Sew Serendipity Dress

Back in 2011 I purchased Sew Serendipity: Fresh and Pretty Designs to Make and Wear*.  It has taken me this long but I have finally made something from the book, and I really love it.  It certainly is fresh and pretty and also very very easy to make (cut it out yesterday, sewed it up last night and this morning and wore it this afternoon – that is very fast for me) and comfortable to wear.

Dress from Serendipity Sews

I made the XS top with the medium sized skirt and sleeve band.  Other than that I made no other alterations to the pattern other than an adjustment to the sleeve pattern as when I was checking my tracings I noticed the seams were not “true” (the seam on the sleeve for the front bodice I think was a seam allowance short in length so I just added the extra when I was tracing) and one of the notches seemed to be in the wrong place.  Easily fixed but worth just checking before cutting out.

Dress from Serendipity Sews

For the skirt part I cut a medium and graded to a small at the waist.  I also added a bit to the length as I wasn’t sure how long it would end up on me but I think I may shorten it a couple of inches after seeing these photos.  It is just a little too “midi” for me.

I lined the skirt with some lightweight cotton but left the bodice unlined.

Dress from Serendipity Sews

There is a side seam invisible zipper, which I used an old one recycled from an old cushion.

I also completely changed the order of construction.  I wanted to check the fit as I went (rather than make a muslin) so I sewed it up in this order (which is very different to the book, although the book instructions are excellent and nicely detailed.)

1. Facings
2. Bodice to skirt
3. Sleeves to bodice (in the flat – not sewing up sleeve seam)
4. Facing to bodice and shoulder elastic added.
5. Pinned side seams and tried on for fit, expecting to need to make adjustments, but made none.
6. Side seam zipper inserted.
7. Side seams sewn up including sleeves
8. Sleeve bands
9. Hem.

I used a lightweight cotton from Spotlight and it worked beautifully for this pattern, although it creases badly.  It’s actually the same fabric that BusyLizzieinBrizzy used to make a Cambie! Woo hoo. Fabric twins.   Kay Whitt uses quilting cottons ALOT in her designs but don’t let that put you off if you are not a quilting cotton fan, you can certainly use any kind of fabric appropriate to the pattern you like. 

This book includes a jacket/coat pattern (awesome versions here and here) which I love and also a lovely a-line skirt pattern (pictured on the front of the book) that lends itself to some great fabric combining possibilities as well as the peasant style dress which can also be shortened into a tunic or top.  I’m glad I finally cracked it open and made something from it.

Sew Serendipity by Kay Whitt, one of my many sewing books.

* These are Amazon affiliate links and in the interests of full disclosure I may earn a few cents commission from these links which I will then immediately spend on sewing books.