Friday, 27 December 2013

My black Cambie Dress

It's been a while since my last post. I have been studying/making the popular Sewaholic Cambie Dress.  I bought it from from Indie Stitches who is doing 20% of all patterns until New Year Eve.

I made both views, but the first dress based on View B was such a disaster that I couldn't wear it to show you (only because I didn't pay attention to the instructions and did a few things wrong). But the experience led me to a successful second dress based on View A. As I made the pattern twice, I have a few thoughts to share.
Front view

I was attracted to four square walls (Andrea)'s modification with a straight neckline bodice. It looks more formal. I also followed her idea of using the sleeve lining pattern pieces on the main fabric so I eliminated the gathering on the sleeves. However after I made it and tried it on, there is a gap on the upper bust. To solve the problem, I added two small darts on the neckline near the point where the sleeves join. The result is amazing. Not only do they eliminate the gap, but also accentuate the bust.
close up on the darts
 I cut size 6 and didn't make any sizing adjustments.

side seams
I was surprised that Tasia did not call for understitching the lining in the instructions. It is a bit of extra work but I think the understitch is always necessary for lining. If you want to add it, do it before the zip. I made this mistake on my first dress when I was following the instructions to sew the zip but then wanted to understitch on my first dress. I used Tasia's tutorial on sewing the lining to the zip and found it very handy.

Sewing the lining

The Fabric
I used some sort of medium-to-heavy weight wool fabric. I don't know what exactly it is. It looks like Twill damask? It's thick and has a bit of stiffness so it's very easy to handle. I bought this fabric from a shop in Dandenong for $4 per meter, but the shop closed down 6 months ago. Shame! I used the leftover pink stripe poplin from my retro top project for the contrasting waist band. The cost of fabric is less than $10:
Wool damask: 1.1 meter x $4 = $4.4
Poly lining: 1.1 x $3 = $3.3

Though it's cheap, it feels and looks like a million bucks.  It fits nicely and looks well made (I hesitate to admit that). I made some silly mistakes in the process but patiently unpicked and resewed. I made sure the waist joined perfectly at the Zip.  It took me two days to finish but could've been quicker had I not made those silly mistakes. 
close-up of the zip
I have seen lots of reviews of this pattern. Now I understand why everyone is doing it. It's very well designed. It's easy to make for a lined dress.  Some steps are very smart. The silhouette is classic and it's also versatile and easy to add on your own creations.  Definitely my favourite pattern. I am already thinking of making a third version.

By they way, Merry belated Christmas. I made a 8kg turkey this year. Lots of work involved. I was basically running between my sewing table and oven this Christmas.

What's next?
I am hooked on Sewaholic Patterns after the Cambie Dress. I am making the Alma Blouse now.

I am also thinking of Vogue 1350 and the retro Butterick. Stay tuned.
ideas for next projects!


  1. Wow! This dress is amazing! I love Cambie pattern and have used it twice but now I want to make another - you totally inspired me :) I think this dress looks really like a million bucks. And I like how you've altered the neckline. Perfect!

    1. Thanks Anna. I was inspired by you to get this pattern!

  2. Great dress!!! I used to skip understitching but now can't imagine sewing without it!


Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...