Pretty Dresses Multiplying & Full Red Velvet Size Guide

MelizzaR Red Velvet Muse

I spent yesterday fine-tuning the Red Velvet Sizing & Measurement pages and sending out the Cake Vine email and didn’t post.  Today I have several lovely Red Velvet Muse makes to show you, starting with MelizzaR!  Melizza is an experienced sewist and new mother, I’m so glad she could fit in a photoshoot for her slinky polka dotted Red Velvet Dress during naptime.

Picture 68After Melizza’s Muse Post was published, I went and read her write up of the pattern on her blog Pincushion Treats.  Surprise!  This was version #1, “accidentally” made without the midriff section.  I think this works really well, now I want to try it too!  Thank you, Melizza, I’m so pleased we got to know each other during this project!

Sewhopeful Strikes Again


You saw Sewhopeful’s lovely navy blue Red Velvet dress with a collar earlier this week.  She quickly followed this up with a happy red and white polka dotted version, I knew I had to share both when I saw them!  Without a collar or pocket, this is a very quick make.  I love this version, it must be SO much fun to wear and may be the first completed Red Velvet Dress that’s actually red.  Check out Sewhopeful’s polka dot dress write-up for insight into the way fabric and stretch influences fit, J is so methodical and thoughtful!

Red Velvet Sizing, Measurement & Alteration Page

Red Velvet Size Guide

click to view page

I had several emails about bust alterations, already!  I’m so impressed by how quickly you’re getting into this pattern, and I care if you sew and that your clothes fit.  I made this Red Velvet Sizing reference to help make this possible.

Red Velvet Size Guide

I’m also just really proud of this page, each measurement and bodice alteration is tidily tucked under a tab, with the relevant instructions section to the left.  This is where I’ve been wanting to take for a while but I had to skill up first.  I have some super cool hub pages in the works for each new pattern, check out the Hummingbird Hub for a preview for what’s coming up!  I’m really, really excited!

Red Velvet Deep Bust Alteration

The page also shows two ways to approach the Red Velvet bodice fitting, I hope you find them useful.  Several emails I received expressed concern about having “low boobs,” so I prioritized the publication of these references.  It is pretty simple and intuitive to adjust the length on the bodice, whether for a Deep Bust Alteration (DBA) or Torso Length Adjustment.

0369 Front

I have some exciting news about the Red Velvet Dress, Espresso Leggings and Red Velvet Clutch paper patterns- they are starting the journey from printer to your sewing room tomorrow, which means we’ll be shipping paper Red Velvet Collection patterns from next week!  Once we start sending them out (in brightly colored envelopes for the sewalong!), the price of the Red Velvet Dress pattern will rise to $20, full price.

I want to say a big thank you to everyone who has purchased from the Red Velvet Collection!  Let’s make some awesome dresses!  Tomorrow… I have such giveaways… And some words on merino.  Did I mention I went fabric shopping for merino for giveaways earlier this week?  I totally did.


  1. I’m very excited about the collection, I have some beautiful fabrics lined up for both espresso and carmine!

    • Ooooh! I have some plans for Cocoa and Carmine, some “taste of tailoring..” There’s this gorgeous blue boucle I saw last time I was at The Fabric Store, I think it’d make a killer Carmine. :)

  2. The muse project is great–it is wonderful to have all these inspirational examples of what can be done with the pattern (particularly on different shapes of people. Beats the 8-inches-ease-hung-on-stick-figure methodology of the Big 4 folks by a mile.) I am curious, though, what constitutes “low boobs”–is there an “average” level for bust points, or is that just a delusion of bra manufacturers?

