended for my Jalie jeans), and the HotPatterns Riviera “Once, Twice, Three Times a T-Shirt” pattern (for the view with the frilly sleeves, of course!). Sadly, the denim is WAY too lightweight–I can’t believe that it’s really 9 oz. denim. 😦 I’m debating on whether to just chalk it up to experience and make it into a trial run of my pattern anyway, or if I should send it back. It’s free shipping to send it back, so that’s not a concern, but I do wonder about restocking fees and the like, so I’ll have to read their return policy a bit more carefully. They claim “no hassle returns” in bold print on nearly every page of their site, but then, so does everyone. 🙄

Right now I’m getting ready to sew up a muslin (using REAL muslin!) of NewLook 6407, view D. If it turns out, I have some black stretch satin that I think would look really nice paired with some “black” pearl buttons. If I like it enough, I may do a sleeveless version in some gorgeous blue plaid silk dupioni that I have.

Hope you have a great week! 🙂