So far my autumn sewing seems to be a lot about knits – I made the Skaterprincess dress last week and the muslin for it has also had quite a lot of wear and now I have made a Colette Moneta. I have seen versions of this dress popping up all summer and I don’t think I have seen one that really hasn’t worked – it genuinely seems to work for all shapes and sizes. There is a detailed sew-along for this dress which was very helpful.
My autumn has also been about deeper, richer colours – this is a big departure from the colour palette that I worked out earlier in the year which was a lot of blue, greys and cooler colours. I don’t know whether this is a permanent shift or just an evolution but it is interesting to see what I end up with!
I didn’t make a Moneta earlier because I struggle to find good quality knit fabric locally. I love Abakhan, which is my local fabric shop, but they don’t seem to have a wide variety of jersey fabrics, so I have been branching out into online shopping. I ordered this aubergine viscose knit fabric from Clothspot (same supplier as the pink ponte I used for the skater princess). The fabric is light with some body so it skims over lumps and bumps, is densely woven enough to be hard to pin and doesn’t have a huge amount of stretch. The site described this fabric as ‘ a perfect choice for ..gathered garments’ so it seemed ideal to try it out on a Moneta.
I didn’t make a muslin – I figured that a knit fabric would be fairly forgiving and it wouldn’t be the end of the world if it wasn’t a success. So this is really a wearable muslin.
The part of making a Moneta that I was most worried about was using clear elastic to gather the waist. Many people seem to have struggled with this step or found an alternative method. My machine is a bit temperamental when it comes to sewing clear elastic and for some reason I often find that the thread in the needle breaks and I have to stop what I am doing to rethread. I used a long straight stitch with quite low tension to sew the elastic. This wasn’t perfect but it did work and I didn’t have the thread break this time but the sewing was a bit wonky in places and the gathering isn’t entirely even. For a first attempt though I think it isn’t too bad and I am happy enough to wear it. I wonder if you can unpick the basting stitch and remove the elastic after the skirt is attached to the bodice as I don’t love the feel of the elastic at my waist?
I really like the shape and it is very easy to wear. The neckline is a fraction wider than I would like – enough to worry about bra straps showing. For winter it could do with a slip underneath to stop the skirt sticking to my tights (as you can see in the picture above!). I definitely want to make more – to get the gathering right and maybe try a collar variation!