Those who follow Cloth Edit on Instagram and who subscribe to the Newsletter saw a progress shot of this dress in Cloth Edit’s ‘Painterly’ linen. It’s a ‘hack’ of the Friday Pattern Co. ‘Saguaro’ bodice / top and the skirt from the Vogue V9253. I’ve made two prior, successful hacks of the Saguaro, although I used the Friday Pattern Co. Davenport skirt pieces in those. I wanted a bit more fullness at the hem (without a tiered frill) and so decided on my ‘go to’, A-Line Vogue pattern. Alas, I was cutting this out late at night, in a rush for the ‘Gather and Stitch’ the next day and made unforced errors. When will I learn my lesson 😆.
I have a YouTube episode on my prior ‘Saguaro’ hacks if you are interested. I just love the Friday Pattern Company patterns and find they have superb ‘hackability’.
In the ‘Saguaro’ the bodice pieces ‘meet’, but as per my previous versions I crossed over the two fronts and stitched them down to avoid gapping. There isn’t a formula for this, you just need to try it on and fit it for your curves. I would recommend cutting out a bigger size though, as you need to compensate for the change in the design. I lengthen the bodice a few centimetres, added a little more length to the sleeves, and finished them with a light green bias tape. I ‘freestyled’ a waist band that was roughly the same circumference as the bottom of the bodice, and wide enough for 38mm wide elastic.
Both the bodice and skirt caused me a few headaches though.
Mistake 1: The Bodice
The bodice was too small😆. It could have been the fact that I didn’t pre-wash my fabric (I know…), or maybe I gave myself a little more width at the side seams in previous versions to compensate for the ‘cross over’, or I am just a bigger size since making the last ones (although the others both fit and I wear them all the time). I think a combo of all three is likely.
I cut wedges from left over fabric (making sure the narrow end was still about 1cm), unpicked the side seams, and sewed the wedges in. This was a lot simpler than I thought and I was very impressed with my ingenuity. I didn't have the seam space for overlocking, so I went 'old school' and zigzagged the edges. See Image Below.
Mistake 2: The Skirt Debacle
In my late night, cutting-out session I completely forgot to consider the lack of ease in the skirt back of the V9253. I sewed everything together before I tried it on, and the skirt just didn’t have enough fullness at the waist, for the style. The front was fine as these pieces have pleats, and by not forming those pleats it provides a nice amount of fullness. The back only has narrow darts, and it just wasn’t enough for the hack.
Once again, the solution was easy, and not as time consuming as I thought. I just needed to unpick the back seam and the back waist band seam and insert a few inches of fabric. As the print is a free-form ‘Painterly’ style, you can’t even notice (unless you’re looking for it’). See Image Below.
I love adding side splits to this skirt for extra swoosh. And there you have it! I hope this gives you a little inspiration to try a little hacking, to persevere, and to sew outside of the rules 😊.