When Skyler met Ella {A Pattern Mash Up}

Hello sewists! –

It’s always a great time to sew, learn to sew, teach someone to sew, sew something new and sew for someone.

My name is Debbie Groves and I live on the island of Jamaica where we have one season – sunny and bright!! I sew mostly for myself and family, and enjoy every minute of it!

Today, I would love to share with you a SLPco. sew made for my niece who sprouted up and became 10 years old overnight! I remember when she was just 4 years old and I sewed her first dress.  How did she get to 10 so fast?!   I was a newbie back then, having no idea what I was doing and neither did she care!! Throughout the years I have watched her love and hate my makes. Nonetheless I continue to sew and channel my creativity. 

She is into fashion nowadays and has a mind of her own on what she thinks “look nice”.  Thankfully Simple Life Patterns still caters to her tastes. 

I stood in awe when I presented her with two patterns the Ella and Skyler and listened as she told me how she wanted it……

Her: “I love the Skyler top because I like the low back – but no bows please!  And I love the Ella “sideways skirt” (meaning asymmetrical skirt) “because it is so floaty” (whatever that meant).

Me: “Well, I was hoping to make you a dress to wear to church this week . I think the Ella double skirt would look so good on you! I was also planning to add tulle”.

Her: “I am into tops now – so the Square neck top and just the short sideways skirt – I think that would look great.”

Me: “So what will you wear with the top?”

Her (with a what kind of question is that look on her face): “Jeans of course.”

So here I am so badly wanting to make her the Ella two layer skirt and  I had my tulle overlay all ready to go. I sat and pondered on how to make this a win-win sewing outcome.

 Then I had an idea! 

Me: “What if I made the Skyler square back with the Ella tunic asymmetrical skirt and made the Ella gathered skirt detachable?”

Her: “Huh, say that again! I have no idea what that means.” 

Me: “Well when I am done sewing you will be able to wear the outfit three ways, as a top, a skirt, and a dress!”

To me my idea was mind blowing, but I wasn’t too sure  if she was onboard with the idea because she said “Just as long as I get a top I am good”

Me: “Oh OK.” 

So the Ella / Skyler mash was born and it blossomed into a three piece outfit with a small pattern hack rolled in. Here is how I did it : 

I made the Skyler top using the modest square neck on the back bodice, and added the Ella asymmetrical circle skirt – tunic length.

I used the Ella  gathered skirt measurements in the pattern however I used the width of the gathered tunic  – making it a little less full. To make this skirt work I created a new waistband pattern piece. 

Making the waistband is easy , I took her waist measurement minus 1”.   I cut the waistband  4” tall (you could make it 6” based on your preference).

I folded  the waistband right sides together, sewed the short sides, then folded the waistband on itself wrong sides .

I sewed the skirt as instructed in the Ella tutorial, up to where I needed to add it to the bodice. From here on I moved away from the written tutorial and gathered the skirt to fit the waistband I made and sewed them together. 

If you would love to try this with the circle skirt option also included in both the Ella or Skyler patterns  the same technique waistband hack would work too. 

The circle skirt would be even much faster to make!

So now for the final reveal of what I really wanted to make . 

The Dress- Simply wear the skirt and the top together! 

The dress turned out beautifully and I was happy!  No one would be the wiser unless she told them they were separate pieces. 

All is well that ends well with my sewing challenges. I think from now on I will let her help me choose a pattern as I love having her input even though it may not always be what I want. Stay tuned for what she picks next!

If you decide to try this pattern mash and skirt hack , I would love you to share in the Simple Life Patterns Fan Group  so we all can see your beautiful makes.

See you soon and happy sewing!


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