The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2 – Converting a top to a dress

PatternImage 5001 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress The Summer Breeze Top is appropriately named as it is such a light and breezy top to wear. To me, there is nothing better than taking a garment off the hanger, looking inside and seeing pretty finished seams. It just makes me feel happy when I know that the inside of my garment looks as pretty as the outside. Pretty finished seams and French seams go hand in hand in my book! If you have never given French seams a try, you are going to love them, and I think you will be surprised by how easy they are to sew.

I’ve chosen a piece of fabric that I’m calling Psychedelic Egg Yolks for my sew along garment.

photo 01 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dressIt’s a lightweight, silk like polyester that should make up into a fun dress.

Not only is the Summer Breeze Top a lovely blouse, it also translates beautifully and easily into a dress. There are only 2 pattern pieces that will need adjusting, the back,

photo 02 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dressAnd the front.

photo 03 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress

There are 2 pattern pieces for the front, but the main body that will need to be lengthened is just 1 piece.

photo 04 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress

In order to lengthen the pattern, take note that the last 2” of the pattern angles in. This is so that when the hem is turned up, it will lay nicely against the inside of the garment. In lengthening our pattern, we do not want to follow that angled line as it might make the bottom of our skirt a little too tight for walking.

photo 05 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress

What I recommend doing is squaring a line across the bottom of the pattern. This will become a guideline.

photo 06 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress Tape a piece of paper to the bottom of the pattern. I added 18” to the length of my pattern. Remember, you can always cut off the excess, it can be much more difficult to add back!

Take your ruler and square a line down from the guideline that was drawn in on the pattern.

photo 07 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dressAt the hemline, the amount of difference between the pattern and what is added on the side is minimal, but by the time the angle reaches the hemline, it would be considerable had we followed the angled line.

photo 08 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dressThe back has been lengthened. Do the same to the front pattern piece. Once you have lengthened the front and back pattern pieces, cut out your fabric.

The seam allowances for this pattern are 3/8”, perfect for French seams!photo 09 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress

To sew the French seam, begin by placing your pieces wrong sides together. This seems strange at first, but trust me, it will all work out in the end. Sew the 2 pieces together with a 1/8” seam allowance.

photo 10 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dressOpen the sewn pieces with the finished seam side facing up. Press the seam to one side, do not press the seam allowance open.

photo 11 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress

Now, fold the pieces together with the seam line along the edge and press the seam line. This will give you a nice crisp edge for sewing.

photo 12 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress

Note that the wrong side of the fabric is now facing out. Sew along the seamed edge with a ¼” seam allowance.

photo 13 The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2   Converting a top to a dress In the above picture you see the right side of the garment in the top portion of the picture and the inside of the garment in the lower portion of the picture. As pretty on the inside as it is on the outside!

All of the seams on this garment can be finished with a French seam except for the front accent piece where we will add all of the gathers. A French seam could be done, but it might get a little complicated.

Next week we will sew up the ties, attach them and take the plunge into attaching the accent piece and adding the gathers. So next week will be a big week!! In the meantime, decide whether you would like a top or a dress, get your pattern cut out, and sew the center back seam with a French seam.

And, be sure to check out the video portion too of the Summer Breeze Sew Along. Rhonda will show you more on how to make French seams.

Remember to visit the Flickr page, you can find it here, Flickr Summer Breeze Sew Along. We love to seeing your fabric as well as your progress!!

Until next week, I hope you are catching a few cool breezes during these hot summer days!

Rhonda Buss

Rhonda’s Creative Life

 

 

About Jill

I write for the Sew News and Creative Machine Embroidery blogs. I love sewing, vintage and would love to get a comment from you!
This entry was posted in Sew Along - Summer Breeze Top and tagged , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to The Hot Patterns Summer Breeze Sew Along Week 2 – Converting a top to a dress

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