Amelie Sew Along Week F | Finishing, Buttons & Hem

For August and September at Sew Busty, we’re doing a button challenge! Post a make that features buttons on instagram with #sewbustychallenge by September 30 for a chance to win a prize!

As part of that challenge, we’re doing a sew along for the Untitled Thoughts Amelie Dress – a cute little number that features buttons down the back of the skirt, as well as an open (but bra-friendly!) back. (Check out the picture of the dress on today’s post, as I accidentally earlier shared a picture of the non-bra friendly! For the full sew along, including bonus content, click here!

I love this dress.

Let’s get this done, shall we?

Your dress should be nearly done! All we need to do this week is sew buttonholes, add buttons, and hem this baby.

Buttonholes

For the buttonholes, I would absolutely highly recommend you use a piece of scrap fabric to sew a tester buttonhole. Here’s my tester:

Make sure to test your tester buttonhole to make sure your chosen button goes through it with relative ease!

Different machines do buttonholes differently, so it’s tough to show a sew-along of how to do buttonholes. On my machine, I have a one-step buttonhole foot. I load the button into the foot, lower a lever, set my stitch to the buttonhole stitch, and voila! A perfect buttonhole.

Here’s my buttonhole foot, loaded with one of the vintage buttons I selected for my Amelie:

One thing I noticed while sewing the buttonholes: While the buttonhole markings on the Amelie pattern are horizontal, the buttons along the skirt should be vertical. If you put your buttonholes on horizontally, you’ll have your buttons pulling more.

At the bodice, though, a horizontal buttonhole is probably okay, as there’s more ease at the bust. Here’s my bodice buttonhole:

And my buttonholes along my skirt. I did the two waistband buttonholes horizontal, which is okay because of how close they are together. But then I switched to vertical buttonholes.

To open up your buttonholes, I like to use my seam ripper. I stick it in at one end and gently tear through the fabric to the other end of the buttonhole.

Buttons

If you’re a lucky duck and chose flat buttons and have a machine that will sew on buttons, you can do this step on your machine!

I, unfortunately, chose shank buttons, which means I had to hand-sew them.

Get your buttons lined up with your buttonholes by laying your buttonhole placket on top of your button placket and poking a marking tool through the middle of each buttonhole. This will show you where to sew your buttons!

Hem

Hang your dress for at least 24 hours before trying to hem!!!

If you recall, we let our dresses hang for 24 hours with the Roseclair sew along, and we’re doing the same here. This pivotal step prevents wobbly hems because it allows your skirt to stretch with gravity before you hem it instead of after.

Once you’ve hung your dress for at least a day, use a measuring tape to ensure it’s even all the way around:

Once you’ve done this, you’ll fold your hem up by about 1/4″ (0.6 cm) once, press, then fold up by another 1/2″ (1.3 cm) and press again. Sew, ensuring you capture both layers of folds under your stitch.

That’s it! Let’s talk fit and bra coverage.

This is my wearable muslin. I’m not a huge muslin-er when it comes to making clothing, so this dress does not fit 100% perfectly the first time, and that’s okay! My philosophy on making clothing is that, even without making a muslin, it’s going to fit better than ready-to-wear clothing would, so I’m alright with slight imperfections.

Things I need to change for next time include:

I need to shorten the back bodice. While the front bodice lays magnificently on me, the back bodice is a bit long, which you can see in how it wrinkles. (It might look tight, but I promise it’s not tight at the bust at all. The wrinkles disappear if I give a tug downward, which tells me it’s too long.)

I need to move where the back overlap is. I’m wearing a tank top in these pictures, so you can’t see it, but my bra does unfortunately show underneath the bra-friendly back. I wasn’t surprised by this, as bra bands land in different places on different people. Thankfully, Brittani from Untitled Thoughts has a brilliant tutorial on fixing this issue, and I’ll be sure to follow her instructions for next time.

