June 23, 2017

Rifle Paper Southport Variation

 As so many of my recent sewing projects have been decided, this one started the same with.  With an email from Carolyn.  It said, "Do you want to buy that Rifle Floral to make a garment and then blog it?"  Do I?  Of course!  I started drooling over the lovely Rifle Paper Les Fluers as soon as I saw them hitting instagram. 

However, I am not buying fabric right now, and Carolyn is acting as my personal Susie Orman and she has been denying all of my purchase requests.  In fact, she had denied this when I first ran it past her (I'll provide the background in the next week or so).  

So - when Carolyn emailed and asked if I wanted to buy it - I was all over it.   This was my first order with Stylemaker fabrics and hope there are more 'approveds' in my future.  The site was easy to navigate and I really appreciate the Michelle sells her fabric in full yards as many small online only shops seem to sell in half yards.

Once the fabric was in my hot little hands, it went straight into the washer and dryer.  I have 3 dogs and I need easy care clothing.  Then I spent 3 days trying to figure out the perfect garment.  I was torn between a Southport and a shirtdress.  So, based on a email with Mary of IdleFancy, I made the Southport/Shirtdress hack.

First - I took new measurements and re-traced my pattern (and this, my friends, is why I don't cut my PDFs!).  I think this time I cut a straight 16 - I can see it needs a full bust adjustment in future - but honestly it's fine.  It didn't pull at the buttons.  When I traced the skirt - I added the same amount of width at the center front as the bodice for button bands.  I used the skirt pieces for the maxi and added 5" at the lengthen/shorten line and called it good.  Everything else I did the same.     


Construction:  I fully lined the bodice with white batiste, but not the skirt.  To do this, I sewed both bodices together at the shoulder seams, then put them right sides together and sewed up the neckline and armholes, turned the bodice rights side out, sewed up the side seams and serged the center front edges. Interfacing was added to the button bands before finishing that front edge.  Interfacing was added to the center front of the skirt, then it was folded under and topstitched just like the bodice.

To highlight the pale pink in the fabric - I used a pink ribbon at the waist and pale pink buttons.  I also added some buttons to the waist tie (which is way too long and needs to be shortened by about 12" on each side).   

This fabric was a dream to work with.  Michelle was lovely to order from and shipping was prompt.  I think this is fastest turn around in fabric history for me - it was sewn up within a week and has been hanging out waiting for it's photoshoot!  

Carolyn - thanks for "Approving" this purchase.      


  1. That Carolyn, such an enabler! Really pretty fabric and turned into a lovely dress!

  2. It's gorgeous! Good thing you found the budget to buy that fabric :)

  3. That fabric is really pretty, and I love the dress lines! There's enough shaping, but with plenty of room to move and do what you need to! I didn't know you were back to the blog...hooray!


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