Hi! Welcome to my latest post for the Minerva Crafts Blogger Network!

This month’s post was inspired by the Instagram #sewtogetherforsummer party hosted by 3 IG seamstresses, @sewsarahsmith, @sewing_in_spain and @rocco.sienna encouraging you to sew any shirt dress pattern of your choice. I love a good challenge so was quick to look for a suitable pattern.

The Pauline Alice Cami dress Sewing Pattern beckoned to me with its 50’s styling, nipped in waist and full skirt. It appealed even more once I’d printed the pdf and found it totalled only 15 pages! And also, pockets. Pockets are always a winner.

Because the skirt features a gathered waist which I’m not always thrilled with (not a fan of added bulk) I wanted a really light weight fabric to mimimise bulk. This Atelier Brunette Fabric beauty fitted the bill perfectly.  You can see here how light it is and yet the bodice appears totally opaque once on.

I decided to make the skirt a little more sun proof (ie less see through) by lining it in a very light cotton muslin I bought very cheaply. I couldn’t match the unusual main shade of the main fabric, but picked out the blue splodges perfectly, which I love!

The added light fabric just makes the whole thing feel more swirly without adding warmth or bulk, which the small girl in me is thrilled about (got to love a twirly skirt, am I right?)

The fit is achieved through an invisible zip on the side seam; the only thing I’m not thrilled about here is that the pockets are then placed below the bottom of the zip, meaning they feel quite low and at risk of peeping out below the hem! I need to think about this next time and see whether I can move the pockets up without impacting the zip.

I followed the tutorial on Sew Sarah Smiths blog when it came to sewing the collar and it made it a total breeze. I’m so pleased with the final outcome here, it’s definitely the nicest collar I’ve sewn yet.

The lining was simply two further rectangles cut 1” shorter than the skirt pieces. It’s simply overlocked to the waist seam which is fine with such light weight fabrics. Other than that, I followed the pattern instructions and found them very straightforward to follow. I did a very narrow hem as I was a little worried about how short it looked; I’m glad I did, it’s fine as it is but I would be tempted to add a little to future versions.

I tested the dress out last weekend in Munich; in 30 degree heat and blazing sunshine, I felt stylish and cool and also failed to burn to a crisp as I usually do. I can’t overstate how fantastic that is for this pasty red head!

And look, you can even twirl in it!

Thanks for the fabulous supplies, Minerva!

Becca x