Disclaimer: I received this pattern for free but my opinion, my awesomeness, and fabric is my own.
The Decades Everyday T.L.C. Caftan is out today!!!! I might be a little bit excited.
Let your inner Mrs. Roper out!
The T.L.C. Caftan is in Decades of Style extended sizing (YESSSSS!). It goes up to a 52 inch bust (YESSSSS!). DOS has gone to great lengths to make a caftan that will look stylish and be comfortable. The faux wrap bodice is genius with the waistband. There are ties on the inside to pull the waistband to whatever tightness you want (cheese room!). It emphasizes curves so that a plus sized person doesn’t just look like they are wrapped in a bunch of fabric. There are two options to it: shorter sleeves and skirt or longer sleeves and skirt. It also has pockets hidden in the seam for the side panels and front skirt.
The only drawback is that this pattern needs a huge amount of fabric (edit: Check out the awesome ideas in the sewalong post for using different fabrics!). The full length takes around 6 yards! But the positive spin of that is the stashbusting possibilities! 😉 I am also thinking of making this in tunic length. I could see it being a really pretty tunic.
For the bodice, I made size 20 bodice and did a 3 inch FBA as per the instructions we were given (edit: Also in this post on the sewalong). DOS is going to include them in the sewalong so there is no guessing when making an FBA for this. Even though the size 26 would have worked for my bust measurements, I chose to do an FBA, because I wanted the smaller shoulders and neckline to prevent gaping and I did. There is no gaping for me and the wrap bodice comes up higher as well covering my bra nicely. I did use the size 26 skirt pieces and side panels.
I have no issues with the fit. The only change for next time is to rotate the dart into the shoulder gathers and the waist gathers. I chose not to do that for this version because I was being lazy but with the sheer fabric you can really see the darts so I don’t want that for the next version.
I used white cotton swiss dot with some plain white cotton fabric for the waistbands and the armhole finish as well as the ties inside since I didn’t have white twill tape handy. I added florescent yellow pompom trim to the sleeves and the hem.
Use the code CAFTAN20 for 20% off your order at the checkout.
- Pattern: Decades Everyday T.L.C. Caftan
- Pros: Love the waistband and faux wrap. Love the pockets. Love it all. Love love love love.
- Cons: Only con is how much fabric I need to make all the caftans.
- Make again?: ALL. THE. CAFTANS.
- Rating: 5/5 stars
I’m extremely pleased to announce that Decades of Style has expanded their size range for their Decades Everyday patterns! The Chore Skirt just released today and goes up to a size 26 or a 46″ waist. This means no more grading up for me! When Janet asked me to test the skirt, I jumped on the chance. I’ve been a big DOS fan for a while. The instructions and drafting are great. The vintage style is right up my alley.
The Chore Skirt is not your regular pleated skirt. It has a narrow waistband, side seam pockets with a side seam zipper, and beautifully placed pleats in the front and the back. In the front, there are less pleats than the back for a clean look. The back pleats really give the skirt a lovely look. There are also side pleats that make the pockets and zipper disappear. There is a bottom panel in the skirt that is perfect for contrasting fabric or for using bias tape or lace. The hem is weighted so that the skirt always draped beautifully. The skirt works beautifully in mid to lightweight fabrics that can handle the multiple pleats at the back.
I made my skirt in a hot pink cotton poplin with bias trim above the bottom panel. The skirt went together really quickly except that I originally forgot the side pleats and frantically messaged Janet saying the waistband didn’t fit. She was very wonderful about it, but my cheeks sure were red! With the side pleats, it of course fit perfectly into the waistband. D’oh.
I will need to wear this version with a belt, but that is okay. My gold belt looks fabulous with it. 😉 I made a size 24, but likely should have made a size 22 instead. I was trying to be extra cautious because my waist can fluctuate due to inflammation. Next time, I will choose a size 22. I have visions of making this in chambray fabric or some lovely linen. Or copying this vintage version posted on the Decades of Style IG page:
Isn’t it beautiful? ❤
Here is my gorgeous version! Don’t I match my blog theme perfectly? ❤
Just a note, the belt is styled under the waistband here since I haven’t added carriers yet for the belt.
Look at that swish!
Needless to say I am totally biased because I was already a fan girl of DOS and I got the pattern for free. But in spite of that bias, I really love this skirt and I think it’s a great pattern.
- Pattern: Decades Everyday Chore Skirt
- Pros: Well-drafted pattern and a great size range! The strategically placed pleats are really going to look awesome on a lot of people.
- Cons: I’m not sure I have any cons!
- Make again?: Already dreaming of the next one!
- Rating: 5/5 stars
For Sewcialist tribute month, Gillian asked me to contribute to the blog. I knew immediately who I was going to make a tribute to: Tanya from Mrs. Hughes.
