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Red Crepe Tea Dress by Carly

Hello! I'm super happy to be back on the Minerva Crafts blog today testing THE most amazing fabric that I've fallen head over heels in love with. Read on to hear all about my new love affair with this perfect fabric...

If you are anything like me, you like to keep your fabric choices quite safe. By safe, I mean you stick to fabrics that are relitively easy to work with and easy to wear. Fabrics such as Linen, Denim, Cotton...stable fabrics that aren't prone to slipping and moving around too much as you sew. Instead of sewing on the wild side, I like to err on the side of caution! I usually like my makes to be quick, simple and straight forward. I don't really stop to pin the seams and using a forgiving and easy to use fabric like those mentioned above, means I can get away with battling on through as quickly as possible.

I had to get totally out of my comfort zone for this make. The fabric I had the pleasure of reviewing this time round is a Luxury Crepe Fabric. I haven't worked with crepe that much before, and when I have I've stuck to a pretty simple pattern with easy construction. Kind of cheating really! So although I've had some limited experience with crepe, I've never actually worked with a triple crepe before. Triple crepe is a completley different kettle of fish! It's weightier than your usual crepes, and has lots of body and drape. It's not too thin or slippery, making it actually quite dreamy to sew with!

I definitley have a gap in my me-made wardrobe for reds. I usually sew with neautrals and in an attempt to add some fire to my wardrobe, I decided to go for the claret colourway of this delicious triple crepe fabric. Boy am I glad I did - that colour though! It's deep and rich and everything I could ever want a red fabric to be.

Ever since seeing the red sample of the Sew House Seven Tea House Dress Pattern, I knew I needed to make a similar one. The dress pattern itself is pretty straight forward to make, eventhough it does seem a little daunting at first. There's quite a few pattern peices and some of the construction methods were new to me, but it came together really well without any hiccups. I went with View B - the knee length version with a wrap around tie belt.

The fabric was lovely to work with. The edges didn't fray which is great if you don't have an overlocker to finish off the seam edges. Pinking shears or a simple zig-zag stitch would do the job nicely, making this a great entry into working with slightly more slippery fabrics, for a beginner. 

A worry when using a crepe fabric is that it doesn't always press too well. Usually you need to keep the heat low as to not burn it meaning that it can be a challenge to press any wringles out. But this crepe took a press at a high heat really well, smoothing out any wrinkles perfectly making a nice crisp finish. I had to use very thin and sharp dressmaking pins when pinning to avoid any pulled threads or holes in this fabric, but that wasn't an issue. 

I also made sure I used a new needle on my sewing machine, as an older blunted needle could possible cause pulls int he fabric as you sew. The fabric is super drapey but has lots of body too. It feels so soft and silky against your skin and has a lovely soft, almost sandwashed feel to the face. It feels and looks like a really expensive cloth, but at a really accessible price point.

I really love this fabric. Like, really really love it. I think this fabric would make a really amazing shirtdress. Floaty enough to not look bulky or stiff, but it has anough weight to handle the buttons and button holes well enough. The great thing is, this fabric comes in such a wide variety of colours! So many rich, deep, jewel tones are catching my eye, I'm having to stop myself snapping up a couple of metres of each colour!

To wrap this review up, without gushing too much, I'm so happy with this make! I feel like I've learned some new skills for working with a slightly trickier fabric than usual. I've plugged a hole in my me-made wardrobe with a lovely red tone, and I've now got a fancy red dress thats a joy to wear. Winner!

Carly @ Lucky Sew and Sew

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