Lace Dress

A while back, I did an outfit with a lace dress I hadn’t properly introduced. I think it’s time to fix that mistake!

I like casual, comfortable dresses best of all. Elastic materials are my favorites. Though they can be challenging to work with, elasticity makes a dress fit snugly without restricting movement. For this dress, I chose a polyester lycra. I usually go for natural fibres such as cotton and viscose. This fabric had a really smooth finish that appealed to me. I paired it up with left-over elastic lace and skin toned mesh. I used a similar combo in our Lace Top. Lace is a see-through material, and requires another layer beneath it. Layered on skin tones, you can easily hold on the translucent quality while making a garment completely decent.

I didn’t use a pattern for this dress. I actually cut it with just a measuring tape as a guideline. When sewing for myself, I often do this. After years and years of clothing myself, I’m pretty familiar with my measurements. My lace dress has a long, A-lined hem, and a spaghetti strap bodice. Combining our Spaghetti Strap Top and Jersey Skirt will yield a very similar outcome.

I only had a little bit of lace left, so I made the bodice short. The bodice ends an inch or two above my natural waist, so this dress may prove tricky to accessorize with belts. Sashes and waist corsets will probably work, but narrow belts might not look so good with this one.

I attached the straps while binding the bodice. The binding is a bit wider, and as I didn’t want it to roll under the straps, I used buttons to secure the straps. The buttons create a nice, subtle detail.

This lace dress turned out a little bit more elegant than I expected. This isn’t the kind of dress you run errands in, but it’s perfect for evenings out. Sleeveless dresses are a bit cold during the winter, but long-sleeved tops make them a lot more appropriate for the freezing temperatures. Shrugs are also a great way to stay warm.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my Lace Dress! Don’t forget that now’s a good time to grab the patterns that can be used to create a similar dress since all The Basics are on sale!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Purple Dress

Once upon a time, I found a piece of jacquard-patterned fabric from a flea market. It was a nice enough quality, so I figured I’d find a use for it. A few years later I found it in my stash, apologized to it for my lack of attention, and obeyed its wish to become a purple dress with puff sleeves. Since our featured product this week is also puff sleeved, I figured this would be as good a time as any to show you this pretty purple dress.

 I wanted the dress cute and pretty, so I could wear it to family gatherings. Mom tends to frown when I show up to Birthdays wearing all black. Biting the bullet and wearing something “colorful” is a small price to pay for her happiness. That was even more reason to make the dress both cute and comfortable. I chose to sew the dress a bit looser at the waist, and to give it lace details. I started with the neckline, which I cut quite low, and bound with satin bias tape with some lace. 

I used lace to hem the dress. Though the fabric is quite dark, it’s still quite purple, and I wanted to tone it down a bit. A strip of narrow lace doesn’t change the color much, but it does make it easier to add black accessories. Lace also gives the dress an even more feminine feel.

My Elna had some serious issues with this material. I don’t know whether it was the slippery surface or overall texture, but getting it to top stitch without pushing the fabric out of place was impossible. I have a roller foot which should help Elna deal with challenging materials such as everything, but no deal. I ended up top stitching the zipper by hand. Ripping it out three times due to bulging and pulling was too much for my limited patience. It may not be perfect, but at least it’s straight!

The dress turned out pretty much just the way I wanted it. It’s cute, it’s quite far from black, and it’s super-comfortable. I actually wore this to my aunt’s Birthday party last summer, and could eat all the cake I wanted. As an added bonus, no-one looked at my clothes funny.

I really like this dress, but because it is purple, I only wear it those “and would you be a dear and wear something pretty” -events. To show you just how cute it is, and what my uncomfortable smiles look like with it, I styled it up a bit, too.

I chose to wear a tulle petticoat for this look. The dress is quite short, so I like to wear another layer under it. To emphasize the waist a little, I tied a long chiffon belt around me. The dress is girly and cute, so I tied it into a bow. High heels are a must, and I chose these ones to fight back the dress’s cuteness just a bit. I left my hair loose because… well, family-things are the only place where I can leave it loose and not have a bunch of people ask me where I got my extensions.

I really like this look, but it does feel like I’m wearing someone else’s clothes. The photos show it too: in most of them I was smiling a very tight, awkward “let me out” -smile I associate with Mom handing me someone’s baby to hold or pulling me to meet great-aunt what’s-her-name. Pretty, but could I have my black dress back, please?

