I really wish at least one of my children was a ginger so I could have come up with some witty commentary here. P.S there’s a giveaway link at the end of this post.
About a month ago I had the opportunity to test the Gingersnap Dress and Tunic pattern by MCM Studio Designs. The dress is a loose fitting, kimono style A-line, with 3/4 length sleeves. The size range is 2T-6. This is Linda’s second pattern, and I think it’s one people will like. It’s also a part of Pattern Revolutions Aspiring Designer Series. Let me break down the awesomeness for you.
The size chart provides measurements for weight, chest, and height. Also included are instructions on how to measure your child’s height and chest. Elle falls within the size 2 range for all measurements except her chest, which is only about 1/2″ smaller than the one listed for size 2. River is tiny for a nearly four year old. She falls within the size 2 range as well, except for her height which puts her in a size 3. Fortunately, there is also a chart with finished measurements, which includes number for chest, tunic length and dress length. That’s a helpful chart to have when you have a skinny, tall daughter.
I tested the size 2, and decided to try it on all the girls. As I previously mentioned, River is taller than the size 2 range. As you can see in the picture, it’s obviously short on her. But, if I was making this dress for River, I could have looked at the finished measurements chart and known that a size 3 length and a size 2 width would have been best for her. That chart is handy for customizing your fit.
Linda provides clear printing and assembly instructions. She includes a layout guide for taping together the pages. She even lists what page the test square is on. I love it when designers do that. I don’t like printing all my pages just to find they’re off, or having to browse through all the pages to find the right one to print first. It’s a helpful thing to note.
A note on pattern test squares. Let’s say you print your pattern out and the 1″ square is actually measuring 7/8″ instead. You might think, “oh it’s only 1/8″ off, that’s not a big deal.” Yes. Yes it is. Your inch is short 1/8″ which means every inch is short that much. So, if you have a piece that is suppose to be 10″ wide. Every inch of that 10″ is short that much. Which makes for a 1 1/4″ difference between what you should have and what you’ve printed. Your 10″ is now down to 8 3/4″ which is going to cause some fit issue. ALWAYS check your test square, and make sure it is right.
Let’s break down the above screen shot of the pattern. A few different methods on finishing seams are mentioned, with a reference to the blog for tutorials on these techniques. I believe the link is clickable, but I find most don’t work when mobile. And, I confess to being lame and not trying to click on it while I was on my computer. Seam allowance is clearly noted. Excellent. I hate searching for that. There’s a clear guide for what is the right side and wrong side of the fabric. You see this in commercial paper patterns. I think it’s something handy to include when line drawings are used in patterns. I’m leaning more and more towards line drawings lately. That’s the next thing I was going to mention. The pattern is done with line drawings.
One more screenshot I want to show you. I think the writing and technique is really intelligent. Thank you for telling me which way to press my seams. Hell, thank you for remembering to tell me to press my seams in the first place. I’ve noticed that pressing seams is hardly mentioned in a lot of patterns. I always do it. It’s force of habit. It’s how I was taught. I don’t need it in the instructions, but it should be there. Not shown in this screen shot, but mentioned throughout is the direction to press your seams – she evens says which way to press if you are using a serger! Because you can’t press serged seams open. I don’t know if I’ve seen a pattern mention which direction to press your serged seams. At least, another example isn’t coming to mind at the moment.
For you Imperial users, you’re in luck, measurements in all charts, and thought the pattern are done in imperials for you. For those of you on the Metric system (like myself* here in Canada), you’re in luck too, because everything is in metric as well. Awesome!
*While I do live in Canada, and we are on the Metric system, when I sew, I’m all Imperial.
Like I said, I think people are going to like this pattern, it’s really well thought out with clear instructions. It’s on sale through Sunday, November 16 for only $4! You can also enter today’s giveaway over on Pattern Revolution for your chance to win a copy.
Ready for a million links? Let’s do this thing!
Go and check out Linda’s blog, The Merry Church Mouse.
Phew. Lots of links, but we made it through. Go grab your copy, and keep an eye out for things to come from MCM Studio Designs. I don’t think you’ll be disappointed.
While this dress was made for Elle, I haven’t done much sewing for River lately. I think she was feeling a bit left out. She was the best little model and styles herself. Yup. Boots. Little purse. Ponytail. All her styling. She picked the purse because the button on it matches the one on the dress.