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Darling Ranges 2.0 | How to sew a dartless version

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary

I’m so excited to let you all know that the Darling Ranges sewing pattern is now available as an instant download PDF! Not only that, but I’ve spent a lot of time over the last year updating the pattern to include a new variation! I’ve been dying to tell you, how to sew a dartless version!

You girls know how much I love pattern variations, and as I kept making the Darling Ranges over the years, I kept thinking how much I’d love to wear it as a blouse. The pattern as it stood didn’t really work very well for a blouse, and once I get an idea in my head it’s really really impossible to make it go away. Since I was planning on releasing the pattern as a PDF, I decided to take that opportunity to add the variations I wanted and make a few little changes!

I’m really excited :) I love this pattern, and I love that it’s even more versatile now – yay! You can still create all the variations I’ve shared on Design Diary before (full list of variations and tutorials I’ve shared here), but now you can also create dartless versions, a dartless blouse and dartless tunic or dress. Completely awesome right?

If you bought the original paper pattern with a side dart in the past – never fear! It’s straightforward to alter the pattern to create the same variations (or you can email us at hello@megannielsen.com and we’ll send you an updated PDF version of the pattern!). I’ll go over the alterations quick, and also go over some of the sewing instructions for the new versions.

ALTERING THE ORIGINAL PATTERN

The main change to the new dartless version is actually to the bust dart – the bust dart position has been moved from the side to the waist. As much as I loved the side darts, a waist dart allows for more variations in the pattern, is easier to alter, and is flattering on a wider range of people. If you have the original pattern making this change is super easy – just follow this tutorial: How to transfer bust dart location.

Then (once the dart is at the waistline) if you want to create the dartless tunic or blouse from the original pattern, all you need to do is extend the pattern pieces at the centre front and side seam, like below. Voila! I recommend extending by 10″/25.4cm for a blouse, 15″/38.1cm for a tunic and 23″/58.4cm for a dress.

Darling Ranges dartless tunic blouse alteration

So easy right?

The sewing instructions are actually pretty much the same for all versions. The neckline, placket, sleeves, etc are all constructed the same way. But I thought I’d go over a few things…

VIEW C : DARTLESS DRESS

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary Version 3 is a loose, dartless dress with pockets. So you can skip the darts and gathers, and start with sewing the pockets and side seams. It’s technically the same exact technique as we went over with V1, but I’ll go over it again here…

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary Start by finishing the raw edges of all four of your pocket pieces. You can use a serger/overlock, zig zag stitch, pinking shears, or binding.

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary Next, we lay our pockets on our skirt pieces. One of the problems I first had when I started learning about pockets was that I kept having alignment issues. I’d put one piece of the pocket up too high, the other too low and they wouldn’t match. Or I’d accidentally sew them to the wrong side. UGH. Here’s an easy way to avoid that. Lay out all the skirt pieces with the right sides facing upwards, and so that the side seams are aligned. This way you can keep an eye on whether everything is placed correctly. Then position your pockets on the side seams, with their right sides facing downwards, so that the pockets match up with each other and so that the top edge of the pocket lines up with the notches on the pattern pieces. Then pin and sew in place 1/2? from the raw edge.

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary Neaten the raw edge of the side seam.

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary Press the pockets open so that the right sides are all facing outwards – and then understitch.

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary Now lay your back dress piece with right sides facing upwards and pockets sticking out to the sides, and then lay the front dress pieces on top with right sides facing downwards. Match up the side seams and the pockets, then pin. Sew down the side seams till you reach the pocket, and sew 5/8? beyond the edge of the pocket, sew around the curve of the pocket, then back down the side seams.

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary So this next step is unique to View C, and not included in View A instructions. It’s completely optional, but I think it gives it a pretty cool look!

Press your pockets towards the front pieces and pin them in place. Topstitch around the pocket edge, so that the stitching is visible from the outside. Isn’t that a neat detail?!

Ok, so from there you can continue on with the shoulder seams, placket, and sleeves just like we went over for View A. I just want to touch on one thing with the sleeves…

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary Instead of using elastic in the sleeve like instructed for V1 (which you can still do here too if you want!)  View B and View C show looser, non-elastic sleeves.

Simply turn up 1/2”, and then turn up another 1/2”. Pin, and sew close to the edge. The same goes for the hemline, which you can see below in View B!

VIEW B : DARTLESS BLOUSE

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design DiaryVersion 2 blouse is suuuupper super simple. Seriously. No darts, no pockets, no ties, nothing crazy.

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary You just got to sew up the side seams and shoulder seams.