I’ve been following Tanya since 2012. She is one of the reasons I got back into sewing in 2013 along with the other editors at the Curvy Sewing Collective. My adventures in sewing had been all over the place before. I was convinced that sewing patterns were incompatible with curvy women. I didn’t know about FBAs or other pattern adjustments. I still use Idle Fancy’s tutorials on that. I also mostly saw bland clothing out there for plus sizes. Nothing colourful or interesting and certainly nothing with reasonable prices and shipping for a Canadian gal. I ordered some dresses from modcloth and eshakti, but I had to wait for sales. I knew I wanted to sew all my clothes since I bought a sewing machine in 2009, but I didn’t feel like the majority of sewing bloggers reflected my needs. When I started following Tanya, all that changed. Her style was exactly what I wanted to sew! Vintage, colourful, and lots and lots of dresses! 😀
Eventually after a million comments, Tanya and I became friends. She sent me the Decades Everyday ESP dress and Wonder Woman fabric and I knew my tribute to her would include both.
If you don’t know, Tanya is the queen of the ESP Dress. She has several versions in all different kinds of fabric, including her very own Wonder Woman ESP Dress.
I love this dress!
The ESP dress only goes to a 46 bust, though, which meant I had some pattern alterations to do for it. I did a 2.5 inch FBA on the largest size to give me 5 extra inches for my 51 inch bust. With the ease in the pattern, it worked out perfectly for me. I also did a large bicep adjustment on the sleeves. The sleeves weren’t tight, but I wanted a bit more ease of movement. For the future however, I will need to increase the armsyce just slightly since it is a bit tight and high. The FBA added space to the waist. However, I could have made the waist darts a big bigger since the dress doesn’t quite come in enough at the waist without the belt. I also lowered the neckline since I knew that would be too high for me. After a muslin, I did a slight hollow chest adjustment at the neckline. I will also be taking a wedge out of the back neckline too next time.
For the skirt, I was restricted with the width due to fabric constraints. I think the fullness works, though.
I already have another version planned using nerdy Hello Kitty fabric.
While this dress isn’t going to worn to work that often, it will get a lot of wear at cons or on the weekends. Basically any excuse for Wonder Woman!
- Pattern: Decades Everyday ESP Dress
- Pros: Really well drafted dress with raglan sleeves and square neckline. Easy pattern for making alterations.
- Cons: A good size range, but I do subtract meanly for it only going up to a 46 inch bust. Otherwise a 5 star pattern. (edit: Decades Everyday is going up to a 52 inch bust soon!)
- Make again?: Already have my next one planned out.
- Rating: 4.5/5 stars
For the final challenge for Indie Pattern Month at the Monthly Stitch, I shared 8 garments that I made in July! The challenge was called Indie Royalty and involved making 2 or more garments. I guess I am just an over-achiever. Originally, I planned to make two for the other challenges but I never got them finished in time. Summer tends to be a busy time and the end of the competitions just never fell on a date that worked for me. I had friends and family visiting and all sorts of plans that got in the way of sewing. The challenge was due on July 31st instead of the Friday. That meant I got all the things I had planned done. I made the following:
- Blank Slate Barton Shorts in a floral linen rayon blend with cotton lace trim. I’ll write a separate blog post on this later since it is my first time using the pattern.
- Cashmerette Concord t-shirt in Hello Kitty print cotton lycra. I made my usual a 22G/H graded to a 24 at the waist. It’s seriously my favourite shirt to date. I want to wear it all the time.
- Swoon Scarf Neck Cardigan in a lightweight rib knit with white and green stripes. More on this in a different blog post later.
- Blank Slate Oceanside shorts in green rayon linen blend. I made a 3XL again. I compared the pieces to the final pattern version since I made the tester version before and decided to go with the tester version again. It looks like I would need to do a few adjustments to the final version of the pattern for fit so I decided to continue using the tester.
- Cashmerette Dartmouth top in pink monkey bamboo jersey. I made a 22G/H graded to 24 at the waist. I had to shorten the length by about 3 inches. It might have been because the fabric is really drapey and heavy. I love it. It fits perfectly.
- Decades of Style Three’s a Charm Jacket in black jersey. I’ve made the jacket before and really liked it. The pattern is made for wovens but I really wanted to try it in a knit. I love the style. It ends up as a boxy jersey jacket.
- Cashmerette Upton skirt hack. I made a 24. I had to shorten the length to fit it on my fabric. It’s made with green cotton fabric. I gathered the skirt instead of pleated and extended the waistband by 2 inches to get an overlapping back for my closure. I think next time I will shorten the front waistband by an inch and half since it ended up a bit too long.
- Cashmerette Webster dress in a soft pink and white patterned cotton. More on this in a later post.
I love how I accidentally made a nicely matching capsule wardrobe. I bought most of the fabric at the thrift store and it just happened to go together really well. I got the Pink Monkey print locally, the linen rayon fabrics were from fabricville and the cotton lycra Kello Kitty print was from a Christmas gift exchange at a Sewcialist meet up here in Toronto.
These two collages don’t even show every combination for the capsule wardrobe:
I’ll be sharing more information on each garment in the next couple of weeks and probably another Swoon cardigan since I just got some super cheap sheer white fabric from Fabricland for another version. Stay tuned!