Friday, 9 March 2018

Sew Over it Eve Dress in partnership with Sew Essential

A few weeks ago, Lucy from Sew Essential contacted me about sponsoring a make. I was flattered and excited. I had never used Sew Essential before and spent hours perusing the stunning fabrics that they have in stock. I think I could quite happily buy up most of their dressmaking stock!!!!

They have a wide choice of patterns from both the big pattern companies and independents. It's really easy to select patterns on the website and you can filter by type and company to refine your search. Great when a company holds so many different options. I thought this would be a good opportunity to try out a Sew Over It pattern. I love their vintage modern aesthetic but had only ever perused makes online. I decided on the Eve dress as I love a wrap dress - who doesn't! - they are so flattering on every figure and I'd only heard good things about this particular pattern.

Then to choose fabric - this really is my downfall and there were so many stunning fabrics it was really difficult to choose. This pattern calls for something with a good drape and there is a stunning selection of drapey prints at Sew Essential. Again, the fabric types are well organised and it's easy to filter to narrow your choices. I decided to narrow my search and stay away from florals, as my last couple of makes (not blogged yet) have been floral. I'm a sucker for polka dots, but when I saw this stunning irregular John Kaldor polka dot crepe de chine fabric in stunning royal blue I was sold. It was really easy to see how it draped as the fabric is shown on a mannequin.

My parcel of fabric and pattern arrived quickly and I prewashed my fabric ready to get started, but then the hospital called with a cancellation and offered me my Hip Arthroscopy the same week. All sewing plans on hold...

...Weeks later I've finally made this dress. My physiotherapist said I could sew a bit as the movement would help with keeping the circulation good in my leg. After looking carefully at the measurements for the Eve dress, I decided I fell cleanly between the 10 and 12 size - so I traced the pattern and cut an "11". I made a toile to check the fit before cutting into the crepe de chine; after doing so the only changes I made were to remove about 3 cm from the wrap edge as it gapes a bit. I did this by slashing and overlapping by a cm in a couple of different places on the wrap edge. I used the straight sleeves on my toile and needed to make them a little wider too, slash and spread the arm, leaving a hinge at the top of the sleeve head, so it doesn't alter the seamline. (I made the flutter sleeve version of the dress as it suits the lovely fabric much better.)

I decided to cut my fabric in a single layer to prevent as much slippage as possible and make it as accurate as I could.

Check out my fancy pattern weights - just open the cutlery drawer... I found the cutting out challenging simply because after my hip operation I can't stand for long and crutches make moving around difficult, so I sat to cut out, thankfully we have a very big dining room table, but it was still tricky reaching the far edges of each pattern piece.

This is a quick and easy pattern and sewn in a lightweight cotton would work as well as something more drapey. I made it difficult for myself; sewing with crepe de chine needs patience and as much accuracy as you can muster. Despite my care, I still managed to stretch out the fabric in a couple of places - not enough to make it a major issue, but I really do like all my seams to match perfectly. I haven't sewn with such a slippery fabric since my early days of sewing (my second make ever was a pair of baggy crepe de chine trousers) and I really didn't know better then! Next time I use a slippy fabric like this I will try the gelatine stabilisation method that I've heard about. This is a stunning fabric in a gorgeous colour and I'm planning to use up every last scrap.

I used a Schmetz 60 microtex needle for this dress and for the most part, it was good, although it did catch a little bit.

I changed the order of construction after making the toile. I constructed the bodice and stayed the neckline and inserted the sleeve in flat. Then I attached the skirt pieces before sewing up the side seams. It was easier to do it this way to allow the gap for the tie to pass through.

All the internal seams are finished with the overlocker but I decided to create a narrow rolled hem for the skirt and sleeves, It gives a nicer finish, especially with the dipped hem - I didn't want the overlocker stitches to be visible I posted a tutorial on how to do this here.

Well, it's all finished and can I just say I. LOVE. THIS. DRESS. It's still a bit chilly to wear it here, but as the fabric DOES NOT CREASE. I think this is gonna get a lot of wear in the summer and it will be perfect for throwing in a suitcase for holidays or days away. I'd be happy wearing this at a summer wedding or party. I now just need some royal blue shoes to match. I don't think this will be my last Sew Over It Eve Dress, made in other fabrics this one dress could suit my whole lifestyle. Thank you Sew Essential for the fabric and pattern, you've certainly brought a smile to this sewist's face.

Disclaimer: The pattern and fabric have been provided by Sew Essential, all opinions are my own.


  1. Lovely dress! I love polka dots and the color of this dress looks great on you!

  2. wow, this is stunning, I love polka dots too. I love the sleeves, so pretty.
    I hope you are recovering well from your op.

    1. Thank you. I'm recovering well and just waiting for warmer weather so I can wear this beauty.

  3. Beautiful dress! I love the design and it looks great on you! Good job on the rolled hems, I almost never have the patience for those!

  4. This looks lovely! It's a very flattering shape.


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