Hello again, and for those of us in the South, happy first day of Spring! It’s been the wettest August on record here in Auckland, while I love hunkering down in my sewing room when it’s wet & wild out even I’m ready for some sunshine. Coupled with the worst cold I’ve had in years (now morphed into bronchitis, yay) it feels like a veeeery long Winter.
So when I was contacted by Katy from one of my fav pattern companies Sew me Something asking if I wanted to review their latest pattern I coughed a hearty “yes please!”
The Emelia has a similar vibe to another of their patterns, the Helena , retaining the same casual feel, with interesting details. I had some gorgeous Paprika linen in my stash (love me a Fabric Store sale) that I knew would drape perfectly and highlight the design details beautifully . Plus, that colour! Its deeply unscientific but I definitely find my mood improves in dull weather if I wear colour. While black on black can look very chic, and is no doubt “slimming” (yawn) , it just makes me feel invisible. Fabulous jewel and autumnal colours are much more fun, plus they work together , this colour looks amazing with deep rich green, chocolate and navy.
So, the details. Jules has expanded her size range for this pattern (and her back catalogue is also being updated!) so the Emelia goes from size 8 to 26. Bear in mind Sew Me Something patterns have a generous amount of ease. I made a straight size 20, I knew I would want to layer this one with a merino underneath, my measurements are 45/39/49 so I’m still a few inches outside the size but I’m really happy with the fit. For a warmer weather version (oh I cannot wait to wear with sneakers & bare legs!) I may even size down to 18.
This dress is all about the detail. The back inverted pleat gives lovely movement through the back (no clinging butt here hey). I was concerned the front pleat over my generous bust (or big boobige as its know in these parts…) could look a tad matronly, but the clever V shape at the front stops that happening.
How about those sleeves?? I’ve mentioned before how I like a sleeve to taper in to my elbow, I have large biceps so I often have to do a large bicep adjustment to sleeves (if this is you too, see here) This results in a wider sleeve hem, which can end up looking weird and unbalanced. Something that pulls that sleeve hem in is always welcome. I’m happy to say NO bicep adjustment needed with this pattern, you can raise that glass of wine with nary a wrinkle.
As you can see I made Version 1, with a collar. Interestingly when Jules asked the question on the Sew Me Something Pattern Facebook group the majority preferred the non collar version. I love the collar! I have quite narrow shoulders, especially in relation to my bust, I think a collar provides balance, and frames the face perfectly. If you’re concerned about complicated construction, don’t be, you are in good hands. Follow the instructions and most importantly , make the notches & dots on the pattern. Seriously.
I’m often a bit casual about that, but this time I was really careful and gosh it paid off. The collar, the front pleat, the top stitching, everything is where it should be because I was 1000% more patient than I normally am.
Will there be more Emelias? Definitely, I have some amazing plum coloured double gauze which I want to use for Version 2, it will be fabulous over jeans. Some striped linen is also calling out to me…
Have a lovely week people. Its Fathers day here in NZ today, I’d love to spend the day with my father Bernie, he passed away in 2011, I think of him often. Sometimes when I’m wearing jeans. Dad hated jeans, he grew up poor in a different generation (Dad was 40 when I was born) & jeans were something you wore when you couldn’t afford anything else, the irony of course being by the time I was a teen a pair of 501’s were not cheap. Oh the arguments…
When I see anything related to Westerns. Dad loved reading & watching Westerns, we would have to collect his Louie Lamour books from the library with our Trixie Beldons , the shame!! He used to talk about Mountain Man breakfasts, not sure what Mum was supposed to whip up or even if they existed in suburban South Auckland but I love the idea.
Most of all when I’m sitting here typing this blog. Dad was a consummate story teller. I don’t really remember him telling jokes as such (I’m def his daughter in that respect, I cant tell a joke to save my life) but he often had a funny remark, and told wonderful stories. He was a kind man, maybe a rather underrated commodity nowadays. Nothing made him happier than big family gatherings , lots of good food, drink & stories. I sometimes think he should’ve been Italian, but that red hair, those freckles, that amount of talk?? Dad was the most perfect Irish NZ combo I can imagine, sláinte x