Pattern hacks

5 chiffon Sylvia Robes (Sew Over it). Unplanned hack (refashion).

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The Sylvia Robe from Sew Over it is not a new pattern and the 5 versions I have made are not new either. In fact, they are 3 years old! I’ll explain why I went back to them now in a tad.

This pattern is super simple, 4 pattern pieces, a front, back, band and sleeve. The style has dropped shoulders and a wide long sleeve attached to that. The band is a rectangle.

The sizing is not inclusive, only catering for sizes XS-XL (8-18 UK) and a bust of 43″ and hips of 46″. There is about 6-8″ of positive ease at the bust and 8″ at the hips, so maybe a size 20 UK could also use this pattern successfully. In my case, my measurements put me in the higher range of size Large, and that is what I have sewn.

The fabric consumption for this pattern is a lot. For the short version, 2.20 mt is suggested. I made mine with 1 mt of 58″ wide chiffon. The sleeves on this pattern have the grain-line marked horizontally across the sleeve? that consumes more fabric and sleeves traditionally have the grain-line going up/down the sleeve. So, I drew a new grain-line and placed on the fabric this way (also making the sleeve a tad shorter). The band is long and I cut it cross-grain. I have no dilemma doing this if this will save so much fabric.

My fabric saving layout

OK, so what do I want to do? seam rip the sleeves and just leave them with the short dolman sleeves that is part of the front and back. Simple: serge, turn up 1/4″ and top stitch. Why? It’s too hot, I can’t stand the fabric on my arms, and since moving to Brazil, I hadn’t been wearing any of these. Also, I realize now that I don’t like the long wide sleeves.

Sylvia Robe Number 1

This is made with chiffon fabric, the band is sewn on the reverse way (see about that in THIS VIDEO) and is machine sewn. I actually desconstructed a RTW dress I wore for years and grew tired of the style, whilst still loving the fabric. I made the band black due to lack of the main fabric from the dress. This fabric frays terribly, so french seams came to the rescue. Love these colors and below you can see the original version with the sleeve and now the new version.

Sylvia Robe Number 2

I made this one with an important hack. I cut the main pieces at the waist and brought them in a tad. I calculated the circumference of the new waist of this “cropped style”. This number was plotted into a half circle calculator to draft a half circle flounce to add. This was fun to think up and sew and I have a sew-along on my channel on how to do this (See HERE and HERE).

Version with the sleeve

I’m glad to have this again sans sleeves. I really like the flounce on this version.

Sylvia Robe Number 3

This one is also a refashion, the fabric comes from a crepe blouse and I loved the print at first sight. I did not have a large enough piece of fabric for the full front and back pieces. I added a slanted shape on the shoulder with black crepe to be able to complete the pieces. Color blocking for the win!

Sylvia Robe Number 4 and 5

The next two are different! I hadn’t removed the sleeves from these yet, so I had these little pieces of fabrics available. I recalled how much I love my Paula tops from Republique du Chiffon (See VIDEO HERE). The little ties on the front always get comments from people on the street and whenever I post them online.

I measured my sleeve pieces and drafted ties. I wanted them shaped. Not a rectangle. See the dimensions below. I will sew these with 1/4″ seam allowance.

To see how I sewed these ties to the center front, see the video on my sewing channel, plus you can see them all on too.

I wish I had kept the sleeves I took off the others…. my mind is blank I don’t recall what I did to them. Oh well, at least I was able to add ties to these two and I love the result a billion times a billion!

Give this little hack on the center front of any top you might want to add a little detail to.

DISCLAIMER: I Purchased my own pattern and fabric for all of these versions. There are no affiliate links in this post.


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