Although it’s the middle of January and there’s snow in the forecast, I’m looking ahead to the warm weather of Spring. The days are finally getting longer, and it’s not pitch black when I leave the office every day, so I need a dress that captures these bright spots in the darkness. Thankfully, Minerva sent me the perfect fabric for this – a lemon-printed black Lady McElroy superfine cotton lawn fabric. This lightweight woven cotton is perfect for the Honeybourne Dress – my first make from Jenny Rushmore’s “Ahead of the Curve”. I was so excited to try out some of the tricks from the book on my Honeybourne, but honestly, the dress fit great without much tweaking.
The highlight of this make is this splendid fabric from Minerva. Lady McElroy makes some of my favorite fabrics and this one is no exception! The contrast between the jet-black background and the bright yellows and greens is just stunning. Plus, the colors stayed bright, with no bleeding, after laundering. As I mentioned before, this cotton lawn is lightweight and can be slightly sheer in some light. For my pictures, I wore a black slip underneath, but you could also line your garment to make sure it remains opaque. I chose to leave my dress unlined and I don’t regret it one bit. The fabric has a beautifully-fluid drape and delightfully catches the wind. It would be perfect for a springtime picnic in the park.
As soon as I received my copy of “Ahead of the Curve,” I knew that the Honeybourne Dress would skip to the top of my sewing queue. I LOVE fit and flair dresses, but after making so many tweaks to my tried and true Simplicity 1873, I was really looking forward to sewing a pattern that didn’t need to be tweaked to death to work for me. The Honeybourne Dress fit the bill perfectly! First things first – let’s discuss the actual pattern. Unlike other Cashmerette patterns, the patterns in “Ahead of the Curve” are printed on double-sided paper. You could either have them printed again so you could cut them out (seems like a hassle) or trace the patterns on tracing/pattern paper, which is what I did. Tracing the pattern also worked well for me because I was grading between three sizes. It was easy to make these adjustments as I was tracing everything. If you choose to use this method, make sure you include all the notches, darts, etc.
Once everything was traced and the fabric pieces cut out, I was a little disappointed to see there was no easy place to add pockets. The skirt is made up of five pieces – a front piece, two side pieces, and two back pieces. To me, the front piece is a bit two narrow to add in-seam pockets, but it might work well for those who like a more front-facing pocket or a center panel pocket. On a happier note, I decided to test the fit by basting the back seam before installing the zipper and the fit was perfect! It was so perfect, in fact, that I skipped the zipper and finished the back seam to complete a pullover version of the Honeybourne. I absolutely love it and am looking forward to making more garments from “Ahead of the Curve”. Have you purchased your copy yet? If not, order yours today!