Splash Inari

Recently I’ve been a bit stressed out over my pledge to make everything in my wardrobe. Two years since taking my no RTW pledge, sewing has become a bit of a necessity rather than something I do purely for fun. And that’s fine.. But the fact is that I am really shit at making basic clothes, like simple singlets to wear under clothes for example. I also find jeans quite exhausting, and the end result is never as durable as RTW ones. Anyhoodle – I was really inspired when I listened to Seamwork Radio’s latest podcast with Jacqui Palhegyi, blogger at Birds of a Thread. She is a sewing blogger, but also part of the ethical clothing blogosphere which I was pretty oblivious to (I mean, I thought our online sewing community had the answer to everything!). So, I’ve started checking out her Ethical Shopping guide with a mind to perhaps let myself do some shopping going forward…

With all this in mind, I’ve recently ‘allowed’ myself to make a bit more fun, unplanned pieces for my wardrobe, this crazy Inari dress being one of them…
If I’m honest, I’m not sure what I think of this dress. I love the last Inari I made, with it’s feminine colours and soft double gauze fabric… Sigh. I just don’t think I can get away with the sack-ish silhouette here. What do you think?

The fabric is a pretty rough eco cotton, described as quilting cotton on the label with a pretty crazy paint splash pattern. It’s very different to what I would normally wear, but I thought what the hell. Since my last Inari was rather tight around my hips, I did widen the pattern for this one quite a bit – probably a bit too much. I also lengthened it by about 2cm.

Oh, and it’s paired with a fresh pair of black Virginia leggings!


What are your thoughts in terms of sewing with stiffer quilting cottons? What clothing projects, if any, do you think they work for? I often find so many lovely fabrics in that section, but never really know if to even try turning them into something wearable. Would be great to get your input!

Project summary:

  • Inari tee dress pattern: in my stash
  • Fabric: £13.50

Total: £13.50

36 thoughts on “Splash Inari

  1. For me, I don’t like wearing anything that is stiff feeling so tend to avoid quilting cottons.
    You look great in this. I have made several sack type dresses and if I am honest they don’t do me any favours. Being short, I need something more fitted, but they are comfortable and have a modern silhouette, so I get drawn to them. You, however, are tall. Lucky you! You most certainly can wear this look. You might like the Stylearc Mila dress. Very easy make and can be varied a lot.

    • Thanks :) I’ve thought about making the Mila so many times. I might have to get on it…. Maybe try making it in a knit fabric? Maybe you’ll get more of a clingy rather than sack effect? It is a tricky silhouette to pull off in general I think… Not convinced I’m doing it either. My boyfriend is def more of a fan of the fitted look :) But it’s so comfortable….

  2. I’ve made a couple of Scouts out of quilting cotton—lovely prints but I just don’t wear them as much as my other tops since the drape is a little off, and they wrinkle like crazy! That said, this dress looks awesome! I think the print is so loud that you can get away with a slightly stiffer fabric.

    • I know what you mean with the wrinkles. But thinking about it, this fabric isn’t quite so stiff as some of the quilting cottons I’ve looked at. Maybe somewhere in between. Which is probably why I get away with it!

  3. I think it works ok – but saying that, the first Inari you made is the one I prefer – It’s difficult to make stiff fabric work for a pattern that has so little shaping. I’ve only had success with that kind of cotton if it’s for a fitted bodice of a sun dress, (although usually strappy rather than with sleeves).

  4. I think it looks beautiful, but I know what you mean about the stiffness of quilting cotton. I have made a button-up granville shirt and it is so cute but it never gets worn, it is just too stiff! I did find that the quilting weight worked well for the hollyburn shirt though.

    • Thank you! I actually don’t think this fabric, on second thought, is as stiff as a lot of quilting cotton. Probably somewhere in the middle which is why I get away with it!

