I couldn’t wait to get my hands on the latest dress release from Sew Over It – The Elsie dress. I love a full skirted 50’s style and the big pleats on the skirt had me swooning!
The fabric recommendations call for stretch cotton and I found this gorgeous green abstract print in the sale section of Minerva Crafts. When it arrived, it was more sheer than I had anticipated so I bought some white cotton lawn, also from Minerva Crafts and used it to line both the bodice and the skirt.
I made a few alterations to the pattern, as I usually find that the sizing of SOI designs are too big for me. I made the smallest size but ended up taking a good 2 inches out of the bodice and down into the hips. I could have taken out a bit more but I’m really happy with the fit and I feel comfortable in it and not constricted.
The Elsie dress has a combination of facings and lining on the bodice, which is a really pretty detail and looks really high end. I didn’t really follow the pattern instructions though as it made more sense to construct the entire lining/facing section and add that all as one piece, and then slip stitch down.
I added in seam pockets to the skirt, as I really hate it when dresses don’t have them. I just used an old pocket pattern piece that I had from a different pattern.
I chose to line the skirt, as I didn’t want it to be too see though. I also finished the lining hem with green bias trim. This is one of my favourite finishes as it gives a flash of colour as you move and just looks really pretty. I have a tutorial on this method if you would like more information.
I took two and a half inches off of the hem so that it sits just below the knee. Having the lining and with the bias trim kicks the whole skirt out slightly and gives a lovely effect – it almost looks like there is a big petticoat under there!
There’s nothing particularly complicated in the pattern, apart from maybe the princess seams, but as long as you use lots of pins and take your time, you should be fine.
Overall, I think The Elsie dress would be perfect to wear for a Christmas do or if you were a guest at a wedding – it is a proper party dress with plenty of scope for twirling!