A couple of weeks ago, the sewing stars aligned when Sew House Seven released their new Montavilla Muumuu pattern the Friday before a work trip that I had planned for the following Monday. I don’t know about you, but something about a trip makes me feel like I suddenly have a gaping hole in my wardrobe that must be filled by panic/stress sewing something new. I’m sure you all can relate!
Anyways, I clicked purchase and printed this bad boy off just about as soon as I set eyes on it. For some of you, a linen shift dress that is marketed as a muumuu would totally not fly at work, but fortunately for me, I’m a geologist in New Mexico. Nearly anything can be considered “professional” wear around here and I was one of the “fanciest” people at the conference (to be fair, its not hard to beat a poorly fitting logo polo shirt and a pair of jeans).
The fun sleeves and quirky details were really what attracted me to the pattern. As a rule, I don’t typically buy patterns that are smaller than my measurements these days now that so many companies are doing a great job increasing their size ranges or even catering specifically to us curvy ladies. But this pattern just got to me and I was only going to have to grade the hips, so I made an exception. My measurements put me in an 18-22-22 in Sew House Seven sizing, however they only grade their patterns up to a 20. Fortunately, the waist is not fitted, so I just graded up the hips one size and then blended between sizes from the bust to the hip. As you can see, it worked just fine! This is the “mini” length, though IMO its a great tunic length.
Excuse the pocket wrinkles, BTW, this is the dresses second washing and I just washed and air dried. I personally don’t love to iron linen, I think it takes away from its natural charm! This is the robert kaufman brussels washer linen that I bought from Stitchology in Albuquerque, a perfectly charming little store that you should definitely visit if you are ever in the area. I think this is the charcoal pattern, though I’m not totally sure. This fabric is a real dream and all my fellow linen lovers should give it a try if they haven’t already. I’m excited to see how it ages over a few years of wear!
Other than grading up and blending between sizes, the only change I made to this pattern was to significantly shorten the length of the underarm elastic (about an inch and a half, if recall correctly, too lazy to check my notes). Fortunately, the pattern directions make it easy for you to do this!
In general, I found the directions to be very clever and thorough. It was an enjoyable sew and the details kept things interesting. I’ve certainly never used half the techniques in the pattern: elastic under the arms, side panels, sleeves drafted into a shoulder dart, just to name a few. And although none of the techniques were challenging, they did make it fun to sew! I haven’t enjoyed the sewing process this much in a while!
Gah, that cute little arm ruffle just gets me! Next time, I will probably raise the underarm panel up about a 1/2″ to have just a little more coverage under the arm. Otherwise, this pattern fits great and I really love wearing it. So fun! I think the Burnside Bibs, Tea House Dress, and Toaster Sweaters have moved up my list… I haven’t made a Sew House Seven pattern since I made the Mississippi Avenue Dress probably 5 years ago. Its time to make more!
Just the Facts:
Pattern: Sew House Seven Montavilla Muumuu
Size: 18-20-22. Had to grade up to a size 22 as the pattern stops at 20. This is the mini length.
BTW, I got a new camera! I hope its easier for ya’ll to see the sewing details, that was my main goal with the purchase. However, it works by using my camera as a remote, which I know is super common now, but I just hadn’t tried it before and can you say super awkward??? Any tips for hiding the camera or at least making me look less stupid (see above)?
As always, thanks for reading, and let me know if you have any questions!