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Polly; A Stylish Take on Patchwork

This is Polly, the perfect summer sundress that is a stylish modern take on patchwork.

Fibre Mood designed this pattern with your creativity in mind. Polly is a great pattern for using up your extra fabrics in a creative way. The combination options are endless and it is so much fun planning how to piece this pattern together.

For my Polly I selected three coordinating fabrics that are all within the same colour hues. They all incorporate more muted colours and are based in the blush pink colour spectrum. I wanted to add a bit of glam to my Polly so my accent fabric is a polished sating. In order for the dress to have a layered patchwork effect, but still feel pulled together I repeated fabrics in different elements of the dress balancing the colours and fabrics at the top and the bottom of the dress's design. I choose the multi-coloured fabric as the bodice of the dress as I was limited by the size of my left over piece. I felt it was a good feature fabric and I used it as a jumping off point for my other fabric selections. The tiers of the dress blend nicely with the bodice as they feature the two colours of the bodice pattern.

I love the way the rust satin adds glam and allure to the dress which is why I chose to feature it in the largest section of the skirt. To tie the dress together I created the bias binding for the shoulder straps and the neckline from this rust satin as well. This is a more sturdy fabric which also gives the straps some structure as the tiers of the dress can get quite heavy and using a lighter weight bias may have eventually stretched the straps. I love the shine that it adds to the dress.

Another way that I tied the patchwork of the dress together was to use the bodice fabric as a ribbon hemline tying in the same fabric at the top and bottom like fabric bookends. To create this hemline I cut a 4" strip of fabric, ironing in in half wrong sides together. I measured the circumference of the bottom tier and made the strip the same length. I sewed the short ends together then overlocked the the two edges of the strip to hold them together. I pinned the strip to the bottom of the final tier and sewing them together with a 1/4" seam allowance. I made sure to press the seam allowance up into the tier and voila... I had a cute accent ribbon hemline. Apart from having a fun hemline accent, using this technique also meant that I did not have to machine stitch a hemline on the satin which would have added a stitching detail that I didn't want. If you would like to learn more about the ins and outs of patchwork and Polly check out the Fibre Mood blog article.

For my Polly I wanted more of a drop waist so I added 6" to the length of the bodice. I sized the entire dress down by one size as the pattern is very roomy, almost oversized. I wanted the dress to have volume but definitely didn't need the amount of room offered by basing my size on the bustline measurements. I looked at the finished garment measurements and based my size choices on that. As I am 6 feet tall by adding 6" to the bodice I did not have to lengthen either of the tiers in order to have a maxi length dress which made laying and cutting out the pattern pieces for the tiers a lot easier.

If you are going to sew Polly you MUST be a fan of gathering and have patience to do it well. Except for the side seams, every piece that you will sew together is gathered, including the front and back necklines. The instructions in the pattern are very clear and take you through the best way to attach the bias binding to a gathered neckline. Just remember to make sure your gathering is even and use lots of pins to secure everything in place. The extra time that you take pinning will pay off in the end. The tiers also take time to gather and sew together. One strategy I use for even gathers is to match the side seams then the front and back first. Then working on one quarter at a time pin the middle and quarter marks of each section, then finally add additional pins to secure everything in place so you can manipulate the other sections. It is time consuming and uses a heck of a lot of pins but as you can see the end result is evenly space gathers.

My rendition of Polly was designed as a fun, glamourous sundress. I can dress it up with accessories and a higher heeled sandal or wear it with a jean jacket and sneakers. The versatility of a pattern like this guarantees that this dress can be styled in multiple ways and used for many different occasions.

After all... There is Sew Much To Design.

Happy Sundress Sewing,

Lou Sheffer

We designed this pattern with your creativity in mind; Polly is your chance to let your imagination run wild for a make that’s 100% you! It’s up to you to find the perfect combinations! It kind of feels like a game... Fun, right?

Scroll down to see and be inspired by what other sewistas in the community have made with the Polly pattern!

Fancy discovering the ins and outs of our new pattern and patchwork? Read all about it in our blog article.

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