1 June 2016

Five Design Hacks for the Bettine Sewing Pattern

Design hack ideas for the Bettine sewing pattern - Tilly and the Buttons

According to Instagram, I’m not the only one who has made Bettine dresses for every day of the week. When speed, comfort and style combine, a sewing pattern becomes addictive! If you’re looking to mix it up a bit with your next Bettine dress, here are some design hack ideas we’ve spotted around the internet…

Bettine dress sewing pattern - Tilly and the Buttons

1) Cut-out shoulder dress

We were super impressed when we spotted this cut-out shoulder Bettine on the Instagram feed of our lovely former intern Emily. Emily lowered the armhole curves on the pattern before cutting her fabric to get a more pronounced drape under the arms. She then cut out oval shapes out of the fabric at the shoulders and finished the edges with binding. Bang on trend, this hack is quick to achieve and great for the Summer or casual evening wear.

Bettine dress sewing pattern - Tilly and the Buttons
Bettine dress sewing pattern - Tilly and the Buttons

2) Add a collar

Mirjam drafted her own Peter Pan collar for the Bettine dress - seriously cute. I love how she matched the colour to the cuff. Any shaped flat collar would work with the scoop neckline – curved, pointed, pleated… And how amazing is the octopus print Cotton + Steel fabric?

Bettine dress sewing pattern - Tilly and the Buttons
Bettine dress sewing pattern - Tilly and the Buttons

3) Make a t-shirt

I’m soooo making one (ten) of these this Summer! We’ve spotted a few Bettine t-shirts around, both in drapey wovens and jersey, including this lovely version by Marie. If you want to make it in jersey, keep reading to find out about adding a neckband. Whatever fabric you’re making it in, add some length to the bodice pieces (Marie added 15cm/6in), then hem it. It’s also wise to check the finished waist measurements (listed in the instructions) will fit over your high hips - if they don’t, simply redraw the bodice side seams so they flare out a bit towards the hem.

Bettine dress sewing pattern - Tilly and the Buttons

4) Exaggerate the grown-on sleeves

Amelia looks so glamorous in her hack! What she’s done is exaggerate the grown-on shape of the sleeves, by redrawing the curves on the bodice pieces much lower than they are on the original pattern. I think this would make a really pretty beach cover up in a semi-translucent cotton voile or even chiffon, maybe with a dainty pompom trim?

Bettine dress sewing pattern - Tilly and the Buttons

5) Fashion a contrast hem band

How about adding a hem band in a contrast fabric? Tasha’s taken the guess work out for you and produced a full tutorial on her Bettine hack – thanks, Tasha! Another thing you could do with this idea is to cut all pieces in the same fabric and insert a contrast piping into the hem band seam.

I know I said five, because five is a good number, but in case you missed it last year, here's one I made earlier!

Jersey Bettine dress - sewing pattern from Tilly and the Buttons

Jersey Bettine dress, AKA the most comfortable outfit in the world!

The design of the Bettine dress makes it perfect for sewing in jersey. You just need to replace the neckline facing with a neckband. Read more details about making Bettine in jersey, including measurements for cutting your neckband.

There's plenty more inspiration to be had from the #SewingBettine hashtag on Instagram and our Bettine maker gallery on Pinterest.

Have you got any more design hack ideas for the Bettine dress sewing pattern? Do share!

[All photos used with permission of the blog authors]