Saturday, August 17, 2019

Dressing the teen: what I learned up to now

Sewing for our eldest has become a little challenging, a very rewarding challenge because it gives me new insights about fitting garments. A few weeks ago, I showed you the shortened Vallis women dresses that I sewed her. Today, I am giving you the teen body take on the Optimum and Litore woman.

After getting such a huge succes with the women Vallis by simply shortening the bottom of the bodice, I tried to do the same with the woman Litore. This was not the same instant success. The finished bodice was gaping a bit at the chest. The fix I did to make it perfect was easy though, I simply shortened the straps at the shoulder about 2 centimeter, one centimeter on each side. This way I did get a perfect fit. I used the A line skirt from the pattern but had to remove the entire hip curve. If you make a woman Litore for your teenage daughter take a good look at the high hip measurement.

The blue dress with flowers is the first Optimum that I made. Because she is between child and women patterns, I dared to see how the dress would fit her. The Risu child version fits her very nicely. The Optimum without adjustments was not a success. Her developed chest was showing too much from the side. I tried to fix it with adding a dart inspired by this hack from the Sofilantjes page. I had done that in the past with a Solis with a similar problem and then it was the perfect solution. At first it seemed to work (it looks great in the pictures) again, but after wearing it for a few hours the Art Gallery fabric that I used seemed to behave differently. It widened a bit, again giving some gaping.

The perfect way to make the Optimum teenage proof is doing the one layer Optimum light hack, the bunny dress with red is my first version. This hack can now also be found on the Sofilantjes page. The band under the arm pulls everything nice and tight but still very comfortable. No gaping what so ever. because of the success with the hacked Optimum I decided to redo the light blue dress. I added a band only around the "armhole". It worked perfectly, no picture though. She had to pull on the dress 5 times before I decided to fix it all with a band and we had already made perfect pictures, so she was not up for that again. Maybe later on Instagram.

What I have learned so far is that bands seem to work very well with developing chests. A small summary regarding Sofilantjes dresses. Risu, and probably all child dresses with sleeves fit fine. The woman Vallis only shortened at the bodice is a winner. The Litore women needs some strap shortening as well, but it is best to test this on your model. Taking in the straps is easy, just cut off the first seam and resew. The Optimum child dress fits best on our teen if I use the Optimum light hack.

Saturday, July 13, 2019

Mix and match with the Risu

Last month, the Risu dress pattern released. During the release post, I showed you the two straight Risu's that I sewed. The Risu has the same waist as the Solis, Montis, Litore etc. This opens up all kind of mix and match options. In this post I am showing you the dresses that I sewed for a wedding that we had in June.

Let's start off with twirl. For the dress of our youngest I combined the Risu bodice with the Solis full circle skirt. The Hilco fabric that I bought on sale at Joyfits was the perfect match for the circle skirt. The picture is printed two ways on the fabric and this worked very well with a circle skirt that turns  images on the side of the skirt sideways. I put one of the images central on the front and am super excited about the whole look of this dress.

Our eldest got an Art gallery fabric from Joyfits, blue is her favorite color. I made her a size 12 on the child chart. I first made this flower dress and after that I realized that I might have to move to the women chart. The dress still fits perfectly, that is why I love sewing with jersey, but taking her developing body into account is better for the long term. After I sewed this flower dress I therefore sewed these much earlier posted teen dresses.

Monday, June 24, 2019

Project Run and Play shop: Foliis pattern

Last month the 20th season of Project Run and Play took place! A while ago Project Run and play decided to create a web shop for patterns that the contestants used. Anne from Sofilantjes participated this season and besides the Risu that released last week, she also used, the Foliis in her look. Both will now be part of the Project Run and Play shop and to celebrate, I created three garments with the Foliis pattern.

I sewed the Foliis trifecta, all three options, when the pattern was released, and I thought that it would be nice to again sew several garments to show the versatility of the pattern. The Foliis can be used to sew a short jacket, a long jacket or a dress, all three with a hood. The pattern comes with long sleeves and 3/4 sleeves.

Our middle one loves jackets and with Dutch summer it is great to have layer options. The long jacket is straight from the pattern, I did not make any changes. It has pockets and the outside is super soft, so of course she did not want to take it off after she tried it on.

The Foliis is designed for heavier fabrics, which especially makes the jacket options stand out more. With my short jacket I did a tiny hack, I made it into a fully reversible garment while using two regular jersey's. This way the jacket gets more texture and has double wearability. I did not change anything with regard to the pattern pieces to make it reversible. The hood is always double, due to reversibility I also cut an extra bodice and sleeve pair. If you add the hood like this you do not have to keep any other turning whole than the one in hood. This clearly will be one of the favorite pieces in her wardrobe.

The last garment that I made is this short dress. Like I wrote before, our middle one strongly prefers vintage length dresses. She often wears them with shorts as well so I kept the dress a bit shorter than the pattern prescribes. I decided not to sew the dress straight from the pattern but to use this hack and to make short sleeves. The hack is super easy, you cut the front bodice on the fold (while removing seam allowance) and add a neckband. I love the contrasting pockets in the dress option. The dress option normally has a zipper in the middle of the bodice which gives even more options for color blocking.

All fabrics where new in my stash this month except for the ribbing. The yellow drops and penguins are from Textielstad and the blue stripes from Joyfits. The Project Run and Play shop is celebrating the new arrivals with a site-wide sale.  You can save 20% on any purchase with the code newpatterns20.  You can also save 25% off your purchase of 3 or more patterns with the code newpatterns25.

Finally, want to win a pattern of your choice from the PRP shop?  Head over to my Instagram, follow me and Project run and Play and comment on my Foliis pictures for your chance to win!

Thursday, June 6, 2019

Risu release

Today, Sofilantjes releases the Risu dress. The Risu's eye catcher element is the back. It looks great and due to the smart construction it does not fall open. The Risu comes with long sleeves and 3/4 sleeves with a fun color blocking finish and simple hemmed short sleeves. It has a sweet overlap on the front neckline and a skirt that finishes with a wide binding. The stitched on pocket is cool to add some extra contrast.

The Risu waist fits the skirts of the Solis, Litore, Montis and gathered skirt from the Mantica. Which means that there are a lot of mix and match options. I already sewed two of those dresses as well, but those I will save for next week.

The Risu is a true diva dress, or at least I feel our kids look very serious and grown up in their Risu's. Perfect for fancy occasions, but the skirt is wide enough to play in as well.

I sewed the Risu for our youngest from a remnant after sewing this shirt. I was surprised to see how little fabric I needed for this dress. It really makes a huge difference that the skirt does not twirl. The dress for our middle one is sewn with an Art Gallery fabric that I recently bought at Joyfits.

I really like the sweet neckline detail. The neckline is in two pieces and they overlap in the front. The Risu is on sale now for 5 US dollar until June 10, 8:00 h CET. As always you can find the Risu in the Sofilantjes webshop.

Sunday, June 2, 2019

Blending and hacking the ultimate easy teen summer dress

Although I can sew a lot and do not mind sewing easy pieces, I also sometimes enjoy buying pieces in a clothing store. Two weeks ago, I went with our eldest and noticed that width wise she fits in the smallest adult pieces (size 34 was even too small!!), but that due to her length the shoulder straps of the sleeveless dresses that we wanted to buy, were way too long. The sleeveless child dresses had an absurdly large armhole and very loose fit, several centimeters of her tank top were showing under her arm.

She has reached the phase in between child and adult which I had noticed with my sewing before. Last year, I made her a Solis and ended up having to add darts because the armhole were gaping.  She is too developed for a child patterns and too short for adult patterns.   Especially, when wearing sleeveless this issues shows, so I decided to try a child/adult blended dress.

Adult patterns are tighter than kids' patterns, so even though she did not fully reach the Sofilantjes' adult size table yet, I was curious to see how the smallest adult Sofilantjes would fit on her. I wanted to make her a Vallis and the chest width of the pattern piece of the size twelve was very similar to the smallest adult size, so I took the plugde and blended.

I took the adult piece as my base. I kept the shoulders and armcycle of the adult piece exactly the same because the height of the arm cycles seemed similar. I did have to redraw the waist bigger though. The size twelve kids is wider, as can be seen on the size table as well. I used the size twelve waist to determine the needed with of the adult pattern piece. I also used the length of the size twelve bodice to determine the length of the bodice. Because I did not change the arm cycles, I did not have to recalculate the arm bands. I did draw a high back neckline, just because it is slightly more versatile, so I did have to recalculate the neckband. I also raised the front neckline with an inch.

I started out with a test dress, because I had no clue how it would fit, the bodice of the child pattern is significantly different from the adult pattern. I used a scrap and some matching uni fabric. I used the half circle skirt from the Regina  It was a perfect fit, so I immediately sewed a second. One from my recently acquired inspirational fabric pile from Joyfits. So, if your daughter has started to develop and has a chest of 76 cm or more, and you own both the child and adult Vallis, I suggest you also blend. It was easy. Now she has a dress that fits perfectly and does not show her tank top.