A few months ago, in the height of the English summer, I had the pleasure of testing the Rushbrook Top and Dress by Titchy Threads. The dress was simply perfect for the balmy weather – a classic sleeveless dress with a swing style which made it loose and comfortable and my daughter feel instantly in love with it.
The problem with the English summer is it never quite lasts that long and now October has arrived we are most definitely in autumn. Whilst this usually means filing away my summer patterns until next year and returning to hoodies and joggers, this was not necessarily the case with the Rushbrook, and so, here I present my autumnal Rushbrook dress.
The loose swing style – seen beautifully in this shot, which also shows the full freedom of movement this classic dress allows – makes it perfect for layering over sweaters and tights.
I opted to make my autumnal Rushbrook in worsted wool to add extra warmth. The dress can be made in a range of woven fabrics but you need to consider the effect the type and thickness of fabric will have on the French seams as described in the pattern. One of the key features of Titchy Threads patterns is the highly professional finish the patterns allow you to achieve through well explained professional techniques; French seams is one such technique described in the Rushbrook pattern. Worsted wool is actually not that much thicker than some quilting cottons so I did not make any modifications to the pattern; which was lucky because I really love the clean look of French seams. Should the fabric you use be an issue, and make your French seams too bulky, the pattern does describe how you could use a regular seam finish.
Whilst we are discussing highly professional finishing techniques, I feel I have to mention the hem facing – I really love this hem finish because it adds a clean finish to the hemline in the same way the French seam adds a clean finish to the seams. It also enables you to add a nice pop of colour or contrast or special ‘secret’ fabric you get a little glimpse of every time the breeze catches the skirt.
The Rushbrook has a feature placket which you can leave simple, like I have in my autumnal Rushbrook, or add a ruffle piece to (as I did in my summer version). You can similarly leave the sleeve edge simple or add a flutter ruffle to it. I have to say, of all the plackets I have attempted, I felt this was one of the most simple and straightforward.
The dress also has optional patch pockets. I daren’t present my daughter with anything that doesn’t have pockets – she is forever collecting little trinkets and ‘treasures’ – and the little patch pockets on this dress are a very practical size for a young collector. I choose to create my pockets in the same fabric I used for my dress (in contrast to my summer version where I used a contrasting fabric), because of this, I choose to cut my pockets on the bias. I did this for two reasons, firstly it changes the direction of the directional print and makes the pocket more of an interesting feature, secondly, it’s a lazy seamstresses way of avoiding pattern matching!
It’s safe to say my daughter loves her autumnal Rushbrook as much as her summery version and it’s a lovely contrast to the hoodies and pants that make up most of her autumn and winter wardrobe.
The Rushbrook dress and top is most definitely a pattern for every season.
I hope you have enjoyed reading my blog post. Be sure to visit the other hosts on the Rushbrook Dress and Top Blog tour for more inspiring ideas.