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Mock Wrap Dress

I have been on the lookout for a stretch jersey fabric to make a dress for some time and have never quite found the right fabric, so when I received this Art Gallery Jersey Fabric from Minerva Crafts I knew exactly the pattern I would use.  The fabric is an Art Gallery stretch jersey medium weight knit – Line Drawings Bluing.  I love the pattern on the fabric, an off white modern floral outline on a denim blue coloured background, feminine without being too fussy.
My chosen pattern is a mock wrap dress by McCall’s 6884 with only a few pattern pieces and easy to follow instructions.  I used pattern A but with the skirt from pattern B as I felt my hips may make the dress gape in the wrong places.
Stretch fabric, in general, can be difficult to work with, from laying out the fabric, to managing the edges that may curl and also cutting and stitching. This fabric is no different and extra care is needed when cutting the pattern pieces to ensure they are cut accurately and the fabric is not stretched out of shape. I still cut all my fabric with scissors but would be interested to know if a rotary cutter would have been better with this jersey fabric. I didn’t take too much time trying to match the pattern on the fabric and roughly ensured the sleeves were similar.
I followed the pattern instructions exactly as I don’t often stitch with knit fabric.  I ensured I stay stitched the required edges, double stitched the seams & neatened the edges with a zig zag stitch.  I have an overlocker that I inherited from my mom but am yet to study the instructions and have a go with it and this would have saved time when stitching the dress.  Instead, I sewed two seams close to each other & then neatened the edges with a basic zig zag stitch. However, stitching with a traditional sewing machine achieved great results as long as care is taken to avoid stretching the fabric whilst stitching.
The pattern starts with hemming the inner front edges and making the belt.  A neat finish was achieved along the edges by creating a small hem with two folds and stitching with straight stitch. The fabric belt was easy to turn right side out and create crisp corners, compared with some cotton fabrics I have used which can be bulky in the corners even with trimming and clipping. All that was required was a light iron on the seams.
I advise lifting & placing the fabric pieces on top of each other carefully rather than smoothing the fabric as this would cause it to become misshapen. I also tacked the side seams as detailed in the instructions whereas I often just rely on pinning. I was slightly anxious about stretching the fabric when handling and stitching and made sure I didn’t pull the fabric when on the machine, and let it feed through naturally. I wondered if the side seams would be quite thick to sew as they consisted of 2 layered front pieces, the belt and the back piece but there was no problem and it sewed with ease.
The fabric is very forgiving to handling with no fraying nor creasing and is perfect for the dress I chose to make. 
I love the finished result and it is a dress that can be worn for many occasions and an ideal fabric to pack to take away on holiday. There is enough spandex to maintain its shape but also very forgiving and not clinging in the wrong places.  It is also a fairly quick pattern to make up, even using a traditional machine and double stitching the seams.
I will definitely sew with knits again in the future and plan to master the overlocker – this particular fabric is ideal for many patterns that require a stretch knit fabric & I’m hoping there is enough fabric left to make a basic vest or t shirt.
Thank you to Minerva Crafts for the beautiful fabric and to everyone for reading my review. 
Helen @ justsewhelen

Comments (2)

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Just Sew Helen said:

Thanks Sewanew - I love the fabric :-) · 29th Dec 2018 10:17pm

Sewanew said:

Hi, you have obviously taken a lot of care in making your dress and it looks really nice on you. Xx · 3rd Dec 2018 12:06am