A Winter Wilder
Posted on Friday the 1st November 2019 by The Unfinished Seamstress
This dress is so special to me. I brought this out of my sewing room thinking, ‘I can make truly beautiful things’.
Working with this beautiful Viscose Dobby fabric by Lady McElroy
(dobby simply refers to the woven texture: if you look closely, you can see a subtle diamond pattern in the weave) was not without certain challenges, but it’s beyond worth it. It’s very lightweight and quite slippery. Which is to say, be on your very best behaviour when cutting. I was as careful as I get, and still some of my pattern pieces ended up slightly wonky. I think this is quite a forgiving pattern, but it’s something to be aware of. I prefer to use a rotary cutter and large self-healing cutting mat, but the most important thing is go slowly and carefully. I’ve also heard of people using spray starch (like for ironing) to temporarily stabilise slippy fabrics for cutting, but I can’t say I’ve tried it myself.
However, once the cutting was done, this project was a dream to sew. The edges of the fabric are quite delicate (again, this is high end stuff - easy does it), but this pattern is a great match, and an easy sew, so I didn’t have any problems. All my raw edges are overlocked here, but a French seam would be an excellent choice for this fabric as well, especially for lingerie. It gathers easily, and drapes beautifully - perfect for this pattern. I used a new sharps needle
just in case, but I should say that I didn’t have any problems with snagging.
When the Wilder Gown by Friday Pattern Company
first came out, I knew I was a goner. I loved every single version anyone posted, anywhere, in any fabric. I was also feeling a little over assembling massive PDF patterns, so I decided to wait until the paper patterns came out in the UK. I do love a PDF, but it is so nice to skip a step sometimes. Also the paper pattern comes in a gorgeous envelope. It has great instructions, and genuinely helpful cutting layouts. I almost never follow the recommended cutting layouts, and almost always save fabric, but this one worked out *exactly* as recommended!
It’s a really simple sew - honestly - but the high neckline and long skirt length give it a drama that you seldom get from beginner-level patterns. It’s probably my favourite pattern release of 2019, and I can see myself making other versions. The shorter dress length is cute, the blouse is amazing, and I’d love another long one just like this but in a solid pastel colour like some modern riff on a ’70’s bridesmaid. I want to experiment with more translucent fabrics with it, and I want a plain black one. I may never get to all my ideas, but the point is, I love this pattern.
And this pattern, with this fabric, is basically all my late autumn dreams come true! Big thanks to my friends at Minerva for sponsoring my sewing adventures, and to you for reading them.