Seasonal Stitching

I've been so absorbed in the self-drafted sewing that it feels like I haven't finished anything in forever! So having come to the end of my 10 week pattern drafting course, my pattern is just about ready to make, well, at least in wearable muslin form before I commit to cutting into the good stuff - some glorious teal green crepe I picked up from the new Sew Over It shop in Islington. I thought it would be nice to have a bit of a breather before I launch into the final thing, so mull all the wine and get the tinsel out - I whizzed up a dress for December!

I used the Simple Sew skater dress pattern that came free with issue 8 of Love Sewing magazine (my mum picks me up a copy if she likes the free pattern ha, thanks mum!) I really liked the Lottie blouse pattern that came free with a past issue and made a few versions of it. , They are, by definition, simple patterns, so I thought I'd give it a go.

I bought a medium-weight (Santa) red viscose jersey from my favourite B&M Fabrics in Leeds Kirkgate Market. I've worked in lightweight fabrics with a tiny bit of stretch before, but this was my first big leap into the world of proper stretch fabric, and I loved it! It took me a bit of faffing with my sewing machine manual and some needle changes, but it was otherwise completely pain free. Plus the fabric is so easy to work with - the seams barely needed finishing *cough* lazy sewist *cough*.

Now I don't know if it's just me, but my completed dress isn't quite what I was expecting from the magazine cover image and the illustration on the pattern. I realised pretty early on - but too late to do anything about it - that the dress might be a bit on the short side of knee length, but oh, it's short. I also found that the pattern could do with a bit more length in the bodice too - at least for me. I ended up using a smaller seam allowance at the waist and doing the narrowest hem possible, just to lengthen it in any way I could.

So I was a bit disappointed as I was really looking forward to a voluminous, flowing, knee-length, jersey skirt. The felt blanket-stitched holly brooch was actually my dramatic last ditch attempt to 'salvage' what I had originally branded a 'festive fail' ha. Anyway, I wore the dress in the house and swished the skirt around for a little while and came round to it in the end. 

Despite a few gripes here, there are actually things I really like about this dress and I'll probably make it again with a few adjustments.

The fab bits:
  • I love the V-back! I've never considered ermm getting my back out, but it sort of works!
  • I think it would look fab as a day or evening dress depending on the fabric used (but I'm now a jersey convert so sticking to that)
  • It has offers plenty of room to get creative - pockets, trims, a fancy lining maybe?
Changes for next time:
  • Add at least 1 inch to the bodice and taper the pattern down from a size 12 to a 10 at the waist.
  • Add a good 4 inches (maybe more!) to the hem - I'm such a prude!
  • Finish the neckline better. My mind was in simple sew mode and I completely forgot to interface my facings, massive oops!

Here's a selfie of me, full of Christmas joy and ready to eat my advent calendar Santa.
Is #SeasonalSew already a hashtag or sewist initiative? If it is, then GREAT. If not... then lets get the ball rolling, it's nearly Christmas!

I'm hoping to use the next couple of weeks to make my self-drafted dress and catch up on a bit of knitting in between the Christmas shopping and parties - hopefully a bit of blogging in there somewhere too.

Merry festive season!

Thanks for visiting!

Thanks for visiting!