Friday, September 6, 2013

The "Perfect" Knit dress

I have had the pattern for "The Perfect Knit Dress" in my stash since 2010 and just got around to making it. In fairness, I was pregnant, then I gave birth, so it was waiting in the wings until a more suitable time. This dress, in my mind was good candidate for nursing access and hiding post baby belly. My son is turning 2 in a few weeks and I still hadn't made the dress!

I have been working on my sewing discipline, finish what I start, sew what I love and all that. I finally decided to make myself a perfect knit dress. I purchased stacks of wonderful fabrics at an estate sale in my neighborhood a couple of months ago and had some viable candidates to make McCalls 5752.

The dress came together in two evenings, a long time for machine sewing for me. The instructions were so detailed I spent most of the time disregarding the "tips". I am sure they are helpful to some, but I found they slowed me down. The construction of the midriff took as long as sewing the rest of the dress. I edge finished the seams with my serger. I serged and folded the hems of the sleeves and skirt bottom. I am 5 feet 8 inches and this skirt brushes me knees when hemmed. I only hemmed it the depth of my four-thread serger. If you want it longer keep that in mind.

One of the great things about having a custom to my body dress form is that I can post pictures of completed garments without having to put on lip gloss. Here is BIRA the photos of the completed dress.

Bira wearing the "perfect" knit dress.

Dress back

Front of dress bodice
Side panel gathers

Back right. Notice the extra fabric at the top.

Detail of the back collar

The back ripple is not that bad when worn.
Here is my review of this pattern:

Pattern Description:
Dresses A,B,C,D have gathered, wrapped bodice, gathered self-lined midriff, A-line skirt and sleeve variations. A&B have gathered shawl collar and extended overarms; C&D have gathered shoulders, choice of sleeves.

Pattern Sizing:

8-14 I cut size 10 of view B

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?  


Were the instructions easy to follow?   

Yes they were, but I thought they were too wordy. I found myself asking "Is this really necessary?" on the midriff portion especially.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I liked the collar and midriff gathering. I didn't like that the second front and back midriff lining created a third layer of fabric around the stomach. Who wants that!? I omitted the "lining" on the midriff.

I am not happy with the gathers in the back. It buckles a bit in the back despite my following the directions.

Fabric Used: 
A double knit I purchased at an estate sale for a buck a yard.

Pattern alterations or any design changes you made:
I omitted the midriff lining as I thought it would add too much bulk in the midsection.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
I will not make this one again. This one is distinct enough for me not to want two of them. I also have other wrap dress patterns to try.

I like it okay. It has nice features, but the billing of this as the "perfect" knit dress is a bit of a let down. If the back panel came together without a hitch, I would have liked it better. I know it sounds silly, but words have power. 

Happy Sewing,


  1. Thank you for posting some kind of information. It was really helpful since I am doing some research now.

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