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my purple dress!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Spaghetti Strap Dresses

As I’ve mentioned many, many times before, basics are a really important part of any wardrobe. Mine consists mainly of dresses and accessories, so it’s only natural that I require a multitude of basic dresses. I hardly ever wear skirts and tops, let alone pants. In that light, it may be easy to understand why my Basic Jersey Skirt and Spaghetti Strap Tops sat in the closet untouched. I don’t like seeing clothes out of circulation, so I turned the skirt and one of the tops into a dress! Spaghetti strap dresses get way more wear in my world than skirts and tops, and I already have loads of outfits planned for this one.

Combining a top and a skirt into a dress is a super-easy project. You simply take a top, cut it at the waist, and sew the skirt onto it. It takes literally twenty minutes, and leaves you with a new, cute dress.

As many people, I’m not a huge fan of vertical seams at the waist, but that can be hidden with a belt, scarf, or corset. I really like this transformed top/skirt-combo. It’s versatile and comfortable, and I trust this will become one of my go-to dresses. Especially after the horrific accident with my favorite maxi dress… 

After putting together the long dress, I decided to need more spaghetti strap dresses. Going through my closet, I noted that most of my short dresses are tight and body conscious. A looser one was in order! I took a piece of thicker cotton jersey, a bit of lace, a pair of wider straps, and our Spaghetti Strap Top Pattern. By lengthening the hem and widening it as much as I could, I gained a short dress with a flowing hem.

Even though I wanted the dress to be a bit less body con, I made the bodice snug. That way, a dress fits comfortably, and stays securely put. I cut the hem to an A-lined shape starting from above the waist to give it more room. A bit of lace turned the dress pretty and feminine.

I used lace to hem the dress instead of going for a rolled hem. This particular fabric likes to roll up if left unguarded, and lace forces it to remain straight.

I love the way this dress turned out. It’s so cute and comfy, and loves cardigans and sweaters!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my cool new spaghetti strap dresses. On Friday, I’ll show you how these two like our Cropped Raglan Top, so stay tuned!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Taffeta Skirt

Once upon a time, I had a little piece of left-over taffeta. It was the basic sort of light taffeta you can get anywhere for 5€/meter, tops. I kinda wanted to make a corselet with it, but taffeta, though it is hard, doesn’t handle pressure that well. Taffeta corsets and corselets require a better quality material, so I opted on making a skirt. I had about half a meter of fabric, so my taffeta skirt was bound to be short.

I wanted a very basic skirt that wouldn’t take long to make. A simple skirt easy to mix and match with all kinds of tops, and even bustle skirts. Instead of picking out a “real” pattern, I used the same idea as with The Crinkle Skirt. With just a long strip of fabric, a zip, and a waist band, this style is super-easy to make.

Taffeta Skirt - this was really easy to sew!

As taffeta frays, and leaves long strands of clingy, fuzzy stuff behind, I used my trusty serger to sew the skirt. I finished all the raw edges straight away to keep from getting covered with taffeta fibers. Then, I used my sewing machine to create a very basic, yet tidy, hem.

Taffeta Skirt - a basic rolled hem always looks tidy.

The original Crinkle Skirt is made with a proper waist band. With this mod, I just took a piece of elastic, and pleated the taffeta against it. I don’t plan to wear this skirt with the waist band exposed, so it doesn’t really need to be that pretty. The wide elastic is tidy enough, though, to be seen, so I do have the option to change my mind about hiding it.

As I chose to pleat the fabric to the elastic without stretching it, the waist band is non-elastic.

Taffeta Skirt - pleated waist is so pretty!

The skirt needed closure. I sewed an exposed zipper to it along with a large button. This solution works with casual skirts, but for formal wear, always use a hidden or concealed zipper!

The skirt turned out really nice, and as I planned, it goes with all kinds of tops and cardigans, and looks super-cute with fluffy petticoats. On Friday, I’ll show a few outfits based on this skirt, along with our featured product for the coming week.

Taffeta Skirt - exposed zippers work for casual wear only!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my taffeta skirt.

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Pretty Basic Ruffle Skirt

Basics are the foundation of any wardrobe. Our Pretty Basic Collection is just about complete. I will create one more knit item for it, but sewing-wise, we’re done. Today, we’re launching the last sewn item to the line! The Pretty Basic Ruffle Skirt comes in five sizes, and is so quick and easy to sew you won’t believe it. Making the model skirt took me around two hours! That includes all the breaks I took to consider how I’d like to write a tutorial for it.

Our Pretty Basic Ruffle Skirt is best made with medium-weight jersey. I used a viscose jersey in a really nice shade of purple. I was tempted to make this in black, but maybe a wild color will be fun for a change!

