This is my Colette Hazel dress made out of a lovely yellow and blue African wax cotton. I bought this cotton when I was in Paris in January, and immediately fell in love with it. I can't remember how much it was - maybe about 20 euros for 3 metres. I had a vague idea when I bought it that it would make a cute sundress come summer.
It sat around for a bit while I debated what it should become, then May came along and I was one of the winners of the Sew Dolly Clackett sew along. My prize was my choice of a Colette pattern. I remembered some lovely Hazels I'd seem made by others and my decision was made! Plus, I'm just in time for Heather's Summer Sundress Sew Along - woohoo!
I didn't do a muslin. Naughty I know, but I figured I'd just try and solve any fitting errors along the way. Using the sizing chart as a guide, I cut a size 2 in the bust, grading to an 8 at the waist and hips. Just before inserting the zip I tried it on and decided I could do with a slight bit more ease all round, so I inserted the zip with just 0.5cm seam allowance. Once I'd inserted it I tried it on again and decided that wasn't quite enough ease at the upper chest, so took out the side seams a little. Clearly a litlle bigger in the upper chest than I thought? Ooooooops.
I decided I wanted to have the bodice sitting quite high on my torso, and therefore removed a whopping 13cm when fitting the straps. I'm really happy with their length but it does now mean I have crazy high bust darts! They're definitely way higher than they should be. It doesn't bother me too much with this version as they're not very visible and really don't affect the bodice shape too much, but if I make Hazel again it's something I'll rectify.
I did my best with a bit of pattern matching, which I think has worked out really well. It would have been tricky to make sure the leaves merged right into each other at the sides, but the rows are at least continuous.
Instead of using the same fabric for the pockets, because it is fairly stiff, I used some lovely soft pink cotton from an old bedsheet. They make me feel happy with their little pop of pink.
The wax cotton was such a delight to sew with; it doesn't shift around, and its nicely rough enough that the two sides stay together when running it through the machine.
To finish my seams I did a mixture of overlocking and pinking. Nice and simple.
This dress really was a delight to sew, and I'm so pleased with it - it's lovely and bright, and just a little bit different. I really hope the sun comes back out so I can wear it out and about! I was properly cold today in bare legs, which made me sad - surely our British summer isn't over already??!
See you all soon!