From the Pattern Envelope
- The dress is fitted through the bust, then skims the body. The style works so you can adjust the fit to flatter your figure.
- Do a Full Bust Adjustment if you need it.
- Adjust the length to your favorite, the style will work in a mid calf or mid knee length.
- I always use 1” seam allowances on the side seams as some knits stretch and can affect the fit.
- In this order: 1) finish the neck edge 2) assemble the dress 3) leave the side seams open, pin or baste the side seams, adjust the fit as needed, sew the side seams.
- At this point it is crucial to try on the dress and check the shoulder seam placement, adjusting if needed. This is one of the most crucial fitting areas, for if the shoulder seam is too wide it broadens the body in an unflattering way, and every knit fabric is different - even if you have already adjusted the pattern.
- If you need to narrow the shoulder, it will usually be at the shoulder seam, tapering to nothing at the notches, and can be adjusted independently at front and back. Working at a full length mirror and a hand held mirror, mark the position of the new seam line with a line of pins. (helps to have a buddy here…). Transfer the marking to the garment, cleaning up the line and making both sides the same. Then, pin the garment together, aligning the shoulder seam and edges. Trim. Be sure to add the seam allowance! This small adjustment will not affect setting in the sleeve.
- Staystitch the neck edge, front and back, to stabilize it and keep it from stretching while sewing and wearing.
- Reinforce square corner for pocket on left bodice front, clip up to but not through or beyond the stitching in the corner.
- For the V neck version, reinforce 2” on either side of the V. (Reinforce means to stitch directly on the seam line). Before stitching the neck band, clip up to but not through the stitching at the V
- Stabilize the shoulder using fusible tricot. Fuse a 1-inch strip of fusible tricot to the back shoulder seams. The important thing is to cut in the non-stretchy direction of the fusible so it will stabilize the shoulder seam and keep it from stretching in wearing.
- Sew front shoulder to back, keeping the LEFT shoulder seam open, this so the neck band can be more easily sewn in the flat.
- The neck band is applied as if the neck is round, then the V stitched in at the end like a tiny dart. Easy peasy!
- The style lends itself to combining different patterns and prints.
- Use a knit for the top part of the dress and a soft fluid woven for the skirt.
- Use a more stable knit like a ponte for the top of the dress, and a softer, more fluid knit for the skirt.
- The secret pocket on the shrug can open on either or both sides, and can open on either the inside or outside of the garment.