The Maria Denmark Pernille Pencil dress was the first thing that I made when we returned from Thailand. It was in my “cut out and ready to sew” box, and I hoped that because of its simplicity it would get the sewjo flowing again. And it did!
The Maria Denmark website description is as follows: The Pernille Pencil Dress is a perfect blank canvas for an everyday dress.
Winter-friendly with the long sleeves and the relatively high boat neck – and very comfortable made in a knit fabric such as sweatshirt fabric or ponte knits.
This dress is all of those things. I made mine in a textured knit from Super Cheap Fabrics in Sydney Road, Brunswick. It’s got a rather high synthetic content, and is an interesting construction with two thin layers of knit joined together in a way that creates the texture. At $3 per metre it was a great option for a hopefully wearable muslin.
I made size Large, with the C cup option and without the back darts. I don’t need shaping added to my non-existent waist. However, I forgot that Maria Denmark patterns need seam allowances added, so the resulting dress is a little smaller than the size Large but seems to fit me quite well. Construction was very straightforward. I used the overlocker for most of it, but secured the neckline facing with a twin needle on the machine and hemmed the sleeves and skirt with the twin needle as well. I took a fairly deep hem at the bottom, which adds weight and improves the way it hangs.
Unfortunately I forgot to stabilise the neckline before sewing the dress, and it stretched out a little in the process. This has made it wider and deeper than the pattern. I added strap keepers to the shoulder seams on the inside which proved to be effective at keeping it on my shoulders and stopping straps from showing. There’s really not much more to say about this dress – it’s a wonderful basic. I’ll tweak the pattern a little and take more care in cutting and construction the next time that I make it. And this is how I wore it: