A Velvet Jacket for Fall – McCalls 7254 Pattern Review

They tell me it’s officially Fall. ¬†The weather here doesn’t necessarily agree, but I live down south so that’s to be expected. ūüôā So what’s Fall without a new, pretty jacket? ¬†With the curvy lines of McCalls 7254 whisperingm7254 to me to make it, I couldn’t resist. ¬†And in nothing less¬†than red stretch velvet, because it’s almost red velvet season.

As a note, I purchased this velvet from FABRIC BRAVO- Better Service! on Amazon.  I ordered 2 yards and was sent 1 yard and 34 inches.  I emailed them about it and went ahead and used the fabric since I was able to squeeze my pattern pieces on it.  Lesson learned, though.

As a pattern review I made¬†View E in an XS. ¬†The sleeve on the pattern was short on me (I’m 5’8″) so I added 3″ to the length. ¬†I debated on whether to interface the collar. ¬†I eventually decided to do so, to ensure the collar would lay flat.

I like this jacket, the only thing lacking is pockets ūüôā ¬†I won’t complain though since velvet was not a recommended fabric. ¬†It’s supposed to be for sweater knits. ¬†The next time¬†I make it, I may not interface the collar, depending on the material I use. ¬†But until then I will certainly enjoy this one.


A Simple Velvet Dress – Simplicity 1018 Pattern Review

Another velvet dress you ask?  Yes, this is the last one for now.  I wanted to choose a simple pattern to showcase the designs embossed in the velvet I found.  Simplicity 1018 seemed to fit the bill and it was a relatively simple sew.  Between work and dance competitions it took me a month to get around to writing the blog post, sorry about that.

As a pattern review¬†I made View A, without the elastic in the sleeves. ¬†The instructions were easy, however I deviated from them on the seam allowances and hem depth. ¬†I used a 3/8″ seam allowance instead of 5/8″ just to make sure as much of my pretty sparkly flowers would show as possible. I also used a narrow hem of about 1/4″ for the sleeves and skirt. I think it would have been too short (on me, I’m 5’8″) had I taken the full hem, and the sleeves were definitely too short. I knew they weren’t long enough prior to cutting and I intended to extend them when I cut the pieces out, but I cut on autopilot and only remembered after I cut the last piece.

If needed I would sew it again. ¬†It’s a nice, simple dress pattern. I would however, extend the sleeves to full length, were I to make it again. I would also measure the length I would want and adjust the pattern accordingly instead of going by the cutting lines. I’m too tall for this one straight out of the envelope.

A Velvet Dress for Fall – Burda 6829 Pattern Review

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I’ve had this velvet in my stash since last year. ¬†I found a bolt of this on the clearance table for an insanely low price a yard. ¬†So, I bought the bolt. ¬†I initially had envisioned using most of the bolt to make a floor length wrap dress with long sleeves and an amazingly full skirt for winter. ¬†Then I started testing wrap dress patterns (as you can see from the previous posts on my blog) and couldn’t decide on a pattern to use as the base for my vision. ¬†Fall is coming though and I’ve decided it’s going to be a velvet time of year. So Burda 6829 gets to make a debut in my wardrobe. ¬†I liked this pattern at first sight, the crossover front that¬†gathers to the side drew me in. ¬†As mentioned in the previous post, I¬†purchased two textured velvets last week, with this pattern in mind for one of them. However as I prepped the pattern, I¬†decided to put them aside and use the green and black velvet from my stash instead. ¬†It has been waiting patiently for a year to be something and it wants to come out and play.

As a sewing pattern review I made View A in the smallest size, which is an 8. ¬†The instructions were easy to follow. ¬†The changes that I made were very small. ¬†I did not use interfacing on the facing pieces. I also used the twin needle on the hems of the front pieces instead of edgestitching per the instructions. The¬†instructions direct you to use the twin needle on the back hem and I wanted to have a clean twin line from one front edge to the other. ¬† I noticed on someone else’s review, there was a comment about not liking how the instructions direct you to hem the front pieces and back piece separately. ¬†Everyone is different and will have their preferences, and I understand why intuitively one¬†would want to complete¬†the hem at one time. I decided to follow the instructions and liked the outcome and the method. ¬†Maybe the instructions had it done separately because it used two different finishes…who knows? ¬†Just a hypothesis.

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Anyway, the pattern is well drafted,the dress went together quickly, and I like it. ¬†As a note, for anyone that is going to make the View B (like me :), eventually) the sleeves in the picture are not pushed up to show forearm. ¬†It¬†is not a full length sleeve, but I wouldn’t consider it 3/4″ length either (at least not for me, I’m 5’8″). ¬†I will be adding length to it to make it full length when I make this pattern again. So, depending on your preferences you may want to compare and add (or subtract) length to suit your needs.

Also having worn it for a complete work day, after it comes out of the wash, I will tack the facings down along the length of the neckline. ¬†They work their way out as I move my shoulders during the course of the day. ¬†I may also release the right side and restitch it so that the left skirt panel is not caught in the seam for the entire length. ¬†I think making them more even inside will eliminate the slight snugness that shows on the left side since the left skirt panel is sewn much farther down than the right panel. ¬†Some stuff you just don’t decide til ya wear it for 10 hours. ūüôā

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Wrap Me in Velvet – McCalls 7186 Pattern Review

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Here is one of the textured velvets I just couldn’t pass up. ¬†The colors are more vivid in person, but these pictures were at close to sundown so you can’t see the sparkly flowers that well. ¬†It’s technically not cold enough here for me to wear it all day, so I used the coolest time of the day to take photos. ¬†Fall weather in Louisiana tends to have a 30-40 degree range through the day, We start out before dawn in the 50s, rise to the 80s-90s by lunch time, and back down to the 60s-50s after sundown.

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As a pattern review, the description says “Close-fitting, pullover dresses have front extending into back collar, gathered shoulders, and stitched hems.” I would like to point out that the gathered shoulders may apply for a regular knit, but the velvet didn’t really need gathering. ¬†I think there are three “gathers” on each side, and I know I cut the pieces properly. ¬†Maybe because it’s thicker than your average knit? I don’t see that many gathers on the sleeves of the solid color one, so maybe it’s supposed to be¬†more of a¬†hint of gathering¬†and not a real good gathering, like on the side. ūüôā

I used the smallest size, a 6 for View A which is like the picture to the left, except sleeveless. ¬†I adore the¬†velvet I used. ¬†It has embossed-like muted tone flowers trimmed with small sparkly stones on a bed of velvet dyed rich browns, golds, and oranges…I wish you could see it in person. ¬†As for the pattern, I didn’t make any design changes this time. ¬†I would definitely make it again with sleeves, and I may deepen the arm holes for the next sleeveless iteration.


I like this dress, the only thing that makes me slightly sad about it, is that a whole panel of my pretty fabric is hidden by the right front. They could have used¬†a left bodice front only instead of a full panel. At least my front will definitely be warm. ūüôā The pattern used a narrow hem for the armholes, and didn’t denote using a twin needle to finish the hem, but I did anyway.¬† Now I need to decide what to do with the other textured velvet.¬† It’s a similar composition but with burgundy instead of orange.¬† Off to the pattern stash I go! ūüôā