OK, my Spring this year had a very solid theme, fitting. It started with my “perfect knit dresses” (Rule Britannia Dress and Tie-dye Aqua Dress) back in January and then my Almas (Starry and Striped) followed suit, ending with my Anna dress. It was fitting, FBAs, muslins. In the end I’m very, very pleased with the fit on all of these garments, but it left me in the mood of wanting to make something more simple. Enter Heather B’s summer sundress sewalong. I had a piece of heavy weight polka dot cotton, stashed away. It wasn’t really suitable for office wear so a sundress seemed like the best deal for it. I did debate using Colette’s Truffle or the Jenny Hellström Norah dress. I made the latter and I’m not sure it was the best decision. However, I wanted an easy project with minimal fitting and the result reflect that. The dress is a balloon dress, described as like walking around in a minitent without feeling like a camper. Yes, this dress really is all sorts of wrong for my figure. There. This is the third pattern I make from Jenny Hellström’s Sy!-books and a few conclusions about the patterns are starting to arise.
Firstly, the patterns could have used a thorough testing and proof reading. In two of those patterns I have found errors (in the Lily shirt there was an error in the instruction for constructing the collar, inthis Norah dress there seemed to be a discrepancy of whether or not the back piece should be cut on the fold or not as well as not illustrating the facing pieces as pattern pieces).
Another conclusion is that the patterns are drafted for a small, perky bust. I had noticed on my Turnaround dress (not properly blogged) that the horisontal bust darts sit very high. For my Norah I lowered them about 2.5 cm (that would be 1” in imperial) and they could have gone down a bit further. Or perhaps have benefited from an FBA, but that seemed so unnecessary on a dress of this shape and when I wanted a simple project.
So, a tent-look was promised and a tent-look I got. It’s not flattering at all, but it’s really comfortable. Unless that the armholes are a bit tight and then there’s the already mentioned case of the high bust dart. In order to draw it in, I sewed myself a narrow belt in the same fabric as the dress. Husband thinks it’s an improvement and sure it takes away from that tent-like feeling, but I’m not feeling the dress, even for a “lounge around the house”-dress. The fabric is a bit meh and washed out, I prefer my colours bright, plus it’s a bit too stiff to fully work as a dress.
The verdict? I have worn this dress during some hot summer days and while it was comfortable in shape, I wasn’t completely comfortable in it. The sundress days are over for this year and the dress will move into the back of my closet. If it survives the full year I might wear it next summer, otherwise it might be chopped up and used for children’s clothes. We’ll see. And in the future I shouldn’t play with silhouettes I know won’t work. I knew this silhouette wouldn’t work and laziness took over since the dress was easy to make. However, had I made the Truffle it probably wouldn’t have been comfortable anyway and more time had been wasted. Do you ever find yourself disliking a garment you made? How do you treat it afterwards? Does it even make the blog?