Merry Christmas, friends!
I’m so happy to share this year’s Christmas dress!
The pattern I used this year is the Colette Dahlia. As soon as this pattern came out, I had to have it. There is a designer dress that I’ve been planning to copy and this pattern is quite similar to it and meant that I didn’t have to do any pattern tweaking, mashing or drafting to get a similar look. I decided to make a different dress with the pattern first before cutting into my more expensive fabric and trim and as the Dahlia looks so great in plaid, my Christmas fabric seemed like a perfect candidate.I know there has been a lot of talk about this dress with many other sewers seemingly unsatisfied with the end result. It looks super cute on the models and overall I’m satisfied with my dress itself, but honestly uncertain whether I will make the pattern again. Although I am not a large busted lady, I do wear a D cup (DD according bra measurement charts…), so I am not small busted either. I have made other dresses with gathers on the bottom of the bodice and found it to be flattering, but I don’t think that the gathers on this one are that flattering on me. I think perhaps they’re suited for a gal with a smaller bust. I know that I have read many comments from when this pattern was released from full busted ladies stating how they didn’t think this dress would look good on them and I figured that they meant those with E’s and higher. I really didn’t think it would mean me…
I did not do any alterations to this dress. I cut a 20/22 out of the envelope. I never have a problem with Colette patterns and rarely have to do any alterations, so I was certain that this pattern would fit me right. The only real problem I have with it is that it’s a bit of a squeeze to get into. It has a side zip and I think it should go up a little higher. I started the invisible zipper where the pattern dictated and it just seems like it needs more room. I’ve made a lot of dresses with side zips, including ones with sleeves, and have never had this issue. It was also a big problem putting this dress on my dress form, which is why the following photo of this dresses’ “guts” are not on my form.
Pretty simple inside with no lining. I usually line all of my dresses whether there are lining pieces/instructions or not. With this one I figured I could get away without lining due to my midweight fabric and the fact that I’d most likely be wearing tights or leggings with it most of the time. I finished the seams with my serger and used bias tape on the neckline. I was just using some leftover bias tape from my stash, so this one is a narrower than suggested. I didn’t use it on the sleeves like the pattern instructs.
The fabric I used for this dress is a rayon/acetate red plaid fabric from Britex Fabrics. I picked this up in San Francisco during their Columbus Day sale, but it’s actually still available online in limited quantity as I write this. The fabric is a bit itchy, so I probably should have lined it, but it’s not enough to bother me immensely. I just wouldn’t be wearing this for an every day dress.
I really didn’t like the gathers on the skirt and had never planned on using this skirt with this bodice as I had always planned on swapping it out for a different skirt pattern. However, I did decide to use the Dahlia skirt and was not happy with the gathers at all when I sewed the skirt to the waistband, but after I pressed them down, I was happier with the result.
You can’t really see it, but this skirt has a little kick pleat. I’m not sure why this skirt needs it and mine just blends in with the tartan print, so you can’t tell it’s there anyway. That’s pretty much a design feature that could be eliminated in my opinion.
I did mention earlier about wearing this dress with tights or leggings and I’m obviously not doing it here… It was in the 60’s (F) when I took these photos and I didn’t feel like overheating…
Yes, Doc was such a good boy posing with me. 🙂
I do really like my Christmas dress. I’m doubtful whether I will make this pattern again as I don’t think it’s the best bodice design for me. I had hopes that it would be, but alas, I feel that it’s not absolutely fabulous, which is what a dress should be if I take the time to make it. I could alter this dress to get it how I want — but why? There are many other patterns out there that I love and fit me without alterations. As far as my planned designer copy — I may or may not use the Dahlia. I have a while to come up with a plan for that dress as it will be a spring/summer frock and I needn’t worry about it at the moment.
I will leave you with the Hughes family Christmas photo. Two dogs are missing as they are quite frankly PITAs at picture taking and it was easier to let them sleep in their beds while the other three were out posing with Mr. H and I. 🙂
- Dress: Colette Dahlia in red plaid rayon/acetate, made by me
- Shoes: Aerosoles
- Pin: Vintage
- Bracelet & earrings: Bauble Bar