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Cynthia Rowley Dress and Pattern review

I finally got round to sewing a dress to take on my holiday, it's been refreshing to sew something for myself for a change.
 I used a simplicity pattern by Cynthia Rowley to make the dress which some of you might remember from this post.

The pattern...

A simple style dress with no darts, giving it loose fitting with a slight trapeze shape when worn with out the tie. 

This pattern has simple gathering to the front and back necklines, pockets and an open back that uses a hook and eye fastening, or you can make it with a zip if you don't want an exposed back. It also has a tie belt.

make time : approx 8 hours 

It's pretty easy to follow but it does have a few fiddley bits so it's better suited to some one who has grasped the basic sewing skills.
I decided to follow the pattern instructions exactly. I found the instructions on attaching the pockets and shoulder straps a little unclear, but I got there in the end.
I would use this pattern again but I would attach the pockets differently and although I used the u.k size 10 so it would be bigger round my bust I think I could get away the size 8 because of the loose fitting style.

The fabric...

I bought this from the remnant house for £2.99 a meter
The fabric is a polyester type peach skin which feels lovely but can be hard to work with. It's a fluid fabric so it moves around a lot and requires plenty of pining. It isn't very good to unpick as it frays and catches easily, yet it isn't as hard to use as chiffon or georgette type fabrics.   
Although the pattern gives many fabric choices from cotton to crepes and silks. I don't think this fabric worked as well as a cotton fabric would have, if I was to use this fabric again to make this dress I would leave out the pockets and insert a zip in to the back.

The dress....

I do like the dress but there a some issues that annoy me. The neck line on the one side doesn't curve smoothly, I've tried to correct the problem twice but it still doesn't sit right.
The hem line jumps up at the side seam ( I think my over locker was too tight) but I should be able to fix as I left a generous seam allowance.
 The biggest annoyance is the open back as it doesn't sit right, this maybe because of the fabric, or because I used a medium weight interfacing, either way I wish I put a zip in. 

*by the way the dress looks awfully short on me in these photo's!! I swear it doesn't look that short when it's actually on?!

I also used bias binding on the facing edges which looks much better than over-locking, I think I'm going to consider doing this on all garments facings from now on.


 What have you been making?



  1. lovely dress. I love the colour choice and the shape of the dress. nice!


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