New Releases: Ladies Alice Pleated Dress & Ladies Sahara Dress & Top

The day is finally here BSD fans! We have had SO many requests for both of these patterns, that I know you are going to be so excited for this.  Our two most popular patterns, The Alice Pleated Dress and the Shara Dress & Top, are now available in Ladies sizes!! And the fit on these is perfection! Take a look.

The Alice Pleated Dress for Ladies

It’s not often that you get a woven pattern that fits so well with minimal adjustments.  But the Alice is that pattern. It comes in sizes 0-20 with 7 cup sizes (Cups A-G!). I think the fact that most people don’t need to do a bust adjustment is what helps make the fit so good right off the bat. I made myself an Alice for Easter, and it is wonderful! I cannot wait to show it off this coming weekend.

Don’t you love it? I think my favorite part is the pockets.  That way I can carry my keys but still look posh. I’m not big on carrying purses, so that’s a nice feature for me.

Our testers also did an amazing job on their Alices.  Everyone worked really hard this test. Look at their photos below:

Sahara Dress & Top for Ladies

Next up we have the Sahara.  When the girls version came out last month, at least 40 of you requested a ladies version stat! It comes in sizes 0-20 and includes a full bust adjustment for those of you that need one. I must say this is quickly becoming a staple in my wardrobe. It is such a quick sew and super flattering.  I love how you can wear it casually with jeans or leggings or you can dress it up with heels just depending on the fabric you use.  The pattern comes with two different necklines, three sleeve lengths (plus sleeveless!) and three dress lengths.  I made a sleeveless one for my final.  I promptly wore it to date night that weekend.  I love it that much.

Once again, we had a ton of fabulous testers that really helped perfect this pattern. I don’t think there is a single person that this garment doesn’t look flattering on.

If you already have the Sahara Play Dress & Top for girls, you know it currently only comes in two garment lengths. Well, that’s about to change because we have since added a tunic length! Some of our original testers were nice enough to test it out for me.  Take a look.

All you have to do to get your updated pattern is head to our My Account page to the downloads section.  Your updated pattern will be waiting for you.  We also changed the construction method to make for nicer finishes.  And if you don’t already have a copy, be sure to pick it up!

As if all that eye candy wasn’t enough, we made a video so you can take a closer look at these amazing garments.

The Ladies Alice Pleated Dress and the Ladies Sahara Dress & Top are currently on sale fo only $6.50. If you join the BSD Facebook group, you can get a coupon code for an additional discount valid the first 24 hours after the release.

Sewing Tutorial: Box Pleats Made Easy

I love box pleats.  They are one of my favorite things to add to my design simply because they are so classic.  They give a wow factor to any garment and they are fairly simple to sew. The Rebel Girl Party Dress and the Alice Pleated Dress both feature inverted box pleats and I just love them. I thought I would write up a quick tutorial to show you how easy they are.

Sewing Tutorial: Box Pleats Made Easy - Must pin for later!

Sewing Tutorial: Box Pleats Made Easy

Box pleats can look scary if you have never done them, but they are actually a snap! I took the photos from our Box Pleat hack we did for the Rose Bubble shorts to show you how to do them.

Sewing Tutorial: Box Pleats Made Easy - Must pin for later!First, transfer your pattern markings.  I like to use a water soluble fabric pen. Just be sure to test it on your fabric first.

Nect you want to line up your two outer lines and fold so they meet.  On BSD patterns, these are the solid lines.  The fold will be on the dotted line.
Sewing Tutorial: Box Pleats Made Easy - Must pin for later!

Then baste on that solid line and you will end up with something like what you see above.

Sewing Tutorial: Box Pleats Made Easy - Must pin for later!

This is how it will look from the front.

Sewing Tutorial: Box Pleats Made Easy - Must pin for later!

Next you want to press the pleat so that the fabric in the back is distributed equally on either side of the basting. This will actually put your dotted line right at the basting.  The picture above shows both the right and the wrong side so you can see what it looks like.
You can then baste the top seam to keep the pleats in place when you sew.  Leave the basting in until you sew your final seam.  That way your feed dogs won’t shift the fabric out of place as you sew.

That’s it!  Now you are a box pleat master! Now you can add them to everything!

Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams

We all have a little extra weight sometimes. You know that bulkiness that you can’t seem to get rid of? No, I’m not talking about what happens to your body after the holidays (or wait, does that only happen to me?) I’m talking about the extra baggage in your seams! Often times when you add a couple layers, your seams expand from too much fabric and look, well, terrible. There is an easy fix for that: grade your seam allowance!

Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams - How this is a great sewing tutorial on how to do seam grading. I've always wondered what that was.  It looks so easy.  Must pin for later!

Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams

Now seam grading sounds like something only a teacher would do, but it’s just a simple term for cutting off your seam bulk. Check the photos below for how to do it.

Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams - How this is a great sewing tutorial on how to do seam grading. I've always wondered what that was.  It looks so easy.  Must pin for later!

First, we start with a seam with multiple fabric layers.  For this tutorial, I have used four layers together and pressed the seam allowance to the right. I did each layer a different color so you could easily see what to do.Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams - How this is a great sewing tutorial on how to do seam grading. I've always wondered what that was.  It looks so easy.  Must pin for later!
When looking at the wrong side, you want the top layer of the seam allowance to be the shortest. Therefore, you are going to trim this layer the most. Since I have four layers of fabric in the seam allowance, I trim this one pretty short. If you only had two layers, you could just trim this seam allowance to half.
Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams
Now do the same thin as the last step, trim this second layer to just past the top layer. Since I have four layers of fabric, I trimmed this layer to half.

Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams - How this is a great sewing tutorial on how to do seam grading. I've always wondered what that was.  It looks so easy.  Must pin for later!

Now it’s time for you final trimming. Take the third layer, and trim a small amount off. Leave the bottom layer untouched.  As you can see, all the layers are visible, and by gradually trimming the seam allowance, you have greatly reduced the bulk.

Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams - How this is a great sewing tutorial on how to do seam grading. I've always wondered what that was.  It looks so easy.  Must pin for later! Here’s what it looks like from the front.

Lose Your Sewing Weight: Grade Your Seams - How this is a great sewing tutorial on how to do seam grading. I've always wondered what that was.  It looks so easy.  Must pin for later! And here is a close-up of the seam allowance. Now you can be super precise if you want and get a ruler out and mark an amount you need to cut off. Personally, I find if you just keep each layer shorter than the next one, it will turn out perfectly fine. But if precise is your thing, take the amount of your seam allowance and divide it by the number of layers of fabric you have to adjust. For example, if you have 4 layers of a 1″ seam allowance, you would trim the first layer .75″, the second .5″, and the last layer .25″.

Now if only all those holiday treats came off so easily. ha ha.

We use this technique on our Sahara Dress & Top for Girls and our Sahara Dress & Top for Ladies. If you don’t have these pattern yet, you are missing out!