Painter’s Block Melissa

With the vintage jumpsuit completed, it’s officially the start of my two weeks of ‘dressmaking’. I started with the knit fabric I bought from one of my countless trips to Spotlight. It was love at first sight with this fabric and I didn’t even know if I was able to handle such a silky, stretchy fabric. Having completed this dress, I have to say it was quite an experience.  As I do not have a serger, I used a jersey needle with my very ordinary sewing machine, a normal foot, zig-zag stitches and a load full of blind guts and went ahead. I can’t recall what fabric this is specifically but cotton jersey it was not. It had a mind of its own and loved to sway from side to side when I tried my best to get it as straight as possible. The seam reaper definitely played a huge role in this project and I’m glad I baste whenever I was in doubt. I guess I will have to practice sewing knits more. So, here it is, my second knit project and what I am calling the Painter’s Block Melissa.

I have been eyeing Burdastyle’s Jenny dress for a long time but knew I had absolutely no occasion to wear it. Melissa, its evil twin, however, was another story. Somehow, knit just seemed more relax, more casual. I planned the fabric placement, hoping that the horizontal stripes and vertical stripes at different locations will help hide excesses where they should not exist and accentuate whatever I lacked.

Before starting on the project, I read reviews by talented seamstresses who had tried the Melissa sewing pattern. Most of them mentioned that it ran large so I cut a size 36 for top and skirt and size 38 for the high waist (I’m a size 38). It seemed to  have worked well for me and is now something I will definitely wear.

As a sewing pattern, I’ll consider the Melissa pretty easy to put together with the right fabric. I managed to finish it in a day despite using a less than easy fabric so this is a dress you can create within a short time frame and easy enough to figure out without much instructions. When I was trying to print the instructions, I realized it was meant for the skirt so I thought they didn’t include instructions for the dress which they actually did under the dress variation (here) but alas I had already completed most of the project. Sometimes, I just wished they could be put together in one place.


18 thoughts on “Painter’s Block Melissa

  1. Gorgeous! I also love the casual and relax knitwear (especially in the form of a pretty dress like this), but haven’t been succeed in making one..

  2. This is a very pretty dress, I love your fabric choice and it works very well with the dress construction. i like that you mixed horizontal and vertical, it makes it very interesting…

  3. LOVE it! And bravo to you for your “blind guts” — if you don’t try, you will never know, right?

    Slippery knits are quite a challenge to work with … I’m battling with one right now. Hahahaha! So thanks for the inspiration ‘cos now I know they *can* be tamed.

  4. Thank you Toy, Ali and Tasia! @Ina: Love to see you make a dress! Your bags are really cute so I’m sure a dress would not be a problem for you my dear. @Petite Josette: Thanks so much, It was the lines and colours on the fabric that made it a must buy for me haha so I thought I better make the most out of it:P

  5. Thanks Simone! Yes, I’d rather try it and regret (which I ain’t feeling now and that’s a bonus!) than to regret not trying it at all. Good luck for yours, it’s gonna be stunning!

  6. Gorgeous dress! I like the name you gave the dress too, very apt for the print and the way you used it. I am getting more in tune with knits too. They are lovely to wear.

  7. I think the dress turned out great! And it’s very flattering, although I can’t imagine what you would want to hide. You look in great shape. Anyway, love the print, stunning dress!

  8. what a gorgeous dress and look at how it shapes your body 🙂 i love the fabric choice too. something that i will overlook in the fabric shop but turns out gorgeous.

  9. Pingback: Mystery Cardigan Completed! « The Sew Convert

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