Seamwork Weston Shorts + Megan Nielsen Matilda Dress Hack Pattern Review
It has been such a struggle to get pictures of a finished sewing project recently! I have tried on three separate occasions to photograph a cheery yellow dress and every time the pictures have been a colossal flop. It is surprisingly difficult to capture yellow accurately. Most of the time it ends up blurry or blown out. . . Gah! I just want to show you the dress!!
But I did manage to get some decent pictures of a different outfit. Lets discuss the top first.
I took my favorite shirtdress pattern and hacked it into a crop top. It wasn't intended to be a cropped, but I didn't measure how long it was going to be so it ended up a little shorter than expected.
I used the bodice portion of the Megan Nielsen Matilda dress including the waistband. Instead of adding the skirt to the waistband, I folded the raw edges to the inside and topstitched. The waistband hits my natural waist perfectly. This is grand in a dress, but for the top it is a bit short to wear with any of my skirts without showing quite a bit of midriff. I was using up scraps though, so I didn't have enough fabric left to re-cut everything. (You may recognize the fabric from this dress. I love a good cherry print and I couldn't not try to squeeze a top out of the leftovers.)
The Matilda top didn't get worn much, if at all for quite a while. Then I stitched up this high waisted pair of Seamwork Weston shorts and suddenly had an adorable, pin-up style outfit!
The Weston shorts have been out for some time now, but I couldn't work up the courage to stitch them up until recently. Trousers/jeans/shorts have been my clothing nemesis for about as long as I can remember. If they fit in the waist, they were much too small over the derrière/hips, and if they fit in the hip area, they were massive at the waist. A nearly 15 inch difference in hips/waist measurement does not make for easy pattern adjustments!
Finally, I decided to just go for it. I had had the pattern printed and cut out for nearly two years. Enough was enough. Grabbing a scrap piece of fabric from my stash, I took a deep breath and plunged.
I cut a size 8 for the waistband and tapered from a size 8 at the waist to a size 14 at the hips. And that was the only adjustment I needed. I stitched them up and tried them on. . . Imagine my shock when not only did they fit, they fit amazingly!
I did end up taking a bit more width out of the side seams since the curve of going from 8-14 proved to be too drastic. But other than that, they were 100% wearable. There are a couple changes I would make to the Weston shorts next time. Nothing too major, but a few tweaks to make them even better. I have every intention of sewing up at least two more pairs for the summer. Virginia summers can be quite muggy it will be a relief to have something so much cooler than dresses to wear.
I would add quite a bit of length to the pattern. For this pair, I serged the hem and folded it up once to keep as much length as possible. Unfortunately, the hem keeps flipping up awkwardly which is rather annoying. I think a deeper hem would resolve the issue.
There is a little bit of odd puckering around the crotch area. My theory is that it is due to needing some extra fullness in the shorts around the tummy, but not as much around the front of my upper thighs. I've pinched the fabric a touch here and there and it took out nearly all of the puckers. This adjustment will probably take a bit of trial and error, but I would prefer to not have awkward puckers!
Other than that, I love my new shorts! I finished off the waistband with two skirt hook and eyes instead of the button/buttonhole closure that was used in the pattern. I think it looks far better this way since it is more streamlined and it also helps me avoid sewing buttonholes! Plus, there are no buttons to dig into my stomach when I sit down.