Ok, so, total honesty here: one of the main reasons I made this dress is because its name reminded me of this one-hit wonder of eighties french synthpop, and I just had to share it.
T’as le look coco, coco t’as le look !
The other main reason is because it is just plain adorable! It’s the Coco pattern from Tilly and the Buttons, in the oh-so-sixties variation that includes cuffs and a funnel neck. I got totally obsessed with this collar variation when the pattern came out, and I wasn’t disappointed by the result: it goes very well with my long giraffe-like neck, but without being annoying and scratchy like turtlenecks often are.
The pattern is very simple, for the variation without cuffs and funnel neck there is only three pattern pieces: front, back, and sleeves. It’s because of the strechiness of the jersey that the 2D dress can turn 3D when worn. The front and back piece go slightly in at the waist so that the dress has a nice A shape, which I like much more than the straighter lines of other shift dresses, like the Laurel from Colette Patterns. I cut it in a size 3, which corresponds to my mesurement at bust and waist. I could have gone up a size or two at the hips according to the chart, but because of the flare of the skirt I could get away with just cutting the size 3 everywhere.
However, compared to more complex patterns with darts or side-panels, the very simple shape of Coco is not as well adapted to curves: in my case it creates vertical lines at the bust, and there is a large amount of excess fabric at the back because of my swayback. I was wondering how the Coco looked like from the back because I only seem to find pictures of the front, so here it is.
The good thing with stretch fabric however is this: who cares? It’s so comfy that I really don’t mind the folds and wrinkles. I’m going to live in that dress, it is just perfect for these mornings when I don’t feel like getting dressed, and I think I’m going to make another one without the funnel neck soon.
Oh I just noticed I forgot to fold up the cuffs for the pictures ! They normally are folded in half, just like the funnel neck, but in the end I like them unfolded too, and it shows my topstitching.
This dress should have been a really quick project, because the pattern is so simple and because jersey fabric does not require finishing the seams. Except this particular one was a nightmare! It should have been fine because it has very little stretch, close to a woven, but for whatever reason the sewing machine kept skipping stitches all the time! I tried everything: changing the needle for a jersey or non-jersey one, in different sizes, changing the thread, tweaking the tension, nothing worked. I had to resolve to use tissue paper between the fabric and the machine for all the seams and it worked pretty well, but it was so awful to check all the time that it was well positioned, and to remove all the tiny bits afterwards!
Except for this problem, this fabric is great because it is so thick and soft. The color seems almost neon on the outside pictures because of the bright light, but in real life it’s not as bright, more like strawberry pink. And most of all, it’s matching my sunglasses 🙂
I made this dress with my friend Diane, and we took this oppotunity to take pictures together for the Coco party! Diane just started blogging at Under the sewing tree, hop over there if you want to see more of her constrasting yoke Coco (I want the exact same one now!).