I was lucky enough to test this lovely dress from Itch to Stitch. It is the Sirena dress and it is going to be one that I will wear often when the weather permits.
I made the version with the flounced sleeves, although I wasn’t sure I would like them
Bottom line? I adore them! I had to shop my stash for fabric and came up with this glorious blue linen for the dress, and found some apricot topstitching thread also in my stash, which then led me to find this lovely dupion silk left over from my apricot Bellini to line the flounce. I just love these two colours together. The pattern does come with sleeves that have a band at the bottom, and I am considering these for the cooler weather that is upon us.
I made the lined version of the dress and used this very luxurious feeling blue silk, also from the stash.
Kennis, the designer of the dress wanted us to use an exposed zipper, but after much scouring of Perth shops I could not find a single metal zip that wasn’t open ended. I had to use an invisible zip, and my dress protested by wrinkling the full length – gah.
In fact, I only had to look at this dress for it to behave as though I had slept in it! These photos were my second attempt at getting something halfway decent to show you, and of course, all my lipstick had worn off leaving me looking rather tired. Ah well!
I also love the fact that this dress has roomy pockets neatly inserted into the side seam. This is the first version of the pattern; the new version has a slightly lowered neckline, which I think would be better. Although the dress has a fair bit of top stitching, it is easy to sew. The instructions are extremely clear and well thought out. The pattern is a joy to make – everything aligns perfectly and I had no real head scratching moments. I dropped the waistline by 2cms, and when I make it again I shall drop and shorten the darts a smidgen, and I might also bring the waist in just a bit. One of the things that I love about this pattern is that it uses cup sizes. This means that I didn’t need to grade between sizes to get the dress to fit my waist and hips, I made the 4C which was pretty close to my measurements. The pattern also comes in a layered PDF, so much easier to trace off. I always mentally thank designers who give this option.
Details: fabric is blue linen bought for me by Mark in Sri Lanka a couple of years ago, with blue silk bought at the Fabric Store in Melbourne. The topstitching thread came from an op shop (I bought about 20 reels of all different colours), and the apricot silk dupion was also bought by Mark on the same trip to Sri Lanka. Shoes are Christian Louboutin.