Thursday, May 29, 2014

Giselle Dress Pattern Review

When we were on sabbatical in NYC I got to meet Kati of Kate & Rose and I knew we were meant to be friends. We have only met in person once and just sporadically email and chat on-line but we are kindred spirits. Our connection is the love of the peasant style. She has designed many peasant style patterns and I have made them. Her latest line, "The Midtown Collection" has just come out and the first one I have made is the Giselle Maxi Dress.

Since I live in GA and it is already hot I made the sleeveless maxi version. Just look how pretty even the line drawings are.

I decided to take a chance and go full out crazy hippie lady with my fabric selections.

 The top fabric is Tula Pink, Field Fox Trot in Dusk. The bodice fabric is Tula Pink, Field Pony Play in Dusk. I have a serious navy and lavender thing going lately so I had about 4 yards of each of these laying around. They were clearly waiting to become this dress.  And two pairs of pajama pants for the Divine Miss M.

I will say I love the style of this pattern, and I am happy how the dress turned out. I am going to make some modifications on my next one. But the fact that I am already planning my next one is a good thing. It is over all great. With a few minor changes.

So the basics are:

  •  I used quilting cotton
  • Cut out view B 
  • size XL
I will admit downloaded patterns are not my favorite. It is a lot of printing and taping. But this one was worth the extra work. Especially when you add in the instant gratification component of downloading.

The only flaw in the pattern is that the back bodice was way longer then the front (see picture). I decided to just cut the back piece shorter to match up with the front so it was easily solved.

I will also admit I only sort of glanced over the directions. I am sure they are great. But I am stubborn and like to put things together my way. Which mostly usually works.

The other issue I had was that the XL was WAY too big in the armpit. I had to take in the sides two inches each. But I do need the boob room up front on the XL so now I know how to handle that differently next time as well. I will make the top pieces of the front bodice a wee bit longer to allow for a little more space for the "girls", while taking in the sides.

I am too lazy to make a muslin so if you are not as lazy as me or are more thrifty with your fabric you should make a muslin of the bodice. It would be worth your time to get it just right.

 A mistake I made was that the fabric was not evenly gathered, it is fuller in some spots than others. I decided once again I am too lazy to care.

I gathered it and sewed it together at the same time on my serger.

IF you do this I would suggest you attach the skirt to the bodice BEFORE you sew the side seams together. Gathering and stitching on the serger when it is round does not work.

Again this is something I would do differently when I make my next one. This was a judgement error on my part.

Let's ignore the fact that I look a little forlorn in this picture. I was melting! Sweat was pouring down my back as I was running back and forth to my camera on a tripod.

I think this dress is fun. It will get worn a lot this summer. But I think the skirt would look better out of just one fabric or with more tiers? Or something? Thoughts?

Here are some outdoor close ups

Yes the ties are another fabric. I had these ties already made from a previous project. I did not end up adding them to that project so I thought it was thrifty (and somewhat lazy) to add them to this dress.

That face I'm making is my: "it is still May! why is it so damn hot already? and of course my AC is out!!!" face. The AC gets replaced on Tuesday thank goodness!

All in all I would give this pattern an "I love it!" rating. It was quick and easy and had no major flaws. I typically think of patterns as a starting point. It will be easy for my lazy self to adjust and make it just perfect. And that is what I like, easy with great results!

Well I am off to see if there is any way to escape this hot house. Today is the last day of school, can we say POOL tomorrow?!?!

Peace Out! 


  1. Oh Chrissy I LOVE how this dress looks on you! Looking at it, you might have done just fine with an L and an FBA... I need to address the FBA issue in the coming months anyway as that's the most common adjustment needed EVER, isn't it? Thank you for making it, and thank you for the review! Also checking on the longer back bodice than front bodice... no clue how that was missed.

    (Hope your AC is back on!)

    1. Hi! AC is back on and thanks!
      I think that the back piece being longer may have been my mistake. I may have cut the wrong back piece. I will let you know next week when I make another one.

  2. Found your review through Google -- I tested this dress and am planning on making up another version this weekend.

    I LOVE your version in all its "hippy" splendor! It's so flattering. I'm making mine out of gauze that I'd like to dip-dye.

    My test version had one fabric on the skirt. I'm planning a peasant skirt out of more fabrics and will split up the tiers -- probably end up with four tiers total. I'm thinking it will require more fabric for the bottom tiers? Hmmm.

    Great job!

    1. Hi Michelle - Thanks!!! I saw your the other day and love it too!!! Such a fun dress pattern it is so exciting to see all the different variations.