The time between Christmas and New Year is one of my favourites. Expectations have evaporated, there are leftovers in the fridge, most people are on leave, Melbourne has cleared out (which makes it great to be here) and I lose track of what day of the week it is. I’ve pottered around the house, getting lots of chores done in a relaxed pace according to my own timetable and no-one else’s. Actually, I’ve barely left the house! The first few days of last week were baking hot which made me very grateful for air-conditioning; fortunately Melbourne has done what it usually does and the last few days have been delightful with cool nights and days in the mid twenties.
Anyway, this is what I wore on Christmas Day. We hosted lunch for 18 people, it was hot outside, and this dress kept me comfortable throughout. It’s the Style Arc Eme dress.
From the Style Arc website: Eme is our new summer cocoon shaped dress that is perfect for the beginner sewer, with no fastenings or trim details required. The loose-fitting shape allows for cool fitting during those hot summer days and the lovely darts at the hem complete the cocoon look. With its simple design lines Eme is the perfect pattern for colour blocking. FABRIC SUGGESTION Linen, rayon, silk, cotton, fine wool.
First things first – that line drawing is VERY deceiving regarding the length of this dress. I know I’m short at 158cm, but in the illustration the dress ends above the knee. Mine ends well below it. Actually, most finished versions that I’ve seen definitely look longer rather than shorter. You might want to take that into account.
It is a simple dress that is straightforward to sew. If you left out the side seam pockets (I included them) you really could ‘whip it up’ in very little time at all! Like all simple things, it needs to be well drafted in order to look good – and in my opinion, this dress is great. The neckline is a great shape, and finishing it with a wide topstitched facing adds a lovely bit of detail. The sleeves can be left longer, or turned back to form a cuff, which is my preference.
The darts at the hemline – two on the front and two on the back – really do give that lovely cocoon shape. I know that it’s not a silhouette for everyone, but it’s definitely one that I like a great deal. No fit and flare in my wardrobe! The hemline also has a wide facing, which gives it body and a little more detail with topstitching.
The fabric came from Darn Cheap Fabrics. It’s current stock, and I’m pretty sure that it is linen/viscose blend. The colour is wonderful! It was great to sew with and to wear as it combined the best properties of both fibre types. The Eme is a great alternative to that other Style Arc staple, the Adeline.