Hannah Shirred Sleeve dress

When I bought this fabric from Fabric Godmother I didn’t have a solid plan of what I would make, just that I wanted to use the By Hand London Hannah sleeves. I bought 2.5 metres and there was pretty much zero waste. I would have liked to make a waist tie so in hindsight maybe I would have got 3 metres, but as with all the best fabrics it sold out in a hot minute so I made do with 2.5.

I used the By Hand London Holly bodice as my base for the bodice hack. I adjusted this one to fit perfectly when I went to the By Hand London Bodice Masterclass at The New Craft House so I often use it if I just want a darted bodice. The pattern has a button placket so if I want to omit this then I just fold that section over. I went a little higher than the Holly neckline but followed the same rounded shape.

I finished the neck with bias binding and added the Nina Lee Kew skirt which I’d also adapted to omit the button placket so I could add an invisible zip instead.

And as for the sleeves, I used the By Hand London Hannah sleeves which I’ve used in a few hacks recently and I just absolutely love. I wanted to add shirring this time because I thought it would really suit the fabric. I cut them a little longer, maybe 4cm, and sewed the shirring before sewing up the side seam of the sleeve so I could fit it at the wrist. Although I had a vague idea of where to start, I have a habit of missing out vital steps by not reading instructions so this time I googled it and stumbled across an excellent YouTube video by the Stitch Sisters – linked here. It was an excellent intro and had great tips like steaming the elastic to help it shrink. I had to make the sleeve a bit narrower so it was fitted at the cuff so I just sewed it to taper off after I’d sewn the 7 lines of shirring, and I’m pretty happy with the shape since there’s still enough volume in the sleeve itself.

I kind of wish I’d kept the neck high for more of a 1970s look but I’m happy with it overall. Also I figured after washing it that it doesn’t need to be ironed which now means it’s my favourite dress .

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