Thursday, 17 July 2014

Blue Danni

I made another Danni!

June was the second annual Indie Pattern Month over at The Monthly Stitch, and the inaugural Indie Pattern Month (announced here, and blogged all over the place). While I'd disagree strongly with the sentiment that the only good pattern is an indie one (of course no one said that, it's just the impression I got from some very passionate pro-indie blog posts), there is undoubtedly much to love about indie pattern companies. Personally I love how they engage with, encourage and promote the people who sew their patterns, and I appreciate the different aesthetics and body types (I'm paraphrasing Mari here) they cater for.

Most of the bigger name indie pattern companies aren't really for me though. I'm waaay too old for cute or mini, I'm not short or particularly curvy, I don't exercise, I'm not a hipster and I'm not a beginner sewist.  I have a huge pattern stash ranging over many decades, so I've probably already got something similar to any straightforward pattern that gets released. Oh, and the Big 4 patterns already fit me pretty well when approached with a standardised set of adjustments.

Having said that, I'm as enamored of beautiful branding as the next sewist, and I really like the idea of supporting local companies. So this June, although you didn't see any indie blog posts from me, I was doing plenty of local indie sewing using StyleArc and Papercut patterns: Danni in stripes, my Denim Pleated Pants, and this Blue Danni:

The Danni Dolman dress is described on StyleArc's site as follows: "This Dolman sleeved dress features a slight boat neck, there are 4 tucks falling from the left side seam softly over the hip line making this dress easy to wear and such a simple dress to sew. Suitable for all seasons." 

That mural in the first photo is fun, but I know you couldn't really see the dress against the blue background. I've lightened these photos taken against a less exciting concrete backdrop to try to better show you the way the tucks look in the ponti fabric, and the way the dress flatters rather than flaunts in a ponti, but dark blue is hard to photograph.

I liked the look of my Danni in stripes, and jersey IS the recommended fabric for the pattern, but I don't feel confident wearing something that feels so clingy, so pretty much as soon as it was sewn, I started Danni #2, with a nice firm ponti di roma from the stash. I think this fabric is 2 or 3 years old, and bought at Lincraft before I knew much about the joys of fabric shopping (that's why it's such a sensible fabric). 

Switching to a ponti fabric, the dress loses the super cling factor; much more suitable for corporate life, and becomes warmer (yay! cosy!). However, when I sewed this up initially the ponti looked loose rather than drapey in the top, so I took the dress in from the waist up (side seams from the waist to the dolman sleeves around elbow level, also centre back seam from the waist up) to make the top more fitted to my curves. It clings to my tummy, but I do have a tummy! The dress was also lengthened a few centimetres (I'm about 5'8").

I think I showed you the pattern last time, but to save you flicking back here they are again:

Yes, I like this one, it's a keeper... 

Thanks for reading, and see you soon.

- Gabrielle x


  1. Sew Little Time17 July 2014 at 01:35

    nice wall! we bloggers love a good wall!

  2. great dress .. and post. I think you very nicely summed up how I feel too about indies.

  3. Catherine Daze17 July 2014 at 04:02

    It's very elegant in the blue ponti. Lovely.

  4. I agree about the Indies! Some are too retro, and too young and just not cut for my shape which is why I love Sewaholic. I have made a few Style Arc but struggle with the only one size issue. I love your new dress. Did you change the neckline or is that how it came out if the packet?

  5. Gorgeous dress. You nailed it. I agree with you too about indies. They have their place for sure and I use them alot but I also sew very happily from Big 4. Id love to try Style Arc but I range across three to four sizes from shoulders to hips as a full on pear shape so the single size puts me off. This dress is so lovely though.

  6. This is such a lovely dress! I love the dolman sleeves and the side twist.

  7. Love it - it's an incredibly flattering style on you!

  8. Lara (thornberry)17 July 2014 at 18:53

    Love the ponte Danni! Your adjustments have made it fit so beautifully. And yes, I agree with you that there sometimes does appear to be a sentiment of "the only good pattern is an indie one" and I have to admit that it gets up my nose a little bit! I have sewn many excellent indie patterns, some truly appalling ones, and very many excellent and appalling patterns from "the big 4". There are many of the indies that I'm not interested in at all for a myriad of reasons, but sometimes I feel as though I am being heretical if I say it. Have you seen the latest Vogue release? There are some superb patterns in it!

  9. Gabrielle Corbett17 July 2014 at 20:04

    We do, don't we :). I wish I had this kind of wall at home!

  10. What a lovely silhouette - and an awesome background! I do prefer seeing the StyleArc's on real people, this is lovely. - and I second Lara, there are some fabulous styles in the new Vogue release....

  11. This looks fabulous on it! So good and how amazing is that wall? You always get the best photos.

    With all patterns I think it's up to the individual to choose what they like. Some of my absolutely go to patterns are from Simplicity and I wear them over and over. If they look good and suit you then that's all that counts!

  12. This looks great! Super stylish :)

  13. Perfect winter dress, very smart!

  14. Yes it is definitely is a keeper!! This is so flattering too. Lovely!!! You and I share many of the same thoughts on patterns. :)

  15. It looks great. I wanted that pattern after I saw your striped one. Of course I am completely different shape and although I love Style Arc I do feel like I need a range of sizes too. I think too many indie patterns are either too similar, too simple, too basic and expensive in relation to the first three issues. I think there are a few great DESIGNS but most you (I) have something so similar that you wouldn't bother. I also think design is what I would be looking for and I just can't get excited about a button down shirt or track pants with a special name and a super special price. I am probably not their demographic! To each his own as they say!

  16. Gabrielle Corbett18 July 2014 at 22:34

    Thanks Debbie! I thought of you when I wrote the post - it's apparently heretical not to worship at the indies altar!

  17. Gabrielle Corbett18 July 2014 at 22:38

    Thanks Catherine! BTW I love your post on the new Vogues - I wasn't finding them that exciting at first glance but the details and designer references you highlighted have sold me :)

  18. Gabrielle Corbett18 July 2014 at 23:08

    Thank you! Oh yes, and there is obviously a huge market for the indies. I get frustrated by all the hype though!

    The single size thing with StyleArc patterns is difficult - I've heard anecdotes about them helping customers grade patterns up though, so it might be worth emailing them if there's a pattern you really love but that you need across a few sizes.

  19. Gabrielle Corbett18 July 2014 at 23:11

    Thank you Kathryn! I'm loving dolman sleeves lately - I think they create the impression of a bit more volume up top ;).

  20. Gabrielle Corbett18 July 2014 at 23:12

    Thank you Mel, yes it is flattering - makes me look in much better shape than I am, lol ;)

  21. Gabrielle Corbett18 July 2014 at 23:22

    Thanks Lara! Yes, my nose too :). It just seems crazy to believe that ANY pattern company would design perfect patterns every time - especially when some of those companies might not have much pattern drafting training! I guess I'm an old grump, but I am often reminded of the emporer's new clothes. Anyway, moving right along before I start getting hate mail... Yes, the latest Vogue release looks great - some terrific deigns and details in there!

  22. You've done a great job with Danni. It suits you to a tee.
    I have my go-to patterns - they're a mix of brands from the big 4 to freebies and my self drafted attempts. So I've plenty of patterns to suit work, weekends and family get-together clothes.
    You're dress is a keeper.


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...