I love a raglan, I am drawn to them. I first made a raglan in stretch for the little one, a Brindille and Twig pattern. I couldn’t believe how easy it was to make. It convinced me that I never needed to buy a sweatshirt for the my toddler again.
Trying to find a larger sized pattern for the big boys seemed to allude me, so I decided to draft a version based on there measurements (luckily they are about the same size). Whoop Whoop, it worked a treat thanks to some help from Metric Pattern Cutting by Winifred Aldrich.
I backed this up by drafting my very first pattern, of course a raglan sweatshirt. It’s one of my favourite pieces, mainly because I drafted it and also the awesome bling on the shoulders. I am sure you have seen this many times before.
I am getting to the point I promise.
I don’t really know what it is that makes me love a raglan so much. Maybe it’s the simple construction or maybe the flattering fall of the sleeve. Whatever it is, I love them and it inspired me to find the perfect raglan sleeve dress.
The first one I made was a very simple self-drafted number based on my sweatshirt. I didn’t want a stretch version though, so I just added a little extra width, basically enough to fall easily over my hips. A boxy shape, my favourite shape. I then added more ease on the three quarter length sleeves. It is possibly the most impractical item I own, it’s in white! WHY?? What was I thinking! The kids are not allowed to come near me with food! This ultimately means I don’t wear it much, shame really because it’s rather nice.
The main fabric was a charity store find, it’s a cotton mix with quite a nice drape. The sleeve fabric is a cotton lace I found at Lincraft many moons ago. There is nothing fancy about this make. Just some homemade bias binding around the neck, hemmed sleeves, and a chunky hem at the bottom.
A more practical colour option was in order and I wanted to try a ‘proper’ pattern! So I tried the raglan sleeve dress in the Japanese pattern book, Stylish Party Dresses.
I used some black crepe that I found at the charity shop. I have been holding onto it for ages looking for the right project but I think this was the one! I wanted to make it a little special so I used the last bit of my quilted bronze fabric. This is the reverse side of the fabric I made my Frocktails dress in. It’s such a wonderful colour, I just couldn’t help myself. I seem to have a thing for bronze shoulders!
I didn’t have enough to make a full sleeve, which is why I opted for the shoulder panel. It’s a minor tweak and easy to redraw, I wrote about it here. It’s amazing how much you improve as you sew, I just re-read that post and wondered who wrote it, lol!
The neckline was also quite high on the pattern so I dropped it by a few centimetres. The pattern calls for a button closure but as I had dropped the neckline I could get it over my head so I ignored this step.
I quite like it, although I think it is perhaps a little short! I will see how I go and then maybe drop the hemline by about 5cm. I rather like it and I am glad I used the last scraps of the bronze as I love it so much!
Watch this space…