Friday, July 26, 2013

renfrew parade v2

It's been over a year since I used this pattern, but here are a couple more Renfrews, woohoo!

First up, my dress!

It's taken me forever, but I'm finally getting around to posting this Renfrew dress.  I went to a wedding in May, and of course needed a new dress to wear.  I busted my butt getting this made in time, and thankfully finished quickly, by my standards at least.

This was a fun make for several reasons, 1) It was my first attempt at turning a Renfrew into a dress, 2) It's also a maternity Renfrew, 3) I just love the fabric

 gathers detail

For turning it into a dress, I added the desired length, tapering it from the hips to the knees.  Let's just say it wasn't a perfect process, but I figured it out somehow.  I was very careful with the fabric/pattern placement, not to highlight the bewbs, only to realize after cutting that I put a big 'ol bouquet on my belly AND my booty, hahahahaha!  Like either of those areas need extra attention!

belly bouquet

booty bouquet

For turning it into a maternity T, I used So, Zo's tutorial found here.  I'd been wanting to do this to a shirt for a while, and had looked up a lot of variations on turning a t-shirt into a maternity one.  Most of them involved taking a RTW shirt and sewing elastic into the side seams.  But I wanted a from scratch one, and as lovely as Megan Nielsen's are, I couldn't justify paying $20 for another t-shirt pattern when I knew there must be a way to alter a pattern.

Luckily, right under my nose, I stumbled on So, Zo's method.  It's easy peasy and makes perfect sense.  Even my math challenged brain had no problem figuring it out :-D

the fabric has this cool cross stitch kinda look

The fabric is a wool jersey from Mood LA.  Because the jersey can stretch pretty thin, I added a stretch lining, also from Mood.  I love that store, but if there's anything they're missing, it's a variety of stretch linings.  This one is a nylon and has two distinct sides.  One is rougher than the other.  Of course I put the smoothest side against my body, but it's still a smidge itchy.  I only lined the body of the dress, omitting the sleeves.

inside gathers

 neck and sleeve head

The lining is less stretchy than the jersey, and after wearing it a few times, the jersey has stretched out a little bit at the bottom, causing a weird ripple at the hem.  I might go back and add the hem band like a regular Renfrew.  But then again, I might end up too lazy to do anything, ha!  Any suggestions out there?

Also, I made a tiny (but liveable) mistake by making the gathers a wee bit high, and not making enough of them.  That's the only thing I changed when I cut out the second one.

the dress is great for stretching my hips!

Speaking of my second one, remember my last post I talked about how awesome my sewing friends are?  Well, my friend Sandra came to my rescue on this shirt.  It was one of the 5 doomed items I was trying to sew for more maternity wear a couple weeks back.  It never made it.  She's one of my IRL blogger friends and when we had a sewing meetup a couple weeks ago, she offered to sew it for me so I could work on another project.  It was already cut out, but HOW FREAKIN' AWESOME IS THAT?!?  Seriously though.

So I can only take credit for cutting it out and wearing it, other than that, it was all Sandra :-)

more gathers this time

I fixed the high gathers I had made on the dress, by lowering these 2 inches.  I also added another 2 inches of gathering.  It fits me perfectly, and is very, very comfy.  In fact, I'm wearing it now!  The material is a rayon jersey bought years ago from Joann's, that is unbelievably soft.  

I have zero complaints about this shirt, huzzah!

Look how straight her stitching is!

The days of being pregnant are numbered.  I'm due in 4 weeks and thankfully, my job ends next week.  I'm looking forward to lounging around in comfy clothes and not having to worry anymore about what to wear to work!  Can't wait!!


  1. Too Cute! Love these!

  2. okay, if i ever get pregnant, i am emailing you POST HASTE. you look freaking amazing, i love the bouquets, seriously, you are rocking the bebe!

  3. I am so impressed by the quality of your maternity sewing! Mine is so shoddy and badly finished! The dress is gorgeous and you are looking great x

  4. great work! I'm impressed! (and bummed I missed a meet-up, stupid Wyoming...)

  5. I'm with Oona on this. You look breathtakingly beautiful!

  6. Great work Jill!!! The seams, the collar...all are very well finished!!! You have to make a tutorial to explain all your tricks ;-)

  7. Gah, you look amazing! These are both so beautiful, and you look absolutely lovely in them! I'm so glad your time off starts soon-- really excited for you!

  8. Lady, you are so pretty! You are rocking the pregnancy fashions! I hope your stretchy Renfrews can last you until the end! (So close now!)

  9. I love that dress - the flowers are so cool. And I'm so glad you like the renfrew - I think I'm going to do bands on all my knits in the future, I hate hemming them, and I end up just leaving it raw on my own stuff!

  10. Your tops look awesome. You totally wear the most complimentary colors.

    I totally made up that pattern and adjusted it using Zoe's tutorial and never used it. Maybe next time :)

  11. I wasn't sewing when I was pregnant but I know I'd have never rocked any outfit the way you are these two!! Totally awesome

  12. Ah lovely dress. And how nice to have such a helpful sewist friend! Hope you're enjoying your maternity leave :)

  13. Nice work! Hope to see at our store again soon.