Laurels for Laurel

And by that I mean Colette Laurel, of course 🙂



And this is after wearing it all day at work, and 3.5 hrs on public transit in the sweaty heat… hence the wrinkles 🙂

A fitting entry back into the world of sewing, if I do say so myself: this dress is a joy in every way. It is the perfect combination of demure and sexy. It has a simple silhouette but is saved from being a sack by vertical darts and bust darts (yay for bust fitting – my girls don’t look good in sacks – more on that later LOL). If that wasn’t enough, it’s comfortable, and makes me feel pretty at the same time – nice!! 🙂

To be honest, I wasn’t going to buy this pattern – after all, I already have lots I haven’t even touched. I bought it when it was released because I was going to enter the super fabulous contest Colette was holding. As it turns out, my plans for that version of Laurel went all out the window and it wasn’t until a few months later, fabric shopping with my mum, that I was inspired to make this beauty.

The fabric is silk cotton, and it’s sheer. It’s absolutely gorgeous. I could have used the handy-dandy built in instructions on the pattern to do an underlining but I decided the fabric needed to keep its light, breezy quality, so I decided to make a slip. So here I am in the fabric store, planning a dress AND a slip, when I haven’t even sewed anything in months LOL. Even I was pretty sure this was a pipe dream, and that pretty fabric would wind up in my stash. I didn’t care, as long as it became mine. LOL.

Nevertheless, I surprised even myself by getting to work on the slip project shortly afterwards. First roadblock: I didn’t have a slip pattern. No worries! I’d just download one – there’s tons on the interwebz, right? But none of them were quite right… so I drafted my own. Yup, just like that. Turns out I can do stuff. Whoda thunkit? LOL


Yay for cat photo bombing LOL.

A little more on the dress:

  • I cut a straight 6, and did an FBA. I made a muslin of just the blouse part, and the fit was good without any other adjustments, so I went ahead with the dress.
  • I could probably have used an extra 1/2″ in the armscye and sleeve circumference; either I have big biceps, or this pattern is for skinny arms LOL.
  • This dress is short, peeps. It calls for a 2″ hem. I did 1″, and still had to take up the hem on my slip over 2″.
  • The good: I made my own bias tape out of this flimsy silk cotton and lived to tell about it.
  • The bad: apparently I cannot sew an invisible zipper. It’s quite visible LOL.

So back to the topic of sacks… this wasn’t TECHNICALLY my re-entry into sewing – I actually attempted a Burda drawstring halter top, which I was SUPER excited about, as it was exactly something I’d been dreaming about for a long time. Alas, after drafting the pattern, and spending an entire evening lovingly sewing it out of some beautiful Chinese silk I’d nabbed at a thrift store, and hung onto for just this blouse, I put it on triumphantly and then stared in horror at what I beheld in the mirror: me… only 14 months pregnant with quadruplets. I am not exaggerating.

We will not speak of this anymore.

So… Laurel!! Go get this pattern, friends… it’s a winner 🙂

About symondezyn

graphic designer, illustrator, and artist of many skills... always striving towards new challenges and goals, and always with more projects than time to do them in!! View all posts by symondezyn

29 responses to “Laurels for Laurel

  • Cation Designs

    You look gorgeous!! That blue is a great color on you, and the Laurel skims attractively without, as you say, making it look like you’re pregnant with quadruplets. Welcome back!

  • Funnygrrl

    Beautiful dress. I love the Laurel variations.
    And the slip is lovely. I have had plans for a slip forever! I want to copy one that I have.
    Great job(s)!

    • symondezyn

      Thank you!! 🙂 Yes, a slip is a wonderful thing to have; it was pretty straightforward to draft & figure out, except for the bust darts lol. I know how to sew them, and alter them on a pattern, but drafting them made me scratch my head a bit! lol

  • Gjeometry

    Gorgeous Laurel! I love that blue colour, looks great! Very uplifting, esp. for me, as over these parts, it’s been raining and cool/cold almost every day. Actually, Vancouver weather!! Kitty loves the cat bomb.

