The Style Arc Eden dress was the last garment that I made at Sewjourn a few weeks ago. I suspect that it is my favourite.
This is the type of dress that I wear constantly in cooler weather. I really love to pull on a knit dress that is loose through the mid-section, and pair it with warm tights and boots, and snuggly singlet or slip underneath, and then a cardi or jacket over the top when I go out. And as much as I admire all the statement sleeves that have been around lately, you really can’t beat a classic fitted sleeve for wearability – it goes under things so much better!
I do love a stripe, but I’m not as excited about stripe matching. As always, most stripe matching success starts at the cutting out stage. It’s so important to have all those pattern pieces lined up correctly! This dress required stripe matching of the sleeve seam, the centre front and centre back seams, and at the lower side seams. I pinned the pieces together every fourth stripe or so, then happily overlocked away (yes, removing the pins before they got to the blade of course) and it worked rather well. Some of the alignment is half a millimetre or so off, but I’m not concerned about that.
Of course, mixing stripe widths on the right side of the fabric definitely removed some of the stripe matching pressure! This fabric is a double sided knit, one side with the wider stripes and the other side with the narrower ones. It came from Clear It, and I’ve actually made quite a number of garments from it over the past couple of years. There’s even one last garment cut out! It’s easy to sew and comfortable to wear, and I definitely enjoy playing with the stripe widths. I didn’t decide which side was going to be the right or wrong side for each part of the garment until I arrived at Sewjourn.
I used both the overlocker and the sewing machine when making this dress, depending on what part I was working on. The hems and the neck band are twin needled with a different colour in each needle (navy and orange). As usual, I secured the hems with double sided fusible tape before sewing. I was recently asked for more information on the double sided tape.
I have a preference for the Vliesofix double sided tape, which comes in a few different widths – I have 6mm, 10mm and 25mm. The 10mm and 25mm are my favourites. It is double sided fusible tape cut to width and with backing paper attached. You iron the non-paper side along the hemline, then peel off the backing paper, fold it over to where you want it, then iron the fabic again to secure it. There are a few different brands, but I prefer the Vliesofix/Bondaweb one as I find that it is softer and doesn’t leave the fabric stiff. Stock up when you come across it – a quick google finds some (in more recent packaging) here. Another good option is Wonder Tape, which you can use the same way and washes out of the fabric. Anna has a terrific tutorial on hemming tricky knits, which shows how she uses Vliesofix tape.
Stella was my photographer this time, and she enjoyed taking photos at rather interesting angles! I sewed size 12, which pretty much corresponds with my bust/shoulder measurements and is what I’d buy in ready to wear for tops. I did shorten the sleeve pattern piece an inch, and folded about two inches out of the dress body pattern pieces to shorten it. I’m 158cm tall, for reference. I included the pockets in the angled front seams, as they can be cosy to put hands in. I am neither here nor there with pockets – sometimes I include them, sometimes I don’t. I know that some people are avid pocket fans – pockets in everything! – but I am a bag carrier and it doesn’t especially bother me not to have them. If they are there my mobile phone is the most likely thing to go in them (although let’s not forget #winepockets).
From the Style Arc website: This fabulous swing dress has a lovely fit-and-flair body shape. The hi-low hemline and V-neck make this dress a great on trend addition to your wardrobe. There are optional inseam pockets in the front angled seams. FABRIC SUGGESTION Jersey, baby wool, ITY.
This would be super fast to sew in a solid, especially if you left out the pockets. I suspect that this dress will become a cool weather staple.
I’ll have the camera back now Stella!