Leila Dress Hack

My Leila Dress hack

Just after the Leila Dress was released earlier this year I stumbled across the below image and instantly saved it on my Pinterest board for a sweet little summer hack of the Leila Dress. The weather is warming up in the Southern Hemisphere and my summer sewing plans are starting to come to fruition.

The inspiration for the Leila Dress hack

Ok, so here’s how I converted the Leila bodice, first tier pattern pieces into a front and back bodice with a side dart. Followed by transforming your sleeve pattern into a little flutter sleeve. And finishing off with detailed instructions on how to sew this hack.

PATTERN ADJUSTMENTS

First things first, draw a long straight line which will act as the grainline for the front bodice. Tape or pin the front 1st tier to a piece of paper lining the CF fold to the grainline just drawn. Mark the seam allowance at the top edge of this pattern piece and the lower edge of the front bodice.

Front pattern piece creation

To keep the integrity of the grainline for the front bodice mark a second line 5cm in from the first grainline drawn. This will enable you to line up the front bodice grainline to the drawn grainline. Tape or pin the front bodice to the page lining up the seam allowance of the front 1st tier and front bodice at the neck edge as well as the grainline drawn to maintain the integrity of the pattern piece. Trace around the pieces drawing a straight line from the under arm point to the bottom of the first tier side seam. It is the green line in the image below. Also draw a line to mark where the old seam line would have been.

Traced front pattern piece with dart marked on.

To work out the position of your dart, measure in 11cm from the side seam along the old panel line. This is for a size 6. Add an additional 6mm for each size bigger than this an minus 6mm for each size smaller than this. Measure down 3cm from this point which will become your bust dart point. Measure down the side seam 3.5cm below the old panel line marking this point. Measure 4cm down from this and make another point. These will form your dart arms. I also lowered my underarm point by 1cm. To correct your side seam line and determine your dart arms fold the dart up and draw a new straight line from the underarm point to the bottom of the bodice. Use your tracing wheel to roll over the folded dart. The new side seam can be seen as the blue line.

Dart folded and pinned to draw new side seam. Use your tracing wheel to determine the shape of the dart fold.

In the image above you can see I have folded the dart up so the dart itself sits down. It is very important to trace your dart like this as this is how your finished dart will be sewn and ironed. If you fold the dart down and the dart itself is facing up, the side seam will not be correct. If you would like to raise the neckline now is the time to make this adjustment. The shaping of the neck line could be rounded or a higher V. Cut out the pattern piece, mark your pattern pieces with the cutting instruction and cut on fold grainline.

Finished front bodice pattern piece

Next, pin the back bodice pattern and back 1st tier to a piece of paper lining up the fold line to a grainline drawn. Make sure you overlap the seam allowance of the two pattern pieces. The side seam of the back pattern must match the front pattern. To do this reduce the side seam length by 1cm at the under arm point. Reduce the side seam length by 4cm at the bottom edge which is equal to the dart amount from the front. I also reduced the CB length by 1cm at the bottom but next time I will reduce by 2cm in total at the bottom. The bottom of the back bodice will have a slight curve to it as per the image below.

Back bodice adjustments.

Time to create your sleeve pattern. Pin your sleeve to the pattern piece to a fresh piece of paper.

Sleeve pattern pinned to a page

Trace around the pattern and mark all of the notches and grainline. Mark a point 13cm down from the shoulder point and curve a line back to the front and back armhole just below the notches. Refer to the image below.

Sleeve drawn with new line

Cut out the sleeve pattern piece along the new hem line. Mark the 1cm SA around the sleeve head. Draw lines 2cm apart starting from the middle of the sleeve out to the edge.

Cut the seam allowance from the pattern and then cut through the lines from the hem to the sleeve head leaving a little bit not cut at the top edge to act as the swinging point.

Seam allowance cut from pattern piece

Tape your sleeve pattern piece to a new page leaving a 1.5cm gap between each cut piece. Then add the 1cm SA back to the sleeve head. Your sleeve pattern is now complete. Make sure you note which is the front and back sleeve. The front sleeve has 1 notch and the back sleeve has 2.

Final sleeve pattern

TIME TO SEW

  1. Cut out all of your pattern pieces which include the front and back bodice pieces that you just created, the sleeve, the front and back 2nd tier and 3rd tier. Also cut out the front and back neck facing pieces.
  2. Sew the darts into the front bodice and iron them down.
Darts sewn in the front bodice

3. Sew the front and back bodice pieces together at the side seams.

Sew front & back together at side seams.

4. Overlock side seams together and shoulder seams individually.

5. Sew shoulder seams together and press them flat.

Sew shoulder seams together and press open

6. Sew neck facing pieces together at the shoulders and press open.

Neck facing pieces sewn together

7. Overlock around the outside edge of the neck facing.

8. Sew the neck facing to the neck edge with right sides together using a 6mm SA. Press the seam out towards the facing.

Neck facing attached to neck edge and pressed towards facing

9. Press facing to the wrong side right along the seam line.

Facing pressed to wrong side

10. Stitch the facing down to the main garment. I increased my stitch length to 3.5mm for this step. Keep your foot running an even distance from the neck edge so the stitch line on the outside of the garment is an even distance from the edge all the way around. Add your woven label at this point if you have one.

Facing stitched down

11. Next prepare your gathered skirt panels. Change your stitch length to 5mm and sew 2 gather stitch lines along the top edge of the 3rd tier pattern pieces. The first stitch line is 5mm from the top edge and the 2nd is 6mm from the first stitch line.

12. Evenly pull the gather stitch so that the 3rd tier fits to the 2nd tier. Change your stitch length back to 2.5mm and sew your 3rd tier to the 2nd tier. Overlock the seams. Keep the front and back pieces separate at this point.

3rd tier gathered to the 2nd tier

13. Join the front and back skirt tiers together at the side seam. Overlock side seams together.

Skirt side seams sewn together

14. Sew an 8mm double turn hem to finish the lower edge of the skirt.

Skirt finished with double turn hem

15. Sew 2 rows of gather stitch to the top of the skirt. I sew 2 rows to the front and 2 rows to the back and pull them up separately so there is less chance of the gather stitches breaking.

16. Sew skirt to the bodice and overlock seam to finish.

Main dress finished!

TIME FOR THE SLEEVE

17. Sew a 6mm double turn hem to the sleeve edge.

Finished sleeve hem

18. Attached the sleeve to the dress ensuring you have the front sleeve to the front of the dress.

Sleeve sewn into dress

19. Fold overlocked edge to the inside of the underarm and stitch down. Stitch 2cm past where the sleeve is attached. Do not stitch all the way around the sleeve.

Finished sleeve

20. Give your dress and final press and it’s ready to wear!

The finished dress!
The finished dress on ✌🏼

The Leila PDF pattern is available through my PDF pattern shop.

Array Top by Papercut Patterns

The Array Top with sleeve pulled up.

The Array Top by Papercut Patterns is another one of those patterns that I’ve had on my make wish list for quite some time. It’s a simple top with a beautiful bellowing sleeve. It is a top style that will stand the test of time.

Styled with my Dawn Jeans.

When Cherie from Fabric Hunt, a new online fabric store located in my home town Gold Coast, Australia, reached out to me to see if I would like to sample one of her fabrics I instantly thought of the Array Top pattern.

Styled with my Lander Shirts, sleeves down.

I selected the OEKO-TEX Marlene Rayon Flowers, Butterflies from Cherie’s beautifully curated collection of fabrics. You can read more about the OEKO-TEX standard here. But in a nut shell the fabric is tested for harmful substances. It is a high quality fabric with a beautiful soft hand feel and drape. I was very surprised at how buttery this fabric felt.

Array Top side view.

I cut the size 4 top which was the closest to my body measurements according to the patterns body measurement chart. I brought the pattern prior to the recent neck adjustment and did not make any adjustments at all to the pattern. I didn’t have any fit issue with the neckline and quite like the closed in neckline shaping. I made the top without waist ties as my preference is to tuck tops in.

The Array Top is a really easy pattern to sew and the pattern pieces fit together well. The pattern instructions were clear and easy to follow. I have ordered a beautiful white linen to make another Array Top in the coming weeks.

This printed Array Top looks great with my newly sewn Lander Shorts as well as my good old faithful Dawn corduroy jeans. I’m super happy with the outcome of this sewing project. Fabric Hunt is currently having a spring sale with 15% off store wide until the 30th of August.

The End!

