This is a blog dedicated to documenting sewing self drafted and indie sewing patterns, consuming less, being better to people and the earth, creative exploration, and my life and times in Rochester, NY.

Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice: Fall Chambray Alder Shirt Dress

Pumpkin Spice and Everything Nice: Fall Chambray Alder Shirt Dress



If you know me at all, you know I love halloween with all my heart. Every bit of my heart loves the fall, spooky season, and the sickly sweet feeling of halloween. Pumpkins, donuts, and cooler weather are all in my main wheelhouse. I realize now that this post has next to nothing to do with fall or halloween, but I should probably preface why there are so many pumpkins in these pics. Sam is feeding my fall fire by showing me his fall favorite spots, including this sweet little nursery with pumpkins, a petting zoo, and hay rides. All of my outfit posts will probably be in fall themed areas because I have no self control. 
Also I am fully aware that in the sun my brassy blonde roots look crazy, am getting my hair colored this week, am not going gray for the record.


Okay on to that dress:

As you may remember, I sewed up a floral Alder earlier in the year and totally loved the pattern. This also was the pattern that pushed me over the edge to start performing full bust adjustments on all of my patterns. I'd love to do a comparison post with a before and after full bust adjustment, so let me know if that would be something you'd be interested in. The floral alder had some discomfort and tightness in the bust, so I sized down the front bodice 2 sizes and performed a 1 inch adjustment. 


The Alder proved to be a little tricky with the FBA. True, I shouldn't expect perfect outcomes without a muslin, but because the last one I made just needed minor tweaking, I assumed my usual adjustments would do the trick. There's still a little tightness in the bust, but it's improved definitely. I wasn't expecting the upper chest to be so large, there just seems to be a lot of fabric from above the bust to the collar, and I have no idea how it got there. It's totally a personal problem, and it looks perfectly fine in person. I also think that the lightness of the fabric (more on that later) makes the construction of the upper chest a little flimsier than i'm used to. Other than the upper chest and the little bit of tightness in the chest, I'm very happy with the fit. I cut a size 18 skirt pieces for extra fullness, a 16 back bodice and yoke, and a 14 with a 1 inch adjustment front bodice. I might experiment with a 1.5 or a 2 inch adjustment on this pattern in the future. 


I knew for my next Alder I wanted a comfortable, wearable dress with a really nice chambray that worked with statement pieces like bandanas, scarves, jewelry and tights. I scoured the internet for many moons, looking at fiber content and weight. I finally settled on this Tencel Denim from the Confident stitch. It has a lovely drape and a super soft feel to the hand. I'm so impressed with this chambray, and as a chambray lover I'm convinced I'll see more in my future. 


I have a post in the works about my style shifting from patterns to simpler fabrics, but I feel like this alder is the perfect example. Fun sewing is fun, but wearable pieces in your wardrobe is what sewing is all about at the end of the day. Having pieces like this in my closet make me excited to get up and get dressed in the morning.


Let me know what fall fabrics you're excited to sew and what fall activities you have on your to-do list!

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