Handmaker's Factory

Hazel dress sew-a-long!

Hazel cover

OK, so you have your pattern but now what? The first thing to do is take your measurements and compare them to the measurements on the chart to find out which size you should cut. The main measurements you need are bust, waist and hips. Here's how to take your own measurements.


If you find it difficult to measure yourself ask a friend to help you. If you do it yourself make sure you stand up straight (a full length mirror helps) and wear something tight fitting.

The next thing to do is check to see where your measurements sit on the chart which you will find on the back of the pattern envelope.

Hazel measurements

You may find your measurements span across multiple sizes. If this is the case you can merge between the sizes when you trace your pattern. Remember, it's always a good idea to make a muslin using a cheaper fabric to test the size before cutting your 'nice' fabric. You may think it's a time waster but to get the best possible fit it's worth the effort.

You will find the fabric requirements on the back cover of the pattern. The amount you need will depend on the width of the fabric and if you need to match a pattern you will need extra.

Hazel back

The Hazel pattern comes printed in multiple sizes on tissue paper. I don't recommend cutting the tissue pattern, instead you will need to trace the size required from the tissue paper. You can either trace the pattern onto tracing paper by placing the pattern underneath and carefully copying each line and marking with a pencil and ruler. Another option is to use brown paper or card, place the pattern on top and roll over each line and marking with a tracing wheel, then make the marks more visible with a pencil or pen. You should use a cutting mat when doing this to save damaging your table!


Once you have your pattern traced and cut out it's time to choose and cut your fabric. Crisp, light to medium weight fabrics are recommended such as seersuckercotton piquepoplin, silk twilldupioni,cotton lawndouble gauze and light sateen. Follow the layout instructions in the booklet.

Hazel layouts

If you use a fabric with a border use the following layout.

Hazel layouts

Fabrics with a print (such as stripes) may require you to move the pattern pieces around to ensure the pattern matches at the side seams etc, just take your time.

When purchasing your fabric you will also need a matching 22" invisible zip and thread and fusible interfacing appropriate for your fabric.

Next week I'll work through the process of sewing the dress. You can sew along with me on the blog or come along to the class on October 5th where I will help you sew the Hazel dress from start to finish. If you haven't got yourself a copy of the pattern yet pop on over to Stitch 56 and type in the code "HANDMAKERS" to receive a 5% discount.

If you have any questions just leave a comment below.