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Dawn McCall's M8104 Sewing Pattern Review

I’m excited to share this new dress with you guys because I really didn’t have high hopes that I would ever even wear it, much less film it for the channel. I don’t know why, put I was convinced it wasn’t going to fit or wasn’t going to look good on my post-pandemic body. But, here we are none-the-less and I’m happy to report the dress isn’t terrible. haha

Ok. I know that’s not the most glowing review but considering how doubtful I was, the fact that we are at “it isn’t terrible” is pretty good. So, let me break it all down for you.

This is the dawn dress from McCall’s aka M8104. The website describes it as an empire seam button front dresses with length and dolman sleeve variations & flounce details. the description is a little vague though and doesn’t do the design justice. here are the line drawings to help you get a better visual for all the details this dress has to offer.

What intrigued me about it was the dolman sleeve, the puffiness of the sleeve, and the bust and back waist gathers.

So, I decided to give it a go and make a wearable muslin. I found this quilter weight cotton in my stash. I think that I got it on sale somewhere. I don’t totally love the print. I’m not much of a bird person. But, I figured the structure and weight of this fabric would lend itself really well to figuring out any fit issues there might be.

As it turns out…there aren’t many. The only one I can really see is the sleeve band is pretty small. I don’t even have full biceps and it’s tight on me. So, I’d definitely check that measurement and adjust accordingly. Pretty simple alteration.

Something that doesn’t bother me, but might bother you is that the buttons don’t extend all the way to the bust line. You can see that the fabric is overlapped in that area keeping it modest, but there’s nothing to keep it that way and certainly if I move a particular way, it will open up and more of my bust will show. Again, no big deal for me, but something to keep in mind if you like a higher neckline.

The last thing I want to say about this pattern is that the front button band is no joke construction wise. It extends into the neck which makes it very curvy with a mix of concave and convex curves. So, be sure to use proper interfacing, press often, and use lots and lots of pins. I skipped the handsewing of the facing opting for topstitching and I don’t think I did myself any favors.

Also, I was having a real battle with my button hole foot for this band. I don’t know if it was the fabric or the thickness of the band or what, but my machine was not having it. So they are not the prettiest. Se la vie.

Alright, that’s going to do it for me today! Let me know what you think of the dress. I’ll see you all very soon! Bye!



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