Wednesday, December 16, 2015

My Sweet Myrtle Dress

I've said it before, I love wearing dresses to work!
Separates are still fun to expand your wardrobe, but it's so much easier to pick out a dress from your closet in the early morning hours. I don't have to think about what goes with what. My biggest decisions are what shoes to wear, tights or not, and do I need a sweater?

Dresses are a great uniform! Find a style that you love and make it up in a variety of fabrics. We love that about sewing - you can really make the clothing you wear your own.
Even in the fall and winter months, I prefer sleeveless and short sleeved dresses for work around the store.  I can always throw a sweater or light jacket (like the Morris Blazer from Grainline Studio) over it if I get chilly or layer them with long sleeved t-shirts. Fabric choices are simple too: cottons, rayons, and knits are among my go-to choices for dresses. Since our weather here in Berkeley is so temperate, I usually opt for wearing layers, but warmer fabrics like wools can be made up into beautiful dresses as well. 

Our independent pattern designers always have something new to chose from when I'm looking for a fresh frock. I love the variety of styles available these days from indie designers. Each designer and pattern has its own personality and flare to inspire you. The Myrtle dress from Colette looked like such an easy, comfortable and elegant style, and I had the perfect knit in mind for it. 

I chose a beautiful, lightweight rayon/lycra knit in black with a white ditsy floral print. Knits are so versatile and I love that this could be worn at work during the day and then dressed up in the evening for any occasion. Easy to wear and care for, and available in more colors and prints than you can imagine, we love knits at Stonemountain! Visit our website to see a selection of our knits.

The front of Myrtle is self-lined, making the draped front neckline fall into place beautifully.  The bodice back is faced with bias tape at the neck and armholes. Laurel chose a red binding to contrast. We love adding design elements like this wherever we can to makes the garment unique. Isn't that the point of sewing for yourself - to make something that you won't see everyone else wearing?

The beginner pattern instructions were a little difficult to follow when it came time to add the elastic around the waist. Since there didn't seem to be enough length in the bodice to cover the 1" wide elastic called for in the pattern, Laurel added extra wide bias tape to the bodice to create a casing for the elastic - in red of course! If you are a more experienced sewist, sometimes you have to go back to what you know when it comes time to following pattern directions.

 Love the drape of this neckline! So very feminine.

The whole dress drapes perfectly...
maybe tights? Boots?

This Myrtle Dress is perfect for rayon or silk knits because of the draped bodice.  You may also want to consider a soft rayon or cotton challis or even a lightweight lawn if your prefer sewing on woven fabrics.  Colette even has a free download that shows you how to execute this pattern in a woven! Whatever you chose, it needs to drape softly, so avoid crisp or heavy fabrics.

Another great pattern from Colette. I can't wait to wear this dress through winter and into the warmer months!

Cheers to Sewing!!!

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