|Style Arc Jema Panel Dress|
|Style Arc Jema Panel Dress|
I could not find any other Jema Panel Dresses on the internet, except for Anne from Clothing Engineer who has done an excellent review of this pattern which I found most helpful. The line drawing is not quite right. The proportions of the panels are different. I moved all the horizontal panel lines (except the top short front panel) down about 10 cm to better reflect the line drawing. I cut a straight size 12 and made no other alterations.
The fabric I used is a light weight denim from Spotlight. I decided to go with the frayed seam lines as a feature. The fringe is a light blue one way, and navy blue on the opposite grainline. I was careful to make sure the light blue fringe would feature on the vertical seam, and the navy fringe on the horizontal seams.
The pattern went together easily, a testament to Style Arc's great drafting skills. This dress was quite simple to construct and I would recommend it for a beginner seamstress. Anne from Clothing Engineer expanded on the technique of lapping the seams before creating the fringe which I found very helpful. I have included a photo of this step to show it clearly.
The lower panel's raw edge must be finished off to avoid fraying. (I overlocked mine). Mark a line 2cm from the finished edge. Mark a line 1cm from the raw edge of the upper panel that will be frayed. Now lap the upper panel over the lower panel, lining the raw edge up with the marked line on the lower panel. Pin and stitch along the line marked on the upper panel. Then stitch another line parallel to the stitching line.
Red thread was used for the entire construction of this dress, as I thought it would be a fun contrast, and I was too lazy to bother changing threads between sewing seams and top stitching. For the top stitching I used a triple stitch to make it stand out and I am really pleased with how this worked out.
I sewed this dress in a few stints over the Easter break and I found creating the fringe to be very time consuming, but I do like the effect. I opted to turn up the hem, and the sleeve hems and top stitch with two rows of triple stitch, rather than finishing off with a fringe.
I sewed the sleeves in flat, before sewing the side seams and sleeve seams all in one go. The sleeves eased in effortlessly. I only needed to run one row of gathering stitches around the sleeve head to ease it into the armscye. I eliminated the back neck opening as it was unnecessary and the neckline is finished off with a double inside binding and top stitched. I also added a decorative top stitch on the shoulder seams and the centre back seam.
After wearing this dress all day today, I am a little disappointed in how it has bagged out in the seat and is sticking out strangley at the lower front, probably due to me sitting all day at work. This fabric may have been a little too stiff for this pattern and a fabric with a little more drape may have worked better. Oh well, you win some, you lose some. Now onto the next project...