August 02, 2019

Summer Basics Tank Dresses

My adventures in garment sewing continue with three new dresses. I used the Summer Basics Tank and Dress pattern from Love Notions. The pattern includes a tank top, a knee length dress and a maxi length dress.

I started with this berry pink solid cotton/spandex jersey knit fabric with the intention that it would make a wearable muslin (which translates to mean it would be a test version, to allow me to tweak the fit, but I hoped it would be good enough to actually wear) and it worked 😊. The dress is incredibly comfortable!
Summer Basics dress | DevotedQuilter.com

My only complaint about the pattern is that it doesn't include pockets, which seemed like a big oversight. So, garment sewing expert that I am (ha!), I decided to add inseam pockets. Well, that didn't go well at all! I added them fine, which was a nice boost to my confidence, but they looked awful. The added weight made the pockets gape open weirdly, which was not a good look at all. I asked in the Love Notions fb group for suggestions for how to fix it, only to be told that this was exactly why pockets weren't included in the pattern. Well, I guess now it makes sense! I ended up removing the pockets, which kind of stretched the fabric so there are ripples in the side seams, but it's still much better than the pockets were.

The back of the skirt is made in two pieces, to conserve fabric, so even the maxi dress can be cut out of 2 yards of fabric, up to the XL size.
Summer Basics dress | DevotedQuilter.com
Initially, I had measured myself to figure out which size to cut, which meant I cut out an XL bodice grading to a M skirt. It fits fine, but there's a little extra fabric under the arms. I wondered if I could get away with a smaller size for the second one, so I asked Paul to measure me to see if there would be a difference. Ummm, yeah, there was. Turns out I actually need the L bodice, not the XL, which explains the extra fabric on the sides.

For my second dress I used this gorgeous wavy stripe fabric to make a maxi version and I love wearing it! This is also a cotton/spandex jersey knit, which feels like a slightly heavier than usual tshirt fabric. I cut two inches off the length, but I may only take an inch off next time.
Summer Basics dress | DevotedQuilter.com
My SIL saw me wearing the dress and asked where I bought it, so you know I loved that 😊

When I sent a picture of the maxi dress to my mom, she said she thought she needed one, too, so I told her to bring some fabric with her when she came to visit. She chose a polyester/spandex jersey knit, which drapes really nicely. She wanted the maxi length as well and because the dress is so simple to put together I was able to get it all done in a day.
Summer Basics dress | DevotedQuilter.com
Mom brought other fabrics for me, too, so there will be more summer basics dresses and/or tank tops before the summer is over. And I bought myself a couple of other fabrics for a different dress, also from Love Notions. Wearing something I've made myself feels wonderful, even if there are still some imperfections because I don't fully know what I'm doing yet.
Summer Basics dress | DevotedQuilter.com
Thanks to Mom and Dad for taking these pictures, especially to Mom for being a much more knowledgeable photographer than I usually have for pictures of me wearing garments I've made. I'm still not a comfortable model, but her photography skills made up for it 😊

8 comments:

  1. Good work and lovely dresses.

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  2. Aww, I love this post and the dresses Leanne. Such a nice project to work on with/for your mom too. You both look beautiful and so happy. Seaming the back of the skirt is a great idea too. Do you use a serger? I can't remember if you have one. Well done on these dresses!!!

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  3. These are great pieces. How sweet that your Mom was a help during this project. It’s avtempting one, that’s for sure.

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  4. The dresses look fabulous Leanne, you should definitely be very proud of yourself!

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  5. Love those dresses! The pattern looks great - and I especially like the fitted bodice. I'm with you about the pockets...

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  6. wonderful dresses; how brave you are to make several.
    Sue Mac Donald, Moncton

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  7. Great job! I like each and every version.

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