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The Red Midsummer Dress by Papercut Patterns

Hi I’m Lauren and I like making stuff – knitting, sewing – I’ll happily have a crack at pretty much any craft going, and I tend to document it all on my Instagram (@craftworksblog) or occasionally on my blog

This summer I’ve mainly been focusing on light, easy-to-wear dresses, that I can just throw on and get on with enjoying whatever I’m up too. This year in general I’ve been trying to sew more every-day garments, and spend less time on those cocktail dresses that I sadly never really have the occasion to wear. One dress I’ve made recently and one that’s been on my ‘to-sew’ list for a while, is the Midsummer Dress Pattern by Papercut Patterns. It even featured on my 2017 Make Nine list, so I’m feeling mega organised right now.

Until recently, I didn’t realise the wealth of Indie Sewing Patterns that is actually available on the Minerva crafts website. (I feel very behind the times.) When I realised that they do indeed stock the very pattern I wanted to sew, I jumped at the chance to order it and also order a few meters of some lovely red Viscose Fabric to go with it.

The Fabric

This Woven Viscose Fabric has the most amazing drape. It feels light, airy and perfect for summer, without being too see-through. I washed it before I used it and it washed really well. Since making up the dress it’s been worn and washed many times and still looks fabulous.

I tend to stick to very neutral colours with the occasional hit of pink or blue, so red isn’t a common colour in my wardrobe, but I thought I’d step a little out of my comfort zone this time, and as the pattern has a simple silhouette, I could get away with it.

The Pattern

As with other Papercut Patterns I’ve tried, the instructions were very clear to work through; I think this pattern would be great for pretty much anyone to have a go at, even I they’ve not sewn many garments before. The only thing that needs to be kept in mind is the fact that the seam allowances are a little different to the traditional ‘big four’ patterns.

It was also a very quick pattern to put together, although the metres of bias binding do get a bit tedious after a while!

I used a regular foot and straight stitch on my sewing machine for the whole of the dress, but I also used my overlocker to neaten the seams on the inside of the dress, as the fabric is a little more fragile and I didn’t want it to fray in the wash. 

You’ll have to excuse my white overlocker thread though – I was so impatient to sew this up that I decided to just go for it instead of waiting for delivery of some red cones of thread. It kind of annoys me now because it really stands out against the red, but as it’s only the inside, I’m trying not to bother about it too much!

The Fit

The only negative thing I have to say about this make, is that it came up a lot bigger than I expected. This could just be me and my measurements, but I have found the same issue with another Papercut Pattern, and I think next time I make anything of theirs I’ll just need to make sure I size down a little. The good thing is that this issue is easily rectified, as the shoulder straps are adjustable and the wrap-style can be cinched in as tight as I need it, so it definitely hasn’t stopped me wearing the dress – I even took it along with me to my honeymoon in Florida.

All in all, I love the style of the dress - the colour and the design detail, like the shoulder straps. And I can definitely see myself wearing this for what’s left of the summer, hopefully it will be a long one!

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