Completed: Marianne Dress

As you well know by now, I love the Emery dress by Christine Haynes.  So when Christine released her newest pattern, the Marianne dress, late last year, I scooped it up. Here’s my version.

Marianne

Marianne is designed for knit fabrics, and has a loose fit, and casual vibe.  I paired it with leggings, because it kind of feels more like a long tunic than a dress to me.  This isn’t a dress that I can wear to the office (except on the rare casual day), but I think it will be good for weekend wear, or traveling.

Marianne

I didn’t make a test version.  I just picked my size based on my upper bust measurement, and then graded out a size at the hip.  I think it fits reasonably well, although I do have some pooling going on at my low back.  A sway back adjustment is in order if I make this again.

Marianne

I did make a slight change to the neckline.  As drafted, I found it was a little too high for my liking. I realized this mid-construction.  So, I very unscientifically put my dress on, and drew a new neckline with chalk.  (I think I lowered it maybe 1.5 inches.)  Because this made the neckline longer, I had to recut a new (longer) neckband piece.  I determined how long it should be using the method shown in this video.

Marianne

I also stitched around the neck with my twin needle.

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The main striped fabric is a cotton/lycra knit that I purchased at The Fabric Store, in L.A.  I bought this with the intent to make a tee shirt, so I only had one yard.  Thankfully the fabric was really wide, and I was able to get all my pattern pieces to fit.  The contrast is a bit of left over ponte.  I knew it was a risk to mix the two fabrics, but I think it turned out fine.  The only thing I don’t like is that the cuffs are a bit thick, compared to the sleeve.

Marianne

Speaking of cuffs, I didn’t have any buttons that matched, so I just left them off.  I kind of like it this way.  But I may go back and add them later.

Here’s a couple flat shots.
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Bottom line?  I like this dress.  It’s nice.  But I’m not like, ‘in love’ with it on me, if that makes sense.  However, it’s really comfy, and comfy is always a winner in my book, so I still see it getting plenty of wear (in fact, I’ve worn it twice already).  :)  If you’re just getting into sewing knits, I think this would be a great first project.  The pattern is easy to assemble, and the instructions are clear and easy to follow.  So Marianne gets a thumbs up, even though it hasn’t knocked Emery out of her top spot.  ;)

Marianne

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Finally, a couple of unrelated notes.  First, I recently re-organized my project pages, so that they are hopefully easier to navigate.  Sewing projects are now organized by pattern company.  Check out the sewing archive here, and knitting archive here. (Permanent links to the pages are at the top of my blog header.)

Second, on the topic of affiliate links, reviews, etc.: If you’ve ever wondered, or cared, I don’t use affiliate links. If I’ve added a link to something, it’s just because I thought it would be helpful for my readers (or me) as a reference.  Also, in the event I do a review or have some sponor-y type thing, I’ll let you know, k. ;)

Completed: Another McCall 2401

I’ve been fighting what feels like a never-ending cold for the past few weeks, so I haven’t sewn a stitch in a while.  (On the upside, my knitting time has increased. :) )  It works out though since I’ve got a backlog of finished garments.  Here’s another dress that I sewed last month.  Right after I finished my last McCall 2401, I decided to cut another one.  I was curious if it would work in a knit, so I pulled out some black ponte from my stash.

McCall 2401

On this version, I dropped the neckline a little bit, and omitted the back zipper.

McCall 2401

As you can see below, my sleeves are still not sitting right. I tried doing a forward shoulder adjustment, but I haven’t got it quite right yet.  I need to go do some more research.  Does anyone have any tips for this type of alteration?

McCall 2401

The insides of this one are really boring.  I used my serger to make things neat, although with this fabric I really didn’t have to, since ponte doesn’t unravel or fray.

mccall 2401
mccall 2401

I sewed a back kick pleat.  Now that I think about it though, I could have skipped that too, given the stretch factor.

mccall 2401
mccall 2401

Overall, I like this version, but the dress is a little too big.  I didn’t size down when I cut it out, and I suppose I should have.  Next time.  Nevertheless, the dress is really comfortable as is, and a cardigan or jacket can always cover up the wrinkles around the shoulders.

