Mochi Staple Scout

April Rhodes Staple Dress + Grainline Studios Scout Tee mash-up, in Cotton and Steel Mochi Lawn

I’m not pregnant… the dress just tends to puff out at the belly a little. The effect isn’t so bad in real life!

Confession: I finished this dress about two months ago. I took the photos about a month ago. Oops.

I’m wearing it today, and that’s what reminded me to finally put this up.

The dress is another “Staple Scout”– a mashup of the April Rhodes Staple Dress and the Grainline Studio Scout Tee. I won’t say too much about it, because construction-wise it’s exactly the same as my first Staple Scout, so you can read up about it here if you’d like more information. I love my two Staple Scouts– they make a perfect go-to summer work dress. Super comfortable with their shirred waistlines, and made of cool, comfortable cotton lawn, pull one on and I’m ready to go. I really should make more, because I have to keep reminding myself not to wear them TOO often! On my own time, I definitely prefer dresses which let me feel the sun on my shoulders and upper chest. However, my job as an elementary school English teacher in Korea requires me to cover all that up– and these dresses are a good way to do it.

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The only difference between this and the last one is the fabric. It’s called Mochi Floral Lawn in teal, by Cotton and Steel. I bought mine from fabric.com, it’s temporarily out of stock but they’re due to get more in. I definitely recommend it. Compared to the Kaufman lawn I used for the last dress, it’s not quite as soft, and it’s smoother. It seems to wrinkle a bit more.  But these differences are very slight, the fabric really does seem to wash and wear well. If this is the standard quality for Cotton and Steel lawn, I’m definitely going to be keeping an eye out for more in a different print!

I’m cheap with my fabric, and always want to use as little as possible of it so that I might be able to squeeze another project out of the leftovers. I recently made pj shorts from the leftovers of my other Staple Scout, so I’m expecting to do the same with the leftovers from this one, as both were 3 yard cuts. For that reason, I used a fat quarter of quilting cotton for the pockets– a kind of pale sea green (the colors are a bit off in the pic below, and I’m terrible with color names anyways, maybe that’s not the right thing to call it) which I had lying around. I think it goes really well with the colors in the dress.

The pictures were taken by my friend Anna, who was visiting me from Canada, as we walked around the Naksan Art Village in Seoul. I had another friend come visit me literally two days after she left, so all up I had visitors staying with me for about a month– had a really great time, but didn’t leave any time for sewing!  Now I’m visitor-less for the next three weeks or so and trying to get myself in gear to get some sewing done in this window of opportunity, because after that I’ll be busy for a month with two visitors and a trip to California!

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Mojave Scout

Mojave Voile Grainline Scout TeeI’m terrible at this blogging thing… I actually finished this top nearly a month ago. It took me this long to get around to bugging a friend into taking pictures for me!

Actually, I’ve worn it around friends a bunch of times– but every time I somehow manage to forget. Anyways, here it is. As you may have guessed, it’s a Scout Tee. Please excuse the wrinkles– I actually DID iron it right before leaving the house, but the photos weren’t taken until an hour or two later. And the fabric, for all its virtues, wrinkles like crazy.

I’m not going to say too much about the construction of this top, because it’s exactly the same as my last scout tee. Like the last one, I finished the neckline with store bought bias tape– still no luck in getting it to lay flat! Anyone have any tips? I even under-stitched this time! Oh well, it doesn’t bother me too much.

I really love this fabric, and have had it set aside for a while. It’s cotton voile by Art Gallery Fabrics, the print is called Mojave in Illuminated. I bought mine from Bobbie Lou’s Fabric Factory, it seems there’s still some available. It’s silky-smooth and slightly sheer but not so much that I feel a need to wear something underneath. It’s also lovely and light, perfect for summer. Although, it was a bit of a pain to sew with– The seams kept wrinkling, I fiddled around with stitch length and tension but couldn’t find a great solution. I probably needed a finer needle/thread, but I didn’t have those on hand, and wasn’t willing to wait until I could get them online/go mime at the grumpy old dude at the tiny local sewing shop until he guessed what I was after (I really need to learn some Korean sewing vocabulary!). I ended up following a tip I read online and gently pulling it taught as it went through the machine, that helped a lot– although, I totally forgot to do that when I was zig-zagging the side seams. They ended up super wrinkly, so I had to go back and unpick them… ever tried unpicking  a tight zig-zag stitch? Not fun. Here’s a before and after for that… hard to tell in the pictures, but it was a definite improvement.IMG_2168IMG_2169

Reviewing the me-made clothes hanging in my closet, it seems that blue with a splash of yellow is definitely my thing. I’ve decided to just go with it…. the dress I’ve got in the works right now fits that theme too.

I still don’t like the loose-top-and-pants (or in this case, shorts) look on me. Reviewing these pictures, and those from my last scout, confirms my fear: they make my boobs look huge (and not in the right way), and totally hide the fact that I DO have a somewhat defined waist. So this will probably be my last top for a while– at least until I find the perfect pattern. I’m on the hunt for a fitted top pattern– perhaps something with princess seams– with a high neck and short sleeves, which I can wear tucked into a high waisted skirt for work. But it’s not urgent– I much, much prefer wearing dresses. Now that I have two me-made top options (in fabrics that I LOVE), I am totally satisfied that that box has been ticked.

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Curious about the writing behind me? I believe it says something along the lines of “car garage”. Haha exciting, I know.

Mountain View Staple Dress

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Yes, another Staple dress. I know pattern repeats are a bit boring, but when you’re really happy with a garment that you’ve just made, and you’ve already gone through the trouble of figuring out pattern adjustments, I feel like it just makes sense to make another one!

At least my very next post won’t be a staple dress (although I won’t promise not to show you another make involving the staple dress pattern soon…).

I didn’t do much different for this dress– it’s just the same as my last staple dress, right down to the same type of fabric (but in a different print). The one change I DID make from the last version is to use plain black quilting cotton for the neck binding (I think the pattern calls it a facing?), as well as the pockets. I did this because I love this fabric so much, I wanted to save as much of it as possible! I think I now (hopefully) have enough left over for a pair of pajama shorts.

black quilting cotton used for the arm/neck bindings and pockets

black quilting cotton used for the arm/neck bindings and pockets

Since it was my second time using this pattern, it mostly went by without a hitch… until I got to the neck binding. Even though I stay stitched, I must have stretched it out somehow when I tried the half-made dress on, because the facing strip was too short! I had to stretch it to make it fit, and it took quite a bit of fiddling to get this right.

So, here’s the most basic info:

Pattern: Staple Dress by April Rhodes

Fabric: Mountain View double gauze by Nani Iro, bought from Miss Matatabi (no longer available from this store in the same color)

Size: XXL at the bust graded to XL at the waist/hips

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More information in the post for my last staple dress 🙂

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