Tag Archives: Colette Macaron

At long, long last… my Colette Macaron

Oh man, I blogged about this when in it was in progress… a year ago! At that time, it still had sleeves, and I was wondering whether I should rip them off. I was also agonizing over the midriff. It looked weird in the plaid, so I subbed it out for a black shantung. Much better!

I’m smiling like my 5 year old niece.

As you can see, the dress has been finished. It’s been done, and well loved, for almost a year now; I’ve simply finally got a pic of it! The photograph comes courtesy Colette patterns themselves! They snapped the pic at the recent Colette release party at Vancouver’s Spool of Thread sewing lounge, and posted it to their facebook page. Thanks, Colette!

This is the first pic of myself I’ve seen in a good long while, and the first in this dress. And I gotta say, I’m a little concerned about the fit. Maybe it’s not the best angle, but it’s true that I’m squeezing into this just a little. I might have a half inch ease at the waist. There was a little more ease when I first made it – I’m packing an extra ten pounds or so of craft beer and associated food. And I’m suddenly wanting to head down to my building’s gym and work on those arms.

Letting out the seams isn’t an option, I’m afraid; I never muslined this, and cut a size too small. My s.a.’s are already tiny. My invisible zipper isn’t invisible… in order to buy myself some more space.

Body dysmorphia aside, here’s my belated review of the pattern…

This is hands down my favourite dress I’ve made, and I wear it very often. My inspiration was a Versus S11 dress, modeled by Emily Browning in the April 2011 Vogue, that mixed a prominent plaid and small floral together:

Not sure what to add to all of the existing reviews… The pattern is awesome. The sweetheart bodice is super easy to put together, thanks to Colette’s awesome instructions.

My fabrics:

Main fabric: Poly shantung. I try to avoid poly, but you know, sometimes it’s the only thing you can get your print in. That was the case with this dress. In any case, it’s a non-gross poly, and I love that I can wad this dress up, pull it out of a bag, and wear it. Not that I do that, of course…

Contrast 1: Poly crinkle. You know – those crinkle fabrics the Elaine Benes broomstick skirts are made from? One of those. I hand basted stay tape to each seamline to avoid it stretching out during stitching.

Constrast 2 (midriff): Poly shantung. I used a soft satin on the inside of the midriff.

My changes – simply for style – are:

  • I took the sleeves off, and I gently gathered the shoulders to bring them in by a half inch or so. Unfortch, it’s hidden by my hair and bag strap. I secured the gathered shoulders with some twill tape.
  • I finished the armscye with (hand-made) bias tape.
  • I lowered the neckline by a good inch and a half or so.
  • I tapered the skirt in ever so slightly towards the hem-by about an inch on each side.
  • I added a second contrast fabric for the midriff – the black shantung.

My likes:

  • I love the ease of construction. I was definitely a bit daunted by that sweetheart neckline, but it turned out so well.
  • The sweetheart neckline is so on trend right now.

What I’d do differently next time:

  • Uh, cut a size up. I cut a 6.
  • I’d lengthen the bodice. The midriff is definitely sitting above my natural waist.
  • My neck facing is a bit problematic. I think that maybe my fusible interfacing shrunk, and it wants to pop up sometimes. I just gotta redo that. Sometime.

Cost: probably $60 or so, including the $20 pattern.


Colette Macaron sleeves – should they stay or should they go?

Perhaps I should really start to heed what ‘they’ (oh mom’s favourite anonymous ‘they’) say about expectations… you get the expectations high, and you’ll likely feel disappointment. As I admit to feeling with this Colette Macaron.

It’s hard to admit that I’m on the fence about a lot of Colette’s stuff, because I *want* to like it so much. I’m just not sure it’s my style. But I had seen a¬†few Macarons that I thought were pretty cute. And after I put the bodice together, I was absolutely swooning.

But as for my almost- finished Macaron? I’m not sure. Given where the pleats landed, the white horizontal strips are now really dominant. I’m thinking of switching out the midriff for a solid black to darken it, but would three fabrics be too much…?


But my biggest question is about the sleeves. I worry that with them there, the dress makes a quick detour to primville. It’s in part because they are eased in, and given how things worked out, there is a bit of a gathering effect (oooh… i so don’t like gathering…). I was most excited by the bodice before I attached the sleeves on. (And I can’t overemphasize how I labored over those crinkly, fussy, and fraying sleeves.) And so I’m wondering… Macaron sleeves – should they stay or should they go?

Colette Macaron – work in progress

I may have been quiet on here since my last update 2 (!?) weeks ago, but the sewing machine has been a-buzzing. I’m finishing the last two of four Colette Negronis for my sweetie. I’m batch sewing those, and timing myself. So far, it’s been 20 hours of sewing time – ten hours per shirt. But all I have left are the cuffs, side seams, buttons, and hems. And I’m finally getting my edgestitching down. woot!

And I’ve gotten to work on a floral/plaid Colette Macaron. Here’s the work in progress. The dress – made from a poly shantung – is totally not wearable in our current ‘heat wave’ in Vancouver, so I’m not too worried about getting it done straightaway…

I was completely inspired by a similar plaid/floral dress by Versace that I saw a few months ago in Vogue; the plaids/florals were in a beautiful royal blue, and it also has a sweetheart neckline with the lighter attached bodice. I immediately thought: Macaron, and started hunting down the fabrics.

These I got at Fabricana in Richmond, and until I stitched them together, I wasn’t sure if I would like them… like, I was really reticent, and several times thought about going the safe route with the floral up top, and a medium-weight soft denim underneath.

But I am So glad I did the plaid (rhyming not intended but realized). I love these together, and I can’t wait to wear it out!

Yup that’s a crinkle fabric up top, which I bought before ever thinking to myself, it’s a crinkle fabric. I was (a) crazy scared of sewing it, and (b) crazy scared it would look very 90s broomstick skirt/Elaine Benes. I get that the Elaine look is back in, at least in some circles, but… no. just, no.

But it’s been going alright. I put some staytape over the crinkle fabric’s seamlines to make sure those crinkles don’t stretch out, and every few stitches, I lift the presser foot and re-adjust the fabric, just in case. and I Love how the fabric texture and weights contrast!

This is also my first major project, at least in a while, without a muslin. And of course I cut a size smaller than I should have! I’ve had to take fabric out of the darts, as well as the seam allowances. And pledge to hit the gym.