I was very fortunate recently to have been sent a couple of sewing patterns from Simplicity New Look and am sharing with you today my thoughts on the first one.
One of the things that swayed me to choose this pattern was the fact that there are options to make knit or woven dresses, and 4 different dress styles too – with mix and match possibilities.
Whilst I love the woven shirt dress with the tie belt ( and will definitely be making one of these too), my eye was drawn to version A, which is the knit dress with short sleeves and patch pocket. I really liked the floral fabric that they had used in their image, and knew that I had a similar fabric in my stash. It’s a knit fabric that I picked up last year at a sewing meetup (#sewbrum), from the rag market in Birmingham. For this reason, I don’t have the exact fabric content details, but it has the perfect amount of stretch needed when I tested it against the handy stretch guide on the pattern envelope.
I think that the bold pink, blue and green floral detail on the black background is super cute, and these colours make it very wearable with thick black tights whilst the weather is still chilly.
I have lost count of the amount of Simplicity New Look patterns that I have sewn up over the years, so it was no surprise to me how straightforward the pattern instructions were. It is rated as an ‘easy’ sewing pattern and I would agree. For those unfamiliar, the pattern pieces are printed on lightweight tissue paper, and the simple step by step written instructions are accompanied by black and white drawings.
The version that I decided to make has a little patch pocket on the chest and I chose to pattern match this as best as I could. It worked pretty well I think, as I think it is almost impossible to spot from a distance (in the image above), although I do think that pattern matching is not essential, and you could totally make a feature of the pocket by ignoring all the pattern matching rules!
Another feature of this dress is the deep cuff band, which is rolled back to finish the short sleeve. I think this gives it a more casual feel and makes a change from the usual sleeve finish which is simply turned under and stitched into place. To make sure they wouldn’t roll undone, I decided to stitch a couple of bar tacks on each cuff. To do this I dropped the feed dogs on my machine and set the stitch to a wide zig zag. This gives a neat and secure bar tack stitch which I sewed on the underarm and top of each sleeve.
The neck band on the dress fitted perfectly, and required no adjustment. It lays nice and flat and I finished it with a row of twin needle stitching. I also used the twin needle to give the hem of the dress a lovely neat finish.
I had a great time making this dress. Quick to cut out, simple to assemble and the result is a dress that will take me through Spring and beyond. I plan to make a t-shirt dress with it this summer as I think it would be cute made from a striped jersey.
Thank you again to Simplicity New Look for sending the pattern to me, I am pleased with the outcome and look forward to making more versions for a long time to come.
Take care, and I’ll be back soon,