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Pattern Reviews> Self Drafted Pattern> Horrockses (Martha Dress)

Review submitted in RTW/Designer Knockoff Contest Contest
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Reviewed by:julliams

About julliamsstar
Member since: 6/12/07
Reviews written: 37
Sewing skills:Intermediate
Favored by: 8 people
patterns reviewed: 37
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Posted on:2/24/13 9:44 PM
Last Updated:3/1/14 9:25 PM
Project Photo:Self Drafted Pattern: Horrockses by julliams

Pattern Rating:Recommend, with Modifications
Review Rating: Very Helpful by 3 people   
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Fabric:Cotton Batiste  [See other projects in this fabric]
Pattern Description: "The first in our series is the gorgeous Martha, a sundress perfect for the last days of summer."

Pattern Sizing: I feel the sizing is off in my opinion. There is no size chart but the patterns show 10 - 16. I was a 10 which is much smaller than any other pattern I have normally used. I'm surprised to see that my size is the smallest one offered because I am normally a 14 - 16 in regular patterns and size 12 in RTW (Australia). I now believe that it could be modern UK sizing.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Here is the original dress here and is mine. I think despite the changes to the construction of the pattern, mine looks just like the RTW version.

Were the instructions easy to follow? I didn't use them.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? The pattern given has the side seams way too forward. All the way through the instructions it says that you should make a muslin first and check the fit. I think this is imperative!

Fabric Used: A very soft cotton voile or batiste that was the end of a roll. I could only buy 2.5m of it and I was not sure I was going to get a dress out of it. Turns out I have around a metre left - too easy! I lined it with a 100% organic cotton with a similar weight and feel. It was originally $20 a metre but was on the discounted table reduced to $8 with 50% off that and when I took it to the cutting table there was some sun damage to the first few metres so she gave it to me for $3 p/m and gave me all the damaged bit too. So needless to say, I have plenty of fabric for lining now. The dress is SO soft and lovely to wear.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: Well I basically used the look as my inspiration but I changed the individual pieces to the point that I consider it self drafted. I resized each piece completely and lengthened the bodice by over an inch because a high waist looks silly on me. This is quite low waisted and has my belt sitting over the gathers which I like. For the skirt, I simply cut too lengths, 65cm long. One I left as one piece and the other one I cut in half to be the two back pieces. I lined the whole dress as the main fabric is a little sheer and treated the skirt pieces as one when I gathered them.

I also used wider straps and used a light interfacing on them to stop them from wrinkling.

I tried a tip I had read once where you use three lines of gathering stitches instead of two. It made all the difference and the gathering is nearly perfect in my eyes.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I would sew MY version again yes, but I wouldn't bother with this particular bodice pattern again. It was a good springboard and it got me sewing that day, but I really didn't use the instructions or actual pattern in my end result at all.

Conclusion: A nice idea for a sundress. Very simple to make and could be made in a day and a half from printing of the pattern, muslining to the finished product. I really like this dress and plan to wear it often.

I just had to add to this review - this dress has become my go to dress. It seems to fit me really well, the straps sit exactly over my bra straps and it's just so soft and comfortable. I get comments on it often, people thinking that it's vintage etc. I think I threw out my original pattern pieces but I may just go ahead and make a pattern out of the dress itself as it's such a good fit and easy dress to wear. I highly recommend taking the time to get a good fit - it makes for a garment that gets plenty of love and wear!

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8 Comments      Login to Add a Comment
Terri A said...
Just lovely! Flattering and feminine...
2/24/13 10:50 PM
Quickie said...
And now....Sun... to have reasons to put on this lovely dress
2/25/13 5:18 AM
caper81 said...
Very lovely indeed! Bring on summer :)
2/25/13 3:48 PM
MissParayim said...
So pretty! I like your fabric choice better than the original.
2/25/13 3:52 PM
trishapatk said...
What a lovely dress to have for the hot weather. You did a very good job copying your inspiration garment, it seems like a good one to make in different colors, either solids or prints. Well done!
3/10/13 1:27 PM
ElizabethDee said...
So pretty! Love your fabric -- and admire your fitting skills.
3/11/13 12:22 PM
TammyMJZ said...
This is such a cute dress!
3/1/14 11:32 PM
KamiSue2 said...
It's really is lovely. I know every commenter said that, but it just sums up the dress perfectly. Great job.
3/2/14 0:16 AM
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