Well hey there folks,
I hope you’re having a wonderful day and that Spring is finally reaching you (unless you’re my aussie mates – that would be weird). How crazy was March? Luckily for us in Asheville, things are looking up weather-wise as you’ll see in this post.
Today’s post is about my second Closet Case Kalle Shirt dress that I made for the 2018 Sew My Style Instagram Challenge.
I talk about the version I chose, the changes I made to the pattern/fit and the things I added. It is safe to say, I’m very excited about this one.
So, the Kalle. I had my first attempt at this pattern in around September last year. I made view C, the dress, with the popover placket – this wasn’t actually a concious choice, I just didn’t order enough fabric for the full placket but I’m happy with how it turned out. There is a #sewbackthen post about it which you can take a look at here.
I feel like many people have been unsure as to whether the style of this dress would suit them, and I was one of them. Even while I was making it to be honest, but once it was done, I was a complete convert.
No surprises then that I put a 2nd Kalle on my 2018 Make Nine list, this time being sure to have enough fabric for the full button placket.
I wasn’t really sure when I was going to get to this one but then the I saw that it was the Sew My Style Pattern for March, plus the fact I wanted to take part in the #makemystash challenge and had some beautiful Cotton and Steel cotton sitting around waiting to be made, put those elements together and it was the perfect push to make this my next project.
As you’ll know from my post about it when I made my first version I made my correct size (chosen from bust measurement),which was a 6,just shortening both front and back by about 1.5″. However, I then ended up having to take it in huge amounts on the side seams, it literally drowned me. I think that if I’d been using a drapey-er fabric like @Maddiemadethis it wouldn’t have been so evident but because I was using a light shirting cotton it just looked like a bag!
Anyway, because I was using a stiffer fabric again I knew I’d need to make alterations again and I wanted to try and do it before the cutting stage. I’m pretty new to altering paper patterns so I have no idea if my approach is the correct one but oh well. I took my original Kalle and laid it over the pattern. It was clear from that, that I could go down a size. It was also clear I could take a good 2″ at the waist, grading in from under the bust and then back out at the hips. I have quite a large waist to hip ration and I wanted my dress to taper a little more than the pattern calls for, again to avoid the “wearing a sack” look.
As well as these changes I also did my same 1.5″ shortening and added pockets. There’s nothing I dislike wearing more than dresses without pockets!
Usually I love to cut out, it’s actually my favourite part about sewing, but with all the changes I’d made, plus the precious stash fabric I was using I was super apprehensive about this one. My typical sewing routine is to pick a project and then shop for a fabric specifically for that garment. Therefore, taking something I already had and deciding what to use it on was a break from the norm and weirded me out a little – it’s good to get out of your box though right? With all this hanging over me I sat hovering with my scissors for quite some time, but the sun came out and with Randle’s supervision it went smoothly.
As this was the second time making this dress the construction went pretty quickly and happy to say my alterations worked out great, I was so happy with the fit. The only issue I had was finding buttons. I took the finished dress to the store assuming I’d use either blue or red to compliment but when I tried that, neither worked well. We’re currently in Asheville, NC but the weekend I finished the dress we took a trip to Alexandria, VA and of course, I went and checked out the local fabric stores and managed to find some great wooden ones. I like to pretend they are supposed to represent the apple stalk 😉
My favourite elements about this dress however are some fabric cutting choices I made.
To save fabric and add a little something extra for my under-collar and pocket bags I used some left over vintage watermelon print cotton – making this a very fruity dress 😉
Here’s me taking showing off those pockets:
Most of all though are my sleeves: I love Cotton and Steel fabrics and I always adore their selvedges and am so sad to just cut them and discard them, so I decided to make a feature of them on this dress! On the front of one sleeve and the back of the other I included the selvedge. I wasn’t sure if it would look a little odd but I’m am so happy with the result and might have to make this a common occurrence.
If you’re unsure about making this pattern, my opinion would be to just go for it. Even if you don’t love the end result you’ll learn so much as it has some great construction techniques. For me though, it’s full blown Kalle love, it’s just so versatile; great for summer as it’s so comfy but throw a jacket on and you’ve got the perfect spring outfit. I love it so much I already have a cropped version planned out in my head with some more of my stash fabric but for now here’s some more pictures.
Then whip off that jacket when the sun comes out…man I love that curved hem!
Oh and before I sign off, just wanted to say a big thanks to my lovely friend and photographer, Laura, who doesn’t give a crap about taking photos of me in public and helps me deal with my awkwardness in said situation!
Ta ta for now