Saturday, March 15, 2014

La, La, La LO-LA: Victory Patterns Lola Dress

Those of us in North America have been freezing our butts off this winter.  I have grown tired of my winter indoor uniform of yoga pants, long sleeve shirt, and fleece jacket.  When I saw the Lola dress made by Lori from Girls in the Garden, I thought...."That looks like a cozy dress.  I could make one to wear indoors on cold days.  I would never leave the house in it, because that looks like it might be the most unflattering dress in the world on me."  I've been in a sewing funk since breaking up with Butterick 5958, and the Lola was the first thing to spark my interest since the breakup.  The Lola dress is from Victory Patterns, which is a new-to-me pattern company.  I bought the pdf version (since it was cheaper), taped it together, and went to work.  

I had 2 yards of french terry in my stash that would be perfect.  I knew that I wanted to make the dress as warm as possible so I cut the sleeves to be full length.  I didn't have any ribbed knit so I skipped the bottom hem band and just extended the length of the dress.  I didn't have enough fabric left to make pockets and I didn't want the extra bulk at my hip anyway.  I considered drafting a kangaroo pocket for the front so that I could carry my phone around in, but I got excited by the sewing and never stopped to draft one.  I cut a size 12 and graded to a 14 at the hip.  It sewed up very quickly.  The seams lined up perfectly and the dress was well drafted.  When I tried it on, I was surprised.  It was not the most unflattering dress in the world.  While it didn't do me many favors, it looked better than I expected.  I really like the seaming and I think it would look good color-blocked with black panels on the side. 

 It was a little floppy in the swayback area so I took in each seam to give it a closer fit. To give my long sleeves even more length, I added hem bands Renfrew-style.  For the hem, I turned up 5/8" and used my coverstitch machine.

The neckline was too low and wide to qualify as warm and snuggle-y since I'm used to wearing a fleece jacket zipped up to my chin.  I wasn't about to wear a scarf indoors so I had to come up with some sort of neckline modification.  I tried to make an extra wide neck band, but that turned out pretty lousy: a cross between an enormous and stumpy turtleneck and a stiff standing-up cowl.  I took what few bits of fabric I had left and created a wide band V-neck!

Eureka!  It was warm and snuggle-y with lots of neck coverage!  I don't think I can ever reproduce exactly what I did to make this.  It was a trial and error process to come up with the look I wanted.  Since I had so little fabric I had to piece together bits of fabric and now there are 2 seams on the back of the neck band which (pat on the back here) I lined up with the raglan sleeve seams!  Woo hoo!

The front V does It doesn't lie perfectly and there is a bit of a bump at the bottom of the V.  I think this is because the neckline was more of a rounded shape with a small v made at the bottom, while my neck band created a very sharp V.  Does it bother me?  Yes.  Am I going to fix it?  Probably not, because I never intended to wear this out of the house  Although, I already have :)

In conclusion, I was pleasantly surprised by the Lola dress, and I think it would be much more flattering on someone who is slimmer through the hips than I.  Will I make it again?  Yes, I think I will!  


  1. I really like this and, personally, I think the shape is really flattering. There's something about those long princess seam lines. I made this in really heavy stable knit and wish I'd made long sleeves like you did. That would have made it much more wearable!

  2. I really like your idea of the wide v neck. Adaptable to a variety of tops, so I bookmarked it. Thank you.

  3. Great dress for the cold days. Well done on the collar.

  4. Lovely dress for the colder days you have done a good job on the neck and fit. I like your idea of colour blocking

  5. Firstly, glad to hear you're out of your sewing funk! I've been in one for the past month, too. Secondly, you did an amazing job on that V-neck band! What a creative idea. I love that you matched up the seams with the raglan seam of the dress, that is the sort of attention to detail that makes a project better than anything you can buy. :)

  6. What a great warm dress you've made! Genius collar modification! And I love grey. Maybe going to have to give this pattern a try...

  7. I really like your dress. and I think it is very flattering on you.. Love what you did with the neck.. Proud your back sewing..

  8. A cosy dress sounds like a nice change from yoga pants. That collar is really elegant, and so much more practical than a scarf. What a good idea for home clothes that you could definitely leave the house in!


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