This blog post is very kindly sponsored by Spoonflower. All opinions are my own.
Hey guys! I’m back today with a recent make that I absolutely looooove! This is my new project for Spoonflower and as you can see in the photos, I did it again: I choose another fabric with fruit on it! What can I say? I have a problem 😛
If you haven’t watched my Spoonflower Fabric haul already, click below.
If you have been reading my blog for a while, you probably remember the other… fruity dresses that I made this summer. There was a lemon print Lisa/Kimberly mashup dress and the very popular watermelon print Jessica dress.
Keeping up with this theme, I present to you my oranges dress!
I fell in love with this fabric the minute I saw it on the Spoonflower website and even though I contemplated whether to get it in the white or green colorway for a while, I ended up choosing the green. I am a sucker for bold prints and this one just screamed summer dress to me!
Deciding what to make with it though was not an easy task. Because these fabrics are so special, it always takes me ages to make up my mind. This beautiful print was giving me all the 50s and 60s vibes and I wanted to make some kind of fit and flare dress with a big, big skirt.
Despite having a million patterns to choose from, in the end I opted for a tried and tested design that I knew was going to work without me having to make a toile -how naughty of me! I used my Lisa dress pattern as a base to start from and tweaked it to get the look I wanted. Think of it as a hack of the Lisa dress if you want to! So, let me show you what I did 😊
Firstly, I wanted my dress to have a lower neckline than the original Lisa dress. So, I went ahead and redrafted the V-shape a bit lower. I then drafted a new facing by following the new neckline shape.
On the back, I also wanted to modify the original Lisa dress and create a slight V. So, I reshaped the pattern piece there and made a new facing piece, too.
These were the bodice changes. Now let’s talk about the skirt!
As I already told you, I wanted my skirt to be BIG! I thought about this a lot and in the end, I decided to go for a gathered skirt to give me the volume I needed. Typically, when drafting a gathered skirt, you measure the waistline and then multiply by either 1 or 1,5 or 2 depending on how full you want the gathers to be. But, I didn’t! Instead, I used the full width of the fabric as the skirt’s width and gathered it to be as wide as the bodice’s waistline. I kept the length of my skirt was the same as my Lisa dress, aka midi.
To explain this a bit better, I cut one piece for the front skirt which was as long as the original Lisa dress and as wide as my fabric was. For the back skirt, I cut out the exact same piece, then folded it in half and cut along the fold. That is because my dress would have an invisible zipper in the back, hence I needed 2 back skirt pieces.
I then stitched my front and back skirt pieces at the side seams, right sides together and finished the seams with my overlocker.
To gather the skirt, I sewed two lines of gathering stitches: one using a 1 cm seam allowance and one using a 1,3 cm seam allowance. When you gather such a wide piece of fabric, it’s best to do it in smaller sections to prevent your thread from snapping. One group should start from the center back to the side seam, the second should be along the front skirt and the third from the other side seam to the center back. A total of 3 sections. Gather the skirt until each section is as wide as the bodice.
Then, with right sides together and raw edges matching, I inserted the bodice to the skirt and pinned along the waistline. I matched the side seams and adjusted the gathers as needed in order to be distributed as evenly as possible. Then, I stitched with 1,5 cm (5/8”) seam allowance and finished my seams. Lastly, I hemmed my dress.
And that’s pretty much it! I really loved the end result with the fitted bodice and the full skirt. I usually wear it with a belt to cinch me in and give an hourglass effect.
I have to say that the fabric was perfect for this kind of project. Its weight was perfect for the skirt, because it helps it retain the structure and puffiness I wanted for this style of garment. The fabric was easy to work with, it pressed very well and matched the usual high-quality standards than anyone would expect from Spoonflower. I definitely recommend it!
I hope you enjoyed seeing my orange-themed dress! Now I wonder what other fruit fabrics I can use next… Maybe strawberries? Or cherries? Hmmm, we’ll see 😊
Until the next time, happy sewing!