My Sew Sew Life-New Shirt From Vogue 9299

The title that I really wanted for this story was: My Vogue Pattern Shirt With Added Pockets and Really Hacked Sleeves. But that was just a tad too long.

This pattern is described as a top. It has a full buttoned front, with a yoke in the back. There are two different sleeve options, which in the end, I didn’t use. Overall, I would rate this pattern as intermediate.

I’m dividing my story into two parts. Part One will be how I want to wear my new dress/tunic/duster and Part Two will be all about the sewing nitty gritty.

It Began With Some Stripes

The idea for this top/dress started over two years ago, when I was lucky enough to attend a Kaffe Fassett lecture in Laurence, Kansas. Those of you who knit, quilt or needlepoint will be familiar with Kaffe. For those who aren’t familiar, I hope you visit his website and check out his incredible sense of color and design. Also, a good selection of his fabric can be found at Fabric.com (US) and The Cotton Patch (GB).

After his presentation, there was a pop-up shop of his quilting fabrics available for purchase. I fell in love with a fabric pack of woven stripes and brought it home, not really knowing what I was going to do with all those “fat quarters”. But I thought the stripes were beautiful and had to have them. Unfortunately, these particular patterns are discontinued, but you can still find a few on ETSY.

A month later, thrift shopping with my oldest daughter Michelle, I ran across a piece of denim looking fabric and when I got home I deposited it next to my Kaffe Fassett stripes. An idea was born. I would use the denim for the base dress and use my stripes as much as I could for contrast.

Ideas For Wearing My Dress/Tunic/Duster

Dress

The pattern is described as a top, but this was designed for a taller person than myself. I think I can, if desired, get away with wearing this as a dress. If, at home, I would just wouldn’t put a belt on and go easy wearing.

I think mules must be going out of style. I wanted a pair of brown crock embossed and was only able to find this one pair at DSW. They are new-picked them up in October. I had some points and got them for $17.

I really like it with my wider thrifted brown belt that I’ve had for years with nothing to really wear it with.

Tunic

I can also wear it as a tunic with the self fabric belt That came with the pattern. I had fun piecing all the different stripes for the belt.

The Marc Fisher boots are old but I picked up my blue and brown leather Francis Valentine bag during their Winter clearance last March. I have a soft spot for Kate Spade. She was a Kansas City girl before she was a designer. Francis Valentine was her company she started before her untimely death.

Duster

By far, my favorite discovery and way to wear my top is as a duster. Throwing it on one day as we were leaving to go grocery shopping, I glanced in the mirror and was smitten. I love dusters but never had one for everyday. My gut feeling is that this is how I will mainly wear it.
If you look closely at the bottom you can see the bias tape I made from the stripped fabric to use as hem facing.

I guess today is my Covid shopping “fess-up”. I have always wanted a Brahmin Duxbury satchel. When Macy’s had them on sale for 25% off last April, I took the plunge. I’ve been carrying it all this Fall and it has lived up to my expectations. On my feet are second hand Vince Camuto booties that I found on eBay in October. I love them. They are so sleek and for me the heel is perfect.
The Back

I loved playing with all the stripes. There are five different patterns shown on the back (with the collar up.

And Now It’s Time To Change Gears

The Sewing Nitty Gritty

I decided on the Option Vogue Pattern 9299, which is a simple shirt dress with a pleat in the back. The design also includes an optional self fabric belt. At the start, my heart was set on making view B, but that didn’t work out (more about that later).

In the end, I added some things, took away some things and did a serious sleeve hack.

What I Added

Darts

As usual, I added bust darts. Bust darts serve two purposes. Because they add much needed fabric in the front, they will gaurantee that the garment’s hem is even. I’ve never understood the clothing industry’s decision a few decades ago that women just didn’t need darts. Darts also makes a garment lie much flatter in the front. It could be said that stretch knits would need less darts, but I draft darts for my stretch knits too.

Pockets

I have decided that when I can, I am adding pockets to my dresses and tunics. They are so handy. This is a feature that I feel the clothes industry and pattern makers have cut out to save time and money and I for one have decided not to settle for that!

Since I usually finish my garments with French Seams (this one included), inserting pockets posed a problem. I certainly couldn’t figure it out but it was YouTube to the rescue. I watched a variety of demonstrations to solve this dilemma. To me, many seem to have finishing problems, except one. Global Fashion Workshop with Irina Paukshte came has an incredible amazing technique. You do have to follow through an interpreter but the visual demonstration is great and I had no problem getting the technique down. I did make a practice pocket before I attempted the ones on my dress. This might be one of the most important techniques that I’ve learned in a long while.

Showing both sides of the pocket. I used my stripes where ever I could.
What I Took Away

It’s always important to look at the suggested fabrics that the pattern was designed for. The fabric used is very tied to how your garment will drape and behave. However, if you are stubborn, like I was with this dress, you might have to make some changes. The pattern suggested fabrics such as cotton shirting and rayon challis. My thrifted fabric was a heavier sort. You can’t tell from the pattern drawings, but there is a lot of fullness in the top. Because I was working with a heavier fabric, I decided to take out a good amount of width down the sides and was not sorry for my decision.

