Creation: Norah Sundress

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.  

I was promised a tent and a tent I got

I was promised a tent and a tent I got

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).

Seriously whose boobs are this perky? (mind you, the dart has been lowered 2.5 cm (1"))

Seriously whose boobs are this perky? (mind you, the dart has been lowered 2.5 cm (1″))

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.

I added a belt, but I'm not sure I like it that much better.

I added a belt, but I’m not sure I like it that much better.

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.

Unflattering (for me, I'm sure other body types could make it work)

Unflattering (for me, I’m sure other body types could make it work)

  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?


10 thoughts on “Creation: Norah Sundress

  1. Yeah, I’m not feelin’ it, either, but look at it this way: the extra fabric leaves you wide open (pardon the pun) for turning it into your choice of shift or sheath. Add sandals a cute solid color shrug and Bang! You’re ready for the Labor Day picnic!

  2. Jag tycker att den är fin när du har det lilla skärpet i midjan. Jag var också väldigt osäker på den där Norah. Jag tänkte att den verkade skön, men misstänkte att den inte skulle passa mig. Provade att sy ett linne och det blev ok, men tror jag skippar att ens försöka klänningsvarianten.

    • Det är en väldigt svår form att bära, linnet tänker jag är ännu mer svårburet för att man inte kan definiera midjan. Men formen är väldigt skön!

  3. Man kan inne vinna alla slag… Du har ändå spenderat några bra timmar när du sydde den! Och lärt dig något mer om vad som fungerar för dig. Och det är inte helt lätt!!

    • Japp, jag ser varje plagg som en sak att lära från. Fast många andra verkar tycka att den ser helt OK på mig så den kanske får en andra chans.

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