Monday, February 12, 2018

Over-Under - The Overall Dress and Tunic

When I went pattern shopping on Black Friday I found two overall patterns that I just had to get and make for my sister - Simplicity 8487, the 1940's overalls I blogged about last week, and Simplicity 8301, a frillier, girlier, overall and overall dress pattern. I was excited to sew up both patterns, as they looked like fun and would fill some wardrobe gaps my sister had. However, contrary to my blogging order, Simplicity 8301 was up first, because I already had the perfect fabric in my stash!

5 yards of light blue needlecord made its way home with me from a thrift store once upon a time. It had been sitting in my stash for a couple years now just waiting to be turned into something. As soon as I saw the Simplicity 8301 overall dress I knew that I'd found the perfect pattern for that corduroy!

The corduroy had just enough stiffness to hold the pleats in the paper-bag style skirt of this overall dress and make them shine, while still being soft and flowy. I couldn't be more pleased with how this fabric and pattern pairing worked out!

For the facings I used a lightweight peach cotton (with little blue hearts printed on it) from my stash. Looking back I should have probably used a blue fabric to match the corduroy, as the facings like to peek out, but oh well. Those little glimpses of peach are rather fun!

While making this dress, I decided it needed a couple of small additions for maximum wearability. First, it needed a back yoke, rather than the straps just being criss-crossed and sewn into the waistband. So, I cut a triangle out of a scrap of the corduroy to serve this purpose.

 The yoke keeps the straps from shifting around and sliding off my sister's shoulders as they might try to do otherwise.

The second addition I made was a pocket on the front overall bib, because what pair of overalls doesn't have a bib pocket? Clearly this was a mandatory edition! And it was a lot of fun to decide on the pocket shape and embellish it with some fancy stitching! (I always enjoy an excuse to put to use some of the decorative stitches on my sewing machine!)

To tie the entire overall dress together and give it one cohesive look, I also used the decorative flower stitch to hem the skirt, and I adore the finished product!

Now once I finished the overall dress, I was struck by the thought that my sister clearly needed something to wear this dress over. 

Here you get a lovely glimpse of the peach hem facing.
A tunic. Or a short dress. Whatever you want to call it. That's what I decided she needed to wear under her overall dress. And I had the perfect pattern and fabric to make her one.

My sister picked out Simplicity 8511 for herself at the Black Friday pattern sale. At first I was taken aback by the fact she'd picked a sheath dress pattern when she typically loves full skirts, but then I saw the sleeves. So many fun sleeve options in this pattern!

Even with the fun sleeve options however, I was in no hurry to make my little sister a sheath dress, until I decided to make her one to go under her overall dress. I had just enough fabric leftover from my gremlin dress to make it. So I dove right in and picked the double ruffle box-pleated sleeve option. The pleated sleeve ruffles just went perfectly with the pleated overall skirt!

For an extra little fun embellishment I added an exposed blue metal zipper down the back. It was my first "officially exposed" zipper and I like how it turned out!

I sewed up this tunic/dress thing and presented it to my little sister to wear with her overall dress. She was thrilled that I'd used a pattern for her she'd picked out herself! She had absolutely no complaints about this outfit and it's been worn time and time again!

While she loves both garments, the overall dress in particular has been a favorite, and I think she's worn it with just about every shirt in her closet! It goes over everything, just as overalls should. I suppose one of these days I should get around to making her the pant overall version of this pattern as well, and see if it is equally as loved.