Pretty Basic Ruffle Skirt - I made this with medium weight viscose jersey

The Pretty Basic Ruffle Skirt is figure-hugging and short-ish. It features an elastic waist, and ruffled hem. This skirt is made with the simplest techniques, so it’s a cool project for beginners, too! Sewing this skirt is really super-easy, and you’ll only need a serger to make one.

I really like the shape of this skirt. It’s cute, feminine, and really comfortable. The Ruffle Skirt loves most kinds of tops, and works as a petticoat just as well as an outer layer. Since this skirt is made with a material that can turn translucent when worn, I do recommend petticoats or thicker leggings with this one. Layering The Ruffle Skirt up makes it warmer, and even fit for winter wear. Our Garter Petticoat will work wonderfully with this one, just like all the Pretty Basic tops! For extra-warmth, add a Crochet Blazer or a Chunky Shrug to the mix!

I hope you’ll have fun with The Ruffle Skirt. On Friday, I’m going to show you a few outfits made with it!

Until then.

Love,

Heather

Yoked Blouse

The new year has begun, and it’s high time to get back in line. Our first featured product for 2018 is The Yoked Blouse. I just realized that for some reason, I’ve been very quiet about it. It’s one of my wardrobe staples, and I wear it all the time, so I can’t understand why! I love this blouse, and would actually like another one, only with bishop sleeves.

The Yoked Blouse is best made with two kinds of fabric. A light cotton blend for the bodice and lower sleeves, and a slightly elastic chiffon for the yoke and upper sleeves. Mixing elastic and non-elastic materials is a big no-no for some sewists, but I say go nuts. Adding a bit of stretch to a garment makes it much more comfortable, and gives it more ease. Mixing stiff cotton with light jersey won’t work, of course, but lighter cotton blends paired with chiffon with a minuscule amount of elastane is a match made in heaven.

The Yoked Blouse has super-long sleeves. They’re cut flared, and finished with a satin ribbon. This tiny detail makes the sleeves both cute and unique.

The Yoked Blouse comes, obviously, with a yoke. I wanted to create a blouse that’s both conservative and revealing. I accomplished this by using a see-through material for the yoke, while keeping the overall design simple. This style has a low mandarin collar, and a lace detail outlining the yoke.

yoked blouse sewing pattern - collar detail

While this is my favorite blouse, it’s been featured in only two outfit posts. That’s going to change next week! In the mean time, I wanted to re-share the outfits already created with it.

A cute, feminine blouse can be styled in many ways. For this look, I chose a super-wide cotton skirt with a high elastic waist. Looking at these two garments next to each other I was certain they wouldn’t look good together, but lo and behold, they rock! It’s always fun to see unexpected companions turn into a kick-ass outfit, and that totally happened here. The wide, light skirt with asymmetric hem goes beautifully with the blouse, and the belt I tied into a little bow brings the cutest element to the look.

This style was a part of warmer party looks. The Faerie Dragon Shawlette adds loads of color to the look, and makes it warm for winter.

The second look belongs to the “and this is how I wear it” -category. Most of the looks I share in the Everyday With an Edge -part of the blog aren’t exactly Me. This is, for me, an eternal dress up -game that as many as possible can enjoy and draw inspiration from. All black and all Goth would leave me with a very limited audience, so I try to tone most of the looks down a bit, or add a dab of color. This is one of the rare looks I actually wear. I love the way The Yoked Blouse plays with our Victorian Skirt and Reversible Corset, and run to this outfit on days when no dress feels just right. This style is always there to save me!

This Victorian inspired outfit features our rarely seen Yoked Blouse.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about our Yoked Blouse!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Grey Dress

Once upon a time, not so very long ago, I found a piece of grey lycra with a really cute print. As you may know, I have a thing about colors, but grey, being just very light black, is sometimes OK. I bought the lycra, brought it home, and asked it what it wanted to be. It muttered something incoherent and I said fine, you just think about it as long as you’d like. Yesterday, right as I’d decided to concentrate on Christmas presents, the fabric had the audacity to announce its desire to become a Pretty Basic Jersey Dress. With a long hem. As I never say NO to fabrics, I cut it straight away, and today, I sewed the lycra into a grey dress.

The fabric really has a super-nice tone, and I’m happy I chose to make a simple dress with it. This way, the color gets a chance to shine.

I made the grey dress with long, tight sleeves. The cuffs are also very basic, but they bring a polished look to the sleeves. I have long arms, so I made the sleeves longer than the pattern calls for.

The Pretty Basic Jersey Dress has a wide, round neckline. For this dress, I made a smaller collar. It’s winter, after all, and I don’t want to freeze to death!

