Saturday, 4 February 2017

Style Arc Hedy Liberty Dress

The Style Arc Hedy Designer dress was an immediate digital purchase via Gumroad when I saw the version made by Thornberry.  It then took me eleven months to tape the pattern together and use it.
Style Arc Hedy Designer Dress

The Finished Garment
We did try some pictures of me in the garden wearing the dress which were less than successful for two reasons. (1) Apparently I have the habit of closing my eyes as soon as a camera is pointed at me and as I was facing the sun my face was all screwed up too. (2) My dearly beloved isn't sure what he should be photographing. When I asked him to take side and back views they are a bit off and you can't see the detail. So back to Dorothy who doesn't have a problem with the sun, isn't camera shy and the camera operator has more of an idea of what she wants in the picture. I did manage one selfie but these are definitely not a strong point either.

Creates Sew Slow: Style Arc Hedy Liberty Dress - side viewCreates Sew Slow: Style Arc Hedy Liberty Dress - front view

Creates Sew Slow: Style Arc Hedy Liberty Dress - arm extendedCreates Sew Slow: Style Arc Hedy Liberty Dress - back view

The Fabric
Yet another Liberty cotton jersey, which I have to confess to being a bit meh about. After I had decided to use this fabric, as I didn't mind sacrificing it to an unsuccessful garment, I discovered that there was only 1.5 metres.  This means that the fabric must have come from Shaukat because Liberty only sell their fabric by the whole metre.

The Pattern Alterations
Not surprisingly given the huge amount of ease in this dress no pattern alterations were made.  Unless you consider me making a straight size eight versus my normal size ten/twelve in Style Arc an alteration.  Oh and knee length for me given I like to cover the knee rather than have it above the knee meant I cut it two inches longer than the designated knee length. I used the calf length dress and cut it shorter so the hem is about 4" wider than if I had used the knee length version. This extra 4" of width at the hem provides the appropriate amount of walking ease for me.

Style Arc provide you with the finished garment measurements for the size 10 and the useful information that there is a two inch grade between sizes in the circumference.  Knowing that the size 10 had a bust measurement of 61" and a hip measurement of 46.5" meant that I could use the size 8 with confidence.

Due to the aforementioned fabric shortage I did cut the centre back piece with a seam and I think it would look better on the fold as the seam chops the pattern up too much. Other than this I easily cut it out of 1.5 metres.

The Sewing
This was a pretty straight forward sew and given Style Arc's reputation for minimalist instructions they actually provide pictures for the tricky bits. My neck pleat is left over right due to a bit of brain fade - I followed the pattern instructions of right over left but with the right side of the garment facing me - oops.

The main sewing was done on the overlocker.  A small portion of the pocket seam and pocket bags used the sewing machine to ensure the placement was correct and then I used the overlocker to sew the seam and around the pocket bags. I also bar tacked the pocket edge to limit the strain on the fabric.
Creates Sew Slow: Style Arc Hedy Liberty Dress - pocket

The neck binding, sleeve hem and dress hems were also done with the sewing machine.  I understitched the neck binding then hand stitched it to the garment as I felt sewing it by machine would spoil the look of the neck pleat.

Creates Sew Slow: Style Arc Hedy Liberty Dress - neck binding

The Styling
When I first put this dress on the feeling was very meh. So I had a bit of a play around to see if I could become a bit more enthusiastic about the finished garment.  My navy Trippen Mandarin sandals looked better than the grey pair. Then I had the bright idea to add the little cream flower - better with this bit of whimsy. When I ventured out in my dress with these sandals a passing stranger thought it was cute!
Creates Sew Slow: Navy Trippen Mandarin Sandals

I certainly like it a lot more with my Untouched World silver Queen Bee jacket thrown over it. If in doubt cover it up seems to work.

Creates Sew Slow: Style Arc Hedy Liberty Dress

As I am so ambivalent about the fabric not sure if the problem is with the dress design or the fabric so might make it again in a fabric that I like before I consign the pattern to the been there done better pile.


  1. This one might be one you just chalk down to experience. I think the fabric definitely works better as a skirt. Maybe it's too busy. I had a look at the version that inspired you and I can see why you chose to do it.

  2. I find the style has too much ease to appeal to me. Maybe if you sized down to a six next time? I like the fabric but the amount of ease just doesnt do much for it.