    • Thanks, Tina, I’m enjoying it too! Oh my, has the big 4 really gotten that poor? I haven’t sewn with them for a while, but I used to get frustrated for my intermediates when they’d be told to do weird/unnecessarily difficult things…

      No, it’s a delusion. I look at/fit a LOT of boobs, and honestly I’ve been obsessed with figuring out breasts for years. I know that sounds a bit weird, but I mean it like a geometrical puzzle. There’s a lot of factors at play- weight, age, skin elasticity, fat/muscle/tissue ratios, gravity, bra choice, etc. I have yet to crack that particular nut, but I do know how to fit busts without touching your dress so we can sort out fitting in the sewalong and make some good references for others. The main thing is that we can get very very close to a good fit, and then give the sewist some excellent simple tools to completely customize the fit. :)

  3. I have a thrifted dress with a skirt very much like MelizzaR’s! Very comfy. Hmm, actually, now that I think about it, I had another thrifted dress that was very similar to your Red Velvet, but a much smaller mid-riff band, pleated skirt (like a kilt – yes, in a knit, those suckers stayed forever too) 3/4 length sleeves, and a cowl-like neckline. Sadly, that much-loved little dress got loved to death. I’ve been wanting to replace it, but didn’t think to copy the dress pattern before woefully tossing it out. I wonder if the Red Velvet will give me similar vibes? I love the simplicity of the top part, and the pleat in the skirt would add that extra fabric around the hips that I loved in my old dress. Hmm…

    Please don’t mind me thinking on the page. :D I’m getting more and more excited about this dress, even if I really don’t need a dress right now! lol

    • Yes! Knit pleats can be so lovely to wear. :) I kinda want to try *just one more* version of this pleat, maybe smaller doubles on a woven with cutaway pockets…

      I know exactly the type of well-loved dress you mean… Before I realized I could sew them for myself, I had one like red velvet but with a tiramisu skirt in black and white polka dot that I wore to death. Come to think of it, I can re-make that dress now. Hmm… You get the wheels turning in my head, Heather!

      RV is easy to wear and change up as you prefer…. And rather fabric efficient, since everything is cut on the straight of the fabric… :)

      I *never* mind thinking!

  4. Thanks putting together that alteration page- there is something about the fitting of kimono sleeved bodices that I haven’t figured out yet! I’m clicking over to read this one thoroughly.

    • I have some other alteration pages to upload for beginners later which is basically to look at where your bodice is wrinkling. Wrinkles usually point to the seam that has an issue. Then it’s a question of re-shaping the seam to match the wearer more perfectly. A lot of the time, “pinch and pin” will work on the simple shape. Susan just posted a nice simple alteration for swinging out the shoulder seam –

  5. Merino for giveaways? You’re spoiling us Steph! It’s a pleasure to buy patterns from you, not only because they are well drafted and there is a lot of attention to details, but also because of all these tips and trick and posts you write.

    • I was delighted when I found a merino-lycra firm but stretchy jersey perfect for leggings in a nice neutral color. What colors is that? It’s espresso, deep black-brown! :)

  6. I am so glad you’ll be talking about merino! It sounds like such a luscious fabric to work with. And lucky for me The Fabric Store opened up just a couple miles up the street from me in Los Angeles!! Thanks for the parade of lovely dresses and all the fitting tips! I always get my computer open to when I’m ready to stitch one of your patterns! :)

    • It’s so soft, and yummy… And washable! I find it gets better with age, too, and some seem to glow like silk. They’re both protein fibers…

      OH! That’s so exciting! Go check them out, I wonder what they’re like trans-pacific??!

      No problem, I have quite a long parade of fabric references and samples of my own for later… :)

  7. First I want to say, MelizzaR is one beautiful lady and Red Velvet looks very nice on her.

    Second. I want the merino!!!! Please explain it all to me and make sure I win a piece! :) We’re supposed to get snow this weekend and my insulin pump is irritating me, so I’m very excited to hear the patterns will soon be in the mail.

  8. This looks like a lovely dress. I don’t have very many dresses at all – I think maybe 5 in total, 2 that I made. I guess it’s time to add more dresses – maybe a Red Velvet in wool jersey for cooler weather?

  9. Hi Steph! Very excited about the sewalong. Got a whole host of fabrics to try, but have a question about prewashing, or specifically drying. How do you dry knits so they don’t stretch out of shape, any good tips?

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