Riddle Me This

For my next project I have 3 yards of this fabulous Atelier Brunette Tabby, a lovely lighter weight cotton woven, purchased from Finch Knitting + Sewing Studio originally to make a shirt dress. Sadly, the reality is that I’d likely never wear such a dress. All the pretty, shapely dresses all over the internet are so lovely, but frankly, just not me. Now, I still want to make a dress, but with certain requirements: sleeves, waistless (because I have no waistline), and hitting just below the knee (because they must not be seen). And it must have some interesting character, and must not be frumpy – not easy to accomplish when one is only 5’4″ on the best of days. Realizing that is a tall order (no pun intended), I’m turning to you, dear readers for some advice. At the moment, I’m waffling (oh waffles, I do love a waffle now and again, that could be problematic) between these patterns.

If you follow me, you might recall that I’ve joined the 2017 MakeNine project. None of these dresses is on my list, but that fabric is so gorgeous I just can’t wait! And I promise to work on another one of the list items next…..perhaps the Linden? Or the Morris Jacket? A bright, flowery blouse? Besides, surely I can swap out my project list items – it is my list after all, right?

Atelier Brunette Tabby

The following are my top three pattern choices: cocoon, trapeze, and swingy (?). Given the above requirements, what would you choose? And oh yes, if you’d like to further complicate matters, you could even offer up a different pattern if it would suit the fabric and the requirements! Yikes. Pattern art from the respective websites.

Style Arc – Adeline

Merchant & Mills – Trapeze

Grainline Studio – Farrow

So what’s the verdict everyone? I’m anxious to get sewing again.

A brief update on our household – the tiny bundle of strength that is my sweet mother is still hanging on(!), although she slips a little more each day. In the meantime, I begin outpatient physical therapy on my left knee this afternoon. Very soon I’ll be able to sit at my machine long enough to sew, and to hop up and down to ironing board, etc.

Soon I’ll join in as you …. Stitch On, Everyone!

21 thoughts on “Riddle Me This

  1. Hi! Glad to see your post and what lovely fabric! 😘😘 Is it a knit or woven (or did I miss that)? What’s the fibre content? Style Arc seems to be usually for knits, and I think the Farrow is wovens… but have to check. I’d go for the Farrow myself, but only because (as you know) I’ve got that, too, sitting on my to-do pile on the cutting table. (And might end up in my suitcase, too.) I guess I’d rate the M&M last, merely because I’ve read such namby-pamby things about fit from sewers who’ve tried some of their similarly-shaped patterns. Who & where I don’t remember, so can’t refer you – sorry. 😳 Hope all continues to going well and your afternoon will include time to view the eclipse – about 2.30 your time. xxx

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  2. I like all of them. Somebody has a “shirtwaist” dress just like the stylearc pattern, but with buttons down the front. Sorry I can’t say who, but it’s nice too. And, yea, hard to take a definite stand without knowing if this is woven or knit fabric. So which is it? 🙂

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  3. Nice to see you here – I’ve just returned from visiting my Mum who is also ailing but not complaining so I’m thinking of you and your own ‘tiny bundle of strength’.
    I couldn’t wear any of these dresses as they would make me look like a box on legs. However……
    I would definitely go for the Farrow because it appears (from the line drawings anyway) to have more shape than the others and should drape nicely with the fabric you have. The sleeves would be good at 3/4 length or even finishing an inch or two above the elbow might work.

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    • Hi Lynn! I’m sorry to hear about your mum, too. This is a sad business, isn’t it, watching them decline? I’m just so honored to be my mama’s caregiver, and so pleased we’ve been able to make her comfortable here at home for her last days.
      Now my dear, if you’d look like a box in these dresses I cannot imagine my own barrel body in one. But little waist-y dresses just won’t do. I’m also leaning toward the Farrow (at the moment) because of the lines. It needs a little interest at the neckline, but I love the seaming and swing! And I’m thinking the just-above-elbow sleeves should work.
      Now I have to commit and do it!!! Yikes.

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  4. I like the idea of the Arc dress, but the Farrow is probably more comfortable – giving easier walking room. I’m a strider, so that’s always important to me. LOL I also like the Collette shown here, and it can be made longer. I like mine just below the knee, too. This one has just a hint of Empire waist, and I liked that, as well. Best of luck choosing one!

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    • Oh that Moneta is pretty too, especially colors on this one, and the raised waistline would certainly be better for me (don’t believe I’ve seen one like it). Is it more suitable for a knit, though?


  5. I think I like the Farrow pattern best of the three.
    It’s so sad when parents start to fail. My mum is 83 and is starting to show her age. So sad. I wish you well caring for your mum, and also with your own therapy.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you, Kim. I’m very sorry to hear that your mum is heading into this, too, hope all goes well. Old age is certainly not for sissies! And my PT is going to be wonderful I think….she only hurts me a little, and I can walk downstairs properly after just one session. Hooray!

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  6. Hi Jen – you have just just described me perfectly! Except that I am only 5’2″ tall. I choose the cocoon style all the time and think they suit me best, although I also like something A-line as it flares out, giving the illusion of a waist. I have slim legs (below the knee!) and slim forearms, so knee length with three quarter length sleeves show off all my best bits. Good luck!!


  7. Beautiful fabric! I prefer the Style Arc, but that’s because the other two remind me of maternity dresses from the 1970s (probably unwarranted!). Whatever you decide, it will be wonderful for you to be back at your sewing machine! It’s always a thrill to return to something you love after an extended absence! I hope your mom is comfy; I know she is loved!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! Maternity dresses – not exactly the look I’m going for. But I guess anything without a waistline does have that vibe. Hmmm. Such a conundrum isn’t it. But I will prevail.
      Thank you for your kind words, she seems to be comfy and oh my, we do love her dearly!


  8. Have you decided, yet? I’d carefully evaluate the drape and if in doubt, line the hem to add weight for a nice drape on either the Farrow or the Trapeze. I think they are very similar. I’m not convinced that the cocoon shape looks good on those of us who are below 5’10”!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Below 5’10” – haha – that leaves me out by 5 inches (on a good day). I’m actually going with the Farrow and have been gifted some fabulous dotted fabric to make it up in. Should be onto it by next week! Fingers crossed.


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