Sew Over It 40s Wrap Dress

I have a new habit and you can tell me whether it is good or bad. When I get a new pattern and read the recommended fabrics and see something I am not particularly fond of – say, for example, the crepe or rayon suggested for use with this pattern – I just shrug my shoulders, screw up my nose and do whatever the hell I want. I’m a natural dissenter!

So, for this dress, I didn’t opt for the fluid and drapey fabrics that are suggested; instead, I went for the a crisp and structured cotton. I know rayon changed the clothing industry in the 1940s but stiff cottons were still a staple so I didn’t feel remotely guilty about using it for my version of the 1940s wrap dress.

As ever, I cannot fault the pattern. Sew Over It are wonderfully consistent in their sizing and their instructions are always super clear and easy to follow which always leads to a particularly pleasant sewing experience.

The dress itself has a couple of style variants – there are shorter and longer sleeves, as well as a couple of skirt lengths. I opted for the shorter in both as I’m thinking forward to the spring and summer and this floral – which was gifted by Minerva – is perfect for sunnier times. That’s not to say I won’t wear it now, layered over with some knitwear.

One problem I did encounter was with the sleeve pieces but you can read all about that in the Minerva Makers blog if you’re interested. You can find it here.

It’s one of those patterns that requires a bit of hand stitching, too – the entire bodice binding needs to be hand stitched (although, if you’re a rebel like me and opt for a sturdier, more forgiving fabric, you could get away with top stitching some of it) as does the inner waistband. If that wasn’t enough hand stitching, you have to sew in a couple of poppers as closures.  

It’s a very pretty pattern and I dare say I will revisit it some time. The one thing I would say is, the little pleats and gathers features are less obvious in the cotton that what they would be in a more fluid fabric but I’d say it’s a small price for me to pay to stick with a natural woven fibre!

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