Chambray shirt-dress

I made a shirt-dress for the PR contest, starting with the Closet Case Patterns Kalle, out of a stashed chambray fabric I bought from a fabric shop that no longer exists.  Here is the guts of my PR review:

Recently I realised that cut on sleeves in wovens don't really work for me. I end up just ripping the armholes as I am getting about my daily business. I modified this pattern to make it sleeveless. I raised the armholes and took the armhole shaping from one of my self-drafted patterns and added a bust dart. 

I have a pear shaped figure, and decided that a flared dress would be more flattering than a straight one, so I flared the side seams from size 10 to size 18. The armhole I used was from a flared top. Because of the flared shape, I thought the curves of the hemline were a bit too severe, so I made them more gentle. (I actually love the original hem curves, which were the reason I bought the pattern, and I have copied them onto another pattern, but this time around I thought more gentle curves were better suited to the garment.

I made a muslin of the dress bodice to test my armhole and bust dart, and although I didn't sew a collar into the muslin, I could see that the neckline was not sitting well. Mostly the front neck was too high. Rather than correct it and play around with another muslin, I used a neckline from the Stylearc Angela woven blouse. Then instead of trying to measure and workout which of the Kalle collar bands and collar fit my new neckline, I just used the band and collar from the Angela as well. The Kalle has the shoulder seam at the top of the shoulder, which is unusual in a yoked shirt. Typically, the yoke extends to the front a bit, I think because this is a high wear section of the shirt. I move the shoulder seam forward, to match the Angela blouse, which made it easier to use the notches on the collar band.

I added an extra button to the placket because I decided to use multi-coloured buttons and wanted to fit one extra colour on the placket.

I like the idea for using a bias binding to finish the hem, and I have used this on other dresses, but when I was looking up the collar instructions on Craftsy, I found the section on sewing a curved hem, and so followed Janet Pray's directions for that too. It helped that my hem curves were more gentle than the original pattern.

In summary
Kalle - starting bodice, placket and pockets
Stylearc Angela - yoke, collar band, collar
Self drafted - armhole, bust dart, hem


  1. I love your dress. It's perfect for the summer!

  2. My kind of shirt dress. Lovely natural fabric and so cool and breezy. All the changes you made has made for a lovely finished dress.

  3. That s a really cute one! Love it! It looks great on you!

  4. Great dress! What great photos too. I love the coloured buttons especially. I laughed at Faye's comment re summer dress... or winter here!

  5. Looks a lot like the Alder shirtdress now! :) Looks nice!

  6. Just had to stop by again to tell you how much I like following your sewing journey and being inspired by what you make! I have nominated you for the Mystery Blogger Award - http://georgiasew.blogspot.com/2018/07/the-mystery-blogger-award.html