As you can see, I am super happy with my latest make! This is the Frida dress by Emporia Patterns, which was given to me by Clair and Charlotte free of charge in exchange for promotion. You can read more about my trip to Emporia Fabric and Craft and why I am keen to support local, independent sewing businesses in my Wilder Gown post.
I saw several samples of the Frida dress on my visit to Emporia and absolutely loved the versions that had been made up in viscose. The drape softens the volume of the skirt and works well with the grown-on sleeves and neckline detail. I had spotted this stunning viscose on the Sew Me Sunshine website some time ago, but hadn’t bought any as I didn’t have a project in mind for it – well now I did and luckily, there was just enough left! The fabric is by Atelier Jupe and although this particular print is now out of stock in this colour-way, Harriet has lots of other absolutely stunning designs available.
The pattern is a very straightforward sew – a front and back skirt, front and back bodice pieces with grown-on sleeves, neckline facings, cuffs and patch pockets. It would be a really suitable project for beginners, although there are no details within the instructions about finishing seams. This is not a problem if you are a more experienced sewist with an understanding of the stages of construction, but if you are just starting out on your sewing journey you may find it tricky to get a clean finish on your garment without these steps outlined for you.
As I have never made an Emporia pattern before, I wasn’t sure what the sizing would be like. The pattern only gives a bust measurement (as that is the only part of the dress that is fitted) – my bust is 33″, so I opted for the size 8 to fit a 34″ bust as I was worried that the 32″ bust in the size 6 might be too tight. In hindsight I think the size 6 would have been better – as you can see, the bodice joins the skirt quite far down my bust, which made the dress very revealing with the neckline open as it should be. I decided to add a small elastic loop and button closure to the neckline, which solves the problem and maintains my modesty (not that there is much to see down there!)
I’m really pleased with my finished Frida and I think it will be a well-worn garment in my wardrobe. When it gets colder I can layer up with a long-sleeved top underneath and pair with leggings and boots and in the summer I can just throw it on with some cute sandals. Although a beach holiday is not on the cards in the near future, a Frida made up in cotton voile would make the perfect cover-up to pop on over a bikini!
I’d like to try some of the other designs by Emporia Patterns and I’m thinking about adding a couple to my 2021 sewing plans. The Cassie dress has been on my radar for a while and I fancy a nice floaty double gauze version for the summer. Charlotte was wearing a gorgeous version of the Kobi dress when we met in October and it would be the perfect pattern to show-off some of the stunning quilting cottons we stock at Hometown!
Thanks again to Clair and Charlotte for giving me the Frida pattern – I chose which version to make and all thoughts and opinions are honest and my own.