Remnants – my case ‘Your Honour’

Why are remnant fabrics my weakness? Maybe it’s because they’re a challenge. Finding a pattern to suit the amount of fabric I’ve found is a challenge.

Vogue 8815 test using Cue remnants from Pitt Trading

Do remnant fabrics ignite my passion for puzzle solving? Should I see a shrink about trawling for fabric especially when the sign on the basket says ‘designer remnants’?

Original Charlie Brown remnant fabric from Pitt Trading

The case in my defence remains, remnants are a low risk purchase to test a future pattern. Making a pattern fit usually means testing it out. Using calico to test a pattern for knit fabric or stretch wovens doesn’t work.

This Charlie Brown abstract knit looked too big for a shortie like me, but I tried to used the main print where it made sense. I bought this fabric at Pitt Trading a few years ago.

See where the longest part of the print is? I’ve used New Look 6149 for this top.

And I’ve kept the front ‘clean’ at the waist. I love my Minerva black jeans.

Below is the second knit remnant I bought ages ago at Pitt Trading. Both prints were from Charlie Brown. The main buying guide I used was to choose strong colours for possible wearable toiles and at the time of purchase, I hadn’t made the purple skinny jeans below.

Test #1: This top above was my attempt at recreating a RTW top. The shaping didn’t come out as planned. The neckline gaped so I added knit lace so the neckline and armholes sat properly. This print gave me a practice at matching the print at the side seam and balancing it on me.
Test 2: New Look 6940 was tested using this fabric. Again, testing it with this fabric confirmed the fit and I got to play with print placement.

And the Bomber jacket above was made using an Ikea remnant. This jacket is a keeper.

Test 3: I used this remnant again to test the bodice for the PR Winter dress. I wasn’t sure about the neckline or shoulder fit. I was also curious about the waistline.  

So once I put this top together, I had just enough fabric left to put a band at the base of the top.

I rest my case ‘Your Honour’. 

Have a lovely Easter break everyone.

Winter Street Dress

Pattern Review’s Winter Street dress is simple to make and very adaptable.
Pitt Trading graciously provided me with the fabrics and notions for this new work dress.


Here’s the list of pattern testers showcasing the Winter Street dress.

cleverthinking99.com 4/4/2014 (that’s me)
juliabobbin.com 4/15/2014


Pattern testing is fun as you get to see how the pattern designer quickly adjusts their pattern when we provide our feedback. And it’s lovely to work with such creative people. This is very motivating to me. 

Do have a look at how each sewer has used this pattern to show their own style.

Pitt Trading: Black tricot lining, elastic, brown ponte and a darker brown soft knit with matching thread

And when Pitt Trading were more than happy to provide me with their fabrics, I was floored. And very grateful. I’ve shopped at Pitt Trading for a very, very long time. So I’m pleased we could work together on this dress.

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Pattern Description:
Winter Street Dress is an easy to sew knit dress with a waist seam and a narrow pleated skirt. The narrow skirt with inverted box pleats has just the right amount of ease where you need it, resulting in a very comfortable and cute tulip shape. 

The bodice is drafted for a “C” cup. There is a choice of elbow length flounce sleeves or a full length sleeve. You can even make it without sleeves. The skirt is designed to fall above the knee for a more trendy look but it is super easy to lengthen or shorten it.

This time I got the hem length right. Remember how my first Summer Street Dress grew its hem overnight?

Pattern Sizing:
XS – 4XL I made the medium.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
Yes it did and there are some pretty variations to make. The hardest part is choosing the variation you want ‘the most’. I tried to stick to my plan as I sewed.

See the black tricot lining on the inside?

Were the instructions easy to follow?
They were easy to follow.
I included a tricot lining on the advice of Sylvia at Pitt Trading. I’ve been adding linings to ponte dresses since then so the dress keeps its shape over time.
It also helps the fabric to glide over you and not stick to you.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
This is clever pattern that allows you to mix stable and soft knit fabrics.
The pleating on the skirt above the tummy eliminates fullness that gathers create. That’s a win in my books.
I’ve extended the pleats down the skirt for a flatter look.

The ruffle sleeve (Deepika’s version) makes this a more feminine dress that I’ll use is another version.

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The scoop neckline isn’t what I usually wear so I’ll be creating different necklines on future versions.

Fabric Used:
I’ve used a ponte knit for the bodice and sleeve. Then the dress skirt and bindings are made of a softer knit. 


Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I did a roll shoulder adjustment.
The sleeves were sized to full arm length but I tend to push my sleeves up during the day.

Once I’d basted the side seams, I took the waist in a bit more and took more in at the centre back seam.

Here’s the back bodice pattern with a few modifications for a bit more shape.

I added shape at the centre back seam (so it’s not cut on the fold) so I could make the back follow my curves better.

Checking the wall for this weekend’s cleaning duties.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Yes. I experimented with a soft cowl neckline in the softer knit and it was very pretty. So I would recommend this dress if you have knit fabrics in your stash and you need warmer dresses for cooler weather.

Kicking back

I’ll also try a v-neck version. This is also a good basic knit dress for beginners to achieve a successful dress.

‘Action girl’ pose
I really should stop watching Marvel comic movies.
Waiting for the Sydney’s humidity to ease up so I can wear this dress.
PS. It took me ages to be brave enough to wear these boots after I bought them. And now I don’t know why I waited so long.

* Pattern Review images used with their permission.