Hello all! This months Minerva project is all about the Gingham Fabric. I originally planned for it to be a shirt but made a last minute decision to turn the fabric into a dress instead. I feel like I haven't made a dress in ages!

This dress turned out into what I lovingly call my 'Japanese pattern book dress'. The silhouette is very unfitted and the skirt length is decidedly long. I used my front bodice block for the front and back of the bodice and rectangles for the skirt. I left the darts unsewn to give it some extra width at the waist. Let's just say that there is a lot of room for chocolate log in there.

I thought that this would be a fairly quick make, but I charged ahead with construction before thinking through all of the steps. The original plan was the line the bodice (I did this with some Calico Fabric which I had lying around so I could have the maximum skirt length). I would machine the armholes, neckline and the centre back seam and the only hand sewing would be attaching the bottom of the lining to the waist seam. However, this method requires the side seams to be unsewn and as I'd charged ahead and sewn the all of the side seams this plan had to be scrapped.

So, instead I machined the lining to the outer up the CB line, across the neckline and down the CB line on the other side, right sides together. Oh and I added 2cm to the centre back pieces to allow for crossover for buttons. I then understitched it all, clipped the corners, turned it out and pressed. The armholes I had to clip and turn over 1cm for the outer and 1.2cm for the lining and tacked. Then I whip-stitched the 2 layers together.

The buttonholes were a bit of a disaster because I can never quite remember the settings and the manual for my machine is at home. I ended up free-hand zigzagging them which although functional score zero points for attractiveness.

I can't quite decide what I think of this dress, but it's great for layering under a turtleneck now and will be great on its own for summer.

Thanks for reading, to Bethan for pictures and to Minerva for providing the supplies for this project!

Lauren xx