The Named Dakota Shawl Collar Dress is done!
The first step was printing it out. Which took a while since it is too large for US Letter sized paper so I kept putting it off. I gave the file instead to someone who printed it on 11×16 paper though legal sized would’ve worked fine.
I cut out the remaining pieces that didn’t need to be traced. Except later on I realized I missed some markings so I dug my scraps out to retrace. So lesson is: don’t throw away anything until everything is sewn.
I ended up using a Japanese cotton from Taiwan that has been sitting in my stash for a year. My goal is to use up all these non stretchy cottons I bought a while ago. I’m over them, but I’d like to use them up to make room for other fabrics.
The neckline on this dress is deep. The model for Named is shown wearing a bow-tie blouse underneath, but that wasn’t going to work with me. My dress did not have enough ease to wear a shirt with sleeves underneath, so I thought I would be clever and sew a triangle into the gap as a modesty panel. Looks great, right!?
Meet Nadeeka. And her dog Daisy. The thing about Dallas/DFW is that I don’t have any friends here. They’ve all moved away. But their parents are still here, so I can always count on Thanksgiving for them to drive up/fly in and then I can kidnap them for a few hours to hang out.
Holding a dog probably didn’t help. But Daisy was too cute to not hold. Also, don’t admire my background too much… that’s a giant landfill behind me. Yep, the only way to get some nice scenic nature views where I live (within a 20 min radius) is to go visit a landfill.
I also realized that I had forgotten to slit open my buttonholes… (Also, yes, I know I made my buttonhole/button placement a bit odd, but that’s what ended up happening because my buttonhole maker doesn’t like working through uneven thicknesses, so I changed the design to avoid the thicker corner. Next time I’ll do a better job of trimming off my seam allowances.)
We decided to go to the Ranger’s Stadium (a baseball team for those non USA or non baseball people) as there was a temporary German christmas market right next to it. Texas, believe it or not, has lots of historic ties to Germany. There’s even Texas German dialect which is gradually going extinct, but they’ve got vocabulary such as der cowboy or der hamburger! My favorite is stinkkatze for skunk.
Anyway, back to the photo shoot. Same routine as before. Throw scarf, jacket, and purse off into a corner since there aren’t any trees around. However, see those black boxes in the far off distance near the scrawny trees? Those were fireworks – and we were warned not to get any to them. Glad I didn’t throw anything in that direction.
As I’ve stated before, the instructions are text only so if you’re a visual learner this pattern won’t make you very happy. However, Rachel of House of Pinheiro and Marie of A Stitching Odyssey hosted a sewalong for this dress full of photo tutorials, tips, detailed instructions, guest posts, and more! I was impressed by how well they interacted with people in the comments – so this specific pattern from Named is worth a purchase just for the sewalong help. Thank you thank you thank you!
To be honest I wanted to test myself and see if it were possible to sew this up without extra help (I was also ahead of the sewalong schedule and was impatient to start sewing). I managed, but got very stuck on the collar construction. It was my first time making a shawl collar so that contributed a lot to my inability. I made it work in the end but for Dakota #2 I’ll be sure to follow the sewalong tutorial so I can do it correctly. I also had to stare at Carrie’s Dakota photos to make sure my cuff looked right. PS Look how my dress is not clinging to me awkwardly!
The secret? A vintage slip! In the perfect color to match the magenta dots on my fabric. I’ve had it in my closet for years but never wore it – until today! It was a bit long so I hiked it up but you’ll see it peeking it later.
While the pocket placement for this dress is cute, it wasn’t really practical as I have to raise my arm a lot and bend my wrist at a strange angle to be able to use the pocket as it’s quite high on the waist. However that means they are secure and I wasn’t afraid of anything falling out anytime I sat or bent over – no missing items from this dress.
I didn’t muslin this… I meant to, but I kind of forgot. I always lay out pieces on my fabric to test to see if I have enough, but I went ahead and cut before realizing that I forgot to adjust my pattern pieces. Oops! I should’ve done some sort of back adjustment here, but I didn’t. It still fits, but there are some lines. PS, anybody know what kind of “problem” I have? Is it: wide shoulders, square shoulders, sloping shoulders, round shoulders, broad back, wide back, etc, etc etc… too many similar fit issues for one area, I never know which one I should be doing for my body.
Ok back to normal. In the end this is going to be a summer dress for me as I prefer to not wear a slip and tights with it. I also think I will be making this in a fabric with some stretch next time since it’ll be easier to get on/off as well as move my arms around in. Don’t forget to check out the sewalong if you plan on making this dress – so worth it! Thanks again to Rachel, Marie, & Named for making this dress possible.
Pattern: Named Dakota Shawl Collar Dress
Fabric: Japanese Cotton