April Challenge #1: A Belated Valentine’s Macaron

Are you noticing a theme yet? I get really ambitious with my sewing projects and then realize I still have a 40-hour a week job and life obligations. Oops.

Anyway, I started this Macaron back in February, intending it to be a dress for a Valentine’s Day date with the beau. I ordered my fabric from Mood in late January, but there were some shipping mix-ups and I wound up having to pick up the fabric directly from my local post office, which has insane hours and I can never seem to make it there before or after work.

I got the fabric the week of Valentine’s Day, and nearly finished it all in 2 evenings when I ran out of bias tape for the neck and arm holes. V-Day came and went, and my almost-finished dress just sat on my dress form and stared at me. There were some minor tweaks that I though about making (the interfacing I used on the waist was meh and one of my front pleats doesn’t exactly line up correctly). But I moved on to other projects. I mentioned it to my friend that got married last week, and she said that I HAD to finish it for her wedding. Well, if it’s for the bride…

Me and the lovely bride. She made this dress with her mom! It's absolutely stunning.
Me with the lovely bride. She made this dress with her mom! It’s absolutely stunning.

The Basics: 

Pattern: Colette Patterns Macaron

Fabric: 2 yds of a glorious garnet cotton sateen from Mood (I’d been eying it for months) and 1 yd of lace from Fashion Fabrics Club

Alterations: Lopped off the sleeves. I finished the neck and the arm holes with bias tape due to the sheerness of the lace. I cut a straight 16, but I should have tapered to a 14 at the waist and hips [scribbles down notes].

Notions: Thread and zipper.

Not quite as matchy as I'd like, but I don't think people will be looking too closely at my armpit.
Not quite as matchy as I’d like, but I don’t think people will be looking too closely at my armpit.

Make it again?: Yup. I have a fun and a dressy version complete. Now I want to make a casual and a work-friendly version. Maybe with an A-line or a pencil skirt? I forgot to add the length to the bodice. I need to add that to my notes for next time.

Favorite parts: Aside from my previous gushing over the lovely bodice, I adore the way these fabrics compliment each other. I really want to use my scrap fabric to make a few accessories, like a bow belt, a clutch, and some shoe clips.

Other thoughts: I’m just really, really happy to have this project done. It was bugging me all of March. I really like the sleeveless option on this dress. It makes construction super quick (aside from a 2 month break in-between sittings:P). I nixed the pockets on this version, but I wish I hadn’t. They really are quite handy.

front - macaron

Hanging with the beau. At least it worked for one of our dates!
Hanging with the beau. At least it worked for one of our dates!



Marvel Macaron

Happy belated Thanksgiving! I hope you all had a happy holiday with loved ones.

A little while back, I mentioned that was getting started on a Macaron dress from Colette. Well, I finished it in time for Thanksgiving dinner! I was so happy with how everything lined up for this dress. I bought a fun Marvel print fabric on a whim over the summer. I was at the cutting table at JoAnn’s when I spotted it. Originally, I intended to make a Cambie out of it, but there was only  2 3/4 yards left. So I stashed it, hoping that a pattern would come along. I read about the Macaron through a few other sewing blogs and thought it’d be perfect. The yoke is a great way to balance out the business of the print. Bonus: I had red fabric for the yoke in my stash!

The moment I started sewing this dress I knew I was going to love it. It’s just such a pretty design. I can’t wait to make more versions of this dress for daily wear. I love my Cambie, but Colette patterns are a better “out of the box” fit for me.


The Basics:

Pattern: Colette Macaron

Fabric: 2 yards of Marvel print fabric from JoAnn’s (I plan to use the rest for other DIY projects) and  1 3/4 red quilting cotton that I had in my stash.

Alterations: I added 1 1/2″ to the skirt length. I also did a rolled hem instead of a blind hem. I’ve never used my blind hem foot and opted for something I knew would work and look neat. I may seam rip this and try the blind hem at a later date.

Time: 7-8~ hours

Notions: Invisible zipper

Make it again? Absolutely. The fit of the pattern is absolutely gorgeous. It really accentuates an hourglass shape, but the pleats are a great camouflage for the tummy area. Big perk for consuming Thanksgiving dinner! I’d love to make a few more versions of this dress for work/play. Expect to see a sleeveless version come warmer weather!

Favorite parts: Pockets hidden into the pleats, scalloped sleeves (I thought I’d hate them. I was so wrong!), overall fit.

Other thoughts: I’m happy I wore this to dinner with the fam, but I can’t wait to wear this dress to a con! It’s just so fun.

I did run into a few minor fitting issues. I read on a few blogs that Colette patterns tend to be a bit more fitted, so I sewed a size up. I did have to take it in at a few points, but only a little. The bodice fits a little higher than I normally like, so I’ll add an inch in future dresses. I’ll also add 4-5″ to the skirt length to allow for a proper hem. The hem on this dress is 1/2″ rolled hem, but the pattern calls for a blind hem that takes a full 2″. That would have put this dress at mid-thigh on me, but I prefer my dresses to sit right below my knee. I’m also a giant, so there’s that.

If you haven’t bought an invisible zipper foot, go out and buy one now. Oh man, it makes such a difference and they’re not expensive. My zipper was so neat on this dress. I am a happy, happy camper.

Side shot. Look at dem sleeves! So pretty. I really love those pockets too.
Butt/back shot. I really like the pleats.