September Shibori

Hello, friends! I hope everyone’s September is going well so far. One of the garments I worked on this month was an end-of-summer shibori dress. Deep blues remind me of September, and I  found some printed cotton that carries the trendy & summery indigo shibori look into fall. There’s not a lot of white which makes it perfect for a summer to fall transition garment. It hasn’t gotten terribly cold yet here, so even though I would love to be making cozy coats, sweater dresses and autumn clothes, I wouldn’t get to wear them for several more weeks! More dresses, it is.

My mom visited me last week, so over the weekend we went down to have brunch on the Santa Cruz wharf and take pictures of the dress:Blue Shibori Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist


We saw lots of birds, sea lions and even dolphins! The photo below is what happens when I see wildlife–distracted!
Blue Shibori Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist

The dress pattern calls for a center back zipper, but I often have trouble zipping those up by myself. As a work around, I bought a zipper that was a few inches shorter than needed and a button. I inserted the zipper as usual, but simply didn’t align the top of the zipper with the top of the dress. I made sure that it went past the level of my bra strap, and that I could reach around to the top of the zipper. Then, at the top of the bodice, I attached the button to one side and a loop of embroidery floss to the other. That way, I can fasten the dress without asking for help, or contorting my body.

Blue Shibori Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist

Below is a close up of the back. I don’t mind that there’s a slight gap between the top of the zipper and the button, but if you were to use this method, mind the gap!

Blue Shibori Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist

The other alteration I made was two small pleats right at the neckline. I did a sort of full bust adjustment (FBA) on the bodice to get it to fit better, and I left the neckline alone. However, somehow I ended up with a gaping neckline. The pleats were a solution to the gaping. I think they’re cute, but I need to find a better solution for next time.Blue Shibori Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist

The fabric that I used for this dress is gorgeous! It’s from the always fabulous Blackbird Fabrics, and was super easy to work with. The stretch only went one way, so I positioned the bodice pieces so that the stretch went around my body (instead of up and down). This makes it really comfortable for everyday wear. The fabric was a little too thick for gathering, which is why I opted for a pleated skirt. I love that the weight of the fabric doesn’t allow it to blow up in the wind, it holds the pleats well, and doesn’t wrinkle very easily. 
Blue Shibori Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist

Totally not planned, but we found this awesome bright blue wall and had to photograph it:

Blue Shibori Fall Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist

The weather was beautiful on the wharf that morning–not too cold and not too hot. There were lots of sea lions and some dolphins that accompanied our brunch! Despite the relatively cold water, there were lots of people out enjoying the waves, too.
Blue Shibori Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist

My mom (aka photographer for the morning!) and I after a delicious brunch at The Dolphin:

Blue Shibori Dress | Midwest Coast Sewist

Pretty soon I’ll transition over to fall sewing, but for the time being, I’m going to enjoy what’s left of summer here!

Pattern: The bodice is my tried and true (TNT) Vogue 8949. (See my others here and here and here.) The skirt is a self drafted pleated skirt. I simply took large rectangles, added pleats, and attached them to the bodice.

Fabric: shibori printed stretch cotton sateen from Blackbird Fabrics.


7 thoughts on “September Shibori

  1. Caitlin, I love this dress! I think your zipper solution is wonderful and I like it better than a full zipper. Glad you and your mom had fun!

  2. Your dress looks beautiful!! I love that blue and shibori stripes! I have that fabric in my stash too, but I can’t seem to work up the nerve to cut into it!

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