Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Grainline Studios: 13001 Alder Shirtdress

I've always stuck with fit and flare dresses, not sure why but I think it comes from the whole idea that its acceptable to be fat as long as you are an hourglass shape.........going to Japan this year was a real eye opener, not sure if its a cultural thing but the women I saw, as a general rule, wore loose flowing clothes regardless of size and I loved how it looked and how freeing it is. So even though this dress still has a waist its significantly more loose than I would normally wear and I am thoroughly in love with it!

I did get rid of the darts and change them to a princess seam. Not sure if its how I am shaped or how I sew darts but I can never get them to fit me anywhere near as nicely as a princess seam.

I managed to sew the collar on upside down..........Its not noticeably in this print but I did such a beautiful top stitching and trimmed the seams before I realised.....D'oh!

I was happily surprised at how easy the whole dress came together, don't be put off by the collar or button band - sewing in a firmer cotton was a breeze as well!

Fabric: Cotton poplin from Spotlight.

Size 16 graded to sz 18 from armholes down.
Changed front darts to princess seams.
1" FBA
Added 0.5" to back width.
Added inseam pockets
Left off the breast pockets.

Adding princess seams to the front means the front is in 3 pieces instead of the original 2. It also meant easier construction because I stitched the side bodice to the front skirt first and then attached them to the front. I did the side seams last as well, I really like to do that, means you can do some last minute fitting.

I love the hi-low hem and I love the looser fit, just seems like a really cool summer dress. I've already cut out another one in  light chambray/denim!


  1. this is wonderful on you! and it's my favorite version of the Alder. Enjoy!

  2. I love this! What a great idea to turn the darts into princess seams! I am totally on board with your move away from fit-and-flare. I recently find myself gravitating towards looser fitting looks - so much more comfy and wearable!

  3. I love the print you choose and the alterations you made to this pattern. You've ended up with a very beautiful and wearable summer dress. It's one of the few Alder shirt dresses that I've seen made up that I've liked! The chambray denim one should be just as amazing.

  4. this might be one of the best versions of this pattern I've seen - really great on you. love the color.

  5. Lovely dress. I have also made 2 alders and they are fabulous for summer. I never thought about changing the darts to princess seams - very clever.