Tuesday, 4 October 2016

Experimental Marianne Dress #2

For my second Marianne Dress I've left off the sleeves in an attempt to make a more summery dress...only problem is that this thick, polyester-esque fabric from Spotlight is not very summery at all. I was busy chatting at the time of purchase so didn't spend enough time concentrating on the feel/drape of the fabric nor the fabric content. This stuff feels like it's made from garbage bags. Oooff.

Fabric choices aside, whilst I think this version is "ok" it's not particulary comfortable. Despite dropping the front neckline a little I still find it too high -- and it's too high up on my shoulders -- so I feel claustrophobic in it. A bit more fiddling needs to be done before it's wearable for me (I'm thinking of copying the neckline of the Casual Lady Dress as that's a better fit on me at the neckline).

I've added an inch to the length which is a good decision as now it hits right on the knees - a good length for me. I finished the arms with a band, but the fabric is too stiff so they stick up. I cannot decide if I need to make the armholes smaller or just find a more floppy fabric (I'm thinking the later).

I really love the stripey fabric and am desperate to find something more drapey...I think I'm going to buy the bullet and buy some from as the ponti from them seems to be more...soft. Let's hope the exchange rate is being kind!

Pattern: Marianne Dress by Christine Haynes
Size: 18
Modifications: added 2" to the neckband
Fabric: ponti-like fabric from Spotlight
Changes for next time: have a bit of a play with the neckline -- make it less...suffocating!

Thursday, 8 September 2016

Ooh look, another Maria Denmark kimono tee

I'll keep this short as you've seen a thousand of these on me lately - it's another Maria Denmark "Kristen Kimono Tee".

The fabric is an 85cm remnant picked up from Tessuti for the bargain price of $9.35. The fabric is the same as that used for this Mandy Boat Tee - just a different colourway with narrower stripes. It feels nice to wear and was pretty easy to sew with.

Even though I thought my last kimono tee was a bit...small, I decided not to go up a size and this one fits okay. Not sure what that's about...but I'll take it. I shortened the length by about 1" as I've felt my others were a big long. I could probably go a bit shorter. Again, much pooling on the back but, whatever, I can't see it!

...and I also sewed this one with a neckband and I'm pretty happy with the way it turned out (though next time I'll make it a tad wider). I thought I'd try top-stitching the neckband with a triple stitch rather than a small zigzag and I HATE the way it looks - so heavy and messy. Won't be doing that again. I have seen someone on Instagram just use a long straight stitch for neckband top-stitching so I'll give that a go next time. I did zigzag the arm hems and my machine decided to skip a few stitches so this top is not as "neat" as I'd like, but it's very wearable so wear it I shall. Once the weather warms up!


Pattern: "Kristen Kimono Tee" by Maria Denmark
Size: size 3XL (no seam allowance added); with size 4XL at the shoulders
Modifications: none
Fabric: Remnant from Tessuti (Viscose + Elastaine)
Changes for next time: none

Saturday, 3 September 2016

Moneta/Lady Skater mash-up

I started this toile back in February and finally finished it today - talk about a slow make!  I bought the Moneta Dress pattern when it was first released and sat on it for about two years - mostly put off by the "gathered elastic waistband" which seemed tricky and destined for failure.

In February I decided to give the Moneta bodice a try with the circle skirt from the Lady Skater Dress (that I've made a few times but the bodice is just too small for me). I cut the Moneta bodice in an XL and it was, really really small. Ugh. I had enough fabric to recut the bodice in a 2XL (despite my measurements firmly putting me in the XL camp) so I cut it out last night and sewed up a rough toile today. The dress is unfinished but I have a good idea of how it fits.

Well, it fits so that's great! BUT...the neckline on the front bodice is higher than the back which is fine, but I feel like I'm choking, so I'll lower the front. The armholes are also really high - like right up in my armpit which is kinda uncomfortable so I'm going to lose 1cm from the bottom of the front and back armhole and subsequently will add 1cm to the front and back of the sleeve piece. There some excess fabric under the arms (on the bodice) but I think I'll leave that alone as I don't know how to fix it. I don't like the shape at the hem of the sleeve piece either as it's tricky to overlock so I'm going to copy the shape of the sleeve sides/hem from the Lady Skater as well as the length of the Lady Skater sleeve as I think this will be a little too short when hemmed.

I think it looks "okay" from the back and I don't need to loose any length from the bodice even though it does catch on my bum a bit (big bum problems = don't care). The skirt length is good - it has 1" added to the length of the hem from when I tried to make a Lady Skater.

I've not finished the dress because as it is I won't wear it and it's not 100% comfortable. When I make the real thing I will add a neckband to the neck rather than turning under and stitching as that finish never works for me. I also didn't add elastic to the waist to stop it stretching out as this was a toile, but will do so for the "real deal".

From all the changes I've listed it sounds like this is a total dud, but it's a good experiment and "if" I can implement the changes mentioned above it might become a good TNT pattern.


Pattern: Moneta Dress by Colette Patterns (bodice) + Lady Skater Dress by Kitschy Koo (skirt)
Size: Moneta Bodice = 2XL + Lady Skater Skirt = 8
Modifications: so many (see above)
Fabric: thin ponti-like fabric from Girl Charlee USA
Changes for next time: so many (see above)