Winter in Tennessee… as a Dress

Emery Dress

That is what this one is going to be called, Winter in Tennessee.  And as appropriate as it could be, the day I finished making it was a nice wet and dreary one – just like it typically is here this time of the year.  I knew it was the perfect name.


This dress was from Chistine Haynes’s Emery dress pattern, and I am probably one of the last ones to make it.  I have seen it around the internet for a long while now, and I finally had to have my own.  (I am most smitten by Barethread’s version that she made out of the best-est Mini Copper material in the whole world wide web.  I know this because I have searched and searched for some.)

My final thoughts about this dress though, I don’t love mine as much as everyone else seems to.  Here are my problems, and may I note that these problems had everything to do with me and probably nothing to do with the pattern.  My only complaint about the pattern itself is that the lines were so close together on the tissue for the darts, that it was a PAIN tracing the pieces out onto butcher paper.  (I have started to do this, trace out my patterns for those special ones that I order online.  A pain, yes, but so far, I think it is worth it…?)

First thing, I did not like the way that the sleeves came out.  This is nothing new to me.  I have such a hard time with sleeves and that is the reason most of my me made dresses don’t have any.  I redid these a couple of times and finally gave up on getting the curve smooth and thought maybe it would look alright how it was.  It doesn’t look alright now that I have worn and photographed the dress.  Those most likely will be coming off the next chance I get to sit down and pull out my seam ripper.

Next, I didn’t line the dress as the directions called for because I don’t like lining dresses.  Had I done this, I think I would be happier with the finishing around the neck.  I made my own facing as I often do, but messed up with it around the top shoulder seam and there was not much for me to do about that without redoing a bunch of stuff, and at that point I was ready to be done.

I had to take the top shoulder seam up some after I had the sleeves in place.  For some reason it seemed to fit just fine as I was working on the bodice, but when the zipper got in place, the dress darts were too low and the back gaped quite a bit.  Lifting the shoulder seams helped the dart placement and the back gaping.  This adjustment I think ended up being the reason for the facing problem previously mentioned.

I had some zipper issues with this dress, and I have come to realize that my upper back is kind of narrow.  Every single dress that I make has to be taken in about an inch and tapered off where the zipper meets.  This might be why I like side zippers so much cause it is a lot easier strait stitching down the back center seam than fiddling with the zipper placement.  It never fails once I start messing with it, something doesn’t line up anymore; whether it be the center back seam or the top neckline.  So on my next Emery, I think I will make it a seamless back and put in a side seam zipper – or try to anyway.

I also lowered the neckline a little bit.  The pattern piece seemed much higher than I liked when I was holding everything up to me before I cut out the material.

Now for the best part of the dress, besides the really cool fabric, I made pockets.  The first time ever and I love them.  Plus, they were so easy, and it was only a small extra step to complete.  Almost all of the dresses I make have pockets in the pattern, but I have never bothered with them because I figured it would slow me down and I would probably put them in backwards or something.  As easy as it was, it looks like all of my dresses will be having pockets from now on, so hopefully I will have a lot less lip balm to loose.  😉

Emery Dress 2

That’s all I have to say about this one.  I do like the dress, but I know I will like it much more without these sleeves.  I suppose that I should line the next one, and probably try the collar since I so much want a dress with a Peter Pan collar.

*Email subscribers, apologies for a duplicate post.  I accidentally hit publish instead of save while I was working on the post.  A very silly mistake that I am sure all bloggers have done at least once… Oops!  This one has the pictures in it so at least you can see the dress that I was going on and on about.

*Linking up with: Craftastic Monday, Creative Mondays, Do Tell Tuesday, Tuesday’s With a Twist & Passion for Fashion.

6 Replies to “Winter in Tennessee… as a Dress”

  1. Aw thanks my dear 😊

    Your looks great! And how fantastic are pockets in dresses?
    Initially i wasnt so in love with emery either. I had similar problems with the shoulder seam, the height of the neckline and needing to taper the zipper also, so you are not alone there.
    But after tweeking the pattern its become a favourite of mine.


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