The Put A Bird On It Dress

I’ve never seen Portlandia. Let’s just start there. I’m sure I would love it, I’m not neglecting it through spite, I just, I have a really full T.V. watching schedule, okay? Okay, okay, I’m going right now to see it! But I do know about this whole “put a bird on it” thing and I must say, it’s as hilarious as it is true. How many birds have I seen on things in Brooklyn? Or even in the very hipster Philadelphia? So many birds. Fly, bird pillows and tote-bags, fly free!

That being said, I really like this dress I made….

PABOI 1See? My mom was right about the messy hair thing…

So I made this with Simplicity 4704, and fabric from my favorite knit fabric source, Girl Charlee. Seriously, that place is the best. This fabric came from the very first fabric order I ever placed with this store, and I have been waiting and waiting to use it and then finally I just decided, you know what I need? A mock-wrap dress.

And I’m mostly happy with the results! It’s a bit big on me, so I think I’m going to go down a size (sidenote- how do you muslin with a knit fabric pattern? Discuss.) I shorted this by about 5 inches and took our 6 inches in the back/waist, creating large darts out of thin air, but it’s still a bit loose, and given that it’s jersey it stretched during the day I wore it to the point that at the end of the day the good people of Harlem had no doubts about the nature of my bra. So I’m going to tack that business together now that I’m back home…

PABOI 6Still, it’s cute, right? It stood me well through the Rijksmuseum:


Where I enjoyed the Dutch Masters:


And thought deep thoughts about art:



PABOI 4I guess  I was concerned that this goose was going to pick a fight with my dress’ canaries.

And onto the train to Haarlem:


PABOI 7Where I posed in a Church, the one and only one we went to this whole trip! I tell you, Holland has a lot of nice things but it’s Churches are just okay. Unless of course you actually are Christian, then I’m sure they are very nice! But as a tourist and a Jew, well, you know…

So I love this dress, and I think I will duplicate it, at least one size down…

Oh, and by the by, Holland was fantastic, we had the best time! Just in case you were wondering…


Filed under Clothing, Sewing, Simplicity Patterns

17 responses to “The Put A Bird On It Dress

  1. That goose is hella scary! Loving the frock 🙂 I have no tips for muslin making with knits I am afraid 😦

  2. I had an old Jersey bedsheet for muslin purposes and I had also picked up some mysterious interlock with which I made some wearable muslins.

    Glad you enjoyed your holiday though 🙂

  3. Judi

    Sooo glad you had a nice time in Holland. Yes your dress is cute…looks very nice. I knew someone had talked about Girl Charlie…it was you…thank you! I saw the ‘bird’ fabric when I placed my first order today.

  4. I have the same fabric I’ve been meaning to make into a Renfrew! I love it as a dress though. Hmmmmm . . . You look so cute in it!

  5. I’m afraid the only way to muslin a knit pattern is with more knit fabric. I try to stock up on weird/cheap knits that I don’t mind using for this purpose (you really want to match the muslin knit with the actual knit you’re going to use – since they can vary wildly in stretch factor, this is important!). At any rate, most knit patterns can have the construction fudged so you make the basic shell before you sew on the bindings, meaning you can try it on and adjust the size in mid-process.

    The Put A Bird On It thing always makes me laugh because that’s kind of what I did to my own body! Oh well, I liked birds before birds were cool ::puts on Ray Bans with no lenses and Toms:: :B

    • Yes, this one has a bunch of princess seams, which I like, but found it difficult to adjust once sewn, sigh. I would go a size down next time for sure.

      You are way cool, Lauren, way cooler then these silly trends. You are too hip for hipster!

  6. I’m with Lauren. I use a lame-o knit for something where it really matters, otherwise I try to sew up side seams last (or close to last) so I can tinker with the fit a little.

  7. I second the knit bedsheets for muslins! And does it count as put a bird on it if the birds were already on the fabric? At any rate, I love a good wrap or mock wrap dress, and this is no exception!

  8. senjiva

    Hi I just found your blog through
    and I love your bird dress. I hava couple tips:
    1. Pre-shrink your fabric if it is washable.
    2. Giggle’s tip on using the old jersey bedsheet is perfect!
    3. Try to always sew your knit seams in the same direction.

    Looking forward to more of your blog!


  9. dixiediy

    i really like this dress on you! and your cute museum poses! the dress is that nice mix of casual and cute/dressy. perfect for strolling european streets 😉

    for muslins i’ve grown a small stash of a variety of cheap knits or leftovers. i try to find a fabric with the same weight and stretchiness as the final fabric i want to use. it’s never perfect as knits are very different from each other but you can get an idea.

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