We’re about halfway through March and I’m seeing signs of Spring everywhere! The cherry blossoms are in bloom all around me, the air has that perfect spring smell, and the temperature is getting warmer and warmer each day. My family and I have been spending so much more time outside over the last couple of weeks, and it has made all of us so happy. (Of course, now that I say that, we’ve got a full week of rain on the forecast. Whoops!)
Now that the weather is getting nicer, I’m able to start thinking about sewing more about spring dresses than warm and cozy sweaters. Earlier this year, I chose this fabric as part of my “Monthly Make My Stash” project, but I wasn’t quite sure what I would make! I purchased this fabric a couple of years ago, before I was comfortable with sewing knit fabrics, and it has sat on my shelf ever since. It is so beautiful, and I really didn’t want to cut into it until I knew I was going to love what I made. So to help me challenge myself to make sure I finally sewed it up, I made it my March project!
I made another version of this dress pattern back in autumn, and it turned out beautifully. I love the deep V-Neck of the bodice, and it is hard to argue with a circle skirt (unless it is windy outside… In which case, leave that baby at home!). When I started thinking up what type of silhouette I wanted in this fabric, the Tres Belle Dress seemed a perfect fit.
I knew that as Spring warms into Summer, the ¾-length sleeves that I used on my previous version would not be ideal. Although I wanted a sleeve that offered less coverage, I have always felt that the standard short sleeve makes this dress a little sportier looking than I’d prefer. I started looking through some of my other previous makes for ideas, and ran across my True Beauty Dress from last summer. Essentially, the sleeves from the True Beauty Dress are tiny circle skirts for your shoulders… So I figured why not mash these shoulder circle skirts on with my waist circle skirt and go for maximum flowiness?
The end result is a dress meant for twirling and swaying. I’ve worn it to the park with my little girl, on a date with my man, and around the house – it felt perfect for every situation! It is one of my favorite pattern mash-ups that I’ve done, and it required no adjustments to my pattern pieces – I simply substituted the True Beauty sleeve pieces for the original Tres Belle sleeve pieces and followed directions as written from there!
I did stray from the written directions in my hems, however. I chose to leave the hems of the sleeves and the skirt unfinished for maximum swinginess. I’ve done this with a few knit dresses in the past, and I normally like the result. The nice thing is that if I end up deciding I’d prefer a more finished and polished look, I can drag this bad boy right back to the sewing room and add hem details in no time!
What are you sewing up now that the weather is warming up? I’m finishing up a pair of sweatpants and a long-sleeve tee this week, and then I will be in full Spring and Summer sewing mode. Dresses, skirts, short sleeve tops – you name it, I’m there! Knit dresses like this are some of my favorite summer garments – I love the breathability and comfort that a cotton jersey provides!
Though the pattern used in this post was generously provided to me by the awesome team at Ellie & Mac, all words and opinions expressed are my own, as always! Links provided throughout this post may be affiliate links – if you choose to purchase any products through these links, I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you. This simply helps me justify the costs of my sewing habit and the time it takes to share it with you!! Happy Sewing!
- XX Elizabeth