Sewing the dress took 1½ hours, including chat-breaks and general procrastination. The pattern is really very easy to sew, and it makes a basic dress that goes with everything! My grey dress is long, and I achieved this by simple lengthening the original pattern’s hem, and cutting it into an A-lined shape. I have to admit that I’ve made this pattern so many times I didn’t even try the dress on until it was finished…

The grey dress is basic in shape and style. That makes it a wardrobe staple. It can be paired with pretty much anything, and it’s so comfortable you’ll want to wear it all the time.

I didn’t have an awful lot of energy to create a proper outfit post with the dress after sewing it, but I did try! I bravely paired the grey dress with my black lace cardigan and called it an outfit. This look does need a hair-do and some accessories to fully work, but it does show that the grey dress really likes cardigans.

I really like the way these two garments look together. Grey and black belong to the same color-family, and look nice together. The lace cardigan allows for the dress’s color to shine through, and that effect ties these two together.

I believe I’m most likely to grab this dress when going out on a weekend. It is basic enough to wear on a weekday, but something about the print says PARTY to me. I was happy to note that my grey dress also likes corsets and large jewelry.

This look is totally Me. It has all of my favorite elements, and it’s super-comfy not only physically, but also mentally. An outfit is best when it doesn’t force you to squirm and tug at it, and this most certainly doesn’t. I’m so looking forward to wearing it out!

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my new grey dress. I’d like to remind you at this point that our Pretty Basics will all be on sale until further notice, but only for VIPs. Join our mailing list to gain access to special offers!

Until next time!

Love,

Heather

Unisex Wrap Skirt

Long, A-lined skirts work for both him and her. Our unisex Wrap Skirt Sewing Pattern is a perfect example of the styles that can go both ways. And that’s not all: sewn fully lined, this skirt can be reversed for a different look.

black cotton unisex wrap skirt

This sewing pattern comes in sizes 32 – 42. The tutorial included comes with a drafting tutorial just in case you need a larger or smaller size. When making a skirt for him, make sure to double-check the length!

Our wrap skirt is best made with non-elastic fabrics, such as cotton. For an everyday look, cotton lined with anything slippery works best. For the model skirt, I chose black cotton and a beige lining silk in order to add a bit of colour to the dark style. Feel free to use patterned fabrics and delisciously colourful lining materials for a fun, unique look!

When making a reversible skirt, make sure to pick fabrics that have a smooth finish. I recommend two layers of satin or taffeta for a reversible skirt. Materials with a rough surface, such as cotton, tend to stick to tights. To make the skirt as comfortable as possible, steer clear of anything clingy when creating a reversible look!

Choosing different materials alters the appearance of this style drastically. Cotton and twill make a stiffer skirt, satin and taffeta fall softer. For a light summer skirt, you can make the skirt without lining, and use viscose jersey. You can even use leather for this style, be it real or faux. I dug up a few fabrics on Amazon which I like. All of these materials are a bit narrower than the cotton I used, so if you do go for these, remember to calculate how much you’ll need! Also, if you order through these link, I might earn a little extra.

First is the Skull and Roses fabric by Timeless Treasures. I love-love-love this print and it would look fabulous paired with red lining!
Timeless Treasures Skulls & Roses Black Fabric By The Yard

The second one I fell for is Under a Spell by Wilmington Prints. The tan tones make this witchy fabric just perfect.
Under a Spell Large Allover Tan Fabric By The Yard

The last one is a skull print cotton sold by Minerva Crafts in the UK. I’ve been eyeing this fabric on eBay for a while now, and though it would work wonderfully for our wrap skirt, I might sew it into a dress instead. if I were to order some as a Christmas prez for myself.
Gothic Skulls Print Cotton Poplin Fabric White on Black – per metre

Adding embellishments, such as pockets and D-ring details, adds attitude to this basic wrap skirt. Use your imagination, and play with the pattern to make the finished garment totally yours. Fashion is all about having fun, and this pattern offers the change for just that.

I hope you’ll enjoy our unisex Wrap Skirt Sewing Pattern!

Until next Wednesday.

Love,

Heather

black cotton wrap skirt with beige lining

Bondage-Inspired Mermaid Skirt

Mermaid skirts are easily associated to formal parties. The figure-flattering shape can work as a part of an everyday wardrobe as well. Our Mermaid Skirt Sewing Pattern is designed to be just that: a comfortable, stunning piece that works wonders on a weekday.

