Today I will mostly be making separates

If participation in Me Made May showed me anything, it’s that I wear a lot of separates, I wore them for 87% of the month.  So I knew the Separates Challenge was the one for me.  But which pattern to pick?  Eventually I decided on the Melissa Dress/Blouse/Skirt pattern by Muse Patterns (in no way trying to curry favour with the judges).

Oh such a natual pose

I cut a straight Size 40 with the B cup option and for once did not need to lengthen the bodice (usually I need to add between 2-5 cms).  The lovely chevron design element of this pattern, does mean that there are rather a lot of pattern pieces.  I found it helpful to keep the pattern pieces pinned to the fabric until need, to keep them in order and even repinned them after applying the interfacing.

The fabric I used for the blouse is a dress weight cotton from Ikea, it has been in my stash for a while, it does have a 2007 copyright on the selvedge, I had to buy some red cotton poplin for the accent and choose to interface it to give it the same weight as the main fabric.  I opted to use poppers rather then button and buttonholes, partly because I felt they went with the design aesthetic but mostly because my sewing machine had stopped cooperating whenever I tried to do a buttonhole (my machine has now had a very well deserved service after 5 years of very hard labour and it feeling much better).  The fit across my shoulders if fantastic, it is maybe a little loose at the waist and hips, but I can certainly adjust that next time I make it (and there will definately be a next time).

I have to admit that I did not really follow the instructions, I have been sewing so long that I very rarely refer to instructions.  I did give them a quick once over with regard to the pockets, but that was about it.   The only things I did differently was to slip stich the front facing down to the seam to keep things nice and tidy.  I also set the sleeves in rather than inserting them on the flat and they went in like a dream, which I feel it the sign of a well drafted pattern. I knew those Tetris skills would come in handy

I had a bit more fun with the skirt.  The pattern calls for 1.8m of fabric.  What I had was 1m of 1.2m wide red denim that I really wanted to use; it’s been in my stash for over 4 years and was begging to be made in to a lovely skirt.  So some modifications were called for, unfortunately the first thing to go was the button front, I just cut one front on the fold and I also opted to cut the back on the fold.  I was fairly sure my fabric didn’t have a nap, but just to be on the safe side,I cut all the front pieces one way and the back pieces the other way and still didn’t have enough fabric for a waistband.  I put in a side zip and finished the waist with ribbon and a large hook and eye.

I did find that when I tried the skirt on it was far too big, I don’t think I accounted enough for the overlap at the button front that I omitted.  But it was an simple enough fix just to take a couple of centimetres out of the side seams at the waist.

I do really like this pattern, especially the pockets.  They are an integral part of the design, not just functional.  I would definately recommend this pattern. Even though dresses aren’t my thing, I am very tempted to make the dress and several more blouses.

If you want to subject yourself to more of my twaddle pop over to my blog.

As well as sewing there you can find far too many pictures of my dogs.

A better picture of Hagrid than my separates

3 thoughts on “Today I will mostly be making separates

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