Frocktober: Deer & Doe Cardamome Dress

We are still frocking it up for Frocktober, dutifully sewing our way through some of our favourite dress patterns.

My first Frocktober make is the Deer + Doe Cardamome dress. I made the sleevleless version, view B, so it could be easily cardied-up and also to accommodate the long, hot summer that is almost upon us. This dress is made in one of our soft light denim fabrics from Japan. I cut this one out only to realise that Attack of the Seam Ripper had already made an identical one - and it's beautiful. Ack! Um, great minds? 

 This came together so easily, like other Deer + Doe patterns the Cardamome is beautifully drafted and the instructions are clear. This was the first time I'd sewn a full collar with collar stand and the D+D instructions were delightfully unintimidating. (It's sitting a bit funny here, but this is straight off the machine - it needs another wash and press). The fabric I used is probably slightly on the heavy side for this pattern. Because of the weight of the denim, I was careful to both clip and & grade my collar seams, but the bulk of the fabric makes the ends of the collar stand a little chunkier than they would be with a nice light lawn, for example.

I did make a couple of minor modifications to the pattern. After spending a fair bit of time deliberating over button choice, I decided to omit them since I'll be wearing this undone anyway. 

The pattern calls for shirring around the waist, but in the interests of sturdiness, I decided to make an elastic casing instead (any excuse to pair a pretty Liberty print with chambray!) Eleanor from Deer & Doe mentioned in a recent blog post that she would be doing a tutorial for this plus also a zippered waist soon (scroll down, there's also a link to an interesting elastic that mimics the look of shirring). To do this I ignored where the pattern instructions suggest sewing both side seams, followed by the shirring. Instead, I sewed one side seam, added the casing, then elastic, then sewed up the final side seam. Here's a fairly uninteresting action shot of when I installed the casing:

To cover the elastic waist I added a belt, made from a 5cm wide strip of the same fabric. 

 Other than that, no modifications. I used the same Liberty (Sarah) to bind the armholes and line the pockets. I was pretty happy with the length on me, so just sewed a 10mm double fold hem (I'm 167cm tall if that helps).
 Here's the side view. Excuse the creases - this had seen a school drop off and a morning in the shop by the time we took photos:

And the back:

If I make another Cardamome, I'll probably size down. This one is a little wide under the arms and across my shoulders (best seen in the back view above). It won't stop me from wearing it, though - no major breaches in undergarment visibility here, thankfully.

The Cardamome Dress pattern is available in store only (or please give us a call if you're interested in any of the Deer + Doe patterns). Don't forget that during Frocktober we're offering a 10% discount off dress fabric + pattern combo purchases in store and online (just enter FROCKTOBER at checkout), plus we'll donate $2 from each of those purchases to the Ovarian Cancer Research Foundation. So: get frocking!


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