Monday, September 16, 2013

Introducing the Emery Dress!

A few weeks ago I had the honor of being a pattern tester for Christine Haynes' new pattern, The Emery Dress! It's been hard to keep it a secret for so long but we just got the go-ahead to blog about it. I was lucky enough to meet Christine this past January at Sew L.A. at the launch of Gertie's book. She was wearing the most incredible black, white, and yellow rose print dress, which of course she made. I am thrilled I get to make my own version!

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When she emailed me and said it was a 60's style cocktail dress, I knew exactly which fabric I was going to use. I bought this from Fashion Fabrics Club for my remake of my beloved blue coat, but when it arrived, it was the totally wrong weight and feel. I'd been saving it to use for a Jackie O-style cocktail dress. Okay, let me tell you about this dress. It's basically the perfect bodice, with endless customizable options. There's short sleeves, 3/4 sleeves, an optional peter pan collar, and optional bow belt. I went with the short sleeves and the bow belt. I pretty much hate sleeves, but these were a dream to set in. It has the perfect amount of ease and I did both without having to unpick and redo anything.

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The neckline is suuuuuper flattering, and I love how full the skirt is. See? Perfect amount of poof!

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 It zips up the back with an invisible zipper, but since I didn't have one, I used a metal zipper and a lapped application. It looks real good. I unfortunately did not notice the line of fading along where I cut my back pieces! Boo! I don't know if I would have had enough fabric to work around it, but I sure would have tried. I don't think it is TOO noticable, so I will pretend like it doesn't bother me.

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I was asked to cut the size 8, which I did without making any alterations. I normally do a full bust adjustment, but I wanted to make this pattern as-is so I could send my feedback to Christine. It's a little tight and I could use an extra inch of wiggle room, but it's not uncomfortable. I'm already making a second dress, this time with the 3/4 sleeves, and I did do a little adjustment in the bust. The dress is also lined, and has pockets. I know a lot of people are pretty crazy for pockets, but I'm just not into them. It's not that I find them difficult to sew or anything, but they're an extra step and I don't really ever use them. I always have a purse, and I never really stick my hands in my pockets. So for future versions they will be eliminated. I wore the dress out for my Mom's birthday and I felt so cute in it! I got a lot of compliments too. So if you want to make your own super cute Emery dress, head on over to Christine's shop because it's in stock now!

Monday, September 2, 2013

One Pattern Seven Bloggers - The Reveal!

I was sewing up until 2 minutes ago, but I finally got my Macaron done in time for the big reveal!  I wouldn't say this pattern is difficult, but there are a LOT of small pieces, lots of seams (and lots of seam finishing!) and the pleats on the skirt about killed me. It was a lot of work, but I think my dress turned out really similar to my inspiration dress.

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I LOVE the bodice so hard. Dare I say more than anything I've ever sewn. It was such a treat to put together and I really took my time on it, making sure each seam was matched up perfectly and finished on the inside.

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I used the lace's natural edge for the sleeves, so obviously I had to disregard the instructions and just wing it. I also slightly lowered the neckline in the front and back.

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I think it's going to be a great party dress. I'm invited to two weddings next month and I'm sure it will make an appearance at one of them.

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 For the lace, I trimmed the seams to 1/4" and overlocked them. I wasn't sure how to bind the neckline, and after lots of failed Google searches for "sheer bias binding", I just used some narrow lace trim to bind it.

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So here's the deal. I LOVE the bodice, but I am "eh" on the skirt. It's really not my style, the short bubble skirt. I would like it much better if it was a little longer, a little more a-line, and gathered. I really want to love the whole dress, so I might actually cut a new skirt. We'll see.

I had so much fun doing this challenge!  I hope we can make it a yearly thing.  Please make sure to check out my fellow stitcher's Macarons because they are all gorgeous.

Rachel - My Messings

And now for the giveaway!  We had a staggering 711 entries and needless to say, I was a little overwhelmed (and thrilled!) by the huge response to our little challenge.  Thank you SO much to all of the generous sponsors and everyone who read and commented. 
Lil- 1 x Macaron Pattern thanks to Colette Patterns 
Josephine - 1 x Macaron Pattern thanks to Guthrie & Ghanie 
MaciNic - 1 x Macaron Pattern thanks to Stitch 56

Elizabeth - 1 x Pattern of your choice thanks to Sew Squirrel
Kathleen S - 1 x Colette Pattern of your choice thanks to Indie Stitches 
Joanne - 1 x Colette Pattern of your choice thanks to The Haby Goddess
Amy - 1 x $20 gift voucher thanks to Fabric Worm 
Sew Charleston - 1 x $30 gift voucher thanks to A Fashionable Stitch