One Unplanned Sleeve Hack

As I mentioned earlier, I originally had my heart set on View B with the ruffle sleeves. So much so, that they were the first thing I made. Oh how I loved those sleeves. I basted them in place and hurried over to my mirror to admire them. Horrors! They looked awful on me and I didn’t have enough of my solid fabric left to create new sleeves or at least, single piece sleeves. As we say around here, “I was up the creek without a paddle”.

But, as we also say, “if life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” I had to sit down, get out my drawing pad and come up with something that would work.

By-By beautiful ruffles-but I just don’t look good in you

I remembered a tunic I made a couple of years ago, Vogue 9089 by Marcy Tilton. I wrote about it in February, 2019 . It had sleeves with cuffs that I loved.

Could I somehow incorporate them into my dress? I could, but with some alteration. Each sleeve would have to be cut in two half’s because I didn’t have enough fabric. Since I had to cut each sleeve with two pieces, why not make a center pleat and insert some of my striped fabric in the sleeves-turn a mistake into a design feature.

Problem-The dress already had set-in sleeve caps. How could I transition the cap to the new section? Maybe a tab? So went my mind to try and solve my dilemma.

This answer made the sleeves pretty busy. But aren’t statement sleeves still in? And I like the peek-a-boo thing going on with the center pleats.

These sleeves had a cuff that I found really attractive

By the time I got to the belt, I was working with pretty small pieces of stripped fabric, but had so much fun piecing them all together. With even smaller scraps, I pieced together a mask-sort of a crazy quilt affair. I still have scraps left and think I’m going to make my two four legged guys ties for Thanksgiving.

This top/dress/duster turned out to be quite an adventure. In the end, I’m very happy with what I ended up with.

That’s the end of this sewing and style tale. I hope you have enjoyed this creative journey of mine. I’m always interested in how many of my readers have sewn during sometime in their life. If you’re new to MeadowTree, let me know.

For me, being creative is like breathing. But, I also was an art teacher for 32 years and so I guess that comes with the territory. What I love about sewing is that we all get to be designers. Even if the pattern is designed by someone else, you still get to pick the fabric, trims and all the other stuff that goes into making something. Even if it’s a simple tote bag, it still reflects you and your personality. You will always make mistakes but that’s part of every learning experience. Believe me, my seam ripper is one of my best friends.

If you ever want to dip your toes into this sewing pond (or get back and swim again), I have to recommend Anita by Design’s YouTube channel. She’s a great teacher and has beginning sewing lessons where she takes you from creating skirts, tops and finally a dress. I have watched quite a few of her sew along classes and think she is just wonderful. Some of the patterns she uses are discontinued but replacements could easily be found.

By the way, have you checked out my extensive list of independent pattern companies?

I am continuously updating it as I find new designers.

That’s finally it.

Take care and stay safe.

25 thoughts on “My Sew Sew Life-New Shirt From Vogue 9299

  1. That was a great job you did there, Terry. I’m very impressed! And I love the idea of wearing your shirt as a duster. It inspired me to try this with a long jeans shirt of mine.
    I’m all busy of upcycling some old pieces at the moment.
    Take care.
    Reni

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Reni
      I had planned this one for such a long time and was taken back, for a bit, when the sleeves just didn’t work. But, I believe having problems makes you creative. I am so happy that it came out a nice as it did. This was a very rewarding project. Could you maybe do a post on your upcycling when you are finished? I would love to see what you are doing.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I love this shirt! Well dress even. Its so versatile and I can see so many possibilities with this piece. You did a great job. The quality looks so high end.

    Like

    1. Thank you, Saundra. Probably, it’s the tunic and duster that I will mainly go with. I ended up really liking the self fabric belt. At first, I thought it would be just too matchy-matchy for me but with the tunic idea, I think it’s perfect.

      Like

  3. You are so talented – this looks lovely on you and the stripes are such a fun addition to the dress! it’s nice you can wear it so many different ways and that you were able to personalise the design to work for you and the material you had available 🙂

    Thanks so much for joining the #WeekdayWearLinkup! Hope that you had a great weekend 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Terri, this is a brilliant piece! I love all the different styling options. And the contrasting striped prints are so cool. I love all those little details especially the matching belt. I really like the dress as a duster and I would probably wrap the pretty belt around my neck as a skinny scarf! You are so creative and so very talented! Thanks for linking with me.

    Shelbee
    http://www.shelbeeontheedge.com

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Shelbee.This is just one of those basic dress down pieces that I think will be a hard worker because it can go so many places. I never thought about other possibilities with the belt. I may play around with that one. Thank you for having the linkup-I always enjoy doing that.

      Like

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