Color Blocked Deer Creek and Sleeve Cuff Hack
Since testing the girl’s Deer Creek Dress on my daughter a year and a half ago, I have made tons of Deer Creek Dresses and tunics. For me, my daughter, my friends, and even people who become my friends because of this dress. (yes, I’m talking about you Miranda!) But this color/stripe blocked Deer Creek Dress with a sleeve cuff hack is hands down my absolute favorite!
I absolutely love how it plays with the stripes and I took great care to make my stripes match well along the shoulder and side seams. Seriously-getting stripes to match like this makes my heart sing!! Plus-the stripes work around the pockets!
When I created my Make Nine plan for 2018, I saw a picture of a dress like this somewhere on the internet and knew I needed to recreate it! And I already had the perfect navy saloon stripe cotton lycra from Girl Charlee’s BOLT collection in my stash. Honestly, I love the BOLT fabric and am bummed that it isn’t being made anymore. But, Art Gallery recently launched a similar line of stripe knit fabrics. And it could be amazing in solids too. Just in case you’re wanting to make your own. 😉
One of the key elements of this dress is color/stripe blocking the bodice. I didn’t take pictures while I was making it but I’ll describe the color blocking in case you aren’t familiar with it. Draw a line from shoulder to waist of the bodice parallel with the fold line, and cut your pattern along that line. When you cut out your pieces, make sure to add 3/8″ seam allowance along that line you just cut for both the center and side pieces. Orient the center bodice piece with the stripes horizontal, and the side bodice pieces with the stripes vertical. (My fabric has almost identical stretch in both directions, but check yours to make sure it has sufficient stretch both ways!) Repeat with the back bodice piece. Remember to add 3/8″ Seam allowance along the line where you cut the bodice! I just used my rotary cutting ruler to measure 3/8″ past the pattern piece and cut along the ruler. But if you have a hard time remembering to do that as you’re cutting, you can grab a piece of paper/tracing paper and add that seam allowance right to the pattern piece.
Sew the side bodice pieces to the center bodice. Repeat with the back pieces. Then start sewing up the dress as in the instructions!
This awesome version has one more change to the pattern. I added cuffs to the sleeves instead of bands! But this time I took pictures. So here’s how to make the sleeve cuff hack.
First, measure your sleeve opening after you’ve sewn the shoulder and side seams. Add 3/4 inch to that measurement. This is your cuff length. Cut out two rectangles 5 inches wide and as long as your cuff length. These will be your cuffs. Fold each cuff in half with right sides of the fabric together like a hamburger and sew the short sides together (just like you would for a band). Then fold the cuff in half with wrong sides of the fabric together like a hot dog. You should have a circle of fabric that looks just like a band.
Pin the cuff to the outside (right side) of your sleeve opening. I line up the seam of the cuff with the side seam. The cuff should fit the sleeve opening just right so there is no need to stretch the cuff to fit. Sew and repeat for the other sleeve.
Next fold the cuffs up, covering the seam from attaching the cuff.
Sew a line of stitching through the folded over cuff along the side seam and another line of stitching through the folded cuff along the shoulder seam. This keeps the cuff folded in place and is hardly noticeable as long as you use thread that blends with the fabric well.
And that’s the whole sleeve cuff hack! I’m loving my modern nautical Deer Creek dress with its delicious play on stripes! So cute, so easy to wear, and so classic yet unique. And I think its fun that while this is a dolman sleeve, it almost looks like a set in sleeve because of the play on stripes. I’d love to see pictures if you make your own!
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