Friday, 6 December 2013

The Louisa dress - pattern tour and giveaway

I don't remember how I came across Marte's blog Compagnie M. All I know is that I am very glad I did. All her creations are super stylish and ridiculously cute.

Marte has a few free patterns and great tutorials on her blog.

Recently Marte started making patterns for sale. The Mara blouse was her first commercial pattern, and what a great pattern has she designed! I fell in love with it the minute I saw it. Because it is such a great patterns and offers a few options I could not stop after making one, so I made a dress version of the Mara blouse. 

Marte's newest creation is the Louisa dress pattern. When Marte first posted it I knew I would buy it as soon as it would be available. The Louisa dress is vintage-inspired and funky at the same time. I knew that the large pocket and buttons would win Little Monkey's heart, and as for me - the thought of indulging in piping was certainly appealing. When Marte offered me to participate in her blog tour I got super excited!

While she was sleeping, I made the Louisa dress for my Little Monkey.



I used some printed cotton poplin that my daughter picked for her new dress. The Louisa dress has three views. The original version Marte posted was my favourite. While the birdies print is super adorable, it really needed something to spice it up. Finding fabric for the side panels was not a very difficult task. However, trying to find either bias tape or plain died fabric to match green or pink on the dress proved to be impossible. I thought adding piping to the side panels made out of the same fabric was defeating the purpose, so I omitted it full stop.



I ran into a problem while sewing the side panels. I just could not fit them in and I could not work out what I was doing wrong. I knew there could not be a problem with the pattern as it has already been tested. I contacted Marte and shared my issue with her. Marte double checked the pattern pieces and then generously sent me a mini-tutorial on how to insert the side panels accompanied by photos! Thank you, thank you very much Marte!

Marte offers a few lining options for the Louisa dress. My dress only has facing around the neckline. I top stitched the seams on the side panels so they would not rub against Little Monkey's skin.


May I just quickly note that this was my first successfully installed invisible zipper! It actually IS invisible :) High five me! Next I shall work on puckering...


Marte mentioned that sleeve pieces from her Mara blouse pattern fit the Louisa dress as well. Perfect! It is summer in my corner of the world, so I used butterfly sleeves from the Mara blouse pattern, just made them one piece.

Now to the coolest feature of the Louisa dress... the pocket!



Please tell me, is it awesome, or is it awesome? I will tell you it is awesome! I have to add pockets or buttons to everything I make for my daughter. Preferably both. Ta-da! Thrifted wooden buttons complete the look.


Little Monkey enjoyed dancing in the rain in her new Louisa dress. Oh yes, we did take photos in the rain. Well, it was more like wetness dripping from the sky, but it was fun!

The Louisa dress pattern is available in sizes 1 to 10.

Now, are you in love with this pattern as much as I am? You can purchase it HERE right now. Marte is offering a 10% discount during the blog tour. Please use the code Louisa10off at checkout. This offer is valid until the 7th of December (23:59 CET timzone). Or you can try your luck and see if you can win a copy!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

If you would like to purchase both the Mara blouse and the Louisa dress patterns, the two pack is available for 12 Euro on Marte's blog. You do not need a discount code to purchase it at this price.

Marte, once again thank you for inviting me to be a part of this wonderful blog tour and giving me the opportunity to be one of the first to sew your new pattern. I have had a lot of fun!

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43 comments:

  1. Hi Jenya, thanks for this lovely blogpost! I'm going to put mine online now. M

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    1. Hi Marte, just read your intro - thank you for you lovely words... and sorry about giving you a mild heart attack ;)

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  2. Sweet version, with those colours! Did you lengthen the dress a bit, compared to the pattern?

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    1. Thank you very much :) No, this is the original length. This is the only dress I didn't have to lengthen for my daughter. She is three years old, but she is skinny and wears size 2 clothes. However she is not short, so I usually have to lengthen skirts, dresses and pants for her. The dress I made is size 2 without any modifications and it is a perfect fit for her.

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  3. I like this version very much, you did a great job - and i lo-ve the way you're writing ;)

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  4. Thanks Jenya for the lovely post! I'm happy that you've used the Mara blouse sleeve on the Louisa dress! M

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    1. Thank you Marte. I love the fact I can mix and match the sleeves!

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  5. Great to see a summer version! (jealous ;-)) And surely this dress is LM heaven! Pockets and buttons !

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    1. Pocket, buttons and birdies - win-win-win :) You would not be as jealous if you were here yesterday. Temperature dropped from low 30's to 16 - not kidding! Strong winds, crazy rain with hail... and did I mention only 16 degrees? It is summer for crying out loud haha It's OK though, it is warming up again and we are expecting to reach 30 this weekend again - bring it on!

