Thursday, August 4, 2016

Panel Prints for End of Summer Sewing

Burda Style #115, May 2016
With one more month of summer fashion, I decided to sew a gorgeous panel print rayon/lycra fabric from Mood. I purchased two panels which is approximately two yards of 60" fabric. Key to successful pattern placement is the fact that the fabric is 4-way stretch.
The garment style is loose and unfitted, not at all my usual choice. The fabric print dictated a style with few seams to break up the interesting, colorful print.
Dress Back has less of the print
The 2016-17 Marfy pattern collection shows many dresses and tops with this sleeve style (referred to as butterfly, bat-wing, dolman, large armhole etc.). The lower armhole is almost at the waist. The garment back overlaps the garment front at the shoulder/neckline seam.
Here is an image of the uncut 2-panel fabric yardage:
The 4-way stretch enabled me to lay the pattern pieces perpendicular to the selvage which I wouldn't normally do. Stretch was almost equal in both directions. In the photo below, the Dress Back is to the left, the Dress Front is to the right. I added seams at Center Back and Center Front to facilitate pattern placement.
Do I love the dress? Not really, to tell you the truth. I absolutely love the fabric, the garment is highly wearable, and the fit is flattering. I prefer more tailored garments and I can't get used to the sleeve style. I thought the print panel was so interesting that I made it the focus of the garment. From this experience, I learned to maintain a more tailored silhouette, even with a knit, and to use less of a print no matter how pretty. The outfit below is much more to my liking:
Louis Vuitton Fall 2016, Look 43
The top features a lovely print but in a scale that I am more comfortable with, and the sleeves are a proportion I like. You can view the collection at: Look #43

A fellow blogger made very fun harem pants from the same panel print and I think she looks beautiful in them even though she too is unhappy with the project results (
  I viewed the Top 10 Designer Shows this morning at While I did not fall in love with many outfits, I saw ways to update my use of color and pattern. I will check out the couture collections over the weekend and hopefully come up with an exciting project to sew.


  1. What beautiful fabric Ann.

    I am sure you look beautiful in the dress, but I do understand your feelings about less tailored/structured clothing.

    This summer I decided to stray away from my normal dress style, making Vogue 1482 and also working in a patterned fabric, when I normally prefer plain cloth. Everyone compliments me on the dress, but I cannot say I feel comfortable in the relaxed style! I too am now working on a plain fabric, fitted dress.

    Thank you for returning to blogging, I have so missed you and your beautiful work.

    1. I guess experimenting and going outside one's comfort zone is a worthwhile learning experience even when the results are not what we expected. I tell this to my young students regularly! Happy I made the dress and I will probably cut it down to a fitted t-shirt next spring!.

  2. Replies
    1. Thanks for making me feel better about the design!

  3. I LOVE the way you used this print! It's gorgeous! Hopefully this dress grows on you a little bit!

  4. Thank you for the encouragement--I am trying to open my mind!