Pattern hack – Sewoverit vintage shirt dress for Indie sewing month

Spotting a pattern hack section in September’s Indie sewing month was just another reason to tempt me to order this pattern, I really loved the look of it from the drawing and well, any old excuse to buy it was enough for me!?

Initially I was simply going to shorten the dress into a jacket, which I did anyway, however the rules did not allow for such a simple pattern hack! Oops, change of plan! Can a pattern hack include bits of a garment hack? Maybe not, but I’ll submit it to the pattern hacking section anyway!

I had these pieces left over from a refashioned garment. They include, a collar and stand, cuffs, a front panel, button stands and the buttons. I wanted to remodel them into yet another top! I had already made up the Sewoverit vintage shirt dress, as a jacket, and it fitted beautifully, so I based my new idea on this pattern!

Scan 3

What I changed on the pattern? I kept the back the same but added 6cm to the length, used the tuck, but repositioned it, and added 2cm to the side seam and reshaped it. On the front I decided to not use the tuck so added nothing to the front side seam. I reshaped the neckline to a curve. The total front and back neckline had to measure 46cm, which is the measurement I took from the salvaged collar and stand. I kept the gathering at the yoke line. I added 6cm to the length, keeping it the same as the back length.

I didn’t want the gathering on the sleeve head so I pivoted the pattern and reduced this by 1cm on the back curve and by 2cm on the front curve, not to fit the armhole exactly, a sleeve should always have some ease in it, simply because it has to shape around the curve of your shoulder.

The sleeve hem edge was the perfect width as it was, and I formed the excess into a tuck to fit onto the already made cuff. I had decided the length of the band for the hem edge should be 90cm, to fit the hem edge of the pattern and to fit me. The width of the band to be as wide as possible depending on what I could cut from the front panel piece of fabric! The button stands I would reuse as button stands.

Now I needed to find a contrast fabric to make up the rest of this top! I had a look round the charity shops, nothing, and then spotted this on a sale rail, I couldn’t believe what a perfect colour match this dress was but realised I needed two! And there were two! I cut the sleeves from one dress and the fronts and back from the other. Still a bit of 70’s influence going on here!? And here is the finished garment.

Mmm!  I do love a pattern hack! – What will I try next with this one?


12 thoughts on “Pattern hack – Sewoverit vintage shirt dress for Indie sewing month

    1. Thank you. Just try it, wear it if it works and hide it if it doesn’t, or turn it into something else! The best thing about sewing is the challenge and if you take your time it’ll work for you!


  1. This is a brilliant hack and so well done. Beautiful fabrics — how amazing that you found 2 of the dresses so that you could make this up.


    1. Thank you, you’re very kind. I had liked the print on the dress anyway, tried it on but it looked like a sack on me. Then a couple of days later I noticed it reduced, two of them, and I only bought one??? Who knows why, a stupid moment!! So I had to go back the next day and hope the second one was still there. I often find fabric this way, there aren’t many fabric outlets in Edinburgh and sometimes even the charity shops look a bit bare!!


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