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary And finish the raw edges of those seams.

From there, you can continue on with the placket and sleeves (or sleeveless!) just like the other versions.

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary The hem on V2 and V3 is slightly different than V1. Instead of a large turn-up, we are going to do a smaller one.

Turn up by 1/2”…

how to make the dartless versions of Darling Ranges pattern // tutorial on Megan Nielsen Design Diary… then turn up another 1/2”, pin, and sew close to the edge.


LOOKING FOR MORE TUTORIALS?

Here’s the full list of Darling Range’s tutorials:

We absolutely love seeing what you make, so don’t forget to tag your creations with #MNdarlingranges and @megannielsenpatterns if sharing on social media.

Don’t have the pattern yet?

Don't have the Darling Ranges pattern yet?

Order Darling Ranges today in sizes 0-20 and Curve sizes 14-30

About Author

Meg is the Founder and Creative Director of Megan Nielsen Patterns, and is constantly dreaming up ideas for new sewing patterns and ways to make your sewing journey more enjoyable! She gets really excited about design details and is always trying to add way too many variations to our patterns.

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Eugénie Poisson
8 years ago

Très trsè jolie!

Tatiana
Tatiana
8 years ago

HAPPY DANCE!!!! I am so glad to hear this, I’ve been waiting this pattern as a PDF for ages! Thank you so much! I am going to buy it right now!

Roz
Roz
8 years ago

Oooh! Exciting! Darling Ranges as a tunic dress sounds, well, darling! xx

Liz
Liz
8 years ago

I really love the look of this pattern, the only problem is the thought of sticking together a dress pattern from A4 pages does not sound fun- I find when I use pdf patterns no matter how hard I try the pages get a little warped and end up not lying flat and connecting to the other pages, any chance of a copy shop version? Like instead of A4 Tiled, fit onto A0? Officeworks (here in Aus) can print off black and white A0 pages for $3.70.

Stephanie
8 years ago
Reply to  Liz

Hi Liz, I found that I had the same problem when I used to tape pages together. Now I cut them to size with a rotary cutter or scalpel and then glue them together. I’ve never had any warping since. Did this on my Virginia Leggings and they turned out great!

Jo
Jo
8 years ago

It had never occurred to me go either go dartless or make a blouse version – but I’ll be doing both! Thanks Megan, and well done (again)!

Elena Knits
8 years ago

Thank you so much. I’ve been waiting this for months. I’ve already got my copy :D

Helen
Helen
8 years ago

I was just wondering if the tunic would work as maternity wear! I don’t have this pattern yet, but am now adding it to my Christmas list! Please post your photos soon! I think I am about a week behind you, pregnant with my second, so I can’t wait to see what maternity wear you sew yourself!

Christina
Christina
8 years ago

I have been looking for the darling ranges pattern all over the internet and became totally obsessed as I thought it wouldn’t be reprinted/digitalized. I finally found one pattern in Canada about a month ago…the postage to Norway was atrocious and I think totaled to more than the pattern itself :-/ had I just waited another couple of weeks…oh well, no regrets, right;-) the pattern looks lovely and I’ll have to look at the tutorials you post for the blouse variation…any tips for curvier ladies that fall outside the size range would be much appreciated :-)

All the best,
Christina

emilie
8 years ago

how exciting :) Darling Ranges is on my to do list !

will you be releasing an updated paper version ?

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[…] useful again once baby is born and i start nursing again. I used the variation instructions in this post, and made it “tunic” length with short sleeves. Totally perfect for wearing with […]

Stephanie
Stephanie
8 years ago

Would you consider letting someone who bought the original to download the new improved version? Because this sounds amazing but I am a lazy seamstress!!!!!!

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[…] Sewing and Construction: Dartless Versions (V2 &V3) Don’t have the Darling Ranges sewing pattern yet? Get it in store here! We absolutely love seeing what you make, so don’t forget to tag your creations with #MNdarlingranges and @megannielsenpatterns if sharing on social media. […]

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[…] Now onto the hemming! I’m going to show you the finishing for V1 and two ways to do this. But you can find the hemming for V2 & V3 here. […]

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[…] Sewing and Construction: Dartless Versions (V2 &V3) […]

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[…] Sewing and Construction: Dartless Versions (V2 &V3) […]

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[…] Sewing and Construction: Dartless Versions (V2 &V3) […]

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[…] Sewing and Construction: Dartless Versions (V2 &V3) […]

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[…] Sewing and Construction: Dartless Versions (V2 &V3) […]

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[…] Sewing and Construction: Dartless Versions (V2 &V3) […]