Sewing Machines andor Overlockers


I know this is a very simple dress, but I am pretty happy right now! I feel more ‘me’ when I’m wearing this dress!




To me that’s what makes a successful ‘make’– When you feel like you are really showing your personality/personal style in the garment and it fits your lifestyle.

Let me tell you something about my lifestyle:I live in a small apartment in Sydney Australia, I am at home a lot, and right now it is HOT. I love the heat, always have, but it really does feel like I’m living in a greenhouse, so a loose fitting cotton shift dress is just what I need!

I went shorter than I ordinarily would…because the dress is such a loose shape I felt like the short length made it more flattering/youthful.

Material notes:

The pattern is New Look 6225. It’s actually a top pattern, but I always planned to lengthen it into a dress (because I love love love raglan sleeves).

The fabric is a mysterious cotton bought years ago at Spotlight. There was a whole roll of it for sale (over 6 meters) for something crazy cheap like $9 for the roll. I bought that whole roll. That was an awesome day!


Things I love about this dress:

  • This is the perfect dress for hot weather. It’s loose fiting and the fabric is light and breathable
  • The bold ‘geometric print cotton fabric I used. I have made a dress from this fabric before, but I feel like this shift dress works much better with the print!

Things I love about this pattern:

  • It’s a good pattern to showcase a bold print (because it’s such a simple style)
  • Raglan sleeves. More flattering on my wide shoulders AND much easier to sew than the dreaded set-in sleeves
  • No zipper/notions or buttons required! This dress slips over my head. Gotta love that!
  • Quick and easy too make.
  • Wide round neckline. Round necklines are a favourite of mine and suit me better, not really sure why

If you try this pattern do be aware that it has a LOT of ease. I recommend going down a size and/or sewing the seam allowances bigger (in my case 5/6mm further in)

Fitting/sewing notes:


Normally I would be apprehensive about using a ‘new look’ pattern, because the fit of ‘new look’ patterns is often very poor, but because it was intended to be a loose fitting garment I went ahead and tried it.

New Look patterns are is the king of too much ‘ease’. This is why I made a size 8 and sewed the seams allowances at 2cms, rather than the usual 1.5cms (in effect removing 5mm from the seam allowances from all the pieces).

I made view B (with the lower neckline)

I added 9cms to hem of top, in order to make it into a shift/mini-dress

I used the sleeve pieces B,C and shortened the sleeves by around 5cms

I made my own bias binding…

I used a 85cm long bias strip for the neckline. I made it much wider than the pattern suggested (so it was easier to work with).

I didn’t use bias binding on the sleeves, I just turned and stitched them like a regular hem. Truth be told I am not a massive fan of using bias binding. I love the way it looks, but it feels sloppily done when I do it. Perhaps I just need practice!

I can’t remember why I did it, but I added a seam to the center back, rather than cutting it on the fold. It may have just been a more economical use of fabric in this case (it would probably look better cut on the fold).

Seam treatment: I just overlocked them, but this kind of dress that would have been a good candidate for french seams. I’m pretty lazy when it comes to changing the colour of my overlocking thread… I overlocked the garment with white overlocking thread. Yes I am THAT lazy! Sorry.Once I am more professional perhaps I will make the insides of my garment nicer!

I am already planning more dresses using this pattern. I love the idea of doing one where the sleeves are in a contrasting fabric. Fun!

I always thought sewing would save me money. This is clearly no longer the case BUT a hobby that brings me so much happiness is worth the spend.

I have so much fabric that at this point I have to smuggle fabrics into my house to avoid angering the people I live with. Yes my fabric addiction is THAT bad!

First up we have the fabric

Is it wrong I get CRAZY MAD excited just looking at  fabric/textile prints? To further freak you out I actually scanned my fabrics with the scanner  well it’s because my camera is rubbish so it was the only way to show you…

Love Love Love! $6 per meter (3 meters)

I like this but do prefer the green colour-way of this print…

On the day I bought this all the already reduced quilting cottons (including the others in this post)  were half the reduced price but it was ONE day only.

I only had $20 left in my account of this particular day. It was torture. 😦

So of this blue fabric I bought 6 meters at $3 per meter

Orange is my all-time favorite colour and its a vintagey-feedsack-kinda floral print! Love it. obviously.

$6 mer meter (3 meters)

Had to get the red version too

$6 mer meter (3 meters)

You will see I buy almost exclusivity floral prints and this point in time.

I don’t know what it is about me and florals…

Also don’t look down on me because I make dresses from quilting cotton.  I know it lacks drape etc but I like quilting cottons because….

1. Better range of prints/more fun prints

2. Cotton  plain weave fabric is so easy to sew with :).

Perhaps one day I will challenge myself with some nightmare chiffony-something-or-rather but I really prefer tougher fabrics. I live a pretty casual existence in that way.

I just don’t enjoy flimsy fabrics enough to justify the the pain of working with them.

These next two are not quilting cottons. The fabric is an interesting weave  but not sure what you would classify them as and I lost the docket…

$5 per meter or perhaps less

This is just so lovely. the print has an early 70’s look to me. I could be wrong.

I have made a dress in the same print before. The fabric frays to an insane degree but its really soft.

But when I bought this print in a different colour it was full price (about $16.95 per meter) Ouch! I am such a sucker !

I am making this dress (link) in this cute fabric soon so stay tunned.

I think a lot of the yardage was free because I used a voucher I got given. Hehe I said yardage. I only work in meters so that was sort of odd…

Also bought a overlocker/serger from amazon rather than in Australia.  Yippee… Had to buy an electrical converter for $20 though.

I was looking at the babylock imagine but I don’t really have over $2000 to spare so I made a compromise…

It’s pretty basic. But with shipping and the electrical converter it was $270.

If I bought a very similar brother model in a shop in Australia it would be over $400. How crazy is that?!

The BurdaStyle Sewing handbook (also from amazon) I seem to like the pattern variations that don’t have tutorials the best 😦

Above is the Colette Sewing Handbook. The instructions in the one are excellent/super clear.Also the dress in the above picture is just my cup of tea! So Gorgeous! Must Make….