Sorry, more By Hand London dressing going on here…

Let me introduce to you Annalex; Elisalex’s bodice and Anna’s maxi skirt.  More Mrs Robinson on the leg front though than Angelina!  I made this a long long long time ago (August!) but By Hand have just released this ‘love child’ post so I thought I really ought to start attending to this here blog again now I’ve sat those exams!!


You got a sneek peak of this dress in my post about my Victoria Blazer.  There’s not a lot really to say about this dress!  The bodice is lined and the skirt french seamed.  It did take a bit of adjustment to get the skirt panels to continue the lines from the bodice, but nothing overly complicated.  I just made some skirt panels wider and some narrower as necessary!

I originally had a completely different plan for this dress.  I wanted to use a tropical print for the centre panels of the skirt and bodice and then a plain black for the sides to give a really neat colour block effect but I couldn’t find the print I’d imagined in my head anywhere.  I’m still on the look out though as that dress has to be made!

So I used this cotton sateen that came from my Goldhawk Road jaunt.  I love polkadots but if they’re too regimented it annoys me for some reason!  I much prefer a more random dottiness (which describes me quite well…).  So when I saw this fabric in a window display I needed 3m of it!  Needed I tell you!  At £5 a meter and 60″ wide that was no hardship either.  As long as you don’t have a directional print it’s perfectly possible to get a maxi from a reasonable amount of fabric.

My only miff with the fabric was that when I got it home it had a grubby mark at intervals along the selvedge where the roll had been propped on the shop floor.  I could not get this out so had to work round it.  If I’d known it was there I would have negotiated a better price on the fabric.  Ah well, live and learn.

Elisalanna Detail

So the bodice is lined (using some nautical vintage cotton) as per the Elisalex instructions and the skirt is french seamed as per Anna’s.  I hemmed the slit by hand as well as the hem and used a hand picked regular zip rather than an invisible one.

There’s not a lot more to say really!  The mash-up of two gorgeous BHL dresses is a success in my eyes and those girls can do no wrong.  Georgia is in the que and Charlotte has also been added so I now have the full collection…  I really must photograph Anna; the post is written but, photographs…

By Hand London Collection


Oh, and it was my birthday over the weekend!  The Charlotte skirt was a gift from me to me (to be made up in a small hounds tooth), I also received a new food processor as I blew up the last one (it was 15 years old!!), the Batman Trilogy (Christian Bale versions),  a new cycle helmet, a Crud Catcher rear mudguard and a bike trailer for Boy as he’s not up to long distance rides yet.  Also the Rock of Ages sound track as well as Despicable Me 2 (if the postman ever brings it – it’s allegedly out for delivery as I type…)

I was also treated to a pedicure so I have pretty toes at the moment and as I’m rubbish at coming up with a gift list I now have money to spend on Amazon and some cash to spend on whatever I like!  Any suggestions?!

35 thoughts on “Annalex

    1. Thanks Sonja! I did have a good day and it’s lovely to be back although I feel like I should have more of a timetable to manage everything! I need to talk to Lizzy as she is uber productive!

      1. If she gives you any advice pass it along! Feeling super stressed at the moment as I’ve got big deadlines for my class and I’m traveling for the American holiday this weekend– not sure how I’ll get through the next 8 days! Then it will be holiday madness, but at least that’s the good kind of chaos. What is on Boy’s Santa list this year?

      2. I will. I suspect however that she is Superwoman whereas I am a mere mortal! Boy’s list is Batman, Disney classics (Jungle Book!), drawing and art stuff. He’s really got into the whole idea of it this year which is a lot of fun! Hope you survived your period of insanity (and can forgive me for replying so late). Have a fantabulous Christmas!

  1. lovely VK! i am in the market for some new shears, fabric (of course!), a magnetic pin tray thingy and did you see miss betty’s attic on etsy is doing 50% off vintage patterns? code on YesILikeThat blog!

  2. Wow, I love it! Did you have to do a lot of alterations to the bodice? I’ve been eyeing up the Elisalex but a bit scared that I’d have to butcher it to make it fit my rather ample chest…

    1. Just a princess seam FBA. There’s a great tutorial as part of the sewalong on the By Hand London blog. I usually have to add 5″ to fit the bewbs and the process isn’t horrific at all!

  3. Happy belated birthday! Sounds like you “made out like a bandit.” (My mom always used to say that to me when I received a ton of loot for my bday!) Love your new dress… those dots are great! It looks like a fabulous fit and so very flattering on you! You look gorgeous!

  4. Lovely, lovely dress! I must get around to sewing my Anna dress, I’ve had the pattern & fabric for months. Happy birthday, I’m sure you’ll think of something nice to spend your birthday money on..

      1. Done and ordered! I have to admit to thoroughly enjoying sketching out all my ideas and it’s really inspiring me to get behind the sewing machine.

  5. Gorgeous make! I’ve never considered inconsistent dots…goes against everything I think I believe in. 🙂
    Very pretty. Makes me long for summer…

  6. Lovely dress!! It’s so fun, and pairs really nicely with the blazer 🙂 Having just finished my Anna dress (and incidentally, my first BHL pattern), I’m definitely eager to get more of their gorgeous patterns into my stash and wardrobe. I love how you can do mash-ups like this with their patterns; it sure extends their life cycle, and bonus – we only have do do HALF the amount of FBA’s!!! ^__^

  7. I love your dress! It looks fab, and the fabric is gorgeous. I also love your idea for a plain and printed fabric version. I hope you find your perfect fabric, because I’d love to see how it turns out.

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