Sewing: Oliver + S Bubble Dress

bubbledress300With the cash Mo slipped me in my dinner bag (sneaky wench!) when she picked up her wedding dress (wish I could show you how LOVELY Heathen looked on her big day- Oh wow.) I went out and splurged on a pattern. Often I skip patterns entirely and wing it- once you know the basics of fit and seams, it’s not hard. But… a well-written pattern can teach a seamstress new tricks- and the Oliver + S Bubble Dress did not disappoint.

Aside from the design being darling and the package scrumptious, the pattern is very well written. As a pattern writer myself, I appreciate when an artists takes the time to be both accurate and concise. This pattern is both. The illustrations are clear and easy to follow- anything beyond basic sewing skills, you could follow along fine.

The pattern itself is printed on highter quality, thicker paper than mass-market patterns, making it both easier to cut and handle, and strong enough for many uses. The notations are clear, and the graphics are simply accurate.


I loved this fabric on the bolt, but transformed into the dress, I’m not so in love. Abby likes it though, and I know to chose something simpler next time. It’s fully lined, and done so in a way that is easy, clean and beautiful. Like I said, I learned a few tricks- tricks I can parlay easily into making other patterns work better. Also, I learned how to do this:


I knew making it a Bubble Dress would involve elastic, but this was just brilliant. No tubing, no pulling elastic through with a safety pin, just perfect stretch, completely concealed in the lining. Fantastic.

IMG_0242Abby is delighted with it- and wore it both yesterday and pulled it on again today. She loves the little wing-things in the side of the bubble, and pretends to fly around the house. I’m definitely making another one of these.

Sometimes when I purchase something because I love the package, or the vintage-y illustrations, I am disappointed in the product. Not so here. Oliver + S, while priced compatibly with mass market patterns, is so much better that I will actively seek out their work next time I want both a cute dress, a good design, and  maybe even to learn a new trick or two.

I give it Five Stars.

6 thoughts on “Sewing: Oliver + S Bubble Dress

  1. Hi Tracy,

    It’s really nice to see one of these patterns made up! I work for Pacific Fabrics, and we carry this line, but I had yet to see one made up….I think you have inspired me to make a sample for my store. Have you checked out ModKid Boutique? They make some darling patterns as well. I’m particularly in love with Kyoko, and have that in my store sample que. Keep up the lovely sewing!

  2. Hi Tracy,

    I’m actually an associate at the Bremerton Store. Although we do have a few other outlets around the sound. We are the biggest independent family owned fabric store in Washington State. We are at Or at least thats the corporate website. I have been reading that you are designing patterns, hopefully, I will see yours in our store one day! Unfortunately, I don’t really have any pull with the powers that be.

  3. So cute! And good to know. I’ll have to pick up one of their patterns sometime. Every time I see one in the store I consider it but just haven’t for one reason or another. Thanks for the review.

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