McCall 2401

Completed: McCall 2401

Happy Saturday!  I’m about to settle down on the couch to watch football and knit.  But first, let’s talk about this dress that I finished last month.  I wore it for the first time yesterday. (That’s been a recent trend for me, to finish something and then let it sit for a while.)

dress

I’ve had this brown jacket in my closet for years.  I originally had brown pants that went with it, but they died a long time ago, and since then, the jacket has just hung there, unworn.  I don’t wear very much brown, as I prefer black or gray.  So I wanted to make something that would go with the jacket because it’s perfect to wear to work.

dress

The pattern I chose was McCall 2401.
McCall 2401

I’ve made this pattern before, and thought it might become a TNT with a few tweaks.  It’s not quite at TNT status yet, but getting there.  On this version I narrowed the shoulders a bit to rid of some of the excess fabric above the bust that my last version had.  The sleeves still don’t fit quite right, so I need to work on that.

dress

You’ve seen the fabric before, it’s the same cotton that I made my sister’s skirt out of.  It’s maybe a little stiff for this dress, which I think contributes to the wrinkles you see in the pics.  Since the jacket covers the most wrinkly bits, I’m not too concerned about it.

dress

Here’s the dress flat:

McCall 2401 Details
McCall 2401 Details

I cut the lining off above the back slit, so that I didn’t have to futz with attaching the lining to the kick pleat.  I always have a really hard time with that.  But when I wore this yesterday, I noticed the dress wanted to cling a bit to my tights below the lining.  So next time I will work on the lining/kick pleat problem.

McCall 2401 Details

Also when I was sewing the lining, I made a mistake and sewed (and serged) the wrong sides together on one side, so the stitching is exposed on the inside.  I almost unpicked this, but on the wise advice of the ladies on Instagram, left it as is.  :)

McCall 2401 Details

I used Hug Snug for my hem again, and love it.  I think this may become my go-to method.
McCall 2401 Details

The end result is that I’m really glad I made this dress and am able to give my old jacket new life, even if brown isn’t my favorite color.
dress

Completed: Simplicity 1541and McCall 6988

Over the holidays, we met up with my sister for a ski trip.  I also brought along my sewing machine, a handful of patterns, and some muslin so I could work on fitting a few things to her. Since I mostly sew only for myself, it was a good challenge to try fitting someone else.

When I got home, I set to work on a couple of the final garments. First I sewed this skirt:
Simplicity 0503

It’s Simplicity 1541. It’s one of the AmazingFit patterns, and I like that includes options for ‘slim/average’ and ‘curvy.’
Simplicity 0503
Simplicity 0503

The front has princess seams and the back is darted. I sewed the ‘curvy’ version, so the back has two darts.  This one fit really well out of the envelope.  The only change I made was to taper the side seams a little bit below the hip level.
Simplicity 0503

The fabric is a medium weight cotton that I purchased from Michael Levine a while back. (I’ve also made myself a dress out of this, and will blog that soon.)  It’s lined with cream Bemberg rayon.

Simplicity 0503

I followed the zipper/lining method from this free Craftsy course.  It worked perfectly and the zipper and lining was sewn completely by machine.
Simplicity 0503

Next I sewed this dress:

McCall 6988

Please ignore the tight fit on my dress form.  It will fit her with more ease than shown here.  I just didn’t bother adjusting my form down to her measurements.

McCall 6988

The pattern is McCall 6988. This pattern has multiple cup sizes, which was helpful.

McCall 6988

I modified the pattern by raising the armholes slightly, reducing the sleeve cap ease, and sewing the sleeves in flat.  I also lengthened the sleeves, per my sister’s preference.
McCall 6988

And I redrafted the facings. As drafted, the facing goes down around the armholes, but I found that added too much bulk. So I went with a neck facing only.
McCall 6988
McCall 6988

The main fabric is a ponte that I ordered online somewhere (I think FabricMart), and I got the lace from Metro Textile when I was in NYC. I purchased these months apart, and just got lucky that they matched so well!

McCall 6988

It was my sister’s idea to add lace to the yoke. I love how it turned out, and want to make one for myself.

McCall 6988

Long distance sewing is a little stressful because there’s not a chance to fit as you sew the final garment.  These are off in the mail now, and hopefully everything works out!