I don’t know if you noticed, but I’ve been posting here once a week every Thursday for the last few weeks now. I quite like that. Sadly, this first week of October, I’m quite… well, busy. My husband and I celebrated our 9th anniversary on the 3rd of October and we both are taking a week off to spend more time together, which I love, but it also means I’m not doing much of sewing. Since I don’t want to miss my weekly post here, I decided to post a review of this pattern. I actually made the dress back in June, back when this blog was on hiatus. So, enough with the chit-chat, let’s get on with the review, shall we?
The pattern, as expected from the Big Four, has a lot of ease (4.5inches!) embedded. Based on my measurements (I’m 38-30-39), I should’ve made size 16, but I went down a size and it was perfect. The pattern offers four views, but of course you can mix and match the pieces like I did, which means even more options. Yay!
The suggested fabrics for this pattern are: challis, charmeuse, cotton types, crepe, crepe back satin, double georgette, lightweight linen types, and silky types.
The size range: 6-18 / FR34-46 / EUR32-44.
Fabric I used.
Atelier Brunette cotton cambric Bye Bye Birdie in gold. This fabric is nice and soft, has got modern print on it. As with most – if not all – cotton fabric, it is very easy to sew and handle. It feels like cotton lawn to me. I used size 70/10 Schmetz universal needle. One thing to note is that this fabric creases easily and is quite sheer.
The changes I made.
- Added back yoke, though not on purpose. I cut my fabric upside-down, I thought my fabric was non-directional. I realised I was wrong after I had cut the back bodice, so I had to be “creative” with the rest of my fabric. I managed to use the upside down back bodice for smaller pattern pieces. Sadly I didn’t have enough to make the whole back bodice from the leftover fabric, so I cut the pattern piece into two and added yoke to it. I think it worked fine.
- Shortened the skirt by 5cm – I’m only 158cm tall.
- Shortened the bodice by 2cm.
- Omitted the chest pockets.
- Added sleeves from view C – they’re flutter sleeves. Perfect for the Summer.
- Used french seam finish on all but the sleeve-bodice seams, including the skirt’s in-seam pockets.
I really enjoyed making this dress – well, apart from the elastic for the waist bit. That thing is only 1cm wide, soooo fiddly! I love the front button opening detail on the dress, and it was the first time making the fabric button loops for me. The dress has all-in-one neckline and front opening facing. Had I made pure view D, the armholes would’ve been finished using bias binding.
As this is 100% cotton, the dress is very comfortable to wear. I wore this dress a lot in the Summer when we had heatwave, the flutter sleeves were perfect. They add nice detail without warming my upper arms (and pits haha!).
As I mentioned above, the fabric is quite sheer so I have to wear half slip underneath. In retrospect, I think the dress would’ve been better in viscose or crepe, anything with more drape than cotton. Not only that the gathering would look nicer, I think, it would also mean not much ironing needed. I don’t particularly like wearing crumpled dress, and it’s not easy to iron the wrinkles out of this one.
Changes I’d do for the next make.
- Different fabric choice, maybe viscose crepe?
- Long sleeves for colder month.
- Raise the neckline. I don’t particularly like how low the neckline is.
I know I didn’t follow the instruction to the T, but I did read them thoroughly first (like you do) before I started sewing. I didn’t notice any error or confusing bit(s), and the illustrations did help.
I love the many views and sizes in this pattern. I made my dress for Summer wear, but I think depending on the fabric choice this pattern can be for Autumn/Winter wear too. I’m thinking something like polyester or viscose crepe would be tights-friendly. I don’t like that they only put illustration on the pattern envelope though. I (and I’m sure I’m not the only one here) would love to see the dress on a real body the way the designer intended. It makes me feel like they didn’t even bother making samples – even though I know it’s most likely not the case.
Would I recommend the pattern? Oh yes! If you’re really new to sewing dresses, just take it slow. Read the instructions carefully and double-check with the illustrations. It’s not a hand-holding kind of pattern, but it’s not a complicated one anyway.
Well that’s all from me today. I’ll be back next time with (hopefully) a review of the Hinterland dress by Sew Liberated. Just a friendly reminder, currently on Instagram there’s a Hinterland dress party going on until the
24th 22nd of October if you’d like to join in. The party is hosted by Sara of @thesaraproject_ and Tori of @thedoingthingsblog, you can check out the hashtag #hinterlandsewoff to see all the beautiful Hinterland dresses.
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Thank you so much for spending time with me today, hope you have a nice day and weekend, see you again soon.