Hi there! Did you know that it’s Coram Week on Indiesew? Allie Olson’s Coram Top and Dress pattern is now available in print and there’s been a blog tour happening to celebrate. I am really pleased to be the last stop of the tour and to show off my two new versions of the Coram pattern.
I was a pattern tester for this pattern and made two Coram tops during testing. At the end of last year I made another Coram top (that I’m excited to finally wear in warm weather!) This pattern is really fun to sew– I love the raglan sleeves and the sleeve cuffs are such a great detail. I love Allie’s method for attaching them and topstitching them in place. I’ve been wanting to try out the Coram dress so I was excited for this push to finally do it.
The Coram dress is cut pretty straight and I am much wider on my bottom half. I know I could have just graded out at the hips but I thought it might be fun to experiment with making a swingy Coram dress. It would be pretty easy to slash and spread the front and back pieces from the bust down to the hem… but I took an even easier way out and overlaid a different swingy dress pattern from just below the bust dart and used that as a cutting guide.
I went with a straight hem for my swing dress, instead of the Coram’s curved hem. The just-above-knee length is great for wearing as is or loosely belted. This fabric is a viscose twill that I got from La Mercerie. It’s such a pretty color and it’s a great weight for a dress. I took Allie’s suggestion in the instructions and basted on my neckband to check the length before sewing and topstitching. I found I was able to take a couple of inches out of the neckband length to avoid gaping.
I always love black and pink together so I threw on this black headband and my favorite black platform sandals. Do I look like a cupcake with a bow on my head and at my waist?? I may keep it to one bow at a time in the future. This dress is so fun to wear and it got a good reaction from my husband, which is always nice! My cousin is getting married next weekend and it’s currently the front-runner for what I’ll wear to the wedding. It checks my boxes for style and comfort and it will be good for twirling around on the dance floor.
Since this was my fourth iteration of the Coram in rayon I thought it would be fun to try the pattern in cotton lawn. Allie suggests making a muslin of the pattern if you’re using a more stable fabric since the shoulder darts may need to be narrowed and shortened. I didn’t make a muslin but I played around with the darts a bit and found that for my shoulders keeping them pretty much true to the markings on the pattern worked best. I went with an exposed bias binding at the neck instead of neck band. It’s hard to see in this busy print, but I like how it mirrors the sleeve cuffs. (I used the same method to attach the bias binding as the cuffs.)
I made this Coram with a slightly a-line shape and a little bit of a high-low hem. I wanted to try something shorter than the original pattern, but not quite a cropped length since most of my pants/shorts/skirts are mid-rise. Isn’t this fabric pretty? I don’t know why I kept it sitting in my stash for years!
There is quite a bit of ease in the Coram pattern so if you’re trying one in a fabric without a lot of drape, like this cotton lawn, you might be able to size down. My measurements put me between the size 8 and 10 at the bust and I have made the size 8 at the bust for all of my Corams. I did a little baste fitting on this one and ended up using a deeper seam allowance from the underarm to hem to get the perfect fit.
I really like how this shorter Coram looks with my Ginger jeans and I think it will be great with the Lander shorts I’m hoping to make in June. I know I’ll be wearing my new dress and top on repeat this Summer!
p.s. The Coram top and dress pattern was given to me by Indiesew. The opinions expressed are my own.