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Sewing A Short Set: Pattern Hack

Updated: Feb 16

Every year since 2018 I have been sewing a gown for my birthday, and in 2019/2020 I decided to do a whole collection. I have really enjoyed this tradition, and it has been something I look forward to every year. It really fuels my creativity. I am so excited to share the first part of my 2023 Birthday Collection with you today. This collection has been a labor of love. A lot of blood (needle and pin stabs), sweat, and sleepless nights went into this collection, and it was worth it. Let's dive right into this journey of using Simplicity 9545 as my canvas for creating two breathtaking looks.

Look 1: Floral Crepe Top and Matching Shorts

For my first look, I sewed View B of Simplicity 9545(The website keeps you up to date on sales, so keep an eye out). This pattern's simplicity, coupled with its potential to be customized to your liking and creativity, was just what I needed to bring my vision to life.

The Top: I found this floral crepe fabric with a dramatic black background at Fine Fabrics in Atlanta, I instantly fell in love with it at first sight. The crepe fabric, with its lovely drape and fluidity, brought the blouse to life beautifully. My bust size lies between 37 and 38, and my waist is a 30, so I cut a 14, and it was the perfect fit. Its breezy movement made it a perfect choice for View B's loose and flowy design.

The Shorts: To complete the look, I decided to create matching shorts, using McCalls 7961 View B (It's here on Etsy in a size 14-22 for $8). Since the floral fabric has so much drape, I decided to back it with a more structured fabric, like the woven suiting fabric I found at Jo-Ann. While I adore the final result, I must admit that they turned out slightly shorter than I'm accustomed to. A lesson learned for next time, as I plan to lengthen them to better suit my personal style. Despite their shorter length, these shorts were a breeze to sew, and I cut them in size 14 to fit my 40" hip.

Look 2: A Tiered Ruffle Dress Hack!

I couldn't resist the temptation to take the Simplicity 9545 pattern to the next level. To do this, I hacked the pattern into a fabulous tiered ruffle dress. First, let me gush over this gorgeous fabric. This rose-embroidered denim from Jo-Ann was love at first sight. I purchased it in the spring waiting for the perfect pattern to use it with, and man was this it. Don't you love when the pattern and the fabric choice go hand in hand with each other? I do, and this was the perfect match-up.

The Hack: I used pattern piece #8, as directed in the instructions, but I cut the two pieces of fabric ten inches long. To create the second tier, I repeated this process, cutting four more pieces, each ten-inches long as well. I followed the pattern instructions to construct the first two parts of the top, then matched the side seams of the bottom tier of the dress to the side seam of the first layer. Next, I lined up the other seams with the center front of the first gathered layer and the back. It was an easy hack that added a little touch of whimsy to the design. The dress was so fun to wear. It moves well, and the embroidered roses make me smile so big. I am absolutely obsessed with this dress.

Final Thoughts

This first part of my 2023 Birthday Collection is a testament to the power of creativity in sewing. From the floral crepe top and shorts to the tiered ruffle dress hack, every piece is a labor of love, a push to think outside the pattern envelope, and a step toward bringing my vision to life. I feel so fueled and motivated to create more, especially with my favorite season approaching, fall.

Stay tuned for more of my Birthday Collection, coming next week. Comment below and let me know what you think?

Thank you for joining me on this creative journey! Make sure you subscribe to my blog, there are some fun and inspirational creations coming your way.


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