Made By Rae Patterns, Sewing

A Week’s Worth of Rubies

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A chain of Ruby bodices lined up and ready to be made into awesome shirts!

The Ruby pattern by MadeByRae is a relatively easy pattern to sew that can be customized to create many different looks. It was the second pattern I sewed after the Washi. I dug around in my stash to find the right fabric for my wearable muslin since I never like to spend money on fabric for my first attempt. (Interestingly, all of my first attempts have ended up being garments I love to wear, but habits die hard.) I had some fabric I liked but didn’t have enough for the main parts of the blouse. Most of the versions I have seen use a white or cream colored bodice with a patterned bottom. Surfing through my sewing blogs I came across this blouse by super seamstress Ada Spragg and I realized that I could do the reverse and use the pattern for the bodice with the white for the main parts of the blouse and that is what I did. As with all my MadebyRae patterns, I made a medium and added two inches to the length. It was an easy sew, done in an afternoon, but I love how finished it looks. Rae’s technique for lining the bodice is explained in her really easy to follow tutorials. Here is a picture of the (slightly rumpled) finished product which I have worn many times.

This is a great layering piece that I plan to replicate in many other fabrics. I love how it looks under a sweater, a jeans jacket and with shorts or a skirt. I love how flattering the neckline is and how the little bit of pattern peeks out.

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I then decided to make some Ruby dresses and made four very different versions. Version one was made with chambray material from my stash purchased over 20 years ago in Brooklyn. I dug through my scraps to find good bodice material and found some unused fat quarters also circa 1993 Brooklyn. They were just enough to make the bodice. I loved the resulting dress which I wore all summer. It is really great with a jeans jacket. I played around with the two bodice fabrics because I could have gone either way in terms of which to use as the bodice fabric and which to use as the lining. Both worked. This is the final version.

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Detail of bodice:

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And here is how I wore it all summer:

Since my first two Rubies were basically free (fabric over 20 years old counts as free in my book!) I splurged to make some more versions. One was inspired by Rae’s version with a lacy top and a spring-like print for the main part of the dress.

I loved this fabric and enjoyed making this and it looks really pretty on the hangar:

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I tried it on though and between the shape and my fabric choices, on me it looks like a nightie my mom would have worn in the 60’s when I was growing up, a really beautiful nightie but still evoking more nightie than work dress. I thought about using it as a nightie and contemplated cutting it shorter and making a top which would probably have been cute with jeans but in the end I sent it to my daughter who said she would wear it with the world’s most versatile belt and here she is looking as cute as ever.

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I then made a version inspired by another dress that Rae made using her Lotus Pond fabric. I used a scrap of the attic chambray for the bodice and the orange Lotus Blossom fabric for the dress. This fabric is really soft when washed and this made a great dress. I like the more structured feel of the chambray which I lined with more of the orange fabric for a more casual summer dress (although this got worn to the office as well.) Also very cute with a little cotton sweater which dresses it up a bit. This is how I wore it to work.

imageFinally I decided to make a Ruby all in one fabric. I was inspired by Allie from IndieSew whose Ruby is adorable. I love this bright turquoise print with little birds. The name of the fabric is Tokyo Trees and I think it made a great dress. Wearing it made me happy.imageOnce I realized that a fat quarter was all it took to make the Ruby bodice, I rummaged around in my stash and found several unused fat quarters to make a week’s worth of Ruby blouses. These will be great all summer and since I had leftover white cotton fabric, making these is basically free. Since I usually make two things at a time, I cut the fat quarters and chained pieced the bodices as one would a quilt.image

Here are some of the bodices after lining them all ready to be attached to the shirt pieces:

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They are still unfinished as of this writing but are high up on my list of WIPs to be finished in the new year. I know that they will be great come summer.

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Overall, I can’t recommend this pattern more highly. Easy, cute, versatile. Here are some detail pictures showing some of the steps.

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8 thoughts on “A Week’s Worth of Rubies

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