La Bella Donna Hacking Cuffs to Sleeves
I've recently discovered the Love Notions La Bella Donna dolman. I like the overall shape of this dolman top and that it includes a plain neckline, cowl or hood. It also has a shirt or tunic length, optional pockets and 3 hem finishes of straight, curved or banded. Basically it's a pattern that has the options I prefer, meaning it's an easy base to hack.
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I've taken the LBD and added the Arlington mock turtleneck to it. I blogged about that make here. Today, I'm changing the long cuffs into long sleeves. While the long cuffs are quick and unique to this pattern, sometimes I just want a regular sleeve. This is a quick and simple hack but don't worry, I'll walk you through all the steps.
What you need
You need the pattern, tracing paper and fabric of your choice. I'm using the Super Soft Southwest Style Hacci from Mily Mae Fabrics for this hack. This is the same fabric base I used for mock turtleneck LBD I made. It's so soft and cozy I wanted to use another print for this one since it's a different style.
Since I used the projector file of the LBD, I'll trace the long cuff onto tracing paper to make a new long sleeve pattern piece. This piece is "cut on fold" which you can keep.
Next, fold your pattern piece in half. You could just use this to cut a new sleeve but your sleeve would end up short. You need to add in a hem allowance! Since the hem of the LBD uses a 1/2" hem allowance, I find it easiest to keep that consistent. Add a 1/2" to the smallest end of the sleeve. Cut your new pattern piece out.
Cut your front and back bodice as well as the cowl, hood or neckline facing. Sew along the shoulder seams on both sides.
Cut 2 new sleeves on the fold. Clip or mark the center of the curved edge of the new sleeve. Match this clipped center of the sleeve to the seam of the shoulder. Stitch/serge using 3/8" seam allowance.
Open up the now stitched sleeve. Fold the bodices and sleeves RST matching up the new sleeve seams. Sew starting at the sleeve hem along the curve to the shirt hem.
For this LBD, I opted for a lined hood (in the same fabric) and curved hem. I prefer the lined hem if I have enough fabric since it has a bit more heft. Also, it's nice to not have visible seams.
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