Pattern Review: The Olivia Top / Dress


I was asked recently to test a new top / dress pattern, THE OLIVIA TOP and DRESS, by Jess from Craftiness is Not Optional. I was really excited because everything Jess does is magic. Seriously.

Let me also pause and say I fiercely LOVE digital pdf patterns. I really hate buying store-bought patterns and only getting to cut out one size.  Then, it's over.  Also, I royally suck at re-folding that gauzy pattern paper and so I always think I will re-use the same pattern, but I don't.  But pdf patterns can be stored in my computer, take up no room, and can be printed and reprinted as many times as I want for as many sizes as I want.  Genius really.

Okay, now on to the pattern.

Once I got the pieces cut out (while watching an episode of Breaking Bad) it probably took me about 2 hours to make the dress AND I also added a lining since the bird fabric I used on the skirt was a bit too see-though.  So, even with an additional step it was still a quick sew.

I consider myself an intermediate+ sewist and I learned more than one MUCH BETTER way to do certain steps than I have ever known before.  Particularly a way of finishing the edges of bias tape that is pure genius.  Seriously, you have no idea how bad previous bias tape edges of mine have been on past projects.  Embarrassing.

The length of this dress was perfect. I find many dress patterns for little girls too short for my taste. Love that this hit perfectly at the bottom of the knee, but, of course, you can really shorten or lengthen it if you wanted to.

There were many different options that came with this one pattern.  Love that.

I did find the chest width of the finished garment to be big based on my measurements.  Next time I would make the 2T and adjust the length of the skirt.  But that is the case with any pattern, I find.  Sometimes it takes a bit of tweaking to your own child's particular body type.  Below is Jess' photo of her daughter wearing the dress and you'll notice it's wide under the arms.  That's about as wide as it turned out on Bianca as well.  I could pinch a good 1.5" on each side of extra fabric.  This can make it super comfy for little ones, I just prefer a more fitted fit.

I looove this pattern.  I will be making more dresses and tops from this cute pattern.

My Project Details:
Green fabric from JoAnn Fabrics
White bird fabric from IKEA
Black buttons from WalMart
Sewing Machine: Brother cs60001
Serger (Brother 1034D) used for finishing inside edges.

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Jess@craftiness is not optional said...

woohoo! Glad you liked it so much! And thanks for testing!

Marie said...

I love it! A great little dress that is perfect for everyday but also nice enough for church! I wish I had more chances to sew and more courage to actually make something for my girl from scratch! The closest I have come is sewing a short onto a store bought short. Well done.