Sewing Adventures – Simplicity 1873 insertion trim edition

By Susan | Comments: 6 | February 29, 2016

Sydney has been hot, like hot hot and it’s unrelenting so even overnight it doesn’t cool down very much so it’s been an endless amount of feeling too warm. Which is kind of nice because yay summer and also kind of over it, would like to not constantly feel hot and sticky.

It was on one of these hot days that I was working at Pitt Trading and by the end of the day I declared it was far too hot to be wearing a skirt and a top. I purchased one of my favourite new fabrics that has only just arrived instore along with some insertion trim with the plan of making a dress. If you want the same fabric you can get it here or come instore.


Pressed for time and wanting a sure fire sewing win I went with Simplicity 1873 which I have made before with much success. Construction wise it was very much like what I’ve done before. Slight sway back adjustment, invisible zip at centre back, no linings or facings I’ve just used bias binding around the neck and armholes. I was pretty happy with my invisible zip.


The only big departure from previous editions was the addition of the insertion trim. I cut the skirt panels 5cm longer than I normally do, constructed the entire dress and then proceeded to measure 10cm up from the raw edge of the skirt. I cut along this line and overlocked the new hem of the skirt.

insertion 1

To place the insertion trim in, I stitched the edge of the trim just above the finished line of overlocking, turned it under and topstitched it down. Then taking the 10 cm circle I cut off, pressed it half with the iron reducing the height to 5cm, overlocked the top edge and pinned it to the lower edge of the trim.

insertion 2

Some slight fiddling with the seams helped it line up correctly as it was slightly larger in circumference than the insertion trim due to the nature of the flared panels of the skirt. Repeated the stitching, then topstitching and hey presto insertion trim and pretty hem.


I’m so happy with it as the insertion trim really lifts it out of the homemade arena and into a more fashion item. It’s certainly the type of garment that I’m aiming towards with my makes this year, more fashion less plain sewing.

Fabric: Polished cotton from Pitt Trading, insertion trim also from Pitt Trading who have one if not the biggest number of trims instore anywhere in Australia.

Dress Pattern: Cynthia Rowley by Simplicity 1873

Alterations:  Added the insertion trim as explained, other alterations as per previous editions of this pattern, I cut the skirt width as per the pattern this time and didn’t add extra volume.


  • Colette
    February 29, 2016

    Gorgeous dress, I love those vibrant colours and the insertion lace really makes it special – you look great ;o)

    • Susan Goodwin
      February 29, 2016

      Thank you! I love big bold colours but normally don’t go for blues and this dress has totally brought my thinking around to trying them more often.

  • Jillian - SewUnravelled
    March 1, 2016

    Really lovely Susan. I adore that fabric and the trim does indeed take it to a whole new level. Perfect summery style

  • Rosie
    March 6, 2016

    I love that lace insertion, great dress

    • Susan Goodwin
      March 7, 2016

      Thanks Rosie, it is certainly make me relook at trims and applications to push the idea of sewing a bit more

  • Karen Mott
    December 1, 2016

    Hi Susan, I love your style & the fabrics you choose for your dresses

Comments are closed.




Hi, I'm Susan. A designer living in Sydney, Australia.

Here I share tales of my sewing, my pattern collection and insights into what it's like to work as a professional fashion designer.

Other recurring themes include cat photos and an ever changing hair style.



Friends and Affiliates

Free Delivery on all Books at the Book Depository