November Garment of the Month: November Nights

Pattern Review: McCalls 6489 and #MMMPR!

It looks as though I am catching onto sewing my monthly garments along with the themes. For this month I picked out this very Autumnal/Winter fabric from my stash and paired it with McCalls 6489 (now OOP). It was also my first garment worn for Me Made Mondays for the rest of 2014.

Let's start with the fabric. I purchased this jersey in the Summer from A1 Fabrics on Goldhawk Road priced at £4.50 per metre. The thing I liked most at the time is how textured it is. The black bits are almost velvet-like in feel and the fabric is dotted with sparkles. The different textures did confuse my sewing machine a tad when it came to tension, but hey, it was worth it. 

I have had McCalls 6489 in my stash for a while, but finally got around to using it. It is not a hard pattern, although for some reason cowls always stump me. I am sure that this is nothing to do with the pattern, but just how my brain is tested when seeing 2D instructions for 3D item (please tell me that I am not the only person that this happens to!). 

I cut a 14 all over, but really I should have cut a 12 on the bodice and graded out to a 14 at the hips. I sewed the bodice with 1" seam allowances and re-cut a deeper armhole to compensate. I also wanted more of an A-line skirt so I graded out the skirt pieces. 

The shoulders feel a bit wide on me, so next time I will cut the back strap a bit shorter to it stops them from drooping off my shoulder. When I sewed the bodice to the skirt section and put in the elastic it hit me too low on the waist and looked terrible. I hacked them apart, removing approximately 2" off the bodice and 1" off the skirt. This means that dress finishes a bit shorter than originally drafted, but to be honest I probably would have shortened the dress to be this length anyway. I was just a tad stingy on hem allowance. 

I am on a learning curve with elasticated waist patterns as I have had this problem before and couple wadders to boot. Does anyone else find it hard to predict how and elasticated waist affects the fit? I expect that this is due to experience and will be something that I will be more aware of from the start of a sewing project. Here is a decent snap of the dress minus the cardi, but with me looking stoned. You can't win 'em all...

The fit issues were easily remedied and I do feel that I have a fab new seasonal dress to see me through those November nights. I love wearing knits in the winter, and although I wasn't particularly enthused by this dress to begin with I can definitely see it appearing frequently in the wardrobe rotation. I wore this dress to work and my sewing group today and I received some compliments even before people knew it was a DIY job, which warmed my heart. I think that this dress would be a great wardrobe staple in a black jersey too. 

You can see my Pattern Review here.

What handmade items are you wearing this Winter?

Happy Sewing!


  1. you did a fantastic job, I have a pattern that has a cowl neckline but still kinda scared it'd drape to my knees lol! Happy sewing!



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