Last week I decided to test the new Peony Patterns Wattle Dress for my eldest. This is Peony’s first knit dress pattern, and given how much my girls love a good knit dress, I know this one will get lots of wear! Oh, and did I mention the twirl on this one? She’s definitely a fan of that!!
Wattle has a lined bodice, a circle skirt in two lengths, and 3 sleeve lengths. The sleeve cap also has a cute ruched detail that adds some feminine detail, and the neckline is a beautiful boatneck. Sizing on this one runs from children’s 1 – 14 and is available in PDF format.
This pattern suits knit fabric with good recovery such as cotton lycra, stretch velvet, stretch French Terry, double brushed polyester, spandex. Because of the bias in the circle skirt, you’ll need a fabric with at least 5% Lycra/Spandex otherwise the skirt will droop in a weird way.
For this version, I decided to use some double brushed polyester that I’d had in my stash for a year or two (Fabric Mart). It is definitely nice to clear out some yardage!! This fabric was pretty easy to sew up and my daughter loves how comfy it is to wear (in winter at least! I wouldn’t recommend it as a summer fabric!).
I would rate this pattern for beginner – advanced beginners (it would be fine as a first knit pattern if you’ve got some experience sewing wovens, but the instructions are easy to follow if you are totally new to sewing as well). You’ll need a sewing machine, and while a serger is optional, it does make things easier in some places. I also recommend some knit stay tape for the neckline. The pattern has you stay stitch it, and I did that that for some sections, but prefer to use stay tape for the neckline itself.
My daughter measured almost a size 6 chest (she’s like size 5 and 3/4!), and between 8 and 10 for height. So for this version I made a size 6 chest and lengthened to a 10. The fit was mostly fine, however I did make a second one with a size 5 chest and 8 bodice length, 10 skirt length, and the fit on that one is a better. I think with this one, if you are between chest sizes, plan to size down. Knit is very forgiving like that!
Tip! I did modify the construction of the bodice side seams, sewing them like I do swimsuits. I describe my method for enclosing side seams at the bottom of this post.
Wattle will be on sale until Sunday December 13 at 8pm US Eastern (December 14, 12pm Australian Eastern). Be sure to join the Peony Patterns Facebook group for even more inspiration!
Disclaimer: I received this pattern in exchange for testing it. Opinions are 100% my own!