The Sinking Sun dress

Hello! Today I have to show you my new favourite dress. 

the Sinking Sun dress (Christine Haynes' Emery pattern with pleated skirt)
It's yet another Emery, again with pleats on either side of centre of the skirt. In fact it's exactly the same as my last version of the Emery, except with the 3/4 length sleeves which I had previously not tried. The sleeves weren't toiled, I just cut the same size as my short sleeved versions (a ten on the sleeve heads grading to an 8 for the straight underarm seam. I should have graded in more, because these sleeves were BIG on me. I do have disproportionally thin arms, so I understand why this would be the case, but it made me look horrid and short and frumpy. Those sleeves added half a stone to me. But by this point I had already made the dress up and had my heart set on 3/4 sleeves. It's autumn after all. And somehow the purple and red in the print was asking for 3/4 length sleeves. 

So, being too lazy and stubborn to cut out new  sleeves, I made do and altered the ones I had already made up. I shortened them by a good 4 inches, then added a little pleat to the sleeve hem. I actually love this feature now, it gives me room to manoeuvre, but still looks fitted. Wonderful! 

Close up of my make-do sleeve

So the sleeves were fixed. Phew! I don't think I'll be making another 3/4 length sleeved Emery any time soon though. At least not without some sleeve adjusting work going on. But actually, I think the short sleeves are more practical anyway - easier to throw a cardigan or jumper over, and easier to cross seasons with. I definitely prefer the silouette of the Emery with short sleeves. BUT I stand by my decision to keep the longer ones on this dress - it totally works and is in keeping with the overall feel of the dress. I'm happy. 

As you can see I didn't *properly* pattern match, but I did make sure, for instance, a big red splodge is next to a big red splodge. You can see in the picture above that I tried to line up the kind of row of green peeking through at the very top of the back bodice / sleeve heads. It worked out pretty darn well!

The fabric is a beautifully soft Swiss cotton, which must be very finely spun and tightly woven as it is so light, soft and drapey, with a very slight sheen on the right side. I just fell in love with the print, then touched it and went "Ooooh". So it is super comfy to wear as well as lovely to look at. I lined it with some of my trusty cotton lawn from classic textiles,  and gave it a centred zip rather than an invisible one as I had an ordinary one "in stock" in a coordinating colour. I always shop my zip bag first! It helps that ages ago one of my neighbours gave me a selection of brand new zips, all different lengths and colours, which make up the majority of my "stock". Hooray for free zips. 

The finished dress is glorious, and has been worn twice already. It's going to be a definite autumn favourite! Bonus is that it goes with my wonderfully bright oasis pumps. 

In other news, I have started my very first quilt (a Christmas gift). It's a nautical themed quilt, and I am currently kicking myself that I didn't buy enough of my nautical print fabrics to make awesome nautical dresses from. What a fool.

I may just have to buy more....