It's February and I want to squeeze in a few date nights, but I have the quintessential date night dilemma... I HAVE NOTHING TO WEAR!! You'd think that being a seamstress I could whip up something new in a jiffy. While it's true that I can make almost anything I want that doesn't eliminate the process of choosing what to make
. I want something flirty and feminine (per my usual) and I'm really trying to go outside of my normal color scheme/comfort zone. But you just can't beat a lace top and slinky pencil skirt to put some sizzle in your sway. So, another little black number it is.
I'm not sure how I got turned onto the Nettie Dress & Bodysuit Pattern
by Closet Case Patterns
, but I fell in love with the idea of pairing it with some brand new me made midi skirts. Now, at first glance the Nettie doesn't seem to be anything out of the ordinary, but after googling for hacks I decided that it is everything!
There have been so many versions made from this pattern: a maxi, a crop top and even swimwear! If you haven't checked out the Closet Case Patterns blog
then you are seriously missing out. Heather Lou posted her own tutorial on how to make an off-the shoulder version
which I loved and followed pretty closely to make mine. I purchased the amount of fabric needed for a bodysuit per the pattern (in black lace) and some pretty silky prints from Joann Fabrics
for my midi-skirt, that I didn't make, spoiler alert.
Now, one thing I didn't do was pay attention. At the print shop I printed the dress version and not the bodysuit so as I happily and effortlessly taped my pieces together I noticed something was off. And guess who didn't have time to have it reprinted? This girl. So, I rolled with it, but I knew that I did not want a dress. All the dress version makers had practically flat tummies...me, not so much. I decided to make it into a tee and switch to making a tummy tucking pencil skirt to go with it. I measured where I wanted the top to fall, cut that part off from the front and back pieces and then proceeded with the off the shoulder tutorial as described here
by Heather Lou.
I found a picture that I liked where there was just barely a slip of a sleeve so I cut the bottom of the sleeve piece at the short sleeve line and continued on as instructed except that I hemmed and sewed on one sleeve backwards (oops) and it was too hard to pick apart so I left it. However, you can barely tell. Even though I used unlined lace I didn't do any french seams or even use a serger. Nothing is hemmed or finished with the exception of using fold over elastic for my neck binding, but who cares because it turned out great! Alternatively, this post could have been titled: How to be a Crappy Seamstress and Still Sew Something Awesome.
First off, let me say that this top fit without any binding at all. I used the method, in the pattern, of cutting the binding at 80% of the dress opening measurement and it worked like a charm. Also, after reading a lot
of reviews/blogs/hacks posts I noticed that people talked about how great the fit was. Again, I'm thinking ok how great can it be and you don't have any mama lumps like I do.....um, the fit is BEYOND amazing! I really could not believe it. If I look any sexier when I wear this my husband's eyeballs might pop out. This top can do double duty: wear it out with a bra or have a night in without. You could make the Nettie
Dress version in something stretchy and sheer or even turn the bodysuit version into a teddy. I can't wait to make more of these in various states of dressed or undressed.
Now for my skirt: I went back to my leftover dress pattern pieces and decided how long I wanted the skirt to be and used the dress piece shapes to cut knee length skirt and shorter lining pieces to cover my lady bits. For the band, I measured the top of my skirt opening and calculated 80% of the circumference + seam allowance and cut my pieces. The pieces were 9" tall so that folded in half I would have enough rise in the back to cover my bum. To tackle my tummy issue with the band I added a layer of firm mesh, folded the whole thing over, sandwiched all my layers and sewed it on exactly the same way I did for the top binding.
I can't say enough about how easy this pattern was, even though I woosed (sp?) out on the bodysuit portion I fully intend to make one. I've already have my next fabric combo. Now that I've got another date night look completed I'd love to see what you're sewing up and look what I have got to help you!
Inspiration & Discounts!
UPDATE:The Nettie code is working and now includes the Printed and PDF versions.
If you are looking for a way to jazz up your existing patterns you can read Sewing by Ti
's very helpful post here
If you're looking for fabric for your date night sew, I've got great news! Simply By Ti is offering 10% off to all the Date Night February readers! Use coupon code DATENIGHT
I think you're going to love all of the inspiration my fellow bloggers have for you. Be sure to check out the entire Date Night February Blog Tour to see what patterns worked for us!
Sunday, February 12th: Embrace Every Day
Sunday, February 19th: Very Blissful
Sunday, February 26th: The Fairy Dust Bin