Wednesday, May 21, 2014

My First Emery

But definitely not my last!  I didn't jump on Christine Haynes' Emery dress pattern bandwagon right away, partially because I hadn't really forayed into dresses yet and partially because the peter pan collar and vintage bow details were not really my style (I find them too twee for me, although I think they're cute on other people).  But once I saw all of the rave reviews of the fit and instructions, I was definitely more intrigued.  I'm really glad I went ahead and got the pattern, because there is a reason for the raves: it's a great pattern and can be the basis for lots of different dresses, not just vintage-style ones.

Lucky for me, this pattern required no alterations for me, with the darts (all 8 of them, scratch that, all 16 of them since the bodice is fully lined!) all hitting in the right place.  Hooray!   
For me, Emery : Peony as Sureau Darling Ranges regarding fitting issues.

This dress needs accessories.

I made my first Emery with this interesting fabric I got on clearance at Joann last year.  I think it was $2/yard, maybe?  I like it a lot, but it was a bit shred-y to work with and I am a little worried that it will get picked easily.... one errant cat claw and it's toast.  I'm not sure what you call it, but it seems like cotton (or at least a blend), it's soft and doesn't press very crisply, it's got warp of one color and weft of another (navy and brown), plus it has woven in polka dots in red, turquoise and bright yellow.  Here's an up-close of both sides of the fabric:

I was a slave to the instructions and the infinitely helpful sewalong posts on Christine's blog. Particularly enlightening was the invisible zipper instructions in the sewalong: awesome.  With the help of those instructions and my new invisible zipper foot (thanks, Mom!), I have now successfully (and mostly correctly) inserted my first invisible zip!  Wooooooo!  And on a dress with a fully-lined bodice, no less.  It the top a little lumpy?  Is the zip slightly visible at the waistline? Yes and yes.  But I am calling this a win nonetheless.

I was particularly happy with how easily the sleeves eased into the bodice.  I've eased seams before, but typically end up with inadvertent gathers or bunchiness.  This time, though: smooth sailing.

So after all that gushing, you can sure expect more Emery dresses in the (near) future!


  1. Hello! I can't remember if I've actually ever commented on your blog, so I thought it was high time to say "hi!" and tell you how much I enjoy your projects and posts! I lived abroad for years, and I've got a soft spot for seeing how people pursue sewing outside North America/Europe/Australia. Makes me wish I could be back in a bustling market somewhere searching out mystery fabric and bargaining for the price! ;) Why, oh why didn't I sew back then?

    1. Aw, thanks! I've been following your blog, too! Yeah, sewing while abroad can be both fun and challenging. I find that getting some of the very specific notions required by pattern can be hard due to language barriers, but, like you said, wandering through markets checking out the fabrics is a bit of a rush. In the fabric area here in Bangkok, there is actually less bargaining than you would think. I would say 85% of the fabrics are clearly marked with a price and you only get a discount if you buy over 10 meters. That said, fabric is pretty cheap... high quality quilting cottons are max USD 3/meter!

  2. I love it! Your fabric choice is great!

    1. Thanks!!! I feel like it's a good basic/staple color, but with a little bit of excitement from the brightly colored dots!