Hello, dear readers!
I’m so happy to share this dress with you! This is the Itch to Stitch Marbella which features a bateau neckline, front and back yokes, pockets, princess seams and a pleated tulip skirt. It’s basically the cocktail dress pattern that I was searching for!The CSC was provided a copy of this pattern for a review and I was excited to sew it as I had been admiring Shannon’s lovely version. I had this black and silver rose brocade lingering in my stash and figured it was a good time to take it out and add it to my wardrobe. This brocade was gifted to me by my mother-in-law and I had always intended to sew a retro cocktail dress with it. This pattern is not inherently vintage inspired, but it evokes a 1960’s vibe in my mind and is more so when paired with a fabric like this.
Pattern Name: Itch to Stitch Marbella Dress in black/silver rose print poly/nylon brocade lined with polyester china silk
Size Range: 0-20
What size did you make? Graded up to about a size 22/24, using the D-cup bodice
What are your….
- Measurements: 48-41-52
- Body Shape: Pear-ish/Spoon
- Height: 5’8
- Bra Size: 44D
What adjustments did you make and how long did they take? Aside from grading this pattern up using this technique, I added about an inch in length to the skirt and did a narrow hem. I also did a swayback alteration, taking a wedge out of the bottom of the back bodice pieces.
What was the construction process like? Did the instructions make sense to you? The construction process is lengthy if you follow the instructions which are very involved and thorough. I started following the instructions, but decided to just skim them as I went along. This pattern is meant for “intermediate” sewers, but has a lot of detailed descriptions and could be completed by a beginner, in my opinion. As my fabric is heavier, it doesn’t need all of the stabilizing efforts that the designer suggests. I don’t think that it needs the interfacing on the yokes as the fashion fabric also acts as the yoke lining. With a lighter weight fabric, it would definitely need stabilization to keep the shape. If you have sewn similar dress patterns before, I would suggest sewing this following your instincts and using your sewing knowledge rather than following the instructions.
How do you like the pattern’s fit? Do you think the design works well for your body shape? I think it fits me rather well and I’m happy with the outcome. I’m not sure that the tulip skirt shape looks fabulous on me as it’s wider at the hips and adds width. However, I wear full gathered skirts, so I’m plainly not concerned with appearing thinner. I did iron the pleats of the skirt down and the brocade creases very well. I prefer this look for this particular fabric.
Will you make the pattern again? If so, what fit or design changes will you make? I may. It’s a chic pattern that I could probably use a couple more of in my closet. The only design change would be to scoop a little out of the bateau neckline. It would also be fun to pair this bodice with another skirt shape. I love the princess seams and the yoke.
Do you have any advice on this pattern for other curvy sewers? Are there any resources or tutorials that helped you sew this piece up? If you’re using a fabric similar in weight to mine, I’d suggest skipping the yoke interfacing. The pattern also suggests an invisible zipper and I was apprehensive of one paired with the thickness of my fabric. I decided to sew it in and it after a pressing, it zips easily. If you make this pattern with a thicker fabric, a lapped zip would probably be a better way to go.
Pattern Rating (1-5)
- Size Range: 3
- Instructions: 5
- Construction Process: 4
- Final Fit: 5
- Overall Rating: 4
All in all, I’m very happy with the outcome of this dress. I wasn’t certain how the tulip shaped skirt would look on me as I’ve never tried one on, and was happy that it isn’t a terrible shape for me, especially with the inverted pleats pressed down. I think it looks chic and a bit more sophisticated than the dress styles that I usually favor.
Note: This pattern was provided free of charge in return for a review. These are my honest thoughts and opinions.