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An Inspired Advent: Day 10

Nan Holidays Inspiration Patterns Styles

Transforming The Dress Shirt Pattern pattern for holiday-wear!

Merchant & Mills dress shirt

Dressing for the holidays doesn’t have to be extreme glitz and glamour…although I DO want to make something with that matte sequins that Debbie used on her infinity scarf on Day 6.

Wait! Where was I? Chic comfort…right.

My husband and I are going to a Christmas party this Saturday at a friend’s house and I want something easy to wear. Boots. Tights. Dress. Period. She always has the fabulous Marigold cater her party so I NEED to have room to expand. (I know, TMI!)

Anyway, ever since our Merchant & Mills opening party a couple of months ago, I have really been enjoying the Dress Shirt tunic I made out of their Khadi cotton block print. It’s easy, unique and comfortable. (Here is Debbie too sporting their Camber Dress in Scuttle Black linen.)

Merchant & Mills Camber Dress and Dress Shirt

…an outtake from that night that I couldn’t pass up!


As cute as it is, it needs some dressing up for the holidays.

I have always had a thing about crisp white blouses, so I decided to use this Sea Island cotton sateen for my new tunic (amazing fabric to work with!!). I also like things to be slightly contrarian: ruffles featuring raw torn edges seemed to be the way to go. I think it worked.

The original pattern has a split placket that is stitched on the outside but has a one-piece lining. I simply used the outside placket for the lining too and extended both so there would be a 1″ overlap. Instead of cutting the exposed portion, I tore it and left it raw. I then tore three pieces of fabric about 3 1/2″ wide for the ruffles at the neck and the sleeves. (Sorry – I never measured the length!)

Merchant & Mills Dress Shirt

I sandwiched the neck ruffle within the linings of the placket and the yoke for a perfect finish on the inside. And did the same sandwiching with facings I made for the cuffs on the sleeves.

Since the original pattern was really long on me (I’m 5′ 4″) I shortened it by five or six inches. I also lengthened the sleeves six or seven inches to my wrist.

Merchant & Mills Dress Shirt

Finally I played around with the button style and placement. I used these cute buttons that add to but don’t distract from the other details of the tunic.

And at Debbie’s suggestion, added a few buttons to a tiny spot of interest at the hem, just for fun.


I’ll have to remember to Instagram a pic on Saturday!

Still can’t decide…jewelry or no? I’m thinking no, but suggestions are welcome. : )

Now, I just have to run over to Knuth’s and get some super sexy thigh-high boots to go with!

Who says chic holiday party-goers have to endure strapless bras?

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