You know when you find a fabric and you can immediately see the dress it is supposed to be? Maybe it’s just me, but I got that feeling as soon as I picked up this mystery cotton-ish, slightly stretchy remnant in my local fabric shop. It was about £6.00 for a metre and a half length and probably about the same width. I knew it had to be kind of shift-ish dress, but with a twist. I had a picture in my head of what I wanted but never quite managed to find the right pattern. It almost became a Laurel but something stopped me at the last second so it has been sitting in my stash for about a year. Then a couple of weeks ago Mari of Disparate Disciplines released the Dandelion dress pattern and it was like she’d read my mind. As soon as I saw the drawings I knew that it would be perfect and ordered it straight away. Unfortunately I didn’t have time to make it straight away so had to be content with lusting over the gorgeous versions popping up on the interweb – check out Winnie’s lace sleeved dress , Lizzie and Wanett’s tops, and Brooke’s Star Trek inspired version , for example.
As you can see it can be made up as a top or an A line dress, with either a round or sweetheart neckline, or sleeveless with a yoke. This gives you the possibility of endless variations – colour blocking, lace inserts, using different textures, piping, the only restraint is your imagination. And as an added bonus you also get a recipe for dandelion pesto – mmmm…
I kept it simple and made up the dress with the round neckline. No pattern matching because I didn’t think I’d have enough fabric, but it does use less than you’d think. This pattern is recommended for intermediate sewers because of the curved lines and the unconventional construction. It is different to anything I’ve made before but the instructions were very clear and I actually found it one of the easiest things I’ve made. It is hard to see how it will turn out until it’s done though, because of the genius side panels that add gorgeous curves while keeping it loose enough to be comfortable even after a large lunch – and I did make sure I tested that factor several times. And the raglan sleeves meant no fannying around trying to avoid the puckers I always get when setting in normal sleeves.
I made it up with a size 2 at the shoulders, grading to a 4 at the bust and a 6 at the waist and hips and the only alteration I made was to take in about an inch at the centre back, as I do for virtually every pattern. And I managed without a zip again. The only cock up was when I was finishing the seams with my overlocker and managed to take a chunk out of the side panel. Luckily not a big chunk, and thanks to the print you can hardly see it:
While I was taking these pictures my husband came in to tell me he had lost the top of his finger in the shed. He cut it while slicing a tomato the other day and rather than going to A & E decided to try and stick it back with strips of plasters. It didn’t work and now his fingertip is kicking around the floor of the shed somewhere. This is my ‘trying to look concerned without laughing and shouting I told you so’ face:
There is still a little bit of extra fabric at the back, I’m wondering if I should try a sway back adjustment next time?
Of course movement is important, so I had to try some moves. This music seemed appropriate.
So to conclude, I love it! I have already cut out another in a solid so the design lines are easier to see. This was my first Disparate Disciplines pattern and I am very impressed by the design, instructions, free recipe, well everything really. And if you head on over to their site they are also offering a free camisole pattern at the moment, made up beautifully here by Clare from Sew Dixie Lou. All they ask is for you to donate however much you want to a charity that tackles hunger. I’m off to order it now…