I expected it to be a doomed relationship. Even before I got involved, I was pretty sure it was going to be a disaster. To quote T-Swif “I knew you were trouble when you walked iiiinnn”
Me… The Named Inari tee dress pattern… Could we ever be together?
I love pretty much all of the Named Clothing patterns and I think 2016 will see me tackle more than a few. They have a really cool and chic collection and of all the indie pattern designers, they probably sit closest to the type of ready to wear clothes that I want to buy.
Before Christmas, Named ran an advent event through instagram and I snapped up the chance to get a deal on some PDF patterns, to start building a handmade skandi cool wardrobe.
I always want what I can’t have and shift dresses are firmly in the the camp of “not for you!”. Being quite hippy, off the rail shift dresses are either too tight around my hips and bum, or of I buy one to cover said hips and bum, then my top is drowned and starts to stumble into sack territory. Although I firmly believe you should wear what the heck you like, sometimes the stupid magazine article have a point and they are right- cinched waist dresses flatter me more than shift dresses. When I drool over shift dresses, the models are often taller and less curvy than I am. They are styled in a crisp minimal way, where as I have to strongly resist piling on jewellery and tasseled shoes and feathers and beads and pom-poms.
So I stared down the Inari pattern and thought to myself, “you could be the answer to my shift dress dreams…or I will own a homemade sack”.
You can make the dress in knit or woven fabric and I decided to go for knit as the stretch might be a little more forgiving on the big hips. I picked up some barginous fabric on eBay from JK’s Fabric in a grey and white sketchy pattern. It is the spongy kind of polyester, 4 way jersey and I thought it would be a nice warm dress for when the colder weather comes.
Another reason to make this up in a knit, was to become more friendly with my overlocker- up until this point I have only been using it to finish seams and not so much to sew with knits.
And so my doomed fling began.
The named pattern is clear and with only 5 pieces to cut, it was really quick to get going. I only did a little but of grading between sizes, as I wanted to keep the proportions as they were, for this first version I was making. One thing to note is that the sizes come grouped in twos for the printing e.g 36 & 38 then 40 & 42- it would be a pain if you needed to grade between sizes across two different print outs.
The trickiest bit to do is the side splits, take a little time over these and try to do you most accurate pivoting. Because my fabric was quite thick, my slits kick out a pit and look like more of a V shaped detail, but this is due to the nature of the fabric.
My biggest trouble came when inserting the neck band. For stretch fabrics the pattern recommended using ribbing, I was keen to keep the same fabric for the whole dress and decided instead to make my neck band from my main fabric. In retrospect, I should have cut the neckband piece on the bias to give me a little extra stretch and also stretch it out more when inserting it.
I had a little extra at fabric from the bodice and to make it fit the neckband I cut, I added two small pleats at the back of the dress- they are more centred than this photo shows, I promise.
And here it is on. For the most part I really like this dress and I don’t this it is as sack like as I feared. I have worn it out the real world and is a great outfit when a big dinner is to follow. I think I could shave a little from the side seams, as usual probably even a whole size down and I have added a few stitches to anchor the folded sleeve detail in place.
I have seen some lovely textured denim versions on Pinterest and would fancy making one of those, however I would be concerned about the fit, as there are no darts in the front and a knit fabric can be more forgiving versus a woven fabric. I am excited to try some more Named patterns and see if there are any other patterns from the wrong side of the tracks, that I can make my beau.