Currently sitting in a hospital room with my poorly eldest daughter, in limbo, awaiting the hospitals next move, I thought I would do an impromptu blog post whilst all is calm and A is resting. It’s strange how we find ourselves in unusual situations, doing unexpected things isn’t it?
Obviously my mind is focused on A, but whilst she rests and to distract me from my worry, I’ve caught up on my blog post reading (limited however, as some blogs I access via Instagram and the hospital wifi seems to not like this particular social media platform!!)
One blog I read was from my newly found sewing friend Emma, from Emmaandhermachine. I do enjoy her posts as they are lighthearted but also very insightful in to her very new sewing journey. I am amazed at the amount of sewing she has done and her many amazing outfit achievements. It’s truely inspiring and she definitely inspires me.
One of her posts covered her two amazing Moneta dresses made for the #monetaparty. Now I’m always up for a party but as an Instagram newbie, when Emma first asked if I was going to join the Instagram party, a week before, I said yes (I hate to miss a party!), but had no idea what an Instagram sewing party was! Not sure whether many of you not on/new to Instagram would either! Well let me explain! This particular ‘party’, hosted by the #triplestitchers – Abigail, Rachel and Elle, started on Instagram last weekend, as a means of bringing the sewing community together and challenge each entrant to sew up their versions of the triplestitchers’ favourite dress from Collette Patterns – the Moneta dress. Various sponsors would choose their favourites for a chance to win prizes, which was an added bonus.
Now, once I got my head around the idea that it wasn’t a physical party that you go to and are face to face physically with the people attending, also that I had less than a week to make the dress and post it for the party, I thoroughly embraced the idea!
Leading up to the weekend of the party, I enjoyed many Instagram posts building up to the event and it certainly made the whole thing very exciting. I started sewing my version of the dress on the Saturday evening after the party started (always late to a party!) and was very happy (also relieved) that it whizzed up on my overlocker in two hours!!! A record for me!
I decided to do version 3 of the pattern, which was unlined and three-quarter length sleeves. I procrastinated on whether to add any ‘extras’ or ‘hacks’ after checking out the Colette blog, but decided in the end the fabric I chose didn’t need extra embellishments – it could hold its own. The fabric was left in my stash after the dress I drafted for my eldest (wearing above) and I had just enough left. I bought it last year from Ray Stitch, by Art Gallery Knits and is a beautiful stretch knit with a black base with white dots shaped as chains across.
The pattern instructions were really easy to follow, particularly given the time pressure I’d given myself to get the dress finished before the party ended on the Sunday evening. I did a rush pattern fitting on the Friday and decided no adjustments were needed and that the size L was suitable for my body measurements.
The sewing process was very straightforward as I’ve already said, using my overlocker, but using a zig zag stitch on a normal machine would be just as straightforward too. The only slightly ‘aarrhh’ moment was sewing the invisible elastic to the skirt waist. The pattern says to divide and tackle in the four sections marked on the pattern. When I make another Moneta (and I definitely will), I will probably divided the elastic further in to eight sections to give more even distribution of the shirring.
All remaining processes were easy to put in place, for instance heming with a twin needle if like most of us you don’t have a cover machine. I had used a twin needle a few times with jersey and knit’s and find it quite easy to use. Even if it is your first time, it’s quite easy to master.
Overall I’m happy with my first Monenta and entry, particularly with the speed I made it! In future makes I would grade from a size M at the shoulders and bust up to L on the waist of the bodice, as it’s a little wide and shows my bra straps easily (you can tell in the piccie above). I would also shorten the bodice an inch and shorten the skirt an inch to ensure a better fit at the waist and the skirt comes on my knee rather than below. I would also lengthen the sleeves as they didn’t come quite to three quarter length and I’ve got relatively short arms! All of the above adjustments I will do on this dress but for now it’s still perfectly fine as it is.
So what are my final thoughts on my first #instaparty? I LOVED IT and can’t wait for more! As you can see from my pictures I certainly embraced the party atmosphere at home and with my family. It was so nice that I was able to share it with them as sewing can be solitary, particularly if you have few like minded people who live locally. Connecting through mediums such as Instagram, especially via events like this, is a brilliant way of connecting Worldwide to an amazing sewing and crafting community. Hope to connect with more of you in the future, for now look after yourselves. X