A few weeks ago the independent pattern company Sinbad and Sailor released a new pattern – the Hepworth Dress. Rachael at House of Pinheiro made a version of this dress as well as Sew Busy Lizzie and I really loved both
I am normally fairly cautious and like to see what lots of people have done with a pattern before committing and I can also be a bit slow and end up finishing a sew-along months after everyone else (hello – Hawthorn). This time the combination of this dress being exactly the silhouette I love and a bank holiday weekend meant that I downloaded the pattern straightaway and got started! Actually there were the extra steps of our printer breaking, me deciding to go out and buy a new printer, coming back and setting up the new printer and then getting started.
So the pattern is a classic fitted bodice and flared skirt, I really prefer a flared to a gathered skirt as I have hips and this looked as if it would be fairly straightforward. I love the By Hand London Anna dress but I have struggled with it every time I have made it – part of this is the number of panels on the skirt – if you get a couple of them slightly out of place then none of the lines match up on the bodice (ask me how I know this…). The Hepworth just has darts front and back and I thought I could manage them a bit better.
I was very good and made a muslin to test the bodice fit – I decided to lengthen the bodice a bit before starting as I compared it to other patterns I have and it came up a bit shorter – this looked fine on the muslin. The bodice muslin fitted apart from a bit of extra fabric across the bust so I took a small wedge out of the princess seam piece and this worked perfectly.
I made the dress out of a lovely lilac linen. The fabric is probably a little heavier than the pattern recommendation as it was a slightly thicker linen but it had a lot of drape and the colour was gorgeous so I went for it. I used more of the linen for the facing and this was possibly a mistake as I struggled with the step where the zip is sandwiched between the facing and shell fabric and a light lining fabric is recommended.
It took a little bit of unpicking to get my darts and side seams matched up exactly, but I am pretty much there I think!
After I had added the skirt I found that actually adding two inches to the bodice length wasn’t necessary – the dress is designed to sit a little higher and it was pooling a bit at the waist seam – I have reduced the extra length for my next attempt.
I did add 4 inches to the skirt length and this was definitely needed – you really dont want to be seeing acres of my thighs. Even with four inches the skirt ends just at my knees – I am 5′ 7″ so that is something to be aware of it you don’t want to go super short!
I totally love this dress – so much that I just started another and will quite possibly make another after that! Has anyone else tried this pattern yet? Which patterns have inspired you to make multiple versions?