Brand new to sewing? Start here, with posts on gathering your tools, taking your measurements, and figuring out your garment sewing cup size. The Sew Busty Beginners’ Sewing Series will be your step-by-step guide to learning garment sewing. Each installment will build upon the last, getting progressively more advanced in skills and techniques. Catch up with the whole series here.
As part of the Beginners’ Sewing Series, we’re doing a sew along of the Cashmerette Roseclair Wrap Dress. Check out the full sew along here.
For our first Beginners’ Series sew along, we started with a tank top made from stretchy knit material. Knits are fantastic for beginners because they’re easier to fit and don’t include more complicated things like darts or facings.
But, if I’m being honest, I really really prefer woven garments. I prefer wearing woven; I prefer sewing woven.
So, for our second sew along, we’re going to make a garment using woven material! And, of course, we’re going to make a dress (with an alternate top option!) for July’s #sewbustychallenge meets #sewmonthlywithhom!
The Cashmerette Rosclair!
This pattern has three options: View A is a long wrap dress with tiers of material, View B is knee-length and has short sleeves, and View C is knee-length with puff sleeves. I’m going to be making View B … I think. I might end up deciding to do View C. You’ll be able to easily follow along by choosing View B or C, but for View A, you’ll be on your own for the tiered skirt.
Not a dress person? The Roseclair can also be made as a peplum top! Feel free to follow along and make a shirt 🙂
what is woven material?
In the most basic sense, woven materials aren’t stretchy, but knits generally are. Now, there are exceptions, like the sheer cup lining we use for bra making, which is both knit and not stretchy. Buuuuut, you can generally think woven = stable and knit = stretchy to keep things simple.
The real difference is that wovens are made out of a bunch of threads woven together. Think of a loom.
Knits, on the other hand, are made of a single thread that’s looped and braided around itself. Think of knitting.
With knits, we don’t always have to use darts or other shaping elements, because the fabric will stretch over our bodies. With wovens, we must use stitching to mold the fabric.
Woven materials come in many different types! Poplin, crepe, silk, satin, linen, polyester, rayon, chiffon, even quilting cotton! So many types.
Choosing Material for the Roseclair
For this particular project, we’re going to choose a lightweight woven fabric, such as cotton poplin, linen, rayon, or double gauze. Honestly, basically any of those fabrics are pretty beginner-friendly. I’m personally going to use this mustard linen from Joann’s, but you should feel free to choose another of the materials I just listed.
If you’d like to use the same material I’m using, check out this link for other linens and linen-look fabrics available from Joann’s!
Choosing a Size for the Roseclair
Normally, at this point in the post, I’d go over very detailed instructions on how to measure yourself and choose your size.
But Cashmerette has made it so much easier than that.
Specifically, they have a magnificent size calculator. Literally just pop in your measurements, click “calculate my size,” and voila! It will tell you which size to make, including places where you might need to blend between sizes.
For me, I’m going to make a 10 G/H for the bust, then blend to an 8 at the waist. The size calculator also tells me to blend to a size 4 at the hip. However, since the Roseclair has an open hip (versus a fitted hip), I’m not going to continue to blend down from the waist, but am instead going to make an 8 from the waist down.
Similarly, if your hip measurement falls into a smaller size than your waist, don’t worry about blending down in sizes. But if your hip measurement falls into a larger size than your waist, you will want to blend up. To blend between sizes, follow this tutorial on Cashmerette’s site!
A note on cashmerette’s cup sizes
Remember back when I told you how to determine your garment cup size, and how I said it wasn’t the same as your bra size? Well, this doesn’t exactly hold true for Cashmerette. So, before you freak out about the cup size suggested by the Cashmerette calculator, let me explain:
You see, Cashmerette labels their cup sizes such that your size in their patterns will likely be closer to your size in bras. However, this does not mean that your cup size in Cashmerette will definitely be equivalent to your bra size. For me, for example, I wear a J bra, and the calculator gives me a G/H as my suggested Cashmerette size.
It really comes down to labeling. What most designers call a garment DD cup, Cashmerette calls a G/H. What most designers call a garment D, Cashmerette calls E/F. And what most designers call a C, Cashmerette calls a C/D.
All of this said, you shouldn’t need to worry much about this, because the size calculator will tell you what you need to know.
What if I need a full bust adjustment?
If you need a full bust adjustment on the Roseclair, hang tight! Later this week, we will have a tutorial on doing a full bust adjustment on a wrap dress.
This week, you should:
- Purchase the Roseclair pattern (sizes 0-16; sizes 12-32) and print and assemble it (or have it printed it at a copy shop!) by following these instructions.
- Make sure you have all the tools you’ll need for sewing. For this project, in addition to the basics listed on the Tools of the Trade post, you’ll need:
- Purchase materials:
- Get your fabric ready:
- Make any necessary pattern adjustments, such as blending between sizes and doing a full bust adjustment.
- Cut out your fabric and be ready to sew!
The next installment of the Roseclair Dress sew along will take place July 19! We’ll be sewing up the bodice.
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