  5. I’ve made two Inari dresses. My first, in a soft rayon heavy knit is gorgeous to wear & I love it. My second was in a cotton ikat and I don’t like it as much as the fabric doesn’t drape and it looks boxier.
    I don’t really see with quilting cottons but I do think they can work for dresses with fitted bodices and gathered or pleated skirts. I think the lack of drape means it is restrictive for garment options.

    • A few people have commented about using knit fabric for this fabric, and I will definitely try it for my next one. Might make it less restrictive too!

  6. This looks amazing on you, not sack-like at all. I generally prefer to wear drapier fabrics, but stiffer fabrics can have a place. I am planning my next Inari in denim, as I think it will show off the cocoon shape, like yours does (my first was in rayon). The fit and flare type shape dress *could* also cope with a more stable fabric – something like an Emery, maybe?

    • Aw thanks :) I’ve seen a few Inari’s in denim and they all look fantastic, so look forward to seeing yours. I might also try to make one in a knit fabric after reading people’s comments here. So moving away from stiffer fabrics completely…. :)

  7. Hi! great post. you look fab in the pics. I’ve been wondering about this pattern for ages and I think you’ve answered my question. Less stiffness more drape is the way to go?

  8. I really like this on you, I think that the print is really cool and it’s working with those leggings! You have to feel comfortable though and that’s the main thing. Also I hear you on the necessity-sewing, I am majorly putting off jeans even though I desperately need some, as well as some other much needed but boring items. It’s all about balance though, sewing has to stay fun!

    • Thanks lovely! And I totally agree re finding a balance. I’ve actually got some denim fabric in my stash waiting for me right now, and my old pair of memade jeans are slowly crumbling… Maybe making leggings are more dresses is a subconscious avoidance thing I’m doing? :)

  9. From the pics it looks great but you’re the one in it! I think it’ll probably sit better with bare legs – unless I wear a slip I find most fabrics stick to leggings. Could you look into some options on treating the fabric to make it softer perhaps? And I think one must pick their battles regarding ethical wardrobe choices. If you can find your basics from another source that fits your ethics then I wouldn’t feel guilt – remember this is meant to be a pleasure too, and I am sure you have many other life responsibilities!

    • You know you are so right. I wore this outfit after blogging about it, and the dress kept riding up like mad. Went a bit crazy after a while. Perhaps it would have been less of an issue with a more drapy fabric? Or leggings made out of a more lycra heavy fabric? Anyhoodle – bare legs it is as soon as it starts heating up :)

  10. I think you’re totally pulling this off! It’s sack-like only in a cool, arty way. I’m just sewing a Portfolio top in slightly-too-stiff cotton, hoping it’ll soften with washing.

    It used to be easy to get excellent ‘ethical’ basics (knickers, vests etc. in organic, fair-trade cotton) and really difficult to get anything fancier, but in the last few years I feel like that has been reversed – there are all sorts of expensive ‘designer’ garments and hardly anywhere to buy some everyday underwear! Also so many ‘ethical’ companies are doing a lot of “bamboo” (actually rayon) now, which is environmentally quite dodgy. But I like People Tree (sale prices only for me), and the New Internationalist shop still has affordable, basic organic cotton underwear http://ethicalshop.org/.

    • Thank you! And you are very right re ‘fashionable’ ethical clothing. I’d never seen the New Internationalist shop so thanks for sharing. I guess after so many years of shopping on the high street I kind of wish more ethical clothing was on there. If nothing else than for the practicality of being able to try stuff on. Online shopping is great, but you also need to know how to find it. But I guess a lot needs to change before that will happen!

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  12. I love it! I think you look great, even in this, like you say, sack-like silhouette. Have you tried wearing it with a belt? It might change the look completely and dramatically since the cotton is a bit stiff.

  13. I love the print on this fabric and think you can totally pull it off! Though I know what you mean about being a bit unsure about the silhouette and I do think the double gauze you used for your first version probably goes better with this shape. I haven’t really used quilting cotton for sewing, will it soften up after a few washes maybe?

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