A Sia Dress Hack by @sew.lala

Welcome to my first paid guest blog post!  When Anna @sew.lala posted her images of this Sia Dress hack on Instagram I knew instantly that I had to approach her to do a guest blog post for me.  Now I can share with the world how Anna transformed the Sia Dress pattern into this beautiful summer dress.  From this point further in the blog post are the words directly from Anna herself.  I hope you enjoy and I can’t wait to make my own version of this hack.

Anna’s Sia Dress Hack

My first Sia Dress was born during the pattern testing for Taree in March 2020. I was so excited to be part of it since I fell in love at first sight with the pattern. There are so many options already coming with the pattern and even more hacks and changes to the pattern are popping up in front of my eye just looking at the technical drafts.

Finally, I found time to sew the hack that I already planned way back then. When Taree asked me to write a little bit about what I did and how I hacked the pattern I was full of excitement to share my hack with you.

My first Sia Dress
My first Sia Dress

Firstly, I would recommend to sew the pattern as purchased at least once before hacking it. This way you know how the pattern reacts to your body shape, if you need grading between the sizes and also you will get a clear idea of what happens with the pattern while following my hacking process here.

My vision for the hack was a romantic, but not too overdone look that keeps as many of the original seam lines as possible.  I’m seriously into ruffles and gathered sections and took the idea Taree started at the sleeves a little further by adding gathers at the waist instead of pleats, and ruffles to the skirt hem.  I also wanted to remove the zipper and have a more versatile option to open and close the dress through the front.  I converted the faux front placket on the skirt to a functioning front placket and continued it through to the waist and bust area.

Changes on the Pattern

Bodice

Figure out your size and trace the pattern on paper.

I have already added a little extra to the neckline as a full bust adjustment when sewing my first Sia Dress (red line in the picture). I found this the easiest way to change the pattern to fit a fuller bust and still be able to close the front bodice a little more.  Taree does have video tutorials on how to do this adjustment on her website.  I then measured from the waist to where I wanted the first button to close at the neckline.  For me it was 17cm up from the waist, but you can alter this to be whatever you like. From this point down to the waist add a 3 cm wide piece of paper.  This is going to be the functioning button placket. The pleat below the bust can easily be adjusted for gathering simply by rounding the pleat point to a curved line.

Waistband

The Sia Dress has a comfortable fit with ease through the waist that can be adjusted with the waist ties.  For this pattern hack I wanted to omit the ties and decided to size down one size on the original waistband pattern piece to have a more fitted look.

However, make sure the waist is not getting to tight as you don’t want any pulling on the button area here.  My recommendations is to take your measurements and compare with the finished garment measurements noted on the original Sia Dress pattern.  For this hack the front waistband pattern piece is not cut on the fold.  You will need to add 3cm to the fold line that will again from part of the functioning button placket.

Sleeves

I wanted to have volume at the lower sleeve but not to much at the shoulder. So I decided to go for sleeve option A with a little puff sleeve and give it more width like option B has at the hem. Or alternatively you can use the sleeve pattern from option B.

If you would like to create a sleeve like mine, tape together the front and back sleeve from option A folding away the ties.  I added 12 cm to the length of the sleeve and draw a straight line from the underarm point to the new sleeve hem.

Skirt

As much as I love pockets from the original pattern I felt they wouldn’t fit with all the ruffles on my new design. To keep the original shape of the upper skirt side seam and waist I simply laid the pocket piece on top of the skirt pattern.

Again, for this hack the front skirt piece is not cut on the fold but separated into two pieces.  You will need to add 3cm to the center front line for functioning button placket. I also added some extra width along the side seam as noted by the pins in the image above.  This will create more gathers in the skirt.  Add the same to the back side seam and change this pattern piece to be cut on the fold instead of cut 1 pair.  When adding width to the side seam make sure it is added at the same height of the original waistline.  Do not make it higher, just extend it as shown in the picture above by the pins.

I reduced the original midi skirt length by 13 cm on both the front and back pattern pieces.  Then I added a ruffle that is 25cm long.  The width of the ruffle pattern piece is two times as long as your skirt hem.

Sewing the hack

Since I sewed my hacked version of this dress before I wrote these instructions there are no pictures of the process.  Below is a brief overview of the construction process.

Start with your bodice.

    Sew the darts at the back pieces as shown in the pattern instruction.
    Finish the edges of the CB seam with a serger or zigzag.
    Sew CB pieces together where the zipper would have been stopping 10cm down from the top edge to create a back keyhole.  Sew the last 1cm at the top neck.  Press seams flat and fix back keyhole with topstitching.