    • symondezyn

      Thanks, Catja! 🙂 The blue is great isn’t it? 🙂 Vancouver weather lately has been quite hot & muggy! ^_^ But pretty fabric goes with ANY weather doesn’t it? 😉

  • Lara

    Your Laurel dress is so cute, I’m pretty sure I’m going to give it another shot after seeing yours today. Also, you are looking quite fabulous as well! Are you doing anything different?

    • symondezyn

      Thanks Lara!! It’s an honour that my little dress could inspire you to try it again! 🙂

      As for me, I have been maintaining my weight loss for the past few months with just regular sensible diet/exercise, nothing special – except i eat a lot! lol. I try to eat more protein, and limit sugars/carbs. I’ve also added in yoga for toning – I love it, and it helps calm my mind as well – bonus! 🙂

  • Amanda

    Welcome back to the land of sewing! A fabulous way to step back 😀 And may I say the blue looks lovely on you and the shorter hair rocks!

  • busylizzieinbrizzy

    Wow! You.look.amazing! Great dress, fit and colour! Welcome back!

  • MarrieB

    Beautiful dress, the color is fantastic. I seriously love your haircut too!

  • sallie

    absolutely gorgeous!! lovely color on you! and such a practical little dress too – laurel is definitely a winner!

  • BeautifullySewn

    You look amazing! The color really suits you, I’ve been on the fence about Laurel because my past experience with shift dresses has been so-so but this is really flattering!

    • symondezyn

      Thanks Salma! 🙂 There are two long vertical darts in the back that, along with the bust darts, make this a shapely shift rather than a sack – otherwise I’d be running far far away from it too!! lol

  • ooobop!

    Amazing dress on you. That colour is gorgeous. And I can just imagine how that fabric feels. I can’t tell you how long I’ve been debating making a slip. Moreso from the point of not having to line everything! Well done for self-drafting. I wouldn’t know where to start! I’m so sad for your drawstring top. I bet it doesn’t look so bad.

    • symondezyn

      Thank you Janene! 🙂 The fabric is super lovely; it’d be better if I could wear it against my skin but it IS quite see-thru so that would be bad lol.

      For the slip, I just fumbled through, really, copying roughly a knit nightie I have that’s too big now. Only had trouble figuring out how to reverse engineer the bust dart – and the end result needs an FBA, but she’s not too bad for a first go, right? 🙂

      The Burda top, on the other hand… I’m afraid it really was that bad lol. Hard to imagine when yours are so glorious, I know – but, trust me lol – on me, it was a TOTALLY different top 😛

  • Calico Stretch

    Welcome back to the sewing machine my dear, other than the disasterous damned Burda preg wear, that is. What a lovely love dress and colour. The blue is frankly gorgeous and the dress very very cute. Wow and you drafted a slip. Wow. Did I say wow? xx

    • symondezyn

      Thank you – it’s good to be back! 😀 Isn’t the fabric dreamy? It was so lovely to work with and sew… except for making the bias tape, which admittedly is not my forte at the best of times. I really just fudged my way through making the slip – I feel bad calling it “drafting” because that implies maths, and knowing what I’m doing, and it really had nothing to do with either, and everything to do with “let’s try this” and hoping for the best LOL.

  • Clare

    I love love love the colour of this Laurel. So eye-catching. Looks really great 🙂

  • Lavender

    Hey beautiful!!! This is a great dress, and you look great! The color is perfect, and I bet the fabric feels dreamy. You’re selling me on this pattern/dress style. I’m digging the new hair, too. At least I think it’s new? I’ve been catching up a bit with you today… new job, sewing mojo, etc…. we’re all navigating around, right! I’m cheering for you!!! xoxoxo

    • symondezyn

      Hey yourself, gorgeous lady!! 🙂 You would look utterly smashing in a Laurel – bonus points for back dart shaping, saving us from Sack City!! 🙂

      Yes, new hair, new lots of things 🙂 I’m cheering for you too, darls xoxo

  • Tia Dia

    Good to see you back! This is such a gorgeous colour on you.

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