Eider Tunic Pattern Review by Clever Charlotte

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Today, I am writing to you about another great dress for kids: The Eider Tunic by Clever Charlotte.  This dress takes its most prominent characteristic from its namesake, the Eider duck.  Look up this bird, and you will understand perfectly what I am talking about.

Eider Tunic Pattern Front

As always, chose your fabrics, lay out your pattern, then make all of your cuts.  This pattern is ideal for contrasting colors.  As you begin sewing, it is important to remember to finish ALL EDGES!!!  The directions do not tell you after every step, but it is understood that edges must be finished every time you have a raw edge.

A final note before I begin: if you want to practice first, Clever Charlotte recommends building the dress out of muslin.

Pintucks:  Once you are ready to start, the Front Yoke and Sleeves are your first part.  It is very important to have all of your markings for these steps.  You are going to add a series of pleats to these pieces that will add all the detail to your dress.

After you complete the Pintucks, you are going to sew all the main parts of the dress together.  My photo will illustrate this part the best.  Once you have the two sleeves with front and back sections connected, it is time to bring the front and back together.  This step is done in one continuous stitch.  After you pin it, you will start at the end of the sleeve and not stop until you are at the bottom of the dress.

Waist Tie Channel:  Creating the Channel is very simple.  It’s merely a matter of folding and ironing the fabric.  After you get it the way you want it, you will center the Channel on the markings that you made earlier and align it to the dress.  Both ends should be on the front section of the dress with about 5/8” away from the raw edges.  Upon stitching the Channel, you will turn it inside out and stitch the center seam ensure that you do not run into the ends of your Channel.

Yoke:  If you are thinking at this point that this dress is a walk in the park, then the Yoke will definitely change your mind.  This was easily the most challenging step.

The construction of the Yoke is not so difficult.  Attach the front and back parts.  Then, add a stitch around the entire outer edge of the Yoke with a 1/2” seam allowance.  Do a good job of clipping the outer edges.  After the clipping, you will need to press this edge in on itself.  The instructions mention a trick using some cardboard, but I have to say that this was no help at all.  I just ironed small sections at a time until I was done with the Yoke.

Now, you are able to attach the Yoke to the neck of the dress.  It was very difficult for me to match the opening of the Yoke with the opening of the dress and have both necklines come together nicely.  Take your time and have some patience.  After this step, it is all downhill from here.  Also, repeat the clipping procedure on the inside of the neckline.  Turn your dress right-side out and pin the York into position.  Use a good amount of pins here.  Be careful not to let the folded edges pop out from under the Yoke as you go to sew it in place.  You will use a top stitch to secure the Yoke.  Make sure you are happy with the look of everything before you stitch this Yoke in place.  The neckline and opening also get a topstitch.

Finishing Touches:  At this point, you have two options.  You can simply hem the edges of the sleeves and bottom of the dress or... You can add bias tape to sleeves.  I chose to use the bias tape method.  Also, this was a perfect place to add more contrast to the dress.  These little accents really make the dress unique.  I have made bias tapes before, so I just used a method I was comfortable with.  I did not follow the directions, but you can if you like.

Next, you will add the ribbon to the Waist Channel.  Again, this is another chance to add a nice accent color to your dress.

Finally, add a hook & eye clasp to the front portion of the Yoke.  This should be your last step.

Congratulations! You have just made a wonderful dress.  If you worked hard on the details, this dress should really shine.  Sew happy, and I hope you enjoyed making the Eider Dress as much as I did.

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