    Gather the bust darts so they fit the front waist band between where the original pleat was.
  • Pin front bodice pieces to front waistband pieces.  They need to line up at the side seam and CF.  Sew together with a 1cm seam allowance.  Finish seams with serger or zigzag.
  • Pin and sew the back bodice to the back waistband and finish seams with serger or zigzag.
  • Close shoulder seams and side seams of the bodice and finish with serger or zigzag.
  • Prepare the sleeves as shown for version B skipping the sleeve pillow (or add the pillow if you’d like a bit of extra poof).
  • The sleeve hem is finished onto a bias band instead of using elastic to pull the sleeve hem in.  You could use the elastic finish if you would like or alternatively to finish like mine cut bias tape 4cm wide and 2cm longer than your lower arm measurement is. Close the ends and press seam flat.
  • Sew 2 lines of gather stitch to your sleeve hem and gather them in evenly to fit the bias band.  Pin in place and sew to the wrong side first.  Then fold bind over and under to the right side to do the final top stitch and attached the bias band to the sleeve on the right side.

  • Pin and sew sleeves to bodice.
  • Sew the side seams of the skirt together.  Finish with serger or zigzag.
  • Gather the waist of the skirt to fit the lower waistband.  Pin and sew in place, finishing seams with serger or zigzag.
  • Hem the lower edge of the ruffle.  You could overlock and turn or do a small double turn hem here.
  • Add the gathered ruffle to the bottom of the skirt. Make sure your gathers are even before sewing.  Finish seam with serger or zigzag.
  • Finish the neckline with 0.5cm double turn.  Alternatively you could used bias to finish the neckline.

  • To finish the function front button placket fold the front edge over 2cm twice to the inside.  Pin well and press in place.  Finish by topstitching the front placket down on both edges.
  •  The neckline is topstitched close to the folding edge.
  • Sew buttons and button holes.
  • Et voila! You are done!

Feel free to contact me when having questions on a step.

Yours Anna from Sew.lala

How to sew the Lined Sia Dress – video tutorials

It’s taken a little moment but I am so pleased that the video tutorials for the lined Sia Dress are now complete and live on my website. Click here to access the tutorials.

The lined Sia Dress is a longer sewing project that is ideal for fabrics that are sheer or light in weight. Now that the video tutorials are complete it’s also the perfect project if you want to extend your sewing skills or challenge yourself with new sewing techniques.

Through these tutorials I will show you techniques that will give your Sia Dress a professional ready to wear look and finish.

As always feel free to contact me if you have any questions along the way. Happy sewing!

The Lander Pants by True Bias.

I love jeans. They are literally my favourite item of clothing to wear. And I also enjoy the process of making them surprisingly. Personally, I really enjoy a sewing project that takes time and effort. Projects that I get lost in and forget about anything else going on other than the next stitch on my machine.

Lander Pants

 

When it comes to home made jeans I have now made the Dawn Jean by Megan Nielsen in the cropped wide leg and straight leg, the Persephone Pant by Anna Allen and now the Lander Pants by True Bias.  They are all quite different patterns that service my love of jeans and pants differently. You can visit my previous blog posts to read about my other jean makes, but this blog post is all about the Lander Pants. But I can’t resist giving a comment on my favourite pattern at the end.

Dawn Jean
The Dawn Jean – cropped straight leg

Dawn Jean
Dawn Jean – cropped flair

Persephone Pants
Persephone Pants

A few weeks ago I had the pleasure of meeting one of my online sewing buddies in person at a social sewing day held by Kylie And The Machine. Meg @meghandmade and I decided we would sew the Lander Pants for the occasion.

Meg and Me
Meg & Me

My Lander Pants have been made in a cotton satine / elastane blend from Potter & Co.  This fabric has a beautiful velvet surface texture and is softening with was and wear. I cut between a size 2 and size 4 in the waist, grading out to a size 6 at the hip. This is something I tend to do on True Bias patterns as they have been drafted for a body shape that is much straighter than mine. The Lander Pants pattern comes with a straight waistband which gaps at my waist. I’m a fan of the curved waistband so I used the waitband pattern from my Dawn Jeans.  I know this pattern works beautifully and fits well on my waist.  After measuring and comparing the pant waist to this waistband pattern I was sure it would all come together well.

