Friday, 21 March 2014

My Very Own Coco

A couple of weeks ago I received something very exciting in the post …

I was very excited to see Tilly's new Coco pattern, and couldn't resist ordering the printed copy.  It really has been beautifully put together.  The pattern has been printed on photocopy weight paper, and the instructions are in a lovely colour booklet, with great photographs.  So much better than tissues paper patterns, and diagrams.

On my first trip to Walthamstow I found a few knit fabrics, which I hoped would be suitable for some versions of Coco.

I decided to use the grey and black fabrics to make a 3/4 sleeve dress.  This is the look I was aiming for:

I started by measuring and marking my original pattern so that I could cut the front and back panels in two parts.

I then used my tracing wheel and tracing paper to transfer the pattern to the fabric.

This took me a few goes to get right, as I had to press really hard to ensure that the marks were clearly visible on the grey fabric.  I then cut out the marked pieces using my rotary cutter and cutting mat.

The first step in sewing the dress was to attach the black section to the grey section, on the front and back panels.  I used my overlocker to sew the pieces together, then pressed the seam down.  Unfortunately, this fabric isn't cotton, so I had to use a pressing cloth to ensure I didn't burn/melt the fabric with a hot iron.

After this, I followed Tilly's very clear instructions.  I sewed all seams using the overlocker, and it gave a really neat finish.  I did all the top stitching on the neckline, cuffs and hem using the stretch stitch on my sewing machine.  I decided not to use my twin needle for the cuffs and hem, as it didn't give a really neat  finish last time I used it.  Instead I carefully sewed two rows of stretch stitch.  I was surprised by how neat a finish I was able to achieve this way.

The final step was attaching the pockets.  I carefully measured and pinned them in place, so they were evenly spaced.  I then sewed the first pocket by just guessing where the stitches should go.  Hmm …

Dodgy, isn't it?  I decided to mark the second pocket with chalk before I stitched it, which resulted in a much more even finish.

This is the finished dress.

I think it looks fab.  I also love that chunky white necklace with it.  I think I need to make this dress a bit shorter though.  My plan is to halve the width of the black section.  I think this length is a tiny bit dowdy.  It's a lesson learned for next time I make a Coco (and there definitely will be a next time) - double check the measurement from shoulder to the hem before I cut my pattern!

I can totally recommend this pattern.  It's so easy to make - even for someone who hasn't sewn with stretch fabrics before.  You can't go wrong with Tilly's clear and easy instructions.


  1. This is very cute! I have looked at a number of other Coco's and haven't been particularly taken by them but your version is making me rethink.

    1. Thanks so much ChaCha. I love the way it looks (except for being a smidge too long. Plus it's incredibly comfortable - always a bonus in my books.