Top of my sewing plans for 2013 was to sew more knit dresses to wear during the colder months here in the UK. The reason was partly to keep my Peony-esque dress company and partly to prevent it from falling apart from overuse. I have two Maria Denmark knit dress patterns that were perfect candidates, and as I'd never used her patterns before, I went with the more simple of the two - the 2007 Kjole raglan sleeved dress.
Onion is the name of the company but I'm not sure what a Snitmonster is, any ideas?
I made the basic, long-armed version, without the bias panel at the bottom and it was pretty simple to put together: front piece, back piece, sleeves, neck binding. It was my first time sewing raglan sleeves but they were easy once I'd figured out how they fitted to the front and back pieces.The actual dress could hardly have taken more than half an hour to sew up. Add another half hour for adding the neckline binding and hemming and you have a dress in an hour. Hoorah, exactly what I was after.
You can see the raglan sleeves and bust darts in this photo
I used a £3.50 a metre turquoise sweater knit fabric from the Goldhawk Road that actually looks like it's knitted. I got carried away and bought 3m but barely used half of it to make this dress. I'm quite tempted to make a knit top with the rest and pretend I knitted it… The fabric is almost certainly a polyester blend (I've heard some suspicious crackling going on) so I'm not expecting it to keep its shape and look good for years, but if it lasts this year I'll be happy as I intend to get some serious wear out of it.
I made a size 40, which is a size larger than I'd choose in a woven fabric, but I was worried about unsightly bulges showing through as the dress is a straight up and down style. It was a bit too big though, and not very flattering. After mulling the problem over for a whole minute, I simply sliced off about 1cm from each side and arm seam. The difference was dramatic, the dress was now fitted and about a trillion times more flattering. The moral of the story: sew the size that corresponds with your measurements instead of trying to be clever.
If you're looking for a simple pattern that's specifically drafted for knit fabrics, then this may well be it. The pattern that arrived in the post is in Danish, but an English translation of the instructions was emailed to me as soon as I'd purchased the pattern. And the finished dress is SSSOOO cosy, it makes me want to make a cushion nest on the sofa and eat crumpets. Which is exactly what I'm going to do. Happy Wednesday everybody. x