I’ve had the stylish dress book for a while but the lack of seam allowance and the fact that there’s about a thousand patterns on one side put me off for months!
I finally bit the bullet and traced the pattern (it really didn’t take that long) of dress E.
I’m usually an 8 on top and 10 below and for this dress I cut a size 10, it fits well in the arms and bust but the neckline is a bit loose.
I don’t tend to toile patterns because the only bit of RTW clothes that don’t fit is the bum! Anything that just fits around the shoulders and bust doesn’t usually need any adjusting.
Sans sleeves, I left the sleeves and the hem until the next day thinking they were going to be complex and they weren’t. I really enjoy sewing sleeves in, they’re tricky but not too tricky.
Love a bit of topstitching (not that you can see it!)
I found the pleats quite tricky in this dress, this was mainly due to the fabric. I was impatient and didn’t wash it first, if I had I don’t think it would have been so stiff it kept repelling pins. Also the gingham kept messing with my ability to judge distance, I’m usually quite good at keeping things even.
This dress is perfect when you’ve eaten 5 slices of pizza the night before and you don’t want everyone to see your pizza belly.
One thing I would probably change is the amount of fabric in the fabric, it’s quite swingy and tent like, I would just have the back going straight down without the pleats. Also I don’t know why that sleeve indents in like that. Sewing sleeves is like putting eyeliner on, one eye goes perfect, the other you end up with eyeliner halfway down your face.
Aaaaanyway the fabric is from Merchant & Mills the red natural gingham, but don’t do what I did and order 147 cm wide thinking it would be enough (it is but only if you want your back to be in two pieces).
I wouldn’t mind making this dress in a nice grey linen but I would definitely reduce the fabric in the back and maybe size down.
My next project is Sew Over It’s ultimate trousers! Wish me luck….