Nettie fail



I have a confession to make: I am afraid of commercial patterns. Until I made the dress pictured above, I had not made a piece of clothing from a pattern (that I did not draft) since some epic tragedies in high school.  A conservative estimate is that I had not made anything except pajama pants from a pre-made pattern in 8 years.

But then Closet Case Files came out with the Nettie pattern, and I thought it might be a good first step back into the commercial pattern world. I am much more comfortable sewing with knits than with woven fabrics, and the pattern is pretty simple. It also fits one of the silhouettes I chose after working through Coletterie’s Wardrobe Architect series. It seemed like a perfect project.

So I made a Nettie this weekend. You may recognize the pattern– it has been all over the sewing blogs lately. I put it together in about an afternoon.

I made a size 12 with some extra space added to the shoulders (1″ on top) and the bust (1/2″ to each side). I also shortened the dress by 2″ at the “shorten/lengthen here” line

But it didn’t fit. Here’s why:

1) shoulders and bust- I had read that the Nettie runs tight in the shoulders. And I’ve got some serious shoulders for a short person (thank you swimming and rock climbing!). Even though I added extra space to the shoulders and bust, when I tried on the finished dress, the arms and bust were still too tight. I might have been able to fudge the fit, except for the next mistake:

2) stretch- I didn’t pick a knit fabric with enough stretch. This grey knit ponte barely had the 50% stretch recommended.

Only slightly daunted from this bump in the road, I resolve that next time I’ll do better.


  1. I hate when that happens, BUT you can always undo it and use that fabric for something else. We learn from our mistakes, so don’t you worry! 🙂


    • Thanks for the encouragement! I’m currently working on making something else out of this, and I’ll post it soon!


  2. Pingback: Nettie success! |

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