Monday, September 10, 2018

Petaluma Dress

I'm going to my first ever Frocktails event later on this week - I'm both ridiculously excited (Meeting new sewing friends!!!) and ridiculously anxious (Meeting new sewing friends!!!).  I know I'll have fun when I get there, it's just the walking in the door that is a bit nerve wracking.  Like the first day at a new school when you were a kid, or the first day on a new job as an adult.  You know that nervous, but excited feeling?

Anyways, I've been pondering what dress I wanted to make for the event and was having trouble deciding.  I was leaning towards a wrap style dress, but couldn't make up my mind which pattern I wanted to use.  Then Kennis posted a testing call for her latest pattern, Petaluma Faux Wrap Dress*. HELLO DRESS OF MY DREAMS!!!!!!!  Decision made.

My husband asked if I was  sure I wanted to choose a pattern that was just at the testing stage for a dress for an event and I thought, "Of course! It's an Itch to Stitch pattern!!"  I had all the confidence in the world that I could make my dress in the testing phase and be happy with it.  I've been lucky enough to test enough of the Itch to Stitch patterns to know how much work Kennis puts into them before she even releases it for testing.  They're always so incredibly well drafted that the first version of a test pattern is often the final version. Her patterns always fit like a dream too.  I rarely have any alteration to make besides adding a bit of length to the bodice.  So of course I was sure!

Petaluma was everything I hoped it would be!  I used some fabric I've had stashed away for probably three years at least.  I haven't wanted to "waste" it on a pattern that might not be worthy of it.  It's just a poly peachskin, but its pretty and it seemed "special" so I've held onto it all this time.  It just goes to show how much faith I have in the ITS patterns, that I was willing to risk a precious cut of fabric on a first run of a test!

So let's talk about the pattern now!  It's got a crossover bodice with the choice of three sleeve options - short like mine, flutter and double petal.  All are so pretty and the flutter ones are definitely going on my next Petaluma dress!  There is an optional tie belt (I absolutely adore the tie belt!!!) that can be tied in the front, or around the back depending on the look you like.  The petal skirt is finished off with a narrow hem.  Check out the ITS blog for some great tips on doing a narrow hem without pulling your hair out and/or throwing a temper tantrum.  It does require a serger, so if you have one, you'll be set.  (If not, she does give some other options in the post that you can look into further).  I don't know why I don't always try the serger method.  I did it on my Crystal Cove Camis and was amazed at how much easier it was.  With Petaluma I fought and cursed and burnt my fingers with the iron and just about cried.  Then Kennis gently reminded us of her serger method and I went back, stitched ripped the hideousness that was my hem pressed it all nice and flat again, serged the edge, folded and stitched.  I was done the front hems in about five minutes.  Oh.  And this dress has pockets!!!  Told you.  Dress of dreams!!

Petaluma promises to be a go to pattern whether you're looking for a new dress for fall (or one for summer if you're in the Southern Hemisphere). If you head over to the Itch to Stitch site you can get your copy for a discounted price right now and don't forget the volume discount still applies so if you've got your eye on any other patterns, right now is the time to scoop them up!

Happy crafting until next time!

I'm baaaaaaaack!  Did you miss me?  LOL

Just popping if for a quick edit, because I wanted to show you all the flutter sleeve version that I finished last week.  This one is in the "Sarah" crepe from Sew Me Sunshine in the UK - let me just stop for a moment to tell you how amazing Sew Me Sunshine is!!!  By some sort of postal miracle, she had my fabric to me in less than a week from when it shipped.  WHAT KIND OF SORCERY IS THAT?!?!?!  Unheard of.  That's what that is.

My only problem is trying to get my narrow hem on my sleeve to lay flat.  That sucker just keeps flipping up and driving me mad.  Anyone have a solution for that?  Because I love this dress and would prefer not to lose my sanity over a sleeve...

For this version I did a wee bit of a broad back adjustment, so I have more room for my linebacker-esque shoulders and I did grade out a little bit at the waist for a slightly looser fit in the mid-section.

This dress.  Red. Polka dots. Flowers.  Flutter sleeves.  I have all the LOVE for it.

There.  Now I'm done!  For real this time! ;)


  1. You made a gorgeous dress and it looks amazing on you!!
    Is this Frocktail party close to where you live? Win!

    1. Thank you!!! Yes! Winnipeg is actually having it's very own Frocktails this week!

    2. I'm hoping it's not too late for me to decide to come. I hope to see you there!

    3. It was so nice to finally meet you in person!!! Glad you came out to it! :)

  2. Last I heard there were still tickets left! Hope to see you!!!