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The Ila Dress

Hello and happy new year!  For my first sewing project of 2017, I decided to make the Ila dress, a pattern by my dear friend, Olga from Coffee and Thread.

I always love an opportunity to play with stripes, especially on a dress like this one with such beautiful, clean lines.  I cut the pattern so that the stripes run vertically on the yoke, center panel and skirt pieces and horizontally on the side bodice pieces. (The fabric was printed with the stripes running vertically.)

One of my favorite features of this pattern is the hidden pockets.  This is also the one photo I have where you can see the true color of the gold piping. It's a pre-made piping I found at one of the big box stores and it worked well for this project!

I made the dress in one of Kaufman's railroad denims.  I have been very happy with his other fabrics from this line, but this one is a bit heavier with zero stretch across the crossgrain.  This made it difficult to work with, especially on a pattern like this one with a curved yoke and set-in sleeves.  I had to unpick those seams several times to get everything to lay just right. In the end, I was happy with the results.  But I wouldn't necessarily recommend this fabric for this pattern.

One the other hand, the heavier weight allows the dress to hold its shape and it hardly wrinkles at all.

Tia loves this dress. After I took these photos, she asked if she could wear the whole outfit to their co-op the next day.   It was her idea to pair it with her fox tights and her cowgirl boots.  She's starting to develop her own sense of style which is often so fun and eclectic.

Other times, she still needs a few pointers.  :)  Does anyone else have a child who tries to wear tights as pants?  Sometimes Tia will be ready to trot out the door in tights and tshirt. 

 It's funny - even Dan was once confused about tights vs the leggings-as-pants trend.  He took Iris to the dermatologist (who also happened to be a fellow mom friend of mine who we hadn't seen in awhile) dressed only in tights and a tshirt.  When they came home, I asked him where her skirt was.  He looked at me, confused.  Then said he thought her tights worked as pants.  haha!

So yes, the tights go under the dress and do not qualify as pants.  I'm glad we cleared that up!  :P


  1. Oh my, that is totally something my husband would do. Tia styled the dress perfectly; glad she didn't go out in just her tights!

  2. I love this dress, it suits Tia perfectly! And love the story about Dan and Iris and the tights :D

  3. chuckle, the finer details of girlhood... tights vs. leggings. =)

  4. Love how the dress turned out, so beautiful! Love her style! ����It took
    a while for Ania to accept that tights were not pants. Good thing Evelyn doesn't wear pants at all so we don't have to deal with any mishaps. Thank you my friend for making my pattern shine! �������� (yellow for the gold piping, of course ��)

  5. hahaha That's the funniest story! I think my husband would not be able to tell the difference either hehe The dress turned out beautiful, and Tia styled it so well :) My daughter (the big one) needs a few pointers every now and then. We have the most hilarious conversations when at times she tries to pair up un-pair-able things and prints hehe

  6. Tia in Ila, that sounds so perfect! I love how you played with the direction of the stripes, especially at the pockets. From all Ila dresses I've seen so far, I prefer the ones with simple fabrics that show the beautiful lines of the pattern well. Like this one!

  7. Beautiful as always, Rachel! I so love your style and classic aesthetic. Playing with the stripes gives it a fun look too! As for the pants vs. tights debate, I'm a pretty big stickler about that one in our household, though usually the offender is leggings. My teen daughter knows that unless her top covers her backside and front, it's a no-go. I just can't come around to the idea that leggings are pants, esp. when worn with a shorter top. Fine for the gym, not for school.

    1. Ohh girl, you are preaching to the choir! We have the same rule in our house! <3

  8. Oh yes! Todd is clueless when it comes to leggings vs. tights. Throw in footless tights and it's game over. Love this combo though! Certainly shows Tia's creativity, and it works!

  9. This dress is so gorgeous! I can imagine that it was tough to get that curved yoke perfect in such a stiff, unyielding fabric, but the end result is just perfect. The stripes, the gold piping, everything! And I wouldn't have combined it with fox tights, but I think Tia was onto something there! Laughing at the idea of her running around town in tights and a shirt. Maggie has a selection of tutus, and that's usually my response to those outfits - well, put on a tutu at least! Ha!


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