The Artiest Skirt by The Eli Monster as a Brand Ambassador

Being a Brand Ambassador is a great way to sew lots but also to try new patterns and designs. I’m all for a maxi skirt and decided this month to make The Artiest Skirt (**affiliate link). It is indeed a maxi skirt with optional pockets that uses up lots of fabric!!!!

Keep in mind, this skirt is very full and although requires lots of fabric, having panels gives that same effect without having to cut a circle skirt. The other advantage is that it has a back zip closure with a waistband so the bulk at the hips and waist is minimised with all the fullness at the bottom of the skirt.

Usually when I want to sew something I peruse Pinterest for inspiration and for this skirt found some images I really liked. For my pattern size E, which equates to AUS 12, I needed about 5 metres of fabric, which is a lot. I thought I would do a plain skirt (read single colour, non-directional print). When I got to the fabric store I couldn’t find any fabric like I had imagined and then stumbled on this printed crepe Jungle in navy 148cm (100% polyester). Not what I was after – it’s both directional and multi coloured!

It was on sale so that helped the decision along however when I went to get my 5 metres cut there was only 3.5 metres left on the bolt. The lady at the counter kind of convinced me I would be okay because of the width of the fabric and although I still wasn’t sure, I went with it. I don’t think she realised how much flare the pattern pieces had. Anyway, fast forward a week later and I prepared myself to cut the fabric.  I was trying to be strategic because I only had one chance to get this right. I cut the front and backs out first and then the side panels, thinking I could probably piece together some fabric at the bottom and it wouldn’t be visible. Lo and behold, there was no need. The pattern pieces literally just fit on the fabric, going into the selvage slightly which is okay as that’s the seam allowance anyway. I will also mention that I chose not to add pockets, blasphemy!!!

So 3.5 metres later and I have a full maxi skirt that swishes amazingly and feels really feminine with some scraps left over probably to make a little camisole. I wonder if I could get away with this looking like a maxi dress then when worn together, time will tell!

I did make one minor adjustment to the skirt as this size was too big when at the zip insertion stage, and that was to take out some width from the centre back. I took out about 6cm at the waist and tapered to about 3cm at the hip. Not an ideal way to do this but next time will alter each pattern piece separately. Also although my invisible zip looks great, I do have some bubbling at the bottom which smooths out when worn, but my main concern was because this fabric is lightweight, I should have interfaced the zip area as I normally do. The instructions don’t have you do this but I highly recommend it.

I do highly recommend The Artiest Skirt Pattern if you want a flowy maxi skirt without the trouble of cutting a circle skirt and it’s currently on sale for $7.00. I’m sure you could even use up less fabric when using a non-directional fabric, providing it is wide enough. You know the feeling when you put on an item of clothing and feel really feminine and good in it, this is how I feel in the Artiest skirt.

**This post contains affiliate links to The Eli Monster Patterns

Advertisements

Bloem Top by The Eli Monster as a Brand Ambassador Sew

I’m not doing a great job promoting these patterns at the moment as a brand ambassador but am trying to stay diligent for 2019.

The Bloem Top (**affiliate link) by The Eli Monster is a simple, airy casual top perfect for warmer weather. Excellent for beginners as the necessary sewing techniques are basic and also it is super fast to sew. This top features bias trim neckline and arm openings, a simple single button back closure and a subtle high/low hem. There is also a kids version available if you want to add some wardrobe basics for everyone.

Like the rest of The Eli Monster’s patterns, The Bloem Top is layered which means you only need to print the size you are making.  All steps are accompanied by colour photographs. To save paper, cutting dimensions for rectangular pieces are included in lieu of pattern pieces.

I used a nice drapey mustard sketch printed rayon 135cm (100% viscose rayon). Looking back however perhaps I could go down 2 sizes next time as it has ended up quite roomy but also perfect for hot, sweltering weather. Also I made an error with the neckline but didn’t bother fixing it. The bias trim is not mean to be turned completely to the inside which I did without thinking, but instead should be half visible as a finish. I’m okay with that in this version because I was too lazy to make my own so used black instead and don’t know if that would have been visually appealing. Also because I did this, those neck gathers aren’t as obvious as they are meant to be as I sewed them down when I top stitched. Face Palm!!!!

The fit issue I have become more aware the more I sew is that often armholes are too tight in sleeveless garments. This is not the case with the Bloem top. They come down quite low so I’m not feeling restricted in any way and also no undergarments are visible so don’t need to worry about showing too much.

For quite a simple top the finishes are nice. The instructions have you finish the hem with bias tape however I cheated and surged, turned and top stitched. I wasn’t sure if the bias would affect how the hem flowed since this fabric is so drapey. Probably not an issue if I had made my own with the same fabric however the bought bias felt a bit stiff.

Also once complete, I noticed the back closure was not really necessary as I can get the top on and off without undoing it. I’m not sure if I went down a couple of sizes whether this would be affected but will need to check for next time. I would love to make a nice crisp white version for summer, perhaps in some eyelet fabric.

I honestly recommend this pattern for a wardrobe basic which takes no time to sew up.

**This post contains affiliate links to The Eli Monster Patterns

Also just a quick update on my fabric quota for the month of January according to my Stash Shrinker in this post. I purchased 10.1m for the month of January and sewed 3.5m. Lets hope February sways more the other way!

The Rivier Dress by The Eli Monster

So, I have joined The Eli Monster Brand Ambassador program and this months’ theme was spooky or sweet. I of course went for sweet, because that’s what little girls are made of :), although I was tempted to do spooky and make a purple and black witches dress. I just thought sweet would get more mileage though.

My inspiration was the colour of candy given that Halloween is such a sugar fest, but I also wanted some romantic element. I chose to make The Rivier Dress (* affiliate link) because I could add soft ruffles, tulle and a bow, very girly indeed.

This dress has a faux/partial wrap bodice with two sets of snaps at the sides, so it’s an easy dress in that you don’t need to insert a zipper. The skirt is a simple gathered one and the neckline can be super simple or ruffled and then there is a sleeveless or cap sleeves option. The pattern ranges from size 18mo up to teen 16, and that is a lot of use for a pattern.

All of The Eli Monster’s patterns feature the layered option and there are color photographs with the instructions. There is a cut chart for all rectangular pieces instead of pattern pieces, to save on both ink and paper and while some people prefer pattern pieces for everything, I’m happy to adapt to either option.

 

For my version, the bodice is completely lined with white broadcloth (100% cotton) and the main exterior fabric is floral printed poplin scattered white (100% cotton) overlayed with soft bridal tulle in mushroom colour (100% nylon). I sewed everything as instructed in the pattern however I sewed the floral and netting as two separate layers up until I sewed them onto the bodice. I used French seams for the netting and cut it to the length specified in the pattern and because I didn’t hem it, it’s longer than the under skirt, which is what I was going for. I also made a size bigger than I should have because I wanted my daughter to get more use out of it but it has ended up a bit big and long although she still adores it.

I chose to make the optional bow with cherry broadcloth (100% cotton), but wasn’t sure at the time if it was too much, but in the end I thought it finished off the dress. I did attach it to a brooch pin instead of to the dress so it is detachable and also can function as a hair brooch.

It’s very feminine and my daughter loves it so that’s a great end to this sweet tale. The Rivier Dress is currently on sale for $7.00 but check out The Eli Monster to get some other great patterns that you can adapt to suit any occasion.

*This post contains affiliate links to The Eli Monster Patterns