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Nina Lee Mayfair Dress

When I was offered the opportunity to make a garment using this incredible Lady McElroy Fabric I leapt at the chance. Yes, you’ve guessed it – a large floral on a dark background and I was sold. This fabric particularly stood out to me because of the metallic detail. When it arrived and I gave it its initial launder, I was pleased to see the gold was excellent quality; there was no danger of it diminishing in the wash. As always, I thought I would probably make a dress with this fabric, and having seen a couple of beautiful versions recently I settled on a Nina Lee Mayfair DressI cut out the straight size 12 and didn’t make any modifications. I sewed some of the seams on my overlocker and the majority of the dress on my regular machine. This is a really lovely pattern that I will definitely be making more of, but I do admit to getting myself in a bit of a pickle over the burrito method as a way of finishing the neckline. Once I’d sought reassurance from Nat over at Thread and Bobbins, I followed the steps and it all turned out fine – so much so I wasn’t quite sure why I had been confused by it! I’m intrigued as to whether it will puzzle me anew next time! 

I chose to make the view with the three quarter sleeves, as I thought the fabric was quite wintery or autumnal, and the three quarter length sleeves mean you don’t HAVE to wear a cardigan as it starts to turn cooler. I actually really like how the sleeve length works with the dress. I also think, happily, that the style of the dress combined with the fabric gives a real retro/vintage feel that I like very much. I am surprised by how put together I feel wearing this dress, and again, I’m interested to see how making it in a different fabric with shorter sleeves is likely to lead to an entirely different vibe. 

I was a bit concerned that the neckline may turn out a bit low, particularly because I wear the majority of my makes to work – and I am a primary school teacher. I think it’s ultimately turned out ok, and I know I could always pop a little pin in or wear a camisole underneath for additional modesty. 

Overall I absolutely LOVE this dress! I think it is truly one of my favourite makes to date. I think the pattern has some beautiful and flattering details and I think the fabric is just gorgeous. I think you could happily wear this dress at Christmas, on a warm summer’s evening or with tights boots for a stroll through the woods. The jersey behaved extremely well throughout the sewing process and yet again reinforced my love for all things Lady McElroy. I wanted to try and get photos with the haystacks so drove around Derbyshire with my mum until we found the perfect field. I did attempt to climb on to one of the haystacks but couldn’t quite manage it!

Thank you for reading and please catch up with more of my makes over on Instagram @ccmercer

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