Moon Bunnies Hazel

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At the stream in Seoul

Another long overdue post! I’ve had so many visitors in the last few months (five since March), that my sewing time has taken a serious hit– since I finished this dress in early May, all I’ve made is one pair of pajama shorts. Hopefully after my visit to California at the end of this month, I’ll be able to get myself back into it– I still think about sewing (and stalk sewing blogs) as much as ever, so I should work harder to turn thought into action.

Yes, it’s another Colette Patterns Hazel. When I made this dress, I wanted something that wouldn’t give me headaches trying to figure out pattern adjustments, something that I could dive right into for a quick and satisfying result. So of course, Hazel. This is my fourth one! It really is such a perfect summer dress for me, with its comfortable and flattering fit-and-flare shape, pockets, and bare shoulders. Because I’ve made it before so many times, I’ll just refer you to my Manhattan Hazel, if you want more information on fitting (and you can see my third Hazel here).

To keep it brief, this dress was made up in size 16 (bodice and skirt– two of my versions used the size 18 skirt, but I’ve decided I like the less gathered, slimmer size 16 better), hemmed a bit shorter, and with 3 cm or so added on top to raise the neckline and cover my bra.

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As for the fabric, the main one is Cotton & Steel Mochi Moon Bunnies in Navy, from fabric.com. There’s still more available here .I fell for this print as soon as I saw it, and just knew I had to get it on my body ASAP.  There’s still some in stock, if you’re interested. It’s a quilting cotton, which really is perfect for this dress!  Yet another reason I love the Hazel dress– it makes a great canvas for quilting cotton prints.

For the contrast panels and pockets, I used plain black quilting cotton. I didn’t consider doing contrast panels until I was actually cutting out the main fabric, when I suddenly realised that I’d have to think about print placement. I was worried that it might look a bit weird if I didn’t match the print, and was in no way inclined to make the effort of figuring out how to make that work with the triangular bodice panels. So I opted for black contrast panels, and then just matched the print along the back seam (and tried but made a silly mistake and failed to match it along the side seams). In the end, I think I prefer it with the black anyways, and I’m very happy with this product of laziness design feature.

The photos were taken during a day out in Seoul with a friend. The ones above are along Cheonggyecheon stream. Below are some action shots– a cheeky afternoon mojito cocktail bag in the Daehangno neighbourhood, and cycling around Yeouido on a different day.

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Florascape Hazel

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Yet another Hazel Dress by Colette Patterns…. I’m not going to say too much about it, because this is the third I’ve made so far! Promise my next dress will be a different pattern!

I tried mixing it up a bit by altering it to have a sweetheart  neckline… it’s not very obvious in these pictures, but it’s there.

altering the center front bodice piece of the Hazel dress for a sweetheart neckline

altering the center front bodice piece of the Hazel dress for a sweetheart neckline

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Here’s some details:

Pattern: Hazel dress by Colette Patterns.

Fabric: Florascape in Moonstone by Leah Duncan for Art Gallery Fabrics.

Size: 16

Modifications: shortened on the pattern by 2 or 3 inches, neckline raised by 3 cm (?), then altered to a sweetheart neckline.

Okay that’s enough. I’ll leave you with some other awkwardly posed pictures of the dress…

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With my lovely photographer :D

With my lovely photographer 😀

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Manhattan Hazel

So! My first post with actual clothes in it. It’s about time. I haven’t got detailed photos, unfortunately– I always feel so awkward being in photos alone, and generally try to avoid it. Next time, I will try to be more diligent. Maybe.

Here it is, a summery sundress which I’m quite happy with:

Colette Hazel Dress

The Pattern: Hazel Dress by Colette Patterns

The fabric: Quilting cotton–  Manhattan in Dusk, designed by Leah Duncan for Art Gallery Fabrics. I bought mine from Bobbie Lou’s Fabric Factory.

Hmmm… What is there to say about this dress? I wasn’t sure that such a busy print would work out for me, as much as I loved it. But it’s definitely grown on me, and I now really love this dress. I know that quilting cotton for clothing is a bit of a sewing faux pas, but I think it makes a really lovely summery sundress, as long as the bodice is quite fitted. Sure, it wrinkles like crazy, but It’s also the easiest possible fabric to sew with– perfect for a novice like me– and stands up well to the rough treatment I put my clothes through. I generally have a Survival Of The Fittest laundry policy– no special treatment, a regular wash cycle and minimal color sorting– so the weak and fussy are doomed to perish. Quilting cotton can make it through!

As for the pattern, this is my second Hazel dress. Granted, it’s only the third pattern I’ve sewn. The first, Colette’s Pastille dress, was a fitting nightmare. The second, Sewaholic’s Hollyburn skirt, is my skirt true love, and has been been made up in three different versions already with plans for a fourth. My first Hazel, also made up in a quilting cotton (pictured below), went really smoothly (once I got the fitting sorted…well enough…), and is now one of my most worn garments. So I knew I needed more!

Colette Patterns Hazel Dress

My first Colette Patterns Hazel dress

Here are some notes on the pattern:

Fitting:

–size 16, with all bodice pieces raised by 3 cm along the top edge so that the top of my bra where it meets the straps wouldn’t show. I’ve read other people making similar adjustments– I think the pattern either assumes a much perkier bust point, or is simply cut too low at that spot!

–In this second version, I also used the size 18 skirt for a more gathered result, and shortened the hem on the pattern by 2 inches.

–I also used bias tape all around the top, instead of facing. I’d recommend this– no worries about facing staying in it’s proper place!

–pockets were sewn with a narrower seam allowance, for more depth.

What I love: The flattering fit of the bodice, the wide bra-strap-hiding straps, the deep pockets.

Remaining issues: The waist is too long (designed for someone taller, no doubt– I’m just over 5’2″!), but I’m not sure how to alter that without messing up the triangle point. But it’s not a huge problem, I doubt I’ll bother trying to do anything about it. Also, it’s a size too big at the waist — thanks to some bustiness, I always fall into a different size on top than the rest of me! I really didn’t want to tackle a FBA on this unconventional bodice construction, and just went with the bigger size. I’m on the fence about whether to take the waist in on my next version. On the one hand, a smaller waist might be more flattering, but on the other the bigger waist leaves plenty of room for big-meal-expansion, and is super comfortable!

Well, that’s more information than anyone needs… so I’ll leave it here, with two more pics of the dress in action.

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