The Olive Top and Dress

Megan Nielsen

 

I love Megan Nielsen Patterns! They come in beautiful packaging, they are unique designs, and I find the explanations are clear and the illustrations helpful. So when an offer to test The Olive dress came into my inbox, I couldn’t say no.

The Olive dress has a relaxed silhouette, a gathered waist, dropped shoulder and a V-neck with insert. 

I will admit, I have struggled with finding the right fit with Megan Nielsen tops. I find that they have a lot of additional ease to create the relaxed fit and that often I end up with a loose fit that looks too roomy. They look like they don’t fit as opposed to looking like a relaxed fit. Knowing that, I made sure that I worked with the finished garment measurements and skipped the body measurement guide completely. My measurements would have put me at a 16 grading to an 18 at the waist, however, based on the finished garment measurements I ended up cutting the 10 and doing an FBA (full bust adjustment).

 

I used the Closet Case Patterns tutorial (here) for doing an FBA on a dartless top with a dropped shoulder because it was a similar shape. I added .75″ per side.

I also chose to handstitch the bias binding down to the inside of the neckline. I had originally done it by machine, but found that I had some rippling along the stitching line. 

 

The trickiest part of the pattern was the insertion of the V insert. I made 2 versions of the dress and on my first one I didn’t add interfacing. It was easier to turn the fabric at the bottom of the V. On this final version, I added the interfacing (as per the instructions) and I found it difficult to turn all the layers at the bottom. Fortunately, the method was changed between the testing phase and the release.

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The pockets of this dress are amazing. They are big and placed well. I will admit, they have become my go-to pockets (and pocket insertion method) for dresses that don’t have pockets. 

Final Thoughts

I am so happy I had the opportunity to test this pattern. It’s not a style that I would normally choose for myself. Will I make myself another Olive? Probably not, or at least not exactly as is. I am planning to add a self belt, or even waist ties to this dress to help bring it in at the waist for a little more shape. I think that would help me get more use out of it. 

 

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