Hi Friends! Today’s agenda is pretty exciting… I made the Colette Myrtle dress and it turned out pretty well!
Bit of back story: I decided that I wanted a Me-Made, capsule wardrobe for a trip to London at the beginning of November so I’ve been slaving away at my machine making a glorious capsule wardrobe. Ian’s been working insane shifts so I was pretty much alone the whole time which means ideal sewing conditions. I have absolutely no shame about carting my machine, cutting matt and other sewing paraphernalia down to the living room and leaving it there for basically a whole month. There’s just SO MUCH SPACE!
Anyway I set out the items I wanted to make: The Colette Myrtle dress, the Lottie Blouse from Sew Simple and the Holly play-suit from By Hand London. I had all my fabric gathered after a very successful trip to Mandors with some other lovely sewing ladies so I was good to go! First up was Mrytle as I thought it would be the best project to start with. I’d say that it’s an overall easy sew and it came together really quickly; I cut it out on the Wednesday night and sewed it all together on Sunday afternoon/evening. It has a self-lined bodice which took me a while to get my head around but I really like the finished look of it!
I did quite a bit of research on this as I really didn’t want to make a muslin so before I even started I knew that the pattern is drafted with a crap-tonne of ease. There was lots of too-ing and fro-ing between pattern reviewers about the fit; Some loved the oversized style and others felt like a sack. I had a lot of help from the Myrtle Sew-along and they mentioned doing a full bust adjustment which was on the cards, but then I took into consideration the ease and thought that I might just get away with a straight size. I like my clothes quite fitted, especially in knits so I threw caution to the wind, cut a size smaller than my usual and called it a day. Thankfully this worked out really well and I have a lovely fitted knit dress!
I did have to make a few adjustments on the hoof. I shortened the bodice by abut 1 inch because I’m what they call a short stack. I also fiddled with the armholes because I thought they were a bit gapey, so I threw in a couple more stitches up past the start of the side seam and that seemed to fix things. As I shortened the bodice once it was already attached to the skirt like an absolute noobe, I ended up shortening the skirt too which actually worked in my favour. With a slim hem it comes in at the perfect length for a 5 foot
Speaking of hems, can someone please come and thread my machine for a twin needle. I really struggled with this! I tried so many different ways of threading, looked at so many online and YouTube tutorials but no dice! Once my machine did this really scary judder and beeping, I packed in the twin needle nonsense and top-stitched the neckline and armholes with a standard zig-zag. It’s not ideal but it works.
I did have a bit of a meltdown again when I realised that I had attached the skirt to the bodice back-to-front so I have a lovely centre-back seam running right down the middle of my dress. The happy coincidence is that I had made a pretty big effort with pattern matching so it’s not glaringly obvious to the untrained eye. I asked on Instagram whether I should unpick or call it a design element and Charlotte from Late Makes said I should ‘pull it off with smug abandon.’ On that sound advice I left it as-is and carried on with my life.
The other thing I would say about this dress is the funny casing for the elastic waistband does add some bulk, so if I was to make the dress again (which I probably will) I’ll find a new way to do that bit. You can kind of see it in the picture below along with a lovely cowl neckline.
Another small adjustment is that I would like for the neckline to have a bit less drape as when I leaned forward my goods were definitely on show. Nothing a tank underneath can’t fix though!
So my verdict? I’m really happy with this dress and it’s so comfortable! I wore it to the Currys in the Kitchen event last Sunday and it was the perfect thing to wear. The process also somewhat abated my fear of sewing with knits and that’s only ever a good thing. So that’s one item ticked off the list, now I’m moving onto the scary challenge that is the Holly jumpsuit!