I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back.

The Avid Seamstress Gathered Dress

I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back. I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back.I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back.I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back. I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back.

You guys know me, I love a bit of business denim (see evidence here and here).

I’m also a huge lover of Lisa from Avid Seamstress (I mean, who isn’t?). So it was a pretty happy day when she reached out about collaborating on one of her newest patterns – the gathered dress.

And obviously even more perfect that her idea for collaborating included this beautiful denim viscose. Perfect business denim.

Basically, who could say no, right?

I know how important it is to read reviews – especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy ’cause I’m about to lay out all the deets on ya πŸ˜€Β Including:

  • The pattern
  • All about the kit I used
  • Details on fit
  • A review of the construction – and techniques you need to be able to make thi
  • And photo overload, of course

The pattern

The gathered dress is one of two new pattern released by Lisa at The Avid Seamstress (the coat is also pretty high on my lust list).

At first the gathered dress looks like just a cool dress with a gathered back skirt, but it’s got some really nice interesting features – like raglan sleeves, a slight cocoon shape and inseam pockets.

And, man, those raglan sleeves are on point. I love that they break up what could potentially be a really formal dress. Definitely love at first sight. But, to be honest I was a bit nervous about fit.

Cocoon shapes and gathered skirts on an hourglass figure?

Recipe for disaster, right?

But Lisa’s done some kind of pattern drafting voodoo because the pattern is spot on. I had just the tiniest of fitting issues (let’s talk about that bit later) and the rest was golden!

Magic!

The Kit

Lisa was kind enough to send me a kit for the dress.

Now, as someone who tends to avoid kits (hello control issues) I was super excited by what she sent and how beautifully packaged it was.

It literally has everything you need – from pattern and fabric (pretty essential, right?) To elastic for the gathers, interfacing, matching thread and a zipper. I think it would make a really nice gift to someone. And if you’re new-ish to sewing I think it just cuts down a lot of searching for the right notions to finish your make.

And can we just quickly talk about the fabric for a second? It’s a really beautiful denim coloured viscose-like material which handles beautifully. It’s one of those rare fabrics that has great drape but is super easy to handle. Gold. Dust.

I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back.I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back.I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back. I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back. I know how important it is to read reviews - especially for new patterns. So sit back and get comfy 'cause I'm about to lay out all the deets on ya for the Avid Seamstress gathered dress - a raglan sleeve cocoon dress with gathers at the back.

Fit

So I was 100% expecting all sorts of fit issues. A dress like this just should suit anyone who isn’t a 6′ tall scandinavian model, right?

But man it fit straight out of the packet.

I cut a size 10 based on the finished measurements/my standard size. The only fit alteration was to take out a 1″ wedge from the centre back. I wouldn’t say that’s a standard fit adjustment I have to make usually, but what a treat not to have to do any flat pattern adjustments like an FBA.

I also chopped about 4″ off the hem. I love the longer length and think it’s super cool – just not on my 5’4″-ness πŸ˜€

Construction

Also, I love how quickly this came together. It may seem like a complicated make – with raglan sleeves and the gathered skirt. But it was a really straightforward. I ended up finishing it all up in three evenings.

Of course, I did cut some corners (did I mention I’m lazy? πŸ˜‚)

 

  • I didn’t add any pockets. Not because they’re not awesome, I just (oddly) wasn’t in a pocket-y mood that day
  • I omitted the zipper. Trine mentioned she sewed this up without needing to add the zipper and I’m naturally adverse to zippers

 

You probably still need one or two projects under your belt before you attempt this, but this pattern would definitely be accessible for a confident beginner. Lisa obviously cares about the instructions. They’re super detailed, which I think is great for beginners. Her zipper insertion made even me (hater of zippers) tempted to give it a go.

I also really liked Lisa’s approach to gathering the skirt – using elastic to create even gathers. I don’t know if it’s just me, but I’m useless at gathering with gathering stitches so this was a new trick which I’ll be sure to use again. Thanks Lisa!

Verdict

I’m really happy how this turned out and can’t wait to wear it in warmer weather (though it’s working great with tights and boots now). I’ve even included it in my 10×10 wardrobe choices for Spring 10 x 10 challenge.

For reference, I’d say this is similar in style to Named Clothing’s inari, but less cocoon-y and just a little more feminine with the gathered back.Β Also, can we just talk about the fact that there’s a mini version for ages 3 – 8? I need to find a mini me. Stat.

Definitely a dress worth adding to your collection – I mean how sweet would this look in a cotton print? 😍

 

I only ever share products and people I think you’ll like as much as I do (because sharing is caring). Everything for this make was kindly provided byΒ the Avid SeamstressΒ (they’re nice like that). All thoughts and opinions are 100% my own.

  1. Reply
    PsychicSewerKathleen

    I have this pattern winging its way to me now! I loved everything about this style – the raglan sleeves are my favourite and rare to see them in a dress/tunic, the gathering at the BACK (as opposed to the front which I avoid) bringing some interest to the back and some shaping as well and a shift looking front. As soon as I saw it released I ordered it – spot on for my style. I never thought to order it as a kit but good to know it works well in a drapey type of fabric. I’ll be sure to use that after I’ve muslined it. I’m pretty sure I’ll have to do an fba (I always do). Yours got me all excited to get to work on it πŸ™‚

    1. Reply
      randomly_happy

      So glad to hear you’re making on too. It’s a really great pattern and such a. Simple construction. Let me know how how that FBA turns out!

  2. Reply
    Dream Aloud-Moira

    Lovely dress! I love the gathered back. I think it would be amazing in a cotton print!

    1. Reply
      randomly_happy

      Wouldn’t it? Something sweet would really compliment the structure of the dress.

  3. Reply
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