Sunday, 1 March 2015

Sew over it ultimate cowl neck dress OR 'When is floral fabric too floral'..........

    So this weekend I had planned to sew a spring version of New Look 6148 in this art gallery fabric that I got on sale from Dragonfly Fabrics:


 But on Thursday I was checking my instagram feed and I saw that Sew over it had released a new dress pattern - The cowl neck dress/top


 So there ensued an inner dialogue that went something like this:

Voice A: ohhhhhh that is so pretty and feminine - you should buy it.
Voice B: The reason why this looks so good is that Lisa from Sew over it is gorgeous as well as skinny - this would look awful on you - this is not the kind of thing that you ever wear....
Voice A: Well perhaps if you made sure it was a bit more loose fitting on you, you wouldn't feel so self conscious and might actually enjoy wearing it, it is good to try new things - plus it is on offer at the moment......

  I am of course assuming that everyone has these inner dialogues and I am not coming across as a total loony! Anyway voice A won so I ordered and downloaded the pattern. It just so happened that the next day Mr Sewingsu and I both had planned a day off work and I suggested that rather than clearing out the garage we travel to Chichester for lunch (I rather hoped that we might manage to pop into a few shops too) - I had heard that C and H fabrics had a good range of fabrics and thought I might find a suitable jersey for this dress. There were lots of wonderful fabrics but the Jersey choice was not huge. I found a lovely black cotton jersey - a very slimming colour, goes with everything but not very summery and just a bit boring really! I also found a blue floral viscose jersey but it looked like it was already bobbling on the roll. Then I saw this fabric (65% viscose, 35% cotton) - nice and summery and floral's do seem to be 'in' at the moment, but was this just too floral? (I seem to remember my parents having a sofa with a similar pattern on it when I was a child). I decided to take a risk and bought 2 meters.

  The pattern was easy to print off and put together, and the instructions were clear, I was reminded however how much I hate laying out and cutting Jersey fabric! I cut a 14 on top and graded out (get me with the sewing terminology!!) to a 16 at the hip and took it up 4cm at the hem. I also decided to make a short sleeved version ready for spring/summer! I managed to get my over locker working (only with three threads but hey - at least it was working). I was eager to try my new twin needle but realized that it was for woven fabrics (despite assurances from the guy in the shop that I bought it from!) so I ended up straight stitching my hems which will be OK for the bottom hem and neckline but I may have to re-do the sleeves at some point. My tiny brain just can't seem to cope with pattern matching, so all I managed to do was make sure the pattern was centered on the front, back, and sleeve pieces.

  My littlest little one is reading 'The enormous turnip' story at school and as part of his homework we had to reenact the story so I thought I would use the opportunity to take some dress photos in the garden - I have no idea why I am leaning so heavily on the fork - I must have been feeling exhausted!!


I wonder if a mustard cardi would look good with this dress and weather I have enough of an excuse to buy one!


I think it looks OK with leggings but is also long enough to be worn without them in the warmer months.

  I am pleased with the fit and don't feel too self conscious in it - so verdicts on the floral fabric - is it too much? do I look like I'm wearing curtains?

  I can see me making a long sleeved grey version for next winter, a sleeveless black version paired with a sparkly belt for evenings out (because I have so many evenings out to attend - ha ha!), and perhaps another short sleeved one in something a bit more casual - stripes perhaps? OK so I probably won't be making one for evenings out, but if I ever find time I would like to make another version(s) of this dress.

  I couldn't resist adding an 'enormous turnip' shot.......


  Thanks for stopping by!

                         Su xx


Spring is just around the corner - Yay!!




12 comments:

  1. Su, it's brilliant - well done you! How satisfying to have only seen the pattern this week and be wearing it at the weekend. I think mustard would go but that would make it more shorty/look at me. Did you look in the remnant boxes in C and H? They are sell nice fabrics in Clothkits. Are you based in West Sussex too?

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    1. Thank you!! I did look through the remnant table at c and h and it took all the will power I had not to buy some of the gorgeous liberty lawn that they had - I am trying hard not to buy any fabric unless I have a specific project in mind as I have a growing pile of unused fabric! I am about 40 mins west of Chichester. How is the dress going? That flamingo fabric looks fab!!

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    2. The Chichester C and H is fabulous, and this print is a gem. It really suits the pattern too. You will get so much use out of this lovely dress.

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    3. Thank you Louise! Do you live somewhere on the south coast too? We may have to organise a south coast sewing meet up??

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  2. It looks great, you know you made the right choice when you start planning the next iteration as soon as the first is finished. And I love the turnip action shot!

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    1. Thank you! - it is nothing compared to your amazing makes! - your little girls cape is so cute!! We had great fun reenacting the enormous turnip story!!

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  3. I love this and definitely the right amount of floral! Such a pretty fabric and I'm kicking myself for not taking advantage of he introductory price on his pattern. Definitely going to make it's way into my pattern collection at some point though! X

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    1. Thank you Marilla! I think it is a fantastic and very versatile pattern! I am building up to making one of yours one day!!

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  4. I just attempted the cowl neck pattern as a top, rather than a dress... I am a newbie sewist so made a few mistakes and hasn't turned out the way I wanted - perhaps easier with an overlocker! Not completely finished yet as I messed up the hem and I need to shorten the sleeves to 3/4 length but otherwise I agree it is versatile. Just need to figure out how to alter the pattern so fits better as the shoulders look a little odd on mine!
    I think the fabric you picked is just lovely. Not curtain like at all and you'll get so much wear from the dress, I'm sure!
    Great blog!

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  5. Hi foodienelly! Knit's can be a bit tricky, My overlocker barely works but when it does I do think it is easier than a normal sewing machine for knits - but not essential. The first thing I made in a knit fabric was a dress for my daughter - I had no idea about knits at all - I used a straight stitch throughout and a normal needle! You will get the hang of it sooner than you think and will end up loving knit fabric!!

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  6. What a beautiful dress! I hope you don't mind a quick fitting question. I have this pattern too, and was a little worried about the two inches of negative ease in the hips. Did you grade out the pattern to avoid this? The sort of fit you have looks just what I'm after!

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    1. Hi Jane! Yes i think i did grade out one size up for extra hip space!!

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