I’d like maybe an inch more ease at the waist. This is probably because I drank too much wine on vacation, after I had cut and started sewing this dress 😂 Note to self: don’t start a garment before vacation … or if you do, add a bit of extra ease.

Overall, I’m super happy with this dress! I love the center front darts. They feel almost regal and very retro, and I’m here for it.

Busty Pattern Review + One Pattern, Two Bodies | Love Notions Sunday Romper

Today, I’m pretty damn thrilled to collaborate with Camilla, the gorgeous qween behind She/We Sew Fabulous!

It’s no secret that Camilla and I look different. I’m an hourglass, with an emphasis on the top — giant boobs, small waist, pretty big hips. Camilla describes herself as “a Mediterranean gal with big hips and small boobs.” So we thought it would be fun to try making the same pattern and see how it looks on our very different body types!

Here are Camilla’s super fun versions!

Doesn’t Camilla look great?! Most importantly, she loves the romper! So much, she made it twice. And I agree with her assessment that it looks amazing on her!

I’ve had this pattern forever, so I was excited to use it! I grabbed some Girl Charlee pineapple print cotton spandex from my stash — originally slated to be a Charm Barbie bodysuit, but then I fell out of love with that pattern and with Charm — and I was off!

The Sunday romper comes with two bust options — a regular front and a full bust front. Camilla used the regular front, while I used the full bust one.

Time for some honesty: I don’t hate mine, but I can’t say I love it either.

The photos I chose for this blog are the most flattering photos I could get, but here’s how I feel in it:

Basically, I feel a little like … shapeless? I prefer garments that clearly define my waist, and this particular garment has too much fabric at the top to do that well. It feels like it goes out at my bust and, despite the elasticated waist, doesn’t really come back in until my hips. So I get a square shape that I don’t prefer.

If I were to make it again, I would shorten the bodice substantially, since getting rid of some of that extra fabric would help me love it a lot more. (When I tuck in the top a bit, I get a shape I actually quite like!)

The original pattern also had the shorts going much longer, as you can see in Camilla’s pictures. But I felt very frumpy with longer shorts, and honestly was on my way to totally hating this romper, so I chopped them to the tiniest inseam. Here’s what my romper looked like before I chopped the shorts:

If you ask me, shaving off the shorts saved this romper for me. It went from 🥴 to 🤔 in my book! I won’t reach for 🤔 regularly, but I’ll definitely wear it sometimes. I’d have probably donated 🥴.

There are a few things I love about this romper though. Namely, it’s suuuuuper comfy and it has pockets! And I honestly think it’s perfect for a day on the beach, as a swimsuit cover or just for lounging.

Camilla LOVES hers, though, and I agree that it’s super flattering on her body. As she puts it, she loved it so much she made it twice! Just goes to show that fit is one thing — both of our rompers technically fit — but some patterns are just going to work better on some bodies. (Though, I want to say, this is a matter of preference! Any body can wear any garment! It’s really a question of whether the wearer enjoys wearing it!)

Sewing the Sunday Romper was pretty straight forward. Camilla opted for her serger and coverstitch, but y’all know I hate serging, and I don’t have a coverstitch. So I used my Pfaff Ambition 620 on a narrow zigzag for most of this garment. (I prefer the narrow zigzag over a lightning stitch or a stretch straight stitch.) The neck band was the trickiest part for me, but it wasn’t too bad!

This was such a fun experiment, and I’m glad Camilla and I teamed up to do this! I hope we do it again! I got to try a new pattern and ended up with a garment I’ll definitely wear to the beach, as well as any time I need a comfy frock.

I want to note one more time: “flattering” is a social construct, and we all have different ways of defining it. For me, this romper isn’t the most flattering on my body because it doesn’t fit my preferences and because I don’t feel super confident in it. But I don’t buy into the idea that only certain bodies can wear certain styles. That’s rubbish! This romper could totally work on another busty body, and other people might even prefer the way this hugs the body!