Lander Pant

I choose not to line my patch pockets but instead turned under a seam allowance and sew directly onto the front and back body.  I added a zipper instead of a button fly as this is my preference for jean and pant openings. You can buy a zipper extension pack for this pattern but I was able to use my knowledge of fly fronts to avoid this. You can actually use the pattern pieces that come with the button front to create the zipper fly front and save a few dollars in the process.

Lander Pant
Lander Pant

 

The Lander Pant comes with a hefty 1” seam allowance at the side seam to help with fitting. I will reduce this back to a 1/2” seam allowance next time I make these pants to save a little on fabric now I know that they fit me well.

Lander Pant

I really like the fit of these pants. I will extend the front rise by 1/2” at the crotch point and add 3/4″ to the front and back rise through the middle next time. This will make them slightly more high rise and help with the little wiskering at the front crotch. I have one more pair planned in the coming weeks. Or maybe I will just make the shorts now that Spring is just around the corner for us Aussies.

Lander Pant
Lander Pant

At this point the Dawn Jean in the straight leg cropped version is still my favourite pant. I love the classic jeans pocketing on this pattern and the fit is perfect for my body.

Dawn Jean
Dawn Jean – Still my favs!

 

The Wiksten Haori | My first ever repurposing project.

I have had the Wiksten Haori on my make list for quite some time and this half finished blog post in my drafts for way to long as well. When the weather turned cool a few months ago it was time to bring it to the top of the list. I have been following the hashtag on Instagram for a while to really get a good feel for the jacket and the look and feel I wanted to achieve for mine.  It has been my most worn item this winter. It is perfect for curling up on the couch.

I have purchased a piece of quilted cotton from Merchant and Mills that was a rather expensive fabric purchase for me. I had this piece of fabric ear marked for this jacket but want to be 100% sure the finished fit was what I wanted. I’m a big believer in testing patterns before I make them in my final selection fabric especially when I have high hopes for the finished garment. The let down of a finished garment in expensive fabric that’s just not working is real!

A few weeks ago I went all beige with our bedroom linen and decided our old bedspread would make the perfect toiling fabric for this project. The quilted bed spread has two sides, both of which I love equally so it made sense to not line may jacket and bind all the seams so I could wear the jacket either way. To keep with the re purposing feel I unpicked all the bind from the bed spread edge to finish all the seams of my jacket.

It once was a bed spread!

I am loving oversized long line jackets at the moment and decide to cut the M size jacket with was 2 sizes bigger than what the pattern recommended for my body measurements. I really want the donor jacket feel and something that I could rug up in on the couch at night.

It was a fairly simple sew given my jacket wasn’t lined but did take a little longer due to the binding of the seams. I also bound the pocket edges to keep the finish of the garment consistent. The bind from the bed spread edge was the perfect width to cover the seams. I overlocked the seams prior to binding them to reduce the thickness of the seams.

Inside out with bonded edges

I did run out of bind for the bottom hem and the white bind that I could find was quite stark in comparison. I tea stained the new bind to reduce the brightness of the white. It’s not perfect but it’s ok. And with some wash and wear it will age with the rest of the garment.

Right side out…

Conclusion….. I love that this jacket is made from something old and special. It is so warm (for Queensland weather anyway). I love that is reversible and ridiculous oversized. Will I use this pattern to sew my Merchant & Mills fabric? Absolutely! It’s cut out and ready to sew today. I am not going to line my second version either as our winters in Queensland, Australia are not that cold and it will be wearable into Autumn and Spring.

The end!

Introduction to the Leila PDF Pattern

When designing the Leila Dress I wanted to create a loose fitting tier dress that wasn’t a boxy shape.  This pattern has clever waist shaping and minimal gathers so you don’t feel completely consumed by the finished dress.  The Leila PDF pattern is now available through the PDF Pattern Shop.  Below are some details for the pattern

A big thank you for your support.  Without you all my little side hustle dream would have not turned into a reality.

Maxi length Leila Dress
Midi length Leila Slip

The Leila Dress is a mini or maxi length dress that is unlined. However, if your fabric requires lining this pattern also includes a pattern for the Leila Slip. The Leila Slip comes in a mini or midi length.

