It took me a while to decide what I wanted to make with this lovely 4 way stretch knit when it arrived from Minerva. I chose this Lady McElroy Viscose Jersey because of the dramatic print and the wonderful basics colour combination. When it arrived I was really pleased to see how soft it was and that it was a lighter weight knit that had some drape to it.
With these qualities in mind I started to look for a pattern for a dress that was simple and elegant. The print itself needed to be the focal point of the dress and the lines of the pattern needed to be simple so that the pattern would be easier to match and the garment wouldn't look too busy because of multiple directions of chevron. I chose a simple raglan sleeve dress, the Delores Tunic Dress from Craft World that I had downloaded for free when I first started sewing. In order to download this particular pattern now you need to be a member of Craft World so I have included a link to a very similar dress by Butterick here and a more dramatic sleeve dress pattern from Vogue here.
The fabric is 96% Viscose and 4% Spandex which makes it very comfortable to wear. At 145 cm in width I was easily able to accommodate the large bat wing pattern piece without having to cut the dress out in single layers. The fabric can be a bit slippery because it is a viscose so just make sure to use lots of quilters clips. I find these clips help to maintain the chevron stripe match and they stay secure and don't fall out of a thinner knit fabric like pins tend to do as you sew.
In laying out the fabric I made sure to pattern match the chevron stripes along the side seams. By doing so, the pattern under the bat wing sleeves blended nicely together as well even though a perfect pattern match was not possible. I self drafted a wide cuff for this dress to add a more sophisticated finish to the sleeves and a small direction change in the chevron stripe that added detail but wasn't too busy.
As the chevron pattern is bold and dramatic and the sleeves are quite full, I kept the dress short so as as not to be too overwhelming. The weight of the fabric makes it a perfect transition dress from late summer into fall and because it is not a heavy weight fabric it works well as a layering piece as well. The boatneck neckline will allow for the addition of a scarf or a thin turtleneck to be layered underneath as well. If you are wearing the dress with tights and boots in the winter months you will need to wear a slip underneath as the fabric will be too clingy over tights, but the lighter weight of the fabric will ensure that it won't be too hot.
All in all I am really pleased with how this dress turned out. The fabric makes the dress an I highly recommend using this Lady McElroy Chevron Print for dresses, tunics or a knit sweater. The drape and drama are a wonderful combination and no matter what you choose to make with it, it will add class and style to your wardrobe.
After all.... The is Sew Much To Design!