Skip to main content

Made by a Fabricista: A Chambray Shirtdress for Spring

I'm a little late to the chambray shirtdress party. Last spring, it seemed like every sewing blogger on the planet sewed a chambray shirtdress at some point. I had every intention of doing so at that time, but it seemed like most of the chambrays that I'd felt either didn't feel beefy enough for a dress or were a little stiff, and I was worried about the lack of drape in a dress.

McCall's 7084 in chambray
 
A few weeks ago, Fabric Mart posted a lovely indigo blue chambray, and I snapped up the chance to obtain a few yards, thinking that I might have finally found my perfect chambray. As of this posting, they're nearly sold out, but knowing Fabric Mart, they'll get something similar in. I feel like I lucked out this time around; it's the perfect weight and hand for a shirtdress--a substantial enough weight for a dress without feeling like blue jean denim.

Chambray for a shirtdress
Now that I finally had my perfect chambray fabric, I had to select a pattern. I hoard shirtdress patterns like they're in danger of disappearing from the face of the earth, so I had quite a few in my stash to select from. Given that my fabric wasn't super drapey, I wanted to avoid gathers or shirring (several of my shirtdress patterns have shirring at the shoulders to add shaping and design details). I also prefer a skirt that's at least A-line in fullness over a straight or pencil skirt.

I ended up choosing McCall's 7084, which was released about a year and a half ago and has been sitting in my pattern stash for nearly as long. I chose this pattern for the shoulder princess seams (easier to adjust for a very large bust) and gored A-line skirt (easier to fit when you have a tummy and a large bum).

M7084 technical drawing (from McCall's website)
If you like a dress with a really swishy skirt, this patterns also has views with godets inserted between the skirt gores. As you can see, and as to be expected, there isn't a lot of twirl factor with an A-line skirt:


The twirl test
M7084 also has several sleeve options and the option of either a traditional or band collar. I prefer to keep my necklines as open as possible, so I went with the band collar. I also chose the rolled-up, tabbed sleeves just because I liked the style/detail.

Overall, the pattern fits as expected. I started with my usual Big 4 size 22 and altered from there. I made my typical Big 4 adjustments: Full Bust Adjustment (FBA), lowering the bust point, full arm adjustment, and a broad back adjustment. I went with the shorter view of the skirt (I'm 5'2"), and the skirt hits just below my knee--my favorite skirt length.

M7084
Just to add a bit more detail to a solid blue dress, I used white contrast top-stitching on the collar, sleeve tabs, button placket, button holes, and hem.  Amazingly, I did not need to do a "large booty adjustment" (for my ample behind) on the back of the skirt, and it still hangs level.

M7084 - rear view
Overall, I think that this is a great basic dress for spring. The fabric is a nice weight, and given that I used sleeves, I'll be able to wear it to work without freezing under my office's air conditioning. The neutral dress color also means that I can throw any color jacket or cardigan over the dress on days where I need to layer. And now that I've made all of the fitting alterations for this pattern, I am looking forward to making quite a few more shirtdresses while the weather is warm!

~ Michelle from Happily Caffeinated

Comments

  1. I love it and you look great1

    ReplyDelete
  2. Great review and great dress. Fit looks fab.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Love this dress & the fit is perfect! This looks like a classic that you'll get lots of wear from, either layered or by itself.

    ReplyDelete
  4. I love it--looks great on you too!

    ReplyDelete
  5. Really great review. You did a really professional job on your dress, which looks great on you!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Wonderful dress! Looks very nice on you!

    ReplyDelete
  7. You made a lovely dress that fits very well ! I am planning my shirtdress make so I enjoyed your post.
    Best Wihes,
    Gail

    ReplyDelete
  8. ACK!!! I love this dress! It looks great on you. This is next up on my sewing list.

    ReplyDelete
  9. Wow, looks great. Nice job!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Thanks for leaving a comment! All comments are reviewed before posting to help us eliminate spam. Your comment will be posted within 24 hours.

Popular Posts You Might Like

Made By A Fabricista: Fall Capsule Wardrobe with Pattern Emporium

Hello fellow fabric lovers! At long last the very best of all seasons has commenced and I'm ready to embrace the impending chill. When Fabric Mart held their sale for 65% off knits (!) I had a ridiculously fun time curating a little collection for myself to sew into a wardrobe that would be perfect for both warm and cool days since fall likes to tease with temperature changes. Can you even believe this whole stack (and thread!!) came in just under $50?! Mind blown. I wear a lot of light wovens in summer to keep cool, and switching to more cozier knits really marks a welcome change in my wardrobe.  There are many designers I simply adore, but the reason I chose Pattern Emporium's patterns for this project is because the garments are already created to pair well with many other designs in the collection. Since I've previously sewn all of these particular items and own just about the entire expanse of PE's patterns, this was a relatively easy decision and I had no doubts a

Made By A Fabricista: Chanel Inspired Boucle Jacket

I've always admired the iconic look of a Chanel Boucle Suit Jacket. The Chanel Jacket style is versatile and classic. Over its rich 100-year life span, the jacket has appeared with collars, zippers, buttons, pockets, trim, fringe, and many other variations. It is worn by everyone from movie stars, royalty, first ladies, and just everyday women. Why? Because the luxurious silhouette, boucle fabric, and tailored fit look great on everyone! Having admired the Chanel Boucle Suit Jacket for most of my life, I set out to acquire one. After a few Google searches for Chanel jackets and a glaringly steep $6,000 price tag (believe it or not, that was for pre-owned Chanel.) I knew the only way I'd ever wear a jacket like that is if I made one. Enter in $50 of fabric from Fabric Mart, $30 in notions, a $10 sewing pattern, and my Chanel dreams could become a reality.  I started my Chanel look-a-like jacket by researching sewing patterns that would help me capture that iconic look. I wanted

Made by a Fabricista: My Olive Green Tamarack

Hello everyone! I hope you all are having a great week! I am here to share my latest make, a Tamarack Jacket from Grainline Studio . This pattern has been out for a while. I am so late to the party, but better late than never, right? I am super happy how my Tamarack turned out! Are you ready? Let's go! Fabric Making an olive color jacket was one of the items on my wish list for a while. Unfortunately the quilted jacketing I used has sold out. When I saw this plaid flannel , I thought it would be pretty if I placed the red on the cuffs. I wanted the red to peek out when I fold over the cuffs. Pattern Alterations I used size 6, shortened 2" for the bodice, and shortened 1" from the sleeve. If I make it again, I would add 1" back to the sleeve. (I am 5'1")  That way, I can fold over cuffs, but I don't lose the length of the sleeves. Also, I would probably go with one size bigger to wear with more layers of clothes underneath. When I made the sample jacket,