Drape Drape dress

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I’m really enjoying sewing knits at the moment – I love the comfort factor and the fact that there are so forgiving of any fitting issues.

So I was interested to read a review of the Japanese ‘Drape Drape’ books by Hisako Sato, which flagged up that these patterns used stretch fabric and looked seriously comfy!

If you’ve not come across them before, they’re designed in such a way that you are basically creating fabric origami. Many of the garments are asymmetrical, made using just one pattern piece.

After a lot of research into popular patterns from the books (there are 4), I went with the second one, which offered a good few top and dress options that I wanted to try.

My first attempt was pattern number 2 – the one piece side drape top. The asymmetrical pattern means that there is a lovely drape feature to one side. As the title suggests, you cut the entire garment in one piece from a flat length of fabric. I think it’s possible to get this out of 1m of fabric, as long as it’s 150cm wide.

I chose a fab piece of galaxy design jersey which has been sitting around waiting for the perfect pattern. I’d bought it online from somewhere in the US I think, so knowing it wasn’t easy to replace I broke and habit of a lifetime and made a toile up.

Now, I’d already heard that these Japanese patterns were on the small size. But even after cutting out the L/XL size I realised that it was still a bit snug. The asymmetrical nature of the design means it’s difficult to make it any bigger, so I decided to add an inch to each side of the pattern, plus another down the centre of the side piece (see below).

The instructions are pretty brief but to be honest it’s not complicated. The neck and armholes are self-bound – I hand tacked them down first because the fabric kept wanting to escape the pins. Then you sew up the sides and turn over a hem.

Here’s the finished article:

Summary: great, easy pattern, ideal for jersey. Next time I will add an inch to the centre back and centre front, as the width is ok but the straps are a little too close to each other. It would look great in a stripe, due to the asymmetrical pattern.

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