I love a sack dress. I love a dress with a fitted waist too – but just not on me. I’ll leave that to the girls with a defined mid-section! I really do prefer things to skim past my middle, which made the Style Arc Zara dress a pretty obvious choice for me.
The pattern description is as follows: This dress is suitable for all occasions. The twist neck falling into a pleat makes it easy to wear. A very clever pattern which is interesting to sew and you will love the result. Make it sleeveless or with a short sleeve.
I chose the sleeveless option with the slightly extended shoulder. There are separate armscye cutting lines for the version with the sleeve, so I assume that the sleeved version would fit together as it should. I used size 12, and made petite adjustments to shorten it through the body and take the length up to just above the knee. I also eliminated the centre back zip after working out that I could easily get the dress on and off without it.
That centre twist/pleat feature was pretty tricky. I had to take it extremely slowly, and study the diagrams and instructions over and over. But in the end we got there! If you are making this, do make sure that you finish the edges of the fold/tuck pieces really nicely, possibly with a very narrow hand-stitched hem. I didn’t, and regret it. You can’t really see it in the photos, but given how long I spent fiddling with this part of the dress it would have been just as quick to do the finishing in that area – and tacking – by hand to really see how it came together. I suspect that once you have made this dress once the tuck/pleat would come together very quickly the second time.
There is a kick pleat at the centre back for walking easy, which was straightforward to construct. The armholes are bound with self-fabric bias strips, as is the neckline. Next time I would just make bias binding from the self fabric with my bias tape maker gadget and use that. The fabric is viscose from Darn Cheap Fabrics. I adore the colour, but it’s shifty stuff to work with, and shows every pull/wrinkle/watermark. Makes for great wearing comfort though. And absolutely my colour.
I’m looking forward to getting some wear from this as summer kicks in!