Then the fabrics came -- a pinstriped navy and blue/gray suiting. The tweed, as our vendor called it (it's not an obvious tweed weave) was soft and thick with the right amount of body and the shirting was crisp and tightly woven. They washed up beautifully and high quality fabrics are always a dream to work with, but....it was a little on the "manly" side. Hmmm. Would this work for a girly twirly skirt? I looked at my patterns and nothing seemed quite right until finally the thought came to me: combine these two fabrics with the Fantasia dress, then complete the look with the Victory Jacket and voila! I've got the suit style that this fabric needs. This outfit has a definite 1940s vibe, and made for fall, this combination will definitely be one of my season favorites.
I chose the low-calf length, view B, but for a formal event, the longer length (view A) would look fabulous too. For this blouse and skirt look-a-like, I used the tweed for the skirt and jacket and the contrasting navy fabric for the dress bodice. It looks like a skirt and blouse, and because it won't come un-tucked, it wears even better!
I decided to switch out the cap sleeve for a longer length. I used the sleeve from Beatrice and shortened it to just above the elbow, which is about 6-6 1/2" from the underarm, finished. Rather than using the sleeve facing, I turned up the bottom 1" and did a blind hem on the sleeve (the alteration means the facing wouldn't fit anymore anyway!). Other than that, the dress has no other variation.
The gray tweed was used for the skirt section, and to transition the two fabrics, I added in a 2" wide covered belt.
To make the belt, follow the tutorial I did for the Sew Mama Sew blog called "Made to Match." Find that tutorial here:
This photo shows the inside finish of the skirt seams turned under and stitched. To emphasize the lovely flares and help it keep structure under the weight of this suiting fabric, I tucked a 1/2" wide horsehair braid down into that hem allowance and topstitched everything into place in one step.
Buy the Fantasia pattern here: http://www.sewchicpatterns.com/fantasia.html
Buy the Victory Jacket pattern here: http://www.sewchicpatterns.com/victory.html
Have a great sewing day!