Pattern hacks

Willow wrap dress & Peplum top (Love Notions. A modest & cute wrap bodice.

The Willow wrap dress & Peplum was my second pattern test for Love Notions patterns back in 2018, I loved the line art posted on the testing call and all the options that were available for the pattern.

Line art for the Willow wrap dress & Top

I appreciate the work that goes into providing an abundance of sleeve, bodice and skirt options. Mixing them to create the options I really prefer is very liberating for me. I chose to make the peplum top with the simple faux wrap bodice. There are two neckline depths. I chose the higher option for modesty. In regards to the sleeves, 3/4 are usually my preference when I actually sew sleeves. I’m a sleeveless person all-day-every-day.

*NOTE: The Willow wrap dress & Peplum is 50% OFF ($5) on Friday the 27th of March 2020. This post contains affiliate links. You can get your pattern HERE.

I whipped up a muslin in rayon/spandex jersey that I was not too fond of the print, actually, I really dislike the color and print! I got it for test purposes only and if you are curious, you can see it in the video a little below in this post. I made a size Large, standard bodice without modifications and the fit was spot on.

This pattern also has a “Full bust bodice” option to use if the difference between the high bust and the full bust is 4″ or more. Basically, this is gold for the larger busted because that mean: No full bust adjustment needed. My difference is only 3″, so can use the standard bodice.

For my final version, I decided to make a rather “fancy” one. I chose black rayon/spandex and made the sleeves and neckline binding with stretch lace. The lace had scallops, so I din’t need to hem the sleeves. WIN.

The lace neckline binding is my favourite aspect of this top and I pat myself on the back for having this idea lol.

I have a full pattern review about the Willow wrap dress & Peplum , sewing construction footage and how I made the lace binding in my sewing channel. You can also see me wearing it.

Such flattering design! The bodice with a flounce is beautiful, but having a larger bust, it is not for me. However, this style could help balance the figure of the triangle body shape (pear). I prefer to keep my necklines simple.

Next, almost two years later, I revisited the Willow wrap dress & Peplum pattern on the occasion of it’s re-release in 2 more sizes, 4XL and 5XL. This time, I chose the bodice with the small pleats on one side and added the skirt piece for the full dress. I decided to make this version sleeveless, although it’s not an official option in the pattern. I used the same armscye you would use if you were sewing the sleeves. No changes there. I made one change to the construction to compensate for my thinner knit fabric choice. I made size Large and the standard bust.

The Willow wrap dress & Peplum pattern recommends medium weight knits and I had a thinner, but beautiful rayon spandex. The bodice has negative ease. A thin fabric will make this design unflattering as lines from undergarments could be noticeable. I decided to partially line the bodice only on the back to add support and thickness to this anatomic area of the body. The result: a smooth back with no bra strap outline to be seen. The front is overlapped as it is a faux wrap, so the thinness of the fabric wasn’t really an issue on the front.

I lengthened the bodice by 1 1/4″ inch and due to the nature of the wrap pieces, the process took a little extra thought. I didn’t want the little pleats or the depth of the neckline to be affected.

In my video, you can see how I lengthened the bodice without compromising the depth of my chosen neckline and the pleats on the side. You can also see how I finished the neckline and armscye neatly with a fun knit binding technique. Have a look at this fun project below.

I am so in love with this dress. In my opinion, its the best fitting, modest, safe faux wrap dress I’ve sewn. I feel amazing wearing it and I can’t believe it took me so long to make it after knowing the tops fit me so well. I highly recommend this pattern! I would for sure make it with rayon spandex again with the back lining. I love how this trick worked out.

The binding pieces are 1.5″ wide by 80% of the total length of the neckline (after shoulder seams are sewn). I used the same width of 1.5″ by 80% of the armscye circumference for the sleeveless armhole. The technique was the same for the neckline and the armholes.

*NOTE: The Willow wrap dress & Peplum is 50% OFF ($5) on Friday the 27th of March 2020. This post contains affiliate links. You can get your pattern HERE.

DISCLAIMER: I was provided the pattern without cost, as a pattern tester, in exchange for sewing a muslin, providing feedback on instructions and fit. I Purchased my own fabric for all these versions. I have affiliate links in this post to the pattern company and the pattern. If you click on these links, at no cost to you, I receive a small commission that helps finance my sewing, blog and Youtube channel.

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