Friday, August 14, 2015

The Driehoek Dress test for the Eli Monster

I don't usually take pattern tests so close together but the opportunity to test the Driehoek Dress by the Eli Monster popped up just as I was finishing the last test and I couldn't pass up the chance.
The Driehoek is a short and swingy dress with a fun, unique bodice shape.
I picked out this fun black and white rose print from my stash of vintage fabrics. I really love the way it works with this design.
The bodice is fully lined so there are no itchy seams up there.
I knew the black and white would be a real stretch for the Bug so I made the bow pink. I do like the way it really "pops".
This dress is so fun and fluid. It hits just above the knee. We added leggings underneath, making it more of a tunic. The leggings were basically to cover up the eight neon band aids covering all of the mosquito bites on her legs. Those things are terrible this year.
I love the fit of the bodice. It's just right. Again, I made the size 6 bodice with size 7 dress length and it was spot on. I love when there is no gap under the arms.
The back closure is an invisible zipper. I used a hot pink one to match the bow... but I did a better job of actually making it invisible this time.
I had her dance around quite a bit to make sure we didn't have any wardrobe malfunctions with the top but the fit is so good, it stayed put.
The Driehoek Dress is available from the Eli Monster at a reduced price through this Sunday. It's recommended for an intermediate sewing level (which I think is pretty accurate) and comes in size 6 month to 12.  If you are a sucker for unique designs like I am, this is a great pattern to add to your collection.

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

The Feestje Dress by the Eli Monster

I was chosen to test a pattern for a new to me PDF pattern designer, The Eli Monster.
This is the Feestje Dress, a fun, full party dress with a bit of a retro vibe.
The Bug's chest measurement put her in a size 6 bodice and her height in a size 7 so we mashed up the two. It was hard, knowing that I usually purchase size 8's for her in ready to wear and often sew 8's as well. But I'm glad we stuck to the measurement charts. This bodice fits with just enough ease that she can get it on comfortably and not so much that it gaps under her arms.
It has a very full, gathered skirt that is right above knee length. She is wearing a petticoat underneath to add some volume in these photos.
One of the really unique features of this dress is the collar and the accent piece.  While the Bug doesn't like that part (there truly is no accounting for taste, is there?), it's really what makes this dress special and different.
The finishings in this pattern are nice. I like that she uses an invisible zipper closure and not buttons. (Even though I stink at making invisible zippers invisible, I think it still looks nicer) 
The seam that attaches the skirt to the bodice is encased in bias tape and the bodice itself is fully lined so there are no exposed seams there. The only seams that are exposed are the skirt side seams and those would be super easy to make french seams if you wanted.
I didn't have any issues printing or assembling the pattern. The pattern is not layered, which I would have preferred but it's not a deal breaker for me.  Dimensions are given for the rectangular pieces which saves some work (and ink) when assembling the pattern.
The size range of this pattern is pretty good. You get size 6 month through size 12 all in one pattern so you could have party dresses for years to come!
The instructions are given alongside clear photographs of the process. Sometimes photos can be a little harder to follow than diagrams, but these are clear and really help guide you through if you are a visual person.  

The layout and design of the pattern is pretty standard of PDF patterns. 

This is listed as an intermediate level pattern and I think that's a fair gauge of difficulty. While not a tough sew there are some things (like the invisible zip) that you need to have a bit of experience under your belt to feel comfortable with.
And now for my secret...
This fun circle print fabric used to be my drapes. When we moved into our house they didn't really work but I loved the print so I saved them. I think it's such a great print to make this retro dress a bit more modern.

You can get your own Feestje Dress pattern at the Eli Monster website. It's on sale for $7 today through Friday. And while you are there, check out her other patterns. They have a really fun retro modern feel to them and I'm excited to try my hand at some more.