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  6. Lovely dress!! I'm loving that pocket and piping.. I really need to get into piping, it adds such a great detail to clothes.

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    1. Thank you Alisa. A word of warning - once you try piping you will get hooked! it is such a fun detail, and it is so easy to make/use! Before I tried it I thought it would be complicated, but I was wrong :) I can't get enough of it now!

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    2. I have some tutorials on my blog that show you how to make your own piping and how to add some!

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  7. High five for first time zippers!!! I wanna put zippers on everything now. Your dress looks beautiful!

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    1. Thank you Venus. That zipper was my 5th in total, 3rd invisible, but the first really invisible. I had a very budget sewing machine before, it had a zipper foot but my zippers were still wonky. I now have an old but very good sewing machine, and the zipper foot that came with it is amazing! it is so much better and I feel I now have control over what I do with piping and zippers. I am no longer scared of zippers, but I still prefer buttons :) It really is amazing how much different proper/good tools make.

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  8. THis is the cutest dress ever! I am in love with the color choice for this pattern and that print is to die for!

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    1. Thank you very much :) I love this birdie fabric as much as mu daughter does, but I was worried it might look a little too boring. I think the splashed of mustard on the sides and around the pocket made it look a little brighter. I was really hoping to be able to use some green there, too, but it is so difficult to match!

      What is your name? I am browsing through your blog - you make gorgeous things! Your little model is so adorable :) Yes, shorts are not for summer only! Love the look with tights :) OK better go actually comment on your post ;)

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  9. I love this dress! I have the pattern and can't wait to make it. I just did my first invisible zipper the other day as well. Hooray for success!

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    1. Thank you April! I will be waiting to see your version of this dress then :) Hooray for successfully installed zippers :)

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  10. Too beautiful. It's very different than the other offers out there, job well done! x

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  11. And there you go again Jenya, just nailed it! I'm such a huge fan of yours my friend... this dress is soooo beautiful!!!

    Natalie
    XX

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  12. This looks great! The last thing I need is more patterns, but I'm tempted to buy this one! Do you know how much of the main fabric it took for your daughter's size? Wondering if I could squeeze it out of fabric I already have and avoid a trip to the store :)

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    1. Hi Elizabeth, to be honest I am not too sure how much fabric I have used. I scored this fabric from the remnants bin in my local chain fabric store (I so was not going to make public how cheap I can be haha), and I think there was just under two meters. I still have enough fabric left to make another little dress. My guess would be around a meter. Little Monkey is in size 2 if this helps. There are no pleats or gathers that require more fabric. I didn't need much fabric for sleeves and the lining either. Because the inside of the pocket can't be seen it can be made from a different fabric if you don't think you have enough. I am sure Marte can suggest how much fabric is needed for the dress?

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  13. Love the pocket with the piping and the wooden buttons and high five on the invisible zip!!!

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  14. Sooo adorable Jenya, yes, the pocket is awesome! As is the print, the buttons, and the fit, nailed it!

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    1. Thank you Michelle :) I bought this fabric last year and have been waiting for the right project for it. I thought this dress provided a perfect excuse to cut into it :) LM agreed ;)

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  15. I love this fabric! I made my first ever dress out of this for my niece last year. Gorgeous combo with the yellow and the front is so sweet.

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    1. Thank you very much :) I bought this fabric last year and have been waiting for he right project to use it :) I thought this dress was it :)

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  16. Simply adorable! I love your fabric and photos. What a cutie in her handmade dress!

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    1. Thank you Justine :) Little Monkey is a joy to sew for. Of course every now and then I make soemthing she doesn't want to wear, but most of the time I manage to get it right. I love it when she takes her time to pick an outfit for the day :) She has the cutest descriptions for her clothes! Do all kids do that?

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  17. Love the fabric choice!! And the pockets as well, the treasures she can put in there...

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  18. That is beautiful! I love when people go out of their way to help makes me want to buy more patterns :)

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    1. Thanks Mel! I love it when designers can help. I am not sure I could figure out what I was doing wrong on my own!

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  19. Beautifully done! I love the design and the fabric!
    Lovely.
    ~Michelle

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    1. Thank you Michelle. This is one of my fave dresses. Little Monkey practically lived in it all summer long!

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  20. This is so beautiful Jenya! I would love a women sized version of this dress :) The fabric is darling.

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    1. Thank you Elizabeth. I love styles like this :) I actually saw an adult version of this dress! I can't remember who made it though...

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