I was beyond excited when I got the email from Sanna of Paradise Patterns, saying I had been chosen to test her new pattern, The Hallon Dress.
I'm in the process of curating a style that feels more "me" after the whirlwind that was the first year of sewing in a pandemic. Currently I'm transitioning from saying yes to every single pattern that catches my eye (I'm looking at you, big collar trend) to learning how to slow down and carefully choose where to devote my sewing time and energy. I'm realizing that simple lines and neutral colors are what I primarily gravitate toward, so when I saw View B of the Hallon, I immediately wanted it in a black linen, despite the temptation to make it in a bright print. Even at the fabric store, I wavered between my original inspiration and choosing a fabric that would "read" better, but in the end, I stuck with my gut.
Based off of the finished garment measurements, I chose size 2 with no modifications. I'll probably add a 1/2" to the length of the armhole bias pieces next time, as the fit is just a touch too tight. The pattern is also modeled after someone who is 5'7", but I didn't take any length off the dress and I'm very glad I didn't (I'm 5'5" for reference).
View B comes with instructions on how to construct French seams with a side slit, making this pattern possible for any home sewer with a basic sewing machine. The side-seam construction, paired with the neckline and armhole bias binding, make this dress durable even in lightweight drapey fabrics. I'm excited to start playing with layering this dress, as I think it lends itself incredibly well to all seasons.
Congratulations Sanna on your Hallon Dress! Your effortless cool girl patterns have me planning an entire summer in Paradise.