Hot! The ‘H-owl-in’ For You Dress

The Facts

Fabric: Owl novelty print & Beige textured calico
Pattern: Colette Hazel (I’m trying these all out for you lovely ladies!)
Year: contemporary
Notions: Threads
Time to complete: 4 hours
First worn: For a day long Mother’s Day adventure!
Wear again?  Not without some alterations…There are many more ‘Hazel’ dresses in my future!
Total price: Under $20 if you include the pattern cost

I have a confession…I love novelty prints!  I don’t use them often however…It’s a love that I profess is one of the ‘see’, but don’t ‘use’ kind. So when I saw the mix-it-up challenge I was very excited, but also, very nervous. I love to mix-it-up with colors, which I guess would make me a fan of color blocking…still the idea of finding two prints that looked like they belong together, just scared the hell out of me.  Fabric shopping online was going to be too much of a risk, so I decided to head out to Joann Fabrics. While on my walkabout I found plenty of prints I liked, but none that seemed to go with each other.  I finally decided on the owls (they’re just too adorable!) and then made it my mission to find a print that would work well as the ‘V’ piece on the Hazel pattern. A bit frustrated, I fell back on piece of advice that my grandma bestowed upon me when I was eight years old or so: ‘Cheryl, if there is a speck of a color somewhere in your shirt/pants, you can match it!’  Thankfully there were a lot of colors to choose from with the owl print so I had plenty of options…almost too many.  Pink, blue, and green didn’t seem the right fit or the pattern clashed too much with the owls…Then I came across the beige calico that had a cross-hatch pattern on it that gave me a good ‘tree’ feel…owls live in trees…Done!

The Hazel pattern is for ‘beginners’ and I couldn’t agree with that label more.  It was so easy to trace and cut, and since I’ve been sewing so much, I felt for the first time that I could piece this baby together without the instructions. Hazel is meant to be a very light and breezy summer dress so the cottons I chose did really well to maintain the light and breezy feel.  Another really appealing thing about the pattern is the various pieces that can mix-and-match; so perfect for this challenge! I decided to make the V piece, the straps and the back panels in the cross-hatch beige color.  After seeing the pictures, I wish I would’ve done the whole back in the beige, but I still like the look nonetheless. My only struggle with the pattern was due to the fact that I’m drastically different sizes in the bust/waist/hip…I didn’t have time for a muslin (I know, shame on me!) so I decided to cut the ’12’ so that I could make adjustments if needed. Boy were adjustments needed!  Despite the fact that my measurements haven’t really changed, due to my martial arts training, my body is all crazy! I realized pretty quickly that I should have cut the ’10’.  In addition, I realized, too late, that the beige was not the right choice of color :(  Since I’ve only recently come out of my Chicago winter hibernation I am pretty pale.  A darker brown would have been a better choice so as not to have a ‘washed out’ look. In the end, knowing that this dress would need some future work, I omitted the zipper and made the adjustments as needed on the back seam and called it a night.

Despite those minor issues, I wore this little beaut for Mother’s Day breakfast and then lunch. The weather was beautiful and made the laid-back nature of the dress that much more appealing and enjoyable.  There is no doubt that I will be going back to Joann’s to get some more owl novelty print and a darker brown cross-hatch pattern to pair it with. But not before I make another Hazel from the very pretty floral print purchased the same day ;)




Cheryl is a teacher, martial artist, crafter and sewer just trying to find balance in a busy world. Originally from Milwaukee, Wisconsin she's now trying to fit into and explore the vast expanse that is Chicago, Illinois.


Comments are closed.

  1. Love the owl print! It’s got such gorgeous colours.

  2. So cute! Looks great with the green cardi.

  3. Cute fabric Cheryl. Nothing wrong with the washed-out look LOL great job! keep up the martial arts we wont to see you do The Crane in your next challenge : )

  4. Very cute color combination! I can understand the pale no-sun thing very well, but I still think the beige/blue combo on dress looks really cute on you. :)

  5. So many cute owly things on here! Your prints work so well together.

  6. Hi Sheryl, nothing lie a cool comfy dress to relax in, nice job.

  7. The owls are great and the contrast works well. Good summer dress

  8. This is so cute!!! That owl print is adorable and I love how it works with the solid panel.

  9. I love Colette patterns so I’m alway intrigued when I see one made up. I like what you did with it. I’ll have to put that pattern on my to-do list. Nice job!

  10. Hazel looks great on you! I have the same struggle with Colette sizing and find that my fit issues aren’t consistent across their line. Good luck working it out.

  11. I’m drawn to novelty prints, too!! They’re so kitschy and cute, it’s hard to resist buying them (but I usually do). It’s great to see the Hazel sewn up…even though the color and fit was an adventure, you seemed to learn a lot AND enjoyed the dress for a day out. That’s cool.

  12. Thank you so much for being our guinea pig with the new Colette patterns. I haven’t tried one yet, holding off till my sewing is a little more advanced as they don’t go up anywhere near my size….but I won’t let that stop me, I want a Hazel sometime. And I love the happy, bright colours of the owls. Lovely!