Jul 1, 2014

cambie #3

I really love Sewaholic Patterns, enough that they are becoming my go-to for a successful, stress-free sewing experience.  I mean, I did make three Belcarra blouses in quick succession.  It's just nice to know that these patterns (at least Renfrew, Cambie, Saltspring, Belcarra, and Alma {post coming soon!}) will fit me right out of the envelope and the final product will look professional and awesome.  I guess I'm just trying to justify my third Cambie dress. :-)


I love this finished dress.  After my last failed batik project, I wanted a project that I knew would end in a successful, lovely, wearable dress.  This fabric is another batik, pretty similar in weight to a quilting cotton.  I originally bought enough fabric for the gathered skirt version, but the more I touched this fabric, the more I realized that the A-line skirt would work better with the weight and drape.  I'm presenting at a conference in a few weeks (my first time, and I am so nervous!), and I think this dress will be perfect for my presentation.

Folding laundry is my enemy. 

Since I've now made this pattern three times, I thought I would detail a few of the construction changes I made this time around.  I think this version is the most well-constructed, which means that it will hopefully last for quite a few years.  

Check out my photo bomber. :-)

On my first version of this dress, I think I over-fit the sleeves and I used my lining fabric for the sleeve lining.  When I wear that dress, my movement is a little bit restricted, which is not cool when I am trying to help my giant two-year-old in and out of his car seat.  However, the beauty of fitting the sleeves last is that this helps fix any neckline gaps (at least for me; all bodies are different).  On this newest Cambie, I added some stay tape leftover from my many Renfrews to the neckline to keep it from stretching out.  I used the batik as the sleeve lining, and I fitted the sleeves with hand basting before I used my machine.  This gave me a little more control over the placement, and I pulled the inner side of the sleeve a little tighter than the outer edge.  This means that the sleeve sits pretty closely to my chest, but there is more ease for movement at my shoulder.  Win!


Since my batik is basically quilting cotton, I wanted to protect my seam allowances so that this dress will hold up well, but I don't have a serger.  Instead, I decided to catch-stitch my seam allowances to keep them flat in the hopes that this will prevent some friction and fraying later on.  I'll add an update on the effectiveness of this method after a few wears and washes.


I much prefer lapped zippers to invisible zippers.  I'm not very confident in my invisible zipper abilities, and I think the lapped zipper gives me more control over matching the waistband seams.  My only regret is that I didn't interface the seam allowance before I inserted my zipper.  Grrr.  Maybe it won't make much of a difference; one more thing for me to watch over the next few wears and add to my update. :-)


Even though no one will see the pockets since they are sandwiched between the dress and the lining, I still wanted to finish the raw edge.  I used a narrow pink bias strip, but I applied like a facing instead of sandwiching the seam allowance.  This way, the pocket edge that lies (lays?) against the  dress is smooth.  I also used my stay tape to reinforce the pocket openings on the skirt.

Overall, I'm so happy with how this dress turned out.  Don't be surprised if a few more Cambies pop up here from time to time...


  1. Beautiful dress! It's a really flattering silhouette on you, and all your finishing work is so lovely. All the best for your conference :)


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