The Mermaid Skirt is designed for elastic materials. I made the model skirt with a pinstripe gabardine that has loads of stretch. The fabric is meant for pants, so it has a lot of elasticity which makes it comfortable to wear. With skin-tight garments this is an extremely important point. A skirt like this can feel absolutely horrible if made with the wrong material!

Mermaid Skirt

The Mermaid Skirt features bondage-inspired details. I wanted it to have a Gothic feel, but in a sophisticated way. A flattering shape gives the skirt a feminine, ladylike silhouette, while subtle details make it totally bad ass.

Our bondage-inspired Mermaid Skirt features a lacing at the back of the knees, embellished pockets, and shaped waist band. With an option to decorate the skirt with D-rings, the style is versatile and cute in the dark sense of the word. The long, widening hem is trumpet-shaped. This style can be made into a knee-length pencil skirt as well. With a figure-hugging shape, this skirt is designed to flatter an hourglass figure.

The Mermaid Skirt has sewn on pockets. The pockets are naturally entirely optional, but they add an interesting detail to the bondage-flavoured skirt. With a lacing on them, the pockets repeat the detail at the back of the knees, tying the design together. With D-rings, the skirt has a unique, Gothic-inspired look.

Bondage-inspired mermaid skirt pocket detail

For the model skirt, I used pinstripe-patterned gabardine. Aligning stripes was quite challenging: with curved seams, this skirt demands a lot from patterned fabrics. Luckily, gabardines come in a variety of delicious shades of black. And possibly brighter colors as well.

Though the pattern comes with a selection of details, feel free to add more to the skirt. With bondage-flavored garments, there can never be too many embellishments. Try a sewn-on lacing to the thigh, or add chains and belts to the hem. With things like this, only your imaginations sets limits.

Mermaid Skirt with bondage-details

I hope you’ll enjoy our bondage-inspired Mermaid Skirt Sewing Pattern! This skirt will be our featured product this week and the next along with another skirt.

Until next time.

Love,

Heather

Purple Wrap Dress

I’m going to Italy for a friend’s wedding. Actually, by the time you read this, the wedding will have happened. I needed a dress for the wedding, and naturally decided to sew one. I figured it would be quick and easy, but it took more time than I figured. I got the dress done only a day before departure! I used our Sleeveless Wrap Dress Pattern to create my purple wrap dress.

I ordered fabric online two months before the trip, and chose the style one month later. It took me an entire week to muster up enough courage to cut the dress, and once I had, sewing felt like a huge task. This dress needed to be perfect!

I didn’t want to rush sewing the purple wrap dress, so I took my time with it, over-thinking every detail. The style is simple enough, but the finishing touches took a lot of brain work.

Purple Wrap Dress with H&M heels

The dress is long, and needs to be worn with heels. For some reason, I didn’t own a single pair of basic black shoes! I put off finding a pair of heels for far too long. I finally ordered a cute pair from Zalando, and they arrived in good time. Sadly, the shoes had an exceptionally small fit, and were a pain to wear. I returned them, and was left shoeless. Charming spent an entire Saturday with me running around town looking for perfect shoes.

I’m picky, especially when it comes to footwear, so we came out empty handed. Buying a pair from Italy was of course an option, but I want to see the sights rather than shop!

There’s an H&M right next door, and it was our last stop. They had a cheap, black high heeled shoe that was OK, so I just got those. It’s better to buy a not-so-nice pair and stumble upon a nicer pair by accident than to risk it and not have anything to wear.

Purple Wrap Dress - belt detail

I used a thick satin for the purple wrap dress. The material is pretty on both sides, so going with The Wrap Dress Pattern was an easy choice. I could even make the dress without a lining, and not have to worry about the hem or belts revealing a turn-side of the fabric.

I made the belts really long so that I can change the way I tie them. I added a few pleats to where they’re attached to the dress. This helps the belt fit through a small hole on the side seam. It also adds a cute little detail.

Purple Wrap Dress - collar detail

I wanted to do something different with the pattern. The original pattern is a pretty basic sleeveless wrap dress. This version needed to be near-formal, so I made the hem long. I shaped the sleeve gaps a bit, and pretty much got rid of the shoulders. I then added a large collar to the dress.

The satin is a rich, beautiful purple. As I was starting with this project, I figured I might add a bit of black lace to the dress. After the dress began to take shape, I realized the fabric was too lovely to hide. I really like this color, and though I might only wear my purple wrap dress once, I’m so happy I made it for my BFFs big day. The dress is all wrinkled up from sewing in these photos. I hope you’ll forgive me for that!

Purple Wrap Dress

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading about my purple wrap dress!

Until next time.

Love,

Heather