Coram Dress

Have you guys had a chance to check out Allie Olson‘s latest sewing pattern, the Coram Top & Dress?? It was just released in the Indiesew Fall/Winter Collection, and it is perfect for wearing with cardigans and coats all season long.

I had the opportunity to test the top version of this pattern, and I know Allie worked so hard on it. I’m so glad that it’s finally released! It’s a loose fitting raglan pattern made for wovens, and it is SO cool. I think my favorite part of the pattern is the fold-up sleeve detail.

The second thing I like is that Allie explains how to do flat felled seams in the instructions, and it makes the garment look so nice! When I was testing the top version of the pattern, I just serged the raw edges and the pattern came together really quickly. But if you want it to look really nice, try flat felling! I’ve never done French seams or flat felled seams before, but it was a good experience and I love the way it looks on this dress.

The next thing I love, that I didn’t love very much at first is the curved hem. Hemming is probably my least favorite thing, depending on the day, but curved hems are just tricky. I really like the basting method she explains in the instructions, but the first two times I tested the pattern I just kept missing part of the hem while top stitching. I can happily say now that it just takes a really good iron and some practice (and probably some luck). It was third time’s the charm for me! I was so happy when I was done hemming this dress because it was perfect and I hadn’t missed any of the hem!

Now, I know this pattern is for wovens with no stretch, but I found the most beautiful fabric that was dying to be made into a Coram Dress…with 25% stretch. Allie recommends using a fabric with no stretch (as do I), but this fabric had a calling. The stretch did affect the fit a little bit. It’s not quite as fitted it should be, but I kind of really like it!

Whether or not you are using a stretch fabric, I do agree with her in the instructions that basting the neckline in first is the smartest choice to make sure it will lay flat. I got a little overly excited and impatient when I got to the neckline of this dress and didn’t baste mine first, but I wish I would have (surprise, surprise). Since my fabric stretches, I could have made the neckband a bit shorter, but it still lays pretty well. Oh well, live and learn.

The only adjustments I made were to lengthen at the waist lengthen/shorten line by 2 inches, and at the bottom lengthen/shorten line by another 2 inches. It’s the perfect length on me and it’s SO comfortable to wear! I chose not to lower the bust darts and they hit in a really good spot, so I’m happy about that.

I love that Allie added the instructions on how to make a waist tie, because it really adds to the design and gives the dress more shape. I asked Dallas this morning before I tied the tie around my waist if the dress looked weird without it, and he said no, it just looked like a loose, flowy dress. So one of these I’ll probably switch things up occaisonally and wear it without the waist tie for a more relaxed look.

I’m really looking forward to making a few more Coram tops and dresses because they are so comfortable and perfect for my mom lifestyle.

Make sure to check out everyone else in the blog tour who has made the patterns released in the Indiesew F/W Collection! Happy Sewing!

Oct 18: Grainline Studio
Oct 20: My Handmade Wardrobe
Oct 23: The Doing Things Blog
Oct 24: Sweet KM
Oct 25: Sew House Seven
Oct 26: Threadbear Garments
Oct 27: Sew Liberated

4 thoughts on “Coram Dress”

    1. Thank you Sky! ❤ I think flat felled seams only work for certain patterns, but they’re perfect for this one. I’m excited to have more woven tops and this one is really good. 🙂

  1. 1. How tall are you? I’m 5’8”, and wondering how much to lengthen/shorten the pattern.
    2. Your dress is so beautiful that I ordered exactly the same fabric from Cali fabrics in order to recreate it for myself. Did you prewash the fabric?
    I’ve already made the Coram top in cotton lawn and I love the fit.
    Thanks for the inspiration!

    1. Hi Beth! I’m so excited for your dress!
      I did prewash the fabric before starting. I highly recommend sizing down at least one size if you use this fabric. You also will want to cut the neckband a little shorter since the fabric stretches. Allie recommends basting the neckline in first.
      I’m 5’11 and I lengthened it 2 inches at the waist l/s line and 2 more inches at the bottom l/s line. (I have a long torso, so the waistline usually sits up on my ribs. You may not have that problem though.) I also didn’t move the bust darts at all because they’re already pretty low and they hit in a good spot for me.
      Hope this helps. Let me know if you have anymore questions!

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *