I’ve wanted to sew a jersey dress for ages and it’s finally happened. Nervous at trying something new, I had no excuse when I got a new overlocker for my birthday. And I got the courage to to do it when this landed on my doorstep:
Wendy Mullin’s Sew U Home Stretch
Inspired by reading about this book on Did you make that and Scruffy Badger‘s blogs I decided to go for it, and I’d recommend it to anyone. Wendy explains in detail how to sew with jersey fabrics and gives alternative instructions for whichever type of machine you may be using. With patterns supplied, easy to follow instructions and details on how to alter them, this is a great book.
I started by following the dress pattern. I picked up some floral jersey at the market ages ago for £1.50 a meter, and knew it would be my practice piece. I’m glad I’d made this decision, because although I started to really like the fabric when sewing it, when I put it on I looked like a sausage, squeezed into a fabric tube. Not a good look!
I needed to change the skirt so it wasn’t so narrow. I looked at one of my favourite dresses and used the cut and spread technique I learnt at a Sew Over It class to make a new pattern.
Stage 1. Copy your skirt pattern piece and cut equally spaced perpendicular lines from the hem to the top of the piece.
Stage 2. Decide the width you want the skirt to be and draw this on another piece of paper. Spread the cut pattern pieces out along this line and tape them down.
Stage 3. Draw a line to match all these pieces up to form your new skirt hem line and trace the rest of the pattern piece.
Stage 4. Take off the cut up pattern and your new skirt piece is ready to use! Remember to do for skirt front and back and copy the other pattern markings.
I made my Christmas Day dress in just half a day on Christmas Eve using some crushed velvet I bought in New Fabric Shop in Walthamstow for £2 a metre. I love it!