The Leila Dress features a V neckline with gathered tiers. The shorter version has 3 tiers, with the maxi length dress having 4 tiers. Entry to the dress is through the neck opening. There are optional ties that can be attached to the back of the dress to bring the waist in. The sleeve has gathers at the sleeve head and a gathered circular frill at the hem.

Midi length Leila Slip
Midi length Leila Slip

The Leila Slip also features a front V neckline with a straight back. The slip lines up with the dress to form the perfect lining slip or can be a dress in it’s own right. The slip comes in a mini or midi length. The midi length slip comes side splits. Try using grosgrain ribbon for shoulder straps. The neck edge is finished with a wide stitched down facing. Also consider using adjusters and sliders with your straps. You will need to increase the recommend strap length by 5cm (2” ) if you are adding adjusters and sliders.

This is an intermediate beginner pattern with the following sewing skills used. Gathering, neck facing and double turn finish to hem.

Leila PDF pattern
It’s a hack – Leila Slip + Leila Dress

There are many pattern hack options to be explored for this pattern. You could extend the 1st tier of the dress to convert the dress to a top. You can take tier 2, 3 and 4 and convert it into an elastic waist maxi skirt. Tier 4 can be shortened to create a midi length flowy dress instead of the maxi. The slip can be easily converted into a cami. You could mesh the slip and cami together to create a sleeveless dress with gathered tiers. So many options in one pattern. The sleeves from the Sia Dress will also fit the Leila Dress for further variations.

FABRIC
This dress and slip are best suited to a fabric that is soft and drapes well. Consider using light to mid weight fabrics such as: linen, linen blends, cotton & cotton gauze. For a softer silhouette consider polyester, viscose, rayon, Tencel, silk or blends of. The surface texture of a crepe or a crinkle is also a great option.

I have personally made this dress is a light weight linen, mid weight linen, cotton lawn, cotton gauze and rayon crepe.  I have made the slip dress in a viscose linen blend, light weight linen and viscose.  All of these fabric have worked beautifully to create different result.

NOTIONS
* fabric (meterage as noted below)
* coordinating thread
* 20cm light weight fusing

FABRIC YARDAGE-01Please note with yields that I have created tight pattern lays.  It is important to follow the cutting guides to ensure you won’t run out of fabric.  It does involve a lot of single layer cutting but I hate wasting fabric so they are tight.  Please make sure all your pieces will fit prior to cutting.

SIZE GUIDE

CB0D511C-1D2C-46F6-8406-2D95BD41F34D

PRICE

The Leila PDF pattern will be AU$12 (a little over US$8 at today’s rate).

Leila Mini Dress
Sneak peak of my latest Leila Dress….

The straight leg Dawn Jean by Megan Nielsen Patterns.

Meet my new favourite jeans. The straight leg version of the Dawn Jean by Megan Nielsen Patterns. If you like a high waisted jean the Dawn Jean is a great pattern.

Paired here with the Hilary Top by Tessuti Fabrics

I am no stranger to this pattern having previously made two pairs of the cropped flare. I have also made two pairs of the Persephone Pant by Anna Allen and felt my hand made wardrobe was swamped with versions of a cropped flare jean. I have been drawn to a Mom or straight leg jean lately that is still slightly cropped and thought I would give the straight leg version of the Dawn Jean a go.

Worn her with a RTW top and my home made Freya Sandals

Having toiled this pattern previously and over fitted on my second pair I decided to stick with the original pattern in the size 8 which is perfect for my measurements and shape. I measured the in leg length of my favourite store brought jeans I own to work out the ideal length for these jeans. It’s best to work with an in leg length as your rise height may very from jean to jean. The in leg length will give you a more accurate measurement to follow.

Front Pant

It is also important to cut all patterns in corduroy in the one direction. Corduroy is a one way fabric and the pile can be brushed up or down. I prefer to cut my corduroy with the pile direction brushing down towards the hem of the pant.

Back Pant

I purchased a piece of yummy vanilla coloured stretch corduroy during Potter & CO’s pre Christmas sale that has been waiting for the perfect project. It is 98% Cotton, 2 % Elastane which gives the pant just a nice little bit of movement for fit and food. The only adjustment I made was cutting the waistband on the opposite grain to that recommended on the pattern. I wanted the cord lines to run vertically and not horizontal on the waistband.

