Tag Archives: pastille dress

Sew Colette 2.0 – Peony Franken AKA Pastilleony

Happy Halloween!!!

Just a reminder this is your last day to enter my giveaway – I’m doing the draw tomorrow 🙂

October’s sewalong item is the Colette Peony dress. I wanted to participate but I was really bogged down with other projects so I did something a little different 😉

Back in May, as part of the Sew Colette sewalong, I made my first fitted dress; Pastille. I did a pretty good job, too, all things considered. I did my first FBA, my first horizontal pleats, and a not too bad job on one of my first zippers even 🙂

However, when all was said & done I had some serious back neck gape which meant I only wore it once. Since then I’ve also lost some weight, and the dress didn’t fit quite as well anyway, but I figured why waste a perfectly good skirt? Skirts are relatively easy to take in, plus I still had some of the same fabric so I figured I could make the Peony bodice, adjust the darts on the skirt to make the thing smaller, then just Franken the two together, right?

Well it turned out ok but it was a lot more work than I anticipated! lol. Aside from fitting woes described in my earlier post, I probably should have taken the skirt apart at the sides & resized it that way instead because I didn’t realize how much I needed to take in, and now I have giant bum darts lol. Also the back isn’t fitting as smoothly as I’d like, and the neck still stands out from my body a bit – *sigh* I’m still chasing that elusive great fit, I guess 🙂

I also got a tad confused making the belt because I hadn’t initially cut enough pieces, plus the instructions baffled me lol. Luckily some kind soul on the Colette forums had explained it for someone else who had a similar issue 🙂

So I’m pleased to have salvaged a dress that otherwise would have gone unworn, and without further ado, I present to you my first Frankenpattern – Pastilleony!!



Sew Colette: Pastille Dress Final

After a cat stealth attack on my pattern, four bodice muslins (with two sets of adjustments each, so eight in total!!!), some self realization, a lot of hair pulling – or more accurately – thread ripping… a few curse words, a ton of frustration and moments where I thought I’d never get it right…. I finally managed to fit my very first sheath dress, and I tell you this: it was all worth it, every little bit.

This dress cost me a month of my time, at an average of about 4-6 hrs a week, and about $35 in supplies (not including the book). It’s the most time, but definitely not the most money, I’ve ever spent on one garment. Despite the fact the fit is not perfect (I had to come to terms with that or it’d never have gotten done) I felt good in it, cause it’s likely one of the best fitting garments I’ve ever worn. I could never buy a dress that fit me this well…. ever.

I had come to terms with the possibility that the dress may not be wearable, due to my inexperience, because final piece aside, I learned a TON from this project. I learned:

  • my body shape (thank you, croquis)
  • that a full bust adjustment is a MUST for me, and that I’ve been buying pattern sizes at least four sizes too big as a result, and that is why nothing I make ever fits LOL
  • how to do an FBA, and other pattern adjustments on paper
  • never to install another facing ever again without understitching

These are the final adjustments I made on my pattern (there were many previous ones but these are the ones that stuck):

  • 1/2″ FBA on the pattern piece so 1″ total (it would be 3/4″ or 1.5″ for the Big 4, but Colette drafts for a C, so it’s less)
  • took 1″ off front at shoulder seam and 3/4″ off back
  • lengthened bust darts on bodice
  • graded between two sizes for the skirt
  • shortened skirt by 2″ (I’m 5’9″ but for some reason, Colette patterns run long on me)

It is by no means perfect. I have some wrinkles in the back and my armhole facings are awaiting a revamp but for a first go at fitting, it works, and it felt pretty good to actually wear something I made, out on a lovely date with my man 🙂



Sew Colette: Pastille

Well once again I had to ask my UFO to take a raincheque, pack up and clear out to make room for my sewing table’s newest tenant, the Pastille dress I’m doing for the Sew Colette sewalong 🙂

As i am three different sizes, from bust to waist to hip, I traced the pattern pieces, grading sizes like I did with the Meringue. The skirt part was easy, but the bodice was a little trickier. I ended up starting the grade at the bottom of the bust dart, then marking that spot on the back bodice piece using the lengthen/shorten line as reference.

We’ll see how that goes. If it’s a total fail, I’ll trace a straight size for the bodice and do a pivot adjustment. LOL I almost sound like I know what I’m talking about right? In reality I’m totally guessing and will probably end up doing 26 muslins lol.

I’m excited nevertheless – I know I’m gonna learn a TON doing this and maybe even get a cute wearable dress in the bargain! ^__^

On a side note, why oh WHYYYYY do cats always know when you have delicate pattern tissue or expensive fabric on your table??? I swear mine only go up there when there’s something I’d particularly like them to avoid on it 😛

The crime (post surgery):


the culprit: