adult's clothing · Lekala · sewing

fit and flattery (alternatively titled “full and frank honesty in sewing blogging”)

Well, you wanted to see Lekala 4331 on me.  Brace yourselves.

Lekala 4331 dress with batwing sleeves

And from behind…

Lekala 4331 dress with batwing sleeves

And from the side…no, no, no, there are SOME extremes that I won’t go to even for your sewing edification!  Now, what is interesting about this dress is that it DOES fit me. The fabric isn’t straining anywhere, or way in excess anywhere. Actually, it pretty much fits me in the same way as the pattern illustration.

Lekala 4331
However, I’m not shaped like that pattern illustration.  So yes, the dress fits.  But does it flatter?  I don’t think so.  Part of the problem is the fabric – it’s a fairly lightweight viscose knit, and a ponte would have been around a zillion times better for that skirt part.  It’s a good thing that I enjoy experimenting with style a little bit!  So I took your advice and turned the hem under to a similar length that the dress would become if it were a top instead.

Lekala 4331 dress with batwing sleeves - becoming a top

Still not brilliant, but a much, much better option.

Lekala 4331 dress with batwing sleeves - becoming a top

This design has some really fun features. Especially the insert into the front and back, that both form the neckline and creates some shaping. And the contrast cuffs are nice too.

Lekala 4331 dress with batwing sleeves

Actually, I think it looks better with my arms sticking out than when they are by my sides!

Lekala 4331 dress with batwing sleeves

Luckily for me I still have plenty of the print (it’s a beautiful quality viscose/lycra I think, that came to me via Anna but is still available at The Cloth Shop). I think that I’ll use it again in a combination with a solid but in a more flattering style. In the meantime, if you have a fairly firm mid-section and a semblance of a waist, I reckon that this would style look wonderful on you! It’s a great style – but not on me. I’ll leave you with a reminder photo of why I will shorten it (oh the things I do for the sake of honesty in sewing and the way that interacts with body acceptance).

Lekala 4331 dress with batwing sleeves

Actually, maybe I’ll just hem it and finish the topstitching and send it off to the oppy.


26 thoughts on “fit and flattery (alternatively titled “full and frank honesty in sewing blogging”)

  1. Posts like these are so comforting. You always look great in the things you make so it’s a surprise ( and let’s be honest, a sympathetic chuckle) to see this! On the russian lekala site you can see photos of (presumably) Russian ladies wearing their makes, and I have noticed that many garments are more, er, fitting than I would consider. Different cultural norms, I imagine. So far I’ve chosen looser styles in Lekala, but on the dress I’m about to make I’ll remember to add a bit of side seam wiggle room.
    Personally for a top I’d make the v part a little smaller overall, but I think you could definitely wear this as a top and look good. But if you’re really not going to wear it, set it free into the universe and free the space for something awesome.

  2. Since we are being honest, I vote for the opp shop! I understand why you were drawn to the pattern but I don’t think this pattern is flattering on you. Glad you have more of the print and thank you for being brave enough to share the pics with us!

  3. I really like the style of the dress and agree ponte would be a good choice for the skirt part. Strangely I am actually drawn to wanting to give this pattern a go, but unfortunately i don’t have a firm mid section either. Thanks for sharing your review and photos.

  4. This is why I love an honest review- you’ve shown how a real person looks in it- not a drawing- I know models are technically teal people! Even given some suggestions- you didnt just say ‘this pattern stinks’ – you made it work. Thank you- I think its a swell top!

  5. Trying taking it up in the shoulders a bit, bring the vee up higher on your chest…. You might see a remarkable difference….. It honestly looks too long in the shoulder to waist area…. If it does not change anything, then donate it!

  6. This is a great review and a much appreciated post, Lara! It’s great to see honesty in a post/review, and that even though we sew well, it doesn’t necessarily result in a garment we like to wear or feel comfortable in. My last wadder through me into a body image crisis. Funny how that happens.

  7. You look good 🙂 It fits well. Buy a body shaper to wear under it 🙂 Try some on and you will be AMAZED at their comfort 🙂 I do alterations. Mostly bridal and formalwear and I always have to teach women about proper undergarments. Even a size 0 needs some smoothing under clingy fabrics 🙂

  8. I hate it when I make something and don’t like the way it looks on me. It seems like a waste of time and fabric. But I guess we learn from these experiences what not to make! And I do admire your honesty in showing the bad and the good. I tend to just get rid of the stuff I don’t like and never mention it again.

  9. Love this post, Lara! And the wonderful feedback here. I say this is a reminder to us all that just because we’re in love with a garment, the fabric and style, and no matter how well it “fits” us or made, some styles are just not for us. Hard to let go when I fall in love with something or the idea of something. I am with the “oppy” camp. PS your choice of fabrics for this dress are wonderful.

  10. Lara–I love your (brutally honest) pics and your willingness to try new patterns. I just discovered lekala and found your blog while I was looking for some reviews of their patterns. Thanks for sharing your sewing expertise; I’ll be following your next lekala developments!

  11. Like Lyndle said, this is a bit of a surprise to see, because you look so good in other outfits!! But the colours were so good on you! Pity you couldn’t add the top section to a looser bottom section ie have the plain fabric in a loose style dress. I suspect you may be a “dramatic” in that these (dramatic) styles really look good on you. Keep up your great blog! It’s so informative and inspiring!

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