sewing the Fibre Mood Danna Dress in Lady McElroy Tencel Lawn
Collabs | Fabric | Patterns

FibreMood Issue 14 Release – Danna Dress with Minerva

April 23, 2021

Big News this week!!! Issue 14 of Fibre Mood Magazine launched on Wednesday, and as you’ve probably come to expect (I definitely have!) it is packed full of fantastic patterns. I truly don’t know how they pump out such great, unique patterns in such rapid succession! For three or four issues now, I have had the distinct pleasure of choosing a pattern from the upcoming issues in exchange for promoting the pattern on launch day! I love having the opportunity to choose the pattern that feels most “me” from each issue, but I struggled more than usual this time! I’m well into my second trimester now, and my bump is POPPING, so I have to consider my new beach ball belly when considering how the patterns will work for me. I typically like cropped length tops and dresses with cinched-in waist details, but clearly those may not be my best options right now!

My eye was first drawn to the Maya Dress – it has beautiful darts at the waist and cool pleated sleeve details, and totally fit my typical aesthetic. However, I know those waist darts are a future dream for me for now, so I kept looking. The Fiona Jumpsuit caught my eye, too, but while I love the look of a jumpsuit on most pregnant ladies, I have never been able to picture myself in one! Next…The Vera Top and Joy dress both looked like comfy knit options that I could modify a bit to accommodate my belly, but didn’t feel quite right. The Grace top and Harmony top both seemed like feasible options, tops with lovely details but loose enough bodices that I figured my belly could fit in them! 

After careful consideration, I ultimately chose to sew the Danna Dress, a button-up dress with a squared neckline and gathered, cuffed sleeves with a button detail. The dress has a loose silhouette without much structure around the waist, which is perfect for accommodating a constantly growing baby bump! The button-front closure is great no matter what (though this dress easily slides over my head without unbuttoning it!), but will be absolutely fantastic for nursing access once baby arrives. Lastly, the optional belt piece is great to give me a little shape right now – there are no belt loops with the pattern, so I’m currently wearing the between my bust and my bump, which makes the dress a little less tent-like! The best part… This dress is neither maternity or nursing specific, so it will still be a great piece that I can wear for many years to come!

This fabric was sent to me by Minerva in exchange for a blog post featuring my completed garment and my experience working with the fabric. I love Lady McElroy fabrics – I’m always drawn to the fun prints and vibrant colors, and I have yet to be disappointed by any of their fabrics, and I’ve worked with quite a few substrates at this point! This was my first time trying out the Tencel Lawn, and it really is a lovely fabric. I don’t think you can go wrong with anything with tencel in the fabric content!! I found this to be so soft and drapey, and it is a dream to wear!

However, I won’t lie… This was NOT the easiest thing to sew! The fabric was a little thin and finicky – for example, the pattern instructions call for finishing the edges of many of the pattern pieces on the serger before moving on to construction. I really struggled finding the right tensions (and by struggled, I mean I don’t think I EVER found quite the right settings!) and found that the overlock stitching often tried to gather the fabric slightly. It just felt as though the fabric was too thin for the serger’s taste! The lightweight nature of the fabric also led to some wavy seams, especially along the front button placket. Nothing about the garment was unwearable, but I certainly preferred working with the fabric when it was interfaced or double layered to working with it in a single layer.

I also found the fabric to be less opaque than I anticipated – I had a hard time choosing between the Marine and the Ivory colorway, and I was very happy I went with the Marine. I’m afraid you’d be able to tell exactly what color undergarments I was wearing underneath the ivory, without a full slip! Even with the darker base color here, I think a slip may be the best plan to ensure full opacity. I don’t have one on in these photos, so there are some shots where you can see the sun shining through my fabric a little bit!! That being said, it certainly isn’t indecent (and if it is, I wore it out as is so I guess I’m indecent, whatever) and is a great option for dresses or tops – though I’d avoid pants, skirts, or any pattern requiring more structure!

For the final details on this dress, I pulled these lovely Tabitha Sewer buttons from my collection. The pattern doesn’t call for a specific amount of buttons, but does require a button for each sleeve, two buttons at the neckline, and then however many buttons you choose along the main placket of the dress. I chose to use a total of 9 buttons in 3 different colors… No rhyme or reason here, simply a choice based off of what I had on hand! I liked the way the blue, pink, and ivory buttons looked against the fabric, but I didn’t have enough of any color to use only one! I had 2 of the icy blue buttons, so I placed these on the sleeve cuffs. I only had one pink button left from another recent project, so I used this as a little fun accent at the neckline, and filled in the rest with a full set of the pearly ivory colored buttons. I felt a little crazy trying to make 3 different button colors work, but I think it worked out well! The color palette of the fabric is beautiful but muted enough that the buttons complement it quite nicely! 

I’m super happy with this final product, and I feel so swishy and nice wearing it around right now! It is wonderful and lightweight, and despite the darker color and longer sleeves will still be totally appropriate for Texas summers! As always, I’m overjoyed to be a part of this team helping to usher in the new selection of FibreMood patterns, and SO happy that I was able to finish my garment in time this time around (I bet you had no idea that I sewed something for Issue 13 that was finished about 2 weeks too late and STILL hasn’t made it to the blog…. WHOOPS. Thanks, Mother Nature. More on that to come!!) I hope you have enjoyed reading about my experience with this dress, and I’d LOVE to hear which pattern from Issue 14 you’re going to be sewing up first…. Leave me a comment below so I can get inspired, too!

Top: handmade by me
Pattern: Fibre Mood – Danna Dress
Fabric: Minerva – Lady McElroy – Symphony of Life Tencel Lawn – Marine
Buttons: Tabitha Sewer – Classic Circle Buttons – 0.59 Inch

Key Ingredients: 
Brother XR9500PRW Sewing Machine 
Brother 1034D Overlocker 
Schmetz Universal 70/30 Needles 
Dahle 36×48 Self-healing Cutting Mat 

Thanks for reading my thoughts on this pattern! The fabric used for this post was provided to me by Minerva in exchange for photos and a blog post of my finished garments posted on their website. The Danna Dress pattern by Fibre Mood was gifted to me as part of the blogger group helping to promote the newest issue of Fibre Mood Magazine and the patterns it contains. All words and opinions expressed throughout this post are my own, as always. Links provided throughout this post may be affiliate links – if you choose to purchase any products through these links, I may receive a small commission, at no cost to you. This simply helps me balance the costs of my sewing habit and the time it takes to share it with you!! Happy Sewing!

  • XX Elizabeth

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  1. Beautiful! I can’t see any signs of struggle, it looks lovely and effortless. And so nice to know it’ll work for your body in the future, too. Also, if you don’t mind me saying, I am so impressed that you are gestating, working, parenting, and blogging all at the same time. Superhero vibes!!

    1. This comment made my day!! I was so lucky to have been able to keep up with most things through my pregnancy, I didn’t have too many limiting side effects.

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