Deer and Doe Myosotis Dress by Vicky aka @sewlittlesparrow
Saturday 6th July 2019
I'm lucky enough to be friends with the lovely Laura and along with a few other ladies we had been on an eventful day out to a sewing meet up back in January (I won't bore you with the full story why it was eventful but it involved the RAC!)
It was my turn to drive and after dropping off the rabble following a day of fabric shopping I noticed a bag left on the back seat. Laura had bought along a piece of fabric to show to one of the group but had left it in my car. Thankfully she wasn't a hurry for needing it back which was good seeing as I then jetted off to Australia for five weeks.
Our next meeting was at the Dressmakers Ball (What a fantastic night that was!) and along came said bag of fabric for another ride in my car, only to be left there again!
So long story short, I got to keep it in exchange for a blog post and this is the absolutely gorgeous fabric I acquired.
It's a beautiful Lady McElroy Try Patch Cotton Lawn which has a really unusual print consisting of numerous triangles containing flower prints, all on a black background.
It reminded me of a bit of a hippy style print so I initially started looking at long maxi skirts with lots of ruffles and floaty summer dresses but just couldn't decide.
A pattern that has been on my "to make list" for ages is the Deer and Doe Myosotis Dress. Although when checking out fabric requirements it needed way more fabric than the 2 meters I had, especially as it was the full ruffle version I loved, so ruffle sleeves and double tiered ruffle skirt.
But through experience you can often squeeze out a pattern using far less than required. So I decided to play the pattern Tetris game to see if I could squeeze the Myosotis out of 2 meters instead of the suggested three.
You guessed it, I won!
It's quite a loose fitting dress but I stuck to my usual adjustments of grading from bust, to waist, then hip and cut out a 42 bust, 44 waist and 46 hip. (I'm usually a 14 in UK ready to wear). Ideally I would have liked to lengthen the skirt to fall just below my knee (I'm around 5 foot 6 inches and it falls just above my knee which is still absolutely fine).
The fabric as expected handled beautifully, it's always so lovely to sew with a Cotton Lawn as it behaves perfectly. I did however make an adjustment to the pattern by fully lining the whole dress. It probably would have been fine but Cotton Lawn is on the thinner side and I thought it may be a little see through.
I already had some plain black Cotton Lawn in the stash. It was really straight forward to line. I basically sewed up two identical bodices, darts and all and then sat the inner bodice over the outer bodice. This actually worked well as all the seams were encased so giving a lovely neat finish.
I then treated the two layers as one and attached the collar and the button placket as per the instructions (i.e. I only used the outer fabric for these pieces, and interfaced them as normal)
For the skirt I sewed up the outer layer as per the instructions and attached the ruffle. But for the lining I only used the top tier pattern piece but I lengthen it so it was just slightly shorter than the full length of the outer skirt. I then hemmed each layer individually making sure the lining was just slightly shorter.
I attached the pockets to the outer layer as per the normal instructions but on the lining I left the 'pocket gap' open and just neatened the seam edge where the pockets would have been.
Again from this point I treated the two layers as one when attaching to the bodice at the waistline.
When wearing, the pocket bags just slot through the open gap of the lining. I'm sure there's a proper way of doing this but the end result is fine and gain gives a really neat finish with all the raw edges being sandwiched in between the two layers.
I didn't line the sleeves as this would have been too bulky but I did French Seam the the seam when attaching sleeves and bodice together
The pattern is pretty straight forward although I did have a head scratching moment with the collar as it seamed way to big. On walking away and coming back to it a few days later I just realised it needed to start lower down the button placket edge, I don't think the pattern markings or instructions where that clear. But other than that is came together really easily.
I'm so pleased with the end result and I think this pattern is a perfect match for the fabric. But the fabric would be so versatile for all sorts of garments. Although maybe I should have stood against a plain background when taking pictures instead of a flower bed! Hopefully you can still see me.
I just wanted to say a massive thank you to Laura for letting me keep the fabric (Even if it did take me an age to sew it up!!!).
Thanks for reading and happy sewing
Vicky (@sewlittlesparrow) xxx