When Maddie’s Mum asked Kay to teach Maddie something challenging, in order to help prepare for her textiles GCSE – the answer was to find a project that covered plenty of dressmaking practice.

The idea of the shirt itself came when Kay discovered a fabulous range of dress patterns called Colette. Colette patterns are SO easy to use, the designs are modern, the pattern pieces are straightforward and the instruction book is easy to follow. We opted for the Violet shirt which is a super cute and modern styled shirt with a Peter Pan collar.


We first made a toile (prototype) to make use the shirt size we selected fit, it was a little big so Kay had to work some magic into making it smaller to fit Maddies petite frame. It is always worth making a toile before you cut into your good fabric, this way you don’t spend hours on a garment that doesn’t fit! It might seem a laborious task, but it also helps you get to know the pattern and the steps you need to take from beginning to end.


When we did get onto making the actual shirt, we decided to use a lovely crisp white cotton fabric with a grey micro dot pattern, which will be perfect for the Summer. The buttons we chose were simple pearly white two holed shirt buttons that blend beautifully with the fabric. The button holes which were stitched in white were not easy to do, it took quite a bit of concentration and practice!


There are two options for sleeve pattern, a capped sleeve and a 3/4 length sleeve with an elasticated hem line. Maddie decided the 3/4 length would suit her style, and although making the tunnel for the elastic around the hem of sleeve was tricky to sew, it has really worked well and looks great!


The back of the shirt has a pretty ruched (gathered) detail that is a simple and modern design. You can see the collar shape continues around from the front of the shirt and sits neatly across the shoulders.


We hope you have enjoyed reading about our project, we feel it went really well and fantastic results were achieved! Not to mention the amount of dressmaking skills we practised along the way! Now I wonder which pattern we will make next… keep tuned in to find out!