Finally I get round to sharing one of my favourite makes! I absolutely adore the fabric- its a heavyweight Liberty cotton twill, bought on Goldhawk Rd.
Here is a close up of the texture, its got the weight & feel of a denim.
I found the perfect zip and binding to combine with it at McCulloch and Wallis the other day too - a sparkly gold exposed zip- it goes soooo well and some burgundy wool bias. Here is my haul from M&W the other day.... (for those not London based, its a fab haberdashery, huge, with every button , zip, ribbon & trimming you could ever wish for just off Berwick St)- here are the things I bought there!
The pattern is a tried & trusted favourite. I really like it- its from Simplicity's 'amazing fit' range and I do find you get a perfect fit from it! As well as having different pattern options by dress size, the front pieces vary by cup size and the back sizes also have slim, medium and curvy options. Also the shape of the pattern allows you to really tailor it on the body- assuming your fabric is happy with pinning, stitching, pinning, stitching until you get it spot on!
Here is my first make with this fabric- its my favourite summer dress in an adorable cherry blossom print from Croftmill. This time I wanted to create a winter version in a thicker fabric with sleeves.
Anyway- on with the make! First step - cutting out... as I mentioned already, there are lots of pattern options so you have the get this bit right.
I kinda ignored the instructions and put it together in my own order. I started with the back zip- Its the beautiful sparkly one and I wanted it exposed. I m really happy how that looks.
Next up, I sewed all the pieces together. I used my overlocker as the fabric freys a lot on the edges. (lazy me put white cotton in the needle threads and left black in the others which works fine- well its not just lazy, I don't have 4 spools of anything other than black!!).
For anyone trying the pattern, the only bit I find tricky is deciding where to stitch the front bodice pieces together. The best way I found to do that is to line up the body curve bit as below first, pin that, then sew the round the curved bust section later from that point - I don't pin it, I personally find it easier to sew slowly & just curve it to fit as I go- but I guess most people would pin it.
So once i d sewn the sides all together, here comes the big job - the fitting. I took a long time over this, trying on inside out, pinning, sewing, retrying, repining until I got it just right. I fitted the front and back seams first, then adjusted the side seams afterwards.
After the fitting I added the neck facing...
Last time I made the dress I didn't do the sleeves, but it turns out I LOVE the shape of the sleeves in the pattern- they've got 3 darts at the top & it gives a really structured look, I think it worked great with the weight of this fabric. I cut the sleeves a lot longer than the pattern, given its the middle of winter. Then I finished the sleeves with the lovely burgundy bias I showed above...
And for the finishing touch, I over-sewed all the seams on the front & I m really happy how that has turned out...
So how does it look?
I m really happy about the fit on this one & how flat all the seams are down the front and back...
As you can see, I made it for Christmas (sorry its taken me several months to share ;(. And I loved it so much I quickly made another ;).... this time with a double sided wool where I could really emphasise the shape & cut.
Messy Essy Makes. x
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