Though it may not be apparent on my blog just yet, anyone who knows me from Instagram (or real life!) knows that novelty print cotton dresses are kind of my jam. All of the best novelty prints come in cottons, and cotton was easily the best fabric to learn to sew with because that stuff STAYS where you tell it to. SO for just this reason, I have a pretty decent collection of bright, fun dresses covered in silly designs that I’ve made over the past year and a half.
Want to know the best time to go all out with those novelty prints? Holidays. Truly, what is more novelty than a dress that is only appropriate 1/12 of the year? Not a whole lot. So today, I’m excited to share with you my small (but growing!) collection of Halloween themed dresses. I’ve been wearing these in a pretty constant rotation over the last week or two, and plan to continue doing so until the 31st.
Bonus: Trick-or-Treaters think you’re super great if you somewhat resemble Miss Frizzle in a ridiculously themed dress and a silly wig. I may know this from past experience…
I started this little Halloween capsule wardrobe last year, with my McCalls 6887. This dress was maybe a bit more than I was ready to tackle at the time, but by the end of it, I’d finished my first fully lined dress, my second ever set-in sleeves, an open back, and my first ever buttons and buttonholes! As far as I remember, this was also the first time I put any semblance of real effort into pattern matching. It was all so worth it though, to fully show off these cute little dancing skeletons!
dress: handmade by me
pattern: McCall’s 6887 – View B with View A Opening
fabric: Cotton + Steel Boo Skeleton Dance Black
As Halloween 2016 wound down, a few fun stores put their Halloween fabrics on sale, and I grabbed up some awesome Maude Asbury fabrics from The Cloth Pocket in Austin, TX. I patiently let them sit in the sewing room, until earlier this month when I finally went to town with some more ridiculous Halloween fun.
My first Halloween 2017 make was a By Hand London Kim (my most loved, tried and true pattern). I chose the straight neckline and gathered skirt, and then put my own spin on it by extending it down to a midi length. Before sewing, my skirt length totaled about 22 inches, and then I used about 2 inches of that to hem up the skirt. The almost sugar-skull play on the ghosts is just perfect, and I love the way the dress rides the line between a timeless, classic shape and a silly themed print.
dress: handmade by me
pattern: By Hand London – Kim Dress
fabric: Maude Asbury Spooktacular Boo Black Ghosts cotton
Next, I whipped up a By Hand London Elisalex. This was the perfect opportunity for a wearable Muslin – I have a couple of Elisalex dresses planned for some upcoming occasions, and I hadn’t tested out the sleeved version yet. I used Version 2, and added on a gathered skirt for something I could whip up super quickly. In both this dress, and the Kim dress above, I added on the pockets from the Christine Haynes Emery dress. When better to make a Franken-dress than Halloween? In this case, my skirt was simply dictated by the amount of fabric I had leftover after cutting my bodice. I used the full width of the fabric, and I believe the length came to about 20 inches before hemming. This Scaredy Cat fabric is a great representation of all of the Spooktacular fabric line, and again, the silliness is just the perfect level.
dress: handmade by me
pattern: By Hand London – Elisalex Dress
fabric: Maude Asbury Spooktacular Scaredy Cat cotton
I’ve already got my eye on a few fabrics for next October – I think I need some pumpkins next! What are some of your favorite Halloween prints – do you have something I need to add to my collection?? For now, I’ll leave you with a glimpse at last year’s Halloween costume…
…as well as a sneak peek of what I’ll be wearing to tonight’s costume party! Note the in progress photo… This may or may not be due to the fact that I have yet to actually finish tonight’s costume. All the greatest sewists are also procrastinators, right?? Any guesses as to what character I will be masquerading as tonight? Leave your guess in the comments, and keep an eye on my Instagram for a finished product update!
I hope you all have a fabulous Halloweekend – I know I plan to! Can’t wait to see all of the wonderful Halloween handmades floating around the online sewing community – let me know if you post yours!!
- XX Elizabeth