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Rad Restyled Contest: My Pinspiration and the Buttercup Dress

Are you ready for some Rad Restyled? Do you know what it is?

Rad Restyled is when you take a totally Rad pattern (see what I did there?) – or two or three or… whatever you want really – and mash them together or hack them apart to create a new amazing garment! Maybe you have a vision in your head of something you just HAVE to try? Maybe you saw something else someone made on facebook you want to replicate? Maybe, like me, you saw something from pinterest and you NEEDED it RIGHT NOW!

Yes, in my case, a friend posted a picture from pinterest in a facebook group, and I decided I needed the shirt. After some others also discussed wanting it, we all settled that the Rad Patterns Buttercup Dress and Top would be the perfect base for making it happen. So off I went to work on thinking about the details and trying a few things out, and my vision started shaping itself… So here’s my pinspiration (blue) and my final product (red) in Southern Belle’s AMAZING double brushed poly fabric.

So how did I get there? Well, I used only one of my favorite Rad patterns, the Buttercup dress, and worked from what my version that fit great already! (I always have some type of full bust adjustment to do.) First, I put on a buttercup dress I had previously made to consider where I wanted the seams on the front to hit and using my tape measure decided I need to be about 5.5” from center. Turns out this happened to line up well enough with the shoulder seam allowance markings, so I went with that.

I then created the middle chunk where I made the following shape so there was more space for the largest part of my boobs and less space for the waist and top of my boobs. (You’ll notice on my final shirt that I probably should have been more aggressive with reducing width on both the top and bottom.) I made this piece 30” long so there would be TONS of gorgeous gathering and kept the top 3 inches to fold over and finish the top, as seen in the image. I used a French curve tool to help me get a decent gentle curve (flipping from inside to outside) from 8” out to 11” and back to 8”. (On my next, I’ll probably go down to 7 inches on each end. Now, you may ask how I came up with these measurements, and I’ll tell you the 11” because that one is easy…. I had 10” of the bodice that was between the center front and where I cut it for the front bodice pieces, I added a half inch seam allowance on each side and ta da! This one you can easily replicate on any size (mine’s a blend of XL and 1X). The 8” was much more trial and error, so your mileage may vary on that guess.

All other pieces you should cut according to the pattern… and on we move to assembly!

Measure very carefully how tall you want the center to be. I honestly did this on the pattern piece as well as using a hard ruler on my body and going from there. I knew I’d have plenty of stretch and settled on 7” tall. Gather your middle front piece (pretty much to it’s maximum, but not quite) so that it is this length (leave the 3 inches at the top ungathered to fold over later for finishing).

Measure super-duper carefully along the inside edges of the front bodice pieces (don’t be like me… measure two, maybe even three times! Save yourself seam ripping!) and mark where your gathered piece should attach.

Attach the gathered piece to both sides, one at a time of the front pieces. Pins or clips are really your friend here to help prevent slipping – you really don’t want the sides to end up uneven!

When you start sewing, remember, we accounted for a half inch seam allowance, make sure you use that! I highly recommend basting BOTH sides and making sure they are still even before doing a final stretch stitch. **For those with a serger, I avoided serging here because that left more fabric for top stitching purposes later on (keep reading, you should be able to pick out where it was useful to have that fabric not cut off).**

Both sides done! (A critical eye will notice my sides are uneven here, don’t be like me… measure measure measure! Have I said it enough yet? HAHAHA)

Next, we ease into using the pattern instructions and will only have one more modification. Attach the two separate front pieces to the back at the shoulders, per pattern instructions (step 2). Then fold over the 3 inches at the top of the front center piece that we left and pin it down in place on the seam allowance with all the gathers. Continue pinning/clipping around the neckline folding a half inch in everywhere. This is similar to step 3 in the pattern, but not quite the same because we have this front piece and we want to stitch all the way down to the waist.

I zoomed in so you could see the connection between the center front piece and the rest of it. That half inch seam allowance should continue all the way around seamlessly.

Here’s an image from the front before stitching.

Top stitch all the way around with a stretch stitch. Start at the waistline on one side, go up around and all the way back down to the waistline on the other side. This will stitch down your gathers too.

Since I didn’t want to be too close to the edge around the neck, this is where the extra seam allowance in the gathered part is really useful.

At this point, we are ready to basically follow the pattern as written, there is just no placket in the front! Follow the steps for sleeveless or sleeved based on what you want! I did sleeved and actually mashed this sleeve with the sleeve from the cozy cuff sleeve top by Rad Patterns because I wanted a little more ease in the sleeves… but that’s a topic for someone else another day! ?

So are you ready to restyle a rad pattern? Check out the facebook group, use the hashtag #radrestyled and enter the contest for the anniversary! Want to try using one you don’t have yet? Make use of the anniversary code! Use code “bday25” for 25% off everything through 2/17/2018 in celebration of Rad Patterns’ second birthday!


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