Here’s the last new dress finished before going on vacation. It’s super comfy, if not especially flattering (the fabric reminds me, now that the dress is finished, of pajamas).

It’s a nod to my favorite Magritte painting, The Empire of Light/L’empire des lumières–dark clouds below, blue sky above, business in the front, party in the back. I might make a bird applique out of the remaining sunny sky fabric, and make it a La grande famille dress.

Pattern: Titus Summer Blouse. I’ve sewed this twice before–once in orange cotton, and once in an adorable Japanese bunny print (I keep forgetting to blog this one). A nice, simple pattern.

Fabric: Bears Just Wanna Have Fun, minus the bears… 1 yard of dark sky, .25 yards of sunny sky; .25 yards of some random white cotton fabric to line the yoke


  • Cut the outer edges of the yoke about 1/2 wider because I didn’t have enough fabric for sleeves.
  • Lined the yoke with contrast material because I ran out of the sunny sky fabric.
  • Instead of cutting the bodice pieces as shown in the pattern, I sewed the entire yard of dark sky fabric into a tube, laid it flat with the seam at the back, then used the corner of the pattern to cut out armholes on either side. I gathered it to the width of the new yoke and sewed them together, then hemmed to the appropriate length with a double-fold hem.
  • Since I left the sleeves off, I turned the outer edges of the yoke to the inside about 1/4 inch, pressed them, and topstitched them together, sandwiching the raw edges inside the yoke. For the underarm parts of the armholes, I just turned the fabric under and stitched it in place–didn’t clip the curves or anything.
  • I gave it an empire (ha ha) waist by cutting the elastic Hanes Her way waistband out of some disintegrating underwear, pinning it to the inside of the tube, under the bustline (stretching the elastic out to the width of the fabric as I pinned) and then sewing 3 lines of stitches to secure it in place. I stretched the elastic out as I went and removed the pins one by one as I came to them to keep everything in the right place. I didn’t put enough pins in the first time, actually, so I had to do this twice after winding up with almost no gathers on one side and a giant avant-garde mass of drooping gathered cloth on the other.

Rahul’s verdict on this dress: “it looks like felt.”