Monday, September 26, 2011

Shirtdress stripes with a white collar? How About a Sewing Workshop Now Shirtdress?

I just love the striped looks in the Fendi spring 2012 collection.   I don't care for the apron looks or some of the other funky looks,  but the stripes and bands and ribbons of fabric as design elements are amazing.    I also like the crisp linen looks with contrast collars and bands at the hemline of the skirts and dresses.    If you're looking for some design inspiration, take a look:   Fendi Spring 2012 RTW on NY Magazine .   I really like the neat preppy look with a twist going on here.     Both these looks reminded me of the many variations myself and others have done using the Sewing Workshop's Now Shirt Pattern.     I like the two looks in the photos below --- the first one is a shirtdress look and the second one look could be achieved by layering two Now Shirts - one as a blouse and the other a jacket.

I've made the Now Shirt as jackets and shirts but not yet as a shirtdress.   So I got to work yesterday, and pulled out this blue and white stripe shirting and a piece of white Swiss cotton that would make a nice collar.       I'm sewing this up today so will be posting photos soon.   I know this is spring sewing but I just had to play with this look, and I'm sure the weather in Florida next month will be perfect to wear it when I go to Louise Cutting and Linda Lee's workshop in Winter Park.

 I printed out a large photo of the dress, and drew a placket look about 12" down.  The placket  below that will sewn together leaving a small pleat like the Fendi dress.   That gives me an opening to put the dress on, plus the lower portion won't pull open as it would if I put buttons all the way down the front.   As shown in the photo of the fabrics,   I'll finish and encase the edges of the sleeves and hem by sewing on bands with the stripes horizontally about the same width as this dress.   
Click on photos to enlarge
This morning, before cutting out this dress,  I called Linda Lee at The Sewing Workshop to ask her opinion on widening the shirt pattern at the bottom.    My final length of the dress portion without the horizontal band is 35" and the width would be 44" straight down.     She suggested adding the back pleat of the Zen Shirt pattern that adds 4" and possibly add side godets if I wanted the look of the original.    I had already worked out a soft front pleat that would be open below the front button placket so that adds another 3 + inches.    I figured that would be enough and I didn't want more going on at the sides.        
I'm almost finished with the dress except for finishing the buttonholes and the bands.   The Now Shirt is completely finished with French seams so no serger is needed.    Lots of planning and pressing but all the numbers added up and it's looking good.   Here are some photos of where I left it.   I think it looks great.   After I put it on to check the fit, I may stitch the back pleat down farther.    More photos on Flickr.


  1. What a wonderful idea! I love the look.

  2. Another winning idea, Terri. I always enjoy seeing what you are creating. Thanks for sharing.

  3. I'm so glad you're feeling better and once again inspiring all of us. It is a joy to watch and learn from your observation of great designs and then your implementation using patterns available to us, sometimes already there in our bounty. I think bounty is such a better word for stash. Anyway, thanks much.