Thursday, 10 April 2014

Pattern Testing the Winter Street Dress

I was very excited to be contacted by Deepika Prakash from to test drive their new 'Winter Street Dress'.  
It was described as  an easy to sew knit dress with a waist seam and a narrow pleated skirt.  I was up for the knit fabric and the waist seam part but as a plus sized lady I usually avoid pleats like the plague.  However once I had seen the pattern and Deepika's version I realised that the pleated skirt is nothing like I initially imagined.

Once I had downloaded the pattern (you can get it here) I thought carefully about how and when I was likely to wear it and what fabric to use, I decided on a black ponte roma with animal print, I haven't sewn with ponte before so I hope to learn something new along the way.

Here is my review of the pattern, and my version of the dress, I have used prompts from Deepika to outline what you may need to know, if I don't have it covered please feel free to ask any questions.

1. Was it easy to assemble?

Yes, it took a while to print and piece everything together but it was super easy to get it
 in the right order due to the alphanumeric pages and colour coded sizing on the pattern pieces.
2. Did the pattern pieces match 
up? Yes (see above)
Any drafting errors? Not that I see, however if you are in the UK you need to adjust the printer settings to 8.5"x11", the pattern then prints perfectly on A4 paper.
3. Which size did you use? 
Right well here goes.... You see I don't have one of those bodies that like to adhere to one size.  I can thank my paternal grandmother for blessing me with a ridiculously over sized rear and hips.  I usually have to make some      serious grading alterations when sewing one piece outfits like dresses.  For this project I cut an XL in the bodice and graded out from the waist seam to a 2XL.
What is your full bust size?  My full bust measures 43.5", whilst I am sharing my body measurements and shape I might as well tell you everything you never know there might be someone else out there that is the same shape as me.  High bust 41" and under bust 39"

4. Which fabric did you use?
I used a Ponte Roma knit fabric with one sided border print, the main fabric is black with a lilac and cream animal print border.  I have never sewn with Ponte before but I certainly will be again and very soon, its a dream fabric, is has stretch, doesn't fray or roll and wears well.  It took a little bit of creativity in the cutting out of the pattern because where I wanted the print to be once the dress was finished.
I used a ball point 80 needle and my usual Gutterman sew all polyester thread.
5. Did you need to do any pattern alterations for fit? I graded out from and XL to a 2XL from the waist seam because of my huge bottom and hips, I also shortened the skirt and sleeve length to my preferred length.
6. Did the waist seam hit you at your natural waist? How tall are you? I am 5ft 4inch but I have a very high waist, I usually shorten a bodice but for the purpose of testing this pattern for Deepika I kept to the pattern, it falls just about right on me.
7. Did the garment have the right amount of ease? Just about right. I think it would benefit from some vertical darts in the bodice to give a better shape under the bust.

The dress is super easy to sew and only took about 3 hours to complete from print to finish, it is also very comfortable to wear but I feel a little self conscious in it (see the behind photo).  Please excuse the state of my hair today it is very windy and cold here in Yorkshire UK.

I am number 10 on the blog tour, but there are still a few stops to go. If you missed the rest of the blog tour, or want to hop on board for the final few days here are the dates and links so you can see lots of other versions of this super simple sew. 4/2/2014  4/3/2014  4/4/2014  4/5/2014  4/6/2014   4/7/2014   4/8/2014 4/9/2014   4/10/2014  4/11/2014   4/12/2014  4/13/2014  4/14/2014   4/15/2014


  1. So pretty :)

    And, you know what they say...if you've got it, flaunt it!!!

  2. Very creative use of the border print. Your dress looks great!

  3. I think that is lovely! Just found your blog - you have a new follower ;)

  4. I think that is lovely! Just found your blog - you have a new follower :o)