I think that I have figured something out when ordering Lekala patterns. Because they are made to your measurements, it can be hard to get an idea of how much ease is included. After having sewn up a few Lekala patterns, it seems to me that the patterns that are illustrated on a fuller-figured model seem to include more ease than those illustrated on slimmer models.
Lekala 5748 has much more ease than many of the other Lekala patterns that I have tried, and I really like the fit. This pattern is for a lined dress with a bubble hem, a centre back zip, a centre front seam and two inserts that incorporate the armholes and shoulder sand attach to the rest of the front with princess style seams (is that as clear as mud?) I can’t seem to grab the line drawings from the Lekala site to show you but they are very clear so pop over and take a look.
The fabric is a fairly heavy weight linen from Rathdowne Fabrics. I lined the dress with rayon, wanting something cool and smooth against the skin. I managed to curb my impatience and try the dress on during construction, which is when I discovered that I wouldn’t need the centre back zip in order to get it on and off. So I left out the zip. This meant that I had to change the construction order a little to attach the lining.
In the end I made two dresses, the outer and the lining, but left the shoulder seams undone. Then I sewed them together around the armholes and the neckline, right sides together, turned to the correct side, and sewed together the shoulder seams of the outer. I hand sewed the lining shoulder seams into place. The slight bubble hem is formed by gathering the outer dress a small amount then attaching it to the shorter lining.
Despite the pattern being supplied to my measurements, there were still some minor issues with fit. There was a weird bubble in the centre back, which was easily pinned out and removed. Also the back is a little too wide across the shoulders from armhole to armhole. Nothing drastic, but not perfect. I have just noticed that Lekala have added a new feature to their ordering system that allows you to further refine the drafting, and I’ll report back on that in a later blog post. Suffice to say that it gives options to state if you are normal, increased or decreased in certain areas, so gives you the opportunity to give a better idea of your proportions and refine fit. It’s on the “extra” tab that is right beside the “main” tab where you enter your measurements. I haven’t used it yet, but don’t you worry, at a later date I will!
This dress has generous wearing ease, which is just what I want in a linen dress for summer. The neckline sits nicely on me, and the depth of the armholes is just right. A Lekala winner.
And thanks for the lovely comments on my new haircut and colour, by the way! I am really enjoying copper, and am also enjoying experimenting with asymmetrical. After all, it’s only hair!