dixie diy | ballet dress

i haven’t felt much like writing lately, but i do have a backlog of projects to show off! and it’s only natural to start with the last thing i made and work backwards…

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the knit skater dresses have been über popular around the blogs, and for good reason. in the quest for everyday wearable clothes, few things are more comfy than knit dresses. i decided to go with dixie DIY’s ballet dress. and really, how has this pattern not received more love? i’ll give up $4 to avoid drafting my own, that’s for sure. there is only one sleeve length in this pattern (3/4 length) but you could easily shorten or lengthen as needed. i should say, this was probably one of the fastest .pdf files i have ever put together. i managed to cut and tape while playing a rousing game of candy land with my son. multitasking at it’s finest.

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this is the fabric’s actual color

the pattern size chart is simply a list of finished measurements. i find this particularly helpful with knits since the stretch of your knit can vary so widely. i used a grey poly/lycra ponte. i know, i know… ugh polyester… it just felt so nice i thought i’d give it a shot. plus it was only $4/yd. as far as sizing goes, i decided to grade from an XS up top out to a M at the waist. this worked out great, though i have a little bit of pulling on the sleeve at the underarm. the shoulder seam may need to come out a touch, and perhaps the armhole scooped out in the front a tad. the waist seam hits me right at my waist in the back, but hikes up a little in the front. i think next time i’ll add about 1/2″ to the front bodice length. also, i cut the skirt 1″ longer than my size dictated to compensate for my height. these are all minor adjustments, and i’m perfectly content with how this one fits.

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i had planned to do a neck band finish, but when i tried it on for size i was happy with where the neckline was sitting. i decided to bind the neckline edge by serging a strip of fabric to the right side, then wrapping it to the back and top stitching. i was a rebel and used a regular straight stitch. the stitches pretty much disappear into the fabric giving me a nice neat neckline. then i finished off the sleeve and hem with my twin needle.

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i really love this dress and am already plotting several more. i know it’s been said ad nauseam, but this really is a perfect style so if you haven’t sewn one up yet, what are you waiting for?

—lisa g.

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