Self Assembly Required

DIY dressmaking + crafts with Emily

A Frilly Tabitha Tee Dress // Tilly and the Buttons

When I picked up a floral viscose jersey from Fabworks Mill last year, I didn’t have an inkling of what I wanted to make with it. All I knew was that the fabric was wonderfully soft and drapey with a good amount of stretch and that the price was too good to resist! I’m not normally one for a floral jersey so it was a bit of a left field choice for me but I loved the colours!

I felt obliged to make something with it – if only to justify it’s purchase! – and decided on another Tabitha dress!

This pattern really seems to be my go to for when I’ve got a piece of jersey I’m not sure what to do with. The Tabitha pattern is from the Make It Simple book from Tilly and the Buttons. It’s a simple t-shirt pattern with a hack option of turning into a drawstring waisted dress. I’ve made it a couple of times already (check them out here).

I knew the stretch and softness of the jersey would lend itself well to this pattern as the dartless semi fitted bodice needs to stretch a little over my bust.

I decided to make it a little different than my previous iterations by adding long sleeves! After adding the sleeves, I still felt it needed a bit more jazzing up for some reason. I wasn’t satisfied with keeping it a plain t-shirt dress!

I opted to add a ruffled cuff to the sleeve hem as a fun way to finish the edge. I used the roll hem setting in my overlocker to finish the edge of a strip twice the width of the cuff which I then gathered and stitched in place.

Even after that I didn’t feel like it was jazzy enough! (I think I’ve become a little addicted to over the top designs and ruffles!).

I decided to do the same to the neckline itself, again using the roll hem setting to finish the edge of a very long strip of jersey which was then gathered and attached. To finish this edge cleanly, I used a neckline binding technique instead of a neckband. Unfortunately for the life of me I can’t remember where I learnt to do this – it was definitely from an indie pattern I’d used before!

It’s a simple enough technique though. Using the stretch of the jersey much like a bias binding, I stitched the band in place, folded it over the seam allowances and then top stitched in place, leaving a clean finish.

I’m not sure if this dress is very “me”, though I feel like that’s to do with the fabric more than anything! Still it’s super comfy and cute – hopefully I’ll actually wear it!

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