Summer sewing with Wiksten hack

All set and longing for summer in this Wiksten Shift top hacked into a ruffle dress. I got this out of 3.2 metres of 112.5cm wide gorgeous cotton poplin. It’s a very dark navy and ivory.
I got the fabric in exchange for writing a blog post.
I used the pattern pieces for the Wiksten top and sliced the bodice off 18” from the high neck mark. I tapered the front bodice 1” towards the centre front.

I added cuffs to the sleeves by folding 3” strips in half, wrong sides together, and overlocking them on. I top-stitched the seam allowance down from the right side.
I made the neck facing and pockets from scraps of Liberty Tana Lawn. I faced the pockets with scraps from the dress – and that’s all there was left!

The first tier of the skirt is made from two widths of the fabric and the second tier is three widths of the fabric. I had to do a bit of calculating with the depths and widths of the skirts and the length I wanted the dress. I drew it out on paper first before I cut to make sure I had it right.
This fabric is really easy to sew and doesn’t shift about, which helps with all those gathers.
I have tried many different ways of doing gathers, but I find using elastic gives me the best results.
For the top tier, I cut the elastic about 2” shorter than the circumference of the bodice. I then marked the skirt into eighths and the same with the elastic. I zigzagged the elastic onto the skirt stretching evenly between the eighths. Then attached the skirt to the bodice. At this stage you have to stretch a tiny bit because the elastic was cut slightly shorter than the bodice.
Then I serged the finished seam to neaten.

For the bottom tier, I cut the elastic slightly shorter than the circumference of the top tier and repeated the process.
I did a rolled hem on my overlocker for the bottom tier hem. I nearly always do with a voluminous hem like this.

My late mother was a wonderful sewer and crafter and I inherited her bead collection. I made the necklace and bracelet by threading beads onto elastic thread. The brown are amber and the black wood.


  1. Lovely dress and will be perfect for summer swishing. (Love a good swish in a dress or skirt myself!)

    Very happy to discover your blog and have added it to my feed. I love finding a fellow sewist who shares something of my body type and age group. And, your taste in boots!

    I look forward to following your future sewing adventures.


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