The Hazel Dolman by Bella Sunshine Designs

I love summertime sewing! My boys might be psycloning around me demanding food or Band-aids (or both) between wild kid-important projects, but I’m so happy to mostly focus on making pretty clothes for ME… all while sitting directly under a ceiling fan.

I haven’t tested for Bella Sunshine Designs (aff) in a bit, so I was thrilled to see the line drawings for the new pattern, the Hazel Dolman Top, Tunic & Dress. How great are those shoulder ties? If you can believe it, I don’t already own a pattern with that option. I knew this was destined to be a fabulous hot-weather dress, so I dove right in.

This is the lower neckline, short-sleeved and tunic-length Hazel in a rib knit from Mily Mae Fabrics. The fabric is super soft and stretchy, really lovely to sew with.


The stripes give me a good 90s vibe, and since the top flares under the bust, I paired it with a pencil skirt the same way I would with a peplum top.

You know I love a good detail shot! I’ve been wearing the shirt ties in a bow, but I find myself letting them free and loose on the dress for kicks.

This higher-neckline, sleeveless knee-length orange dress was actually my test garment, but it came out rather perfectly, so I’m calling it a bonus final. This fabric was something I grabbed for super cheap in the garment district, kind of a thicker poly spandex, almost a tiny rib knit.  I’m terrible at making solids (all the prints! all the time!) but this hot coral is pretty magnificent on its own.

I love the dress so much that I couldn’t help myself and did a tiny pattern hack to make a maxi. Ah, the maxi length: my tried-and-true favorite thing to wear. Nothing else makes me look as remotely statuesque and put together in an instant. And wearing one is as easy as pulling on a t-shirt. Easier, even–no pants!

For this magnificent trick, I added 16″ in length and blended out to the hem starting at about the tunic cut line. Next time I’d add 18″ for a little more sweep, but I was sort of excitedly rushing through this project while the kids were occupied. Fabric is an ITY, and I’m forever hoarding massive scale prints for simple maxi dresses and skirts. What better way to show them off?

Oh, and in case you were wondering, it’s utterly a piece of cake to leave off the ties and have a super crazy fast sew!

The Hazel Dolman pattern is available from Bella Sunshine Designs (affiliate link). Get your copy on release sale Friday, August 2 through Saturday, August 10. Happy sewing!