I’ve wanted to make a Geranium Dress with sleeves for the longest time. The pattern doesn’t include sleeves, and I wasn’t quite sure how to go about it. What kind of sleeve would work? How would I attach it? How could it be done???
It was time to give it a try.
The first thing I did was take a look at the arm hole (or “armscye” if you’re fancy) on the bodice of both the Geranium and Hattie patterns. As you might have guessed, they weren’t exactly the same. If I wanted the Hattie sleeve to fit the Gernaium bodice, I knew I needed to adjust the Geranium armscye to match Hattie’s.
No biggie. I just traced out the Geranium front and back bodice pieces onto transparent Swedish tracing paper, laid them on top of the Hattie bodice pattern pieces, and traced the Hattie armscye right onto those Geranium pieces. I did end up lengthening the Geranium bodice a little bit, as the arm opening is lower on the Hattie.
And, of course, I just cut the Hattie sleeves straight from the pattern pieces, as is.
I sewed the bodice shoulders and back/neckline together as usual — but I didn’t sew the arm holes or side pieces together as directed. I sewed main and lining pieces together at the sides separately, and then turned the whole thing right side out and pressed.
Then I basted the arm holes, wrong sides together.
I sewed each sleeve together at the sides and set them in. A quick serge to the seam allowances, and they were done!
I couldn’t believe I did it! (Although if I had it to do again, I’d have used blue thread in my bobbin here. Ah well.) Now, I’m sure there are other ways to get these sleeves in, and I have no idea if I did it the best, or even the “right” way. But, I was pretty amazed that they fit so nicely and look like they belong to the dress.
One thing to keep in mind if you decide to try this is that the seam allowances for the Geranium are 1/2″, and the Hattie’s are 3/8″. When you sew the sleeve sides together, be sure to use 1/2″ seam allowance so that they fit into the arm holes properly. I couldn’t quite wrap my brain around it, so I tried it both ways — 1/2″ worked!
The only other thing that was sorely needed was flat piping. You know.
You may recognize this fab butterfly/firefly fabric from the Fort Firefly line by the amazing Teagan White. It’s Fireflies in coral, to be exact. Soft as anything and cute as hell! The bodice is brown corduroy from my local fabric shop. This fall, I made a mess of Geraniums with corduroy skirts, and I thought it might be fun to try corduroy up top. It’s very cozy and works pretty nicely, I think.
Lulu still fits into a 2T, but I think I may have cut the skirt to the 3T length. I can’t really remember, because when I cut this dress, I was planning for her to wear it for Thanksgiving — so yes, that was three months ago. Since I can barely remember what I ate for breakfast, I definitely don’t have those sizing details at the front of my brain.
The ladies love their pockets, right?
I think I’m just about caught up with all those projects I started before going back to work. I wonder what will come up next . . .