Monday, 8 June 2015

Completed: Muse Natalie Dress

After filling the wardrobe gap of a LBD, this is something I’ve wanted to make for ages – a little red dress! I’m always drawn to prints, but I wear solid colours way more often. I’ve already made a few solid colour knit Moneta dresses that I wear all the time (here and here, with a third unblogged), so I knew that this would be a great wardrobe staple for me. Plus, I love red – it seems to work for all seasons and all occasions!



I’m always super excited when there’s a new knit dress pattern out, especially if it’s by an indie pattern company. So, after making the top version of the Natalie top and dress by Muse Patterns and loving it, I knew I wanted to make it as a dress.



I cut out a size 30, as I did for my top, and the only alteration I needed was to shorten it. I shortened the skirt 2″, and I can’t remember how much I shortened the sleeves but it was an inch or two.



The fabric is rayon jersey that I bought from Fabricana in Richmond. It was on sale so I bought a few metres – I already made a top from it (so far unblogged), and I have enough left for at least another top, possibly another dress.



Since I’m away from home again, I don’t have access to my mom’s serger anymore, so this was my first knit garment made entirely on a regular sewing machine. It went together more smoothly than I was expecting! The insides don’t look as professional as they would with a serger, but they’re still quite neat, and my gathering and my neckline actually look way better than on the version that I made on my mom’s serger. After sewing the seams with a narrow zigzag, I finished the seam allowances with a slightly wider zigzag wherever I thought they might roll. The local sewing store where I’m living for the summer didn’t have any ballpoint twin needles, so I just hemmed with a single line of narrow zigzag stitching. I actually quite like it – it’s very subtle, almost invisible in this fabric.



There’s a bit of extra fabric bunching up at the back because of my swayback, but I think the only way to fix this would be to put in some sort of seam or some darts there. 



The only changes that I would make next time is to make the skirt a little more flared, to make it more bike-friendly (which might also solve the problem of the bunching in the back), and to add pockets! I usually add pockets to everything, but I completely forgot with this dress. 




Overall, I’m very happy with it! It’s very flattering and a nice change from the Moneta, which I’ve made lots of already. I’ve been really impressed with all the Muse Patterns that I’ve tried – the instructions and the drafting are great, and I really love the styles. I think I might try the Gillian wrap dress next!


Incidentally, after resorting to mirror selfies for the last week or so of Me-Made-May, I knew I would need to find a better way to take photos while I'm living on my own. I could ask a co-worker to take photos, but I'm quite picky about my photos and take lots of them, so I don't like asking people to take them for me until I know them well. I'm rather proud of my solution:


It's a holder for my phone made out of duct tape, that I taped onto the railing of the porch at my uncle's condo where I'm staying! I use a timer with it, and managed to get some pretty clear photos. Although the background isn't that pretty, the lighting is good, and my phone can take decent photos so long as there's good light (inside, like for the flat shots, they get a bit grainy). They've also just replaced the wood on the porch but haven't painted it yet, so I don't have to worry about peeling off the paint with the tape. I wish I had figured this out for Me-Made-May!

UPDATE: This dress was picked as one of 15 finalists in the Indie Pattern Month Dresses Contest over at The Monthly Stitch. If you like the dress, I'd really appreciate it if you head on over and vote for me!

Thanks for reading!


Dress: Me-made (Muse Natalie dress)
Shoes: Bought second-hand from the McGill Clothing Exchange (Sperry)

8 comments:

  1. That's a really beautiful dress! I will check out those Muse patterns, you made me curious :-)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I would highly recommend Muse patterns - I've loved both that I've tried!

      Delete
  2. What a cute dress. I am surprised how well it comes out even on a regular sewing machine, as I am still afraid of sewing knits without a serger. It makes really great finish.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! I was a little skeptical about how nicely this would turn out on a regular machine, but I'm really happy with it. A serger does make for a nicer finish, but I find it gives you a little less control (although that may have been this particular fabric... I'll see how I feel at the end of the summer!)

      Delete
  3. That is cute! I like your solution to taking photos too!
    I sewed knits quite a bit with my regular sewing machine before I bought my serger.... I still use the sewing machine for any small, tight spots, like the point of a v-neck, because it's just so much more precise!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks! Yeah, I found that the V-neck was also much easier on the regular machine. My first version was a little wonky but this one turned out quite nicely!

      Delete
  4. Oh the gathers on this are lovely - the bust looks wonderful. Can never go wrong with red either :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! I find the gathers so flattering.

      Delete