My biggest issue with sewing jeans in the past has been the topstitching. My machine has really struggled with this in the past always leaving me disappointed with the finish of the garment. The inside stitch tension was loose and messy. It finally occurred to me that I needed tightened the top thread tension on my machine. The ideal top tension on my machine for top stitching with a topstitching thread is 8. This has been a game changer and now the inside of my jeans is as beautiful as the outside.

Megan Nielsen Patterns also have great little hardware trims packages for purchase which gave my jeans that professional finish. I am a massive fan of matt tin trims and think this colour works beautifully with the vanilla coloured cord. After washing my jeans the vegan leather patch did change colour, lost some of it’s wording and became stiff but I don’t mind the change in appearance. Kylie And The Machine also has the cutest side tab labels that was perfect for the back pocket.

All the details

Megan’s pattern are impeccable and very professional. They are beautifully notched and the instructions are well written and clear. I also understand she has a comprehensive range of video tutorials to accompany her patterns. I have not watched or used them due to my extensive knowledge on construction but imagine they would be the perfect companion to those sewers taking on the challenge of sewing jeans for the first time.

Worn here with my Adelia Top by The Hemming

The thought off sewing jeans can seem daunting if you have not done it before. It is a project that will take time but the sense of accomplishment once you finish is amazing. These jeans are probably the best jeans I have ever made. I took my time and the details and finish are really satisfying. These jeans are a make that I am truly proud of.

Video Tutorial on how to sew the Sia Dress – View D unlined.

Video tutorials on how to sew the Sia Dress – view D unlined are now up on my website and ready for viewing and sewing along to.  You can click here to access the tutorials.

Sia Dress PDF Pattern

Part A takes you through the preparation stages where I share tips about fusing, making notches and drill holes. Then the fun part begins, sewing the bodice. I go through each step in detail and again share tips on how to achieve a great finish with your dress.  There are a ton of close up images on how to prepare and finish your binded neck edge to perfection.

Sia Dress PDF Pattern

Part B takes you through preparing the waist ties and sewing on the waistband of the dress. I share tips on how to achieve the perfect turned point on your ties and how to ensure your center front bodice pieces line up exactly at center front.

Sia Dress PDF Pattern

Part C takes shows you how to construct and insert the tie sleeves. Part D is how to sew your skirt with tips on sewing a stretch free pocket. Part E is connecting your skirt to the bodice and all of the finishing touches like inserting the perfect invisible zipper, sewing a beautiful double turned hem and sewing on buttons using your machine.

Sia Dress PDF Pattern

This is also the big reveal for my latest Sia Dress which I love. It has been made in a printed Anique Floral linen from Potter & Co. It is the perfect composition and weight to make an unlined version of the Sia Dress. If you are an intermediate beginner this type of fabric is perfect to sew a Sia Dress and start building on your sewing skills. And now that the video tutorials are here you will have the perfect support network to help you through this s sewing project.

Sia Dress PDF Pattern

The Sia Dress PDF Pattern is available by clicking here. The pattern comes in US2 to US22 or AU/UK 6-26. It has options for lining and comes in a mini or midi length. The pattern cost $AU12 which is a little less than $US8 at today’s exchange rate.

Sia Dress PDF Pattern

I really hope you find value in the video tutorials. I am always here to help if you have any questions that are not covered in the tutorials. You can get in contact with me via Instagram or clicking here.

Sia Dress PDF Pattern

Adjusting the Sia Dress bodice pattern

Over the weekend I created a series of videos on how to adjust the Sia Dress bodice pattern pieces.  I am very new to creating this type of content so please provide feedback on how I can improve this content moving forward.

The adjustments covered include:

  1. How to increase the V neck to create a more modest front bodice.
  2. How to shorten the front bodice.
  3. How to increase the front bodice.
  4. How to reduce the amount of fabric in the front pleat for a smaller bust size and how to increase the amount of fabric in the front pleat and front bodice at centre front for a larger bust size.

I have provided an introduction of the bodice to provide an understanding of how it was drafted and a summary of all of the adjustments at the end.

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Instructions include how to adjust the back bodice piece where necessary and also your front lining piece so all pattern pieces marry up.

Goodluck and please email me if you have any additional questions about adjusting the Sia Dress Pattern. I am here to help you achieve the best possible fit of this pattern for your body.

To video tutorials are available through the main menu or by clicking here.

The Sia Dress PDF pattern is available by clicking here.