Monday, August 24, 2015

FO: Maya Dottie Angel Frock

Happy Monday!
This weekend was devoted to making my first Dottie Angel frock.
It is not the one I planned to make, because I was so in awe of my beautiful Merchant and Mills block print khadi fabric I was afraid to cut it.  Ha!
So this is the economy version.


Simplicity 1080, the Dottie Angel frock, in size XS and Marilla Walker's Maya Dress, size 2, blended together at the underarm.

Around 1.2m of fine seersuckerish cotton print from Croft Mill for the main part of the dress; perhaps 40cm of Merchant and Mills 5 oz denim (leftover from my Brumby skirt); and a repurposed linen camisole for the pockets.
Lots of black and white gingham bias binding - probably 5 metres of it.  I used it inside and outside:  on the seam between the upper and lower parts of the dress, to bind the hem, to make the apron string ties and to bind the pockets.

As noted above, I decided to mash together two patterns.  Although I liked the photos of the dress on the pattern envelope, I realised that the neckline as designed was lower, and the sleeves were scantier than I prefer.
Look, it's mostly cold here.  I am not as young as I used to be.  Um, yeah.
Also, reading reviews of the pattern by other bloggers set my alarm bells ringing.  People commented that the neck binding did not sit properly, and that the finish of the sleeve / shoulder edges stuck out awkwardly. 
So I did the sensible thing and used the upper section of my favourite pattern of 2015, the Maya dress, blending the two together at the underarm.  As it happens, size XS Simplicity and size 2 Maya matched perfectly, and being a similar pull-over style, the two can be constructed using the same methods.

The other thing that I changed was that I lowered the front tucks to sit below my bust, as other bloggers noted that they were set too high, causing an unflattering matronly bosom shape.
In my case, I dropped the point where the apron strings are attached by 2cm.


Once I decided to use Maya for the upper section, my initial scepticism faded away.  The soft drapey print was perfectly "Dottie Angel"-looking and the blue linen I scavenged for the pockets was a perfect colour match.  The gingham bias binding was serendipitous - I just happened to have it in my stash, and it worked well.
Dressed-up version with Lotta of Stockholm clogs

It was quite a lot of work, as I chose to French seam everything except the join between upper and lower skirt, which is covered on the inside with bias binding.  I am not complaining, but it was definitely a candidate for "slow sewing" rather than a quick project to rustle up in an afternoon.  It took me two full days of dedicated stitching.

Everyday version with wellies :)

Will I make another?
I almost definitely will, using the khadi block print I bought with this in mind, but maybe not until next summer.  The barley is almost ready for harvest.  It is not the right time to sew summer frocks.  I might wear this with a long-sleeved tee underneath and a warm cardigan on top, but my arms are unlikely to see the light of day again this year!


Linda said...

Lovely! It suits you so well! Can't wait to see your next one:)

Melissa said...

How clever of you to use the Maya for the neckline and sleeves! I have made my first Dottie Angel and was not very happy with it all based on the points you mentioned. Now I will happily give it another go. You look great in your frock!

Sarah said...

This is one spectacular frock, Roo! I love how you mixed it with Maya and got a wonderful outcome. The fabric choices are terrific and how lucky to have the gingham bias binding in your stash. Well done!

vintagerockchick said...

It looks great - and perfectly timed as the pattern has just dropped through my letterbox! I will bear your comments in mind - I'm no spring chicken, but I definitely don't want a matronly bust! I trust your judgement as I got the M&M Camber and Factory dress patterns, based partly on your recommendations and I've been delighted with them and made several versions of both.
Now I just need a couple of days to spare ...... Gill

poppyinstitches said...

looks great on you!

sewstyled said...

Love your version with the higher neckline and adaptations. Please tell about the blue suede/nubuck? shoes!

Roobeedoo said...

Sewstyled - they are clogs from Lotta of Stockholm :)

Janine said...

I had never heard of dottie angel before but I am really attracted to this granny chic. Your dress looks great ,I think your fabric choices look good.

Jennifer Hill said...

Love this and definitely agree about slightly longer sleeves. I love that main fabric! Jen

jessica said...


Roo, you are so coming into this new style of yours with panache. <3<3<3^1000000

Nicola Quinn said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Nicola Quinn said...

I really like your choice of fabrics for this dress, the fabrics look lovely together. Very stylish and flattering on you. Can't wait to have a go, just trying to come up with a compatible combination of prints....

Scruffybadger said...

Wow! This looks a lot of careful designing and sewing - there's no way I would have thought it a quick sew at all. Love the way you've combined fabrics and the Maya cut style is lovely on you I think the dress was designed for wellies actually. Finishes the look! X

Little Black Car said...

1080 is on my list just as soon as I finish up a couple of gift projects that have looming deadlines, but I'm glad I found this--you made exactly the alterations I've been considering. I think I'm going to like it a lot better with the higher neckline, lower waist (well, I always have to lower the waist on everything, anyway), and a little bit more arm. I'm actually toying with doing an add-on sleeve, the way you sometimes see in 1920's dress with short kimono sleeves, but then longer sleeve options, for winter.