Winter Dakota.

Hello friends,
Autumn has finally arrived here in the UK and my latest project really reflects the changing season both in my choice of colour and fabric. 
Fabric: Claret Ponte Knit from Minerva Crafts as part of BN.

Ponte Knits( Roma Knits) is generally made from a blend of rayon, polyester and lycra and has stable and smooth characteristic which means the fabric is very durable, wrinkle resistant and easy to wear. Has a beautiful drape, soft touch and big range of bright colours! Heart it!
I’m completely in love with this dress. The shawl collar, the fit and style. This dress is so elegant that you would  think came from Princess Kate’s wardrobe. This is a classical but fun style that can suit all body shapes and ages groups. The pattern is very well drafted: I would not be doing my 1st ever sew along on something I wasn’t sure; and offers a varied range of personalisation: You know I value patterns versatility.
Back to the fabric. Did I mention is also easy to sew as you treat it as woven. Lauren will have awesome tips for you to sew with this fabric during the sew along.
Pattern notes & Personal alterations:
Named Dakota dress size 38. 
Raised the neckline so I can wear this dress with or without a shirt underneath.
lengthen the sleeves by 3cm.
I skipped the plackets in favour of a larger sweater style cuffs (original pattern cuffs enlarged by 2,5 cm) and placed the pockets on the front instead of the side. I know, I’m such a pattern rebel! 

Follow the sew along to see a version of this pattern without modifications. Is awesome too I promise.
The shawl collar was made slightly larger to suit my personal preference and self lined the bodice. Looks very tidy and warm.

Because you can just pull it over your body, the dress is quite loose fitting on the waist and hips but fits well on the shoulders.
Let’s face it. This is a perfect candidate to wear during Christmas lunches since my stomach  will require space to expand. Did I mention the dress skim over without being clingy? Pass me those mince pies please! Don’t tell me is too early to talk about my favourite time of the year!
You can get my BN fabric kit to join the sew along or make something else. It has enough for this dress and to double up the bodice like I did for an extra warm layer. 
The collar and pocket was stabilised with the interfacing that accompanies my kit. It comes with matched perfectly thread (Gutermann  730).  
The body front  piece was lengthen by 2 cms. To compare, I generally have to lengthen the  front bodice to 3 to 5 cm depending on the pattern brand and the back, generally 2 cm less than the front. I haven’t needed to alter the back.
Nothing of my alterations were major or required a lot of work.
Let’s sew a dakota together… #dakotasewalong
  • Looks lovely on you. The colour and modifications are great.

  • Oo I like what you did with the neckline, and that is a gorgeous colour. Very seasonal.

  • This is so lovely! It’s absolutely gorgeous! What a perfect dress!

  • Oh my! That is gorgeous Rachel!

  • This is so pretty, great job as always.

  • This is so lovely! I would love to see a Dakota sewalong!

  • Your dress looks lovely Rachel, the colour really suits you. I really like the changes you made to the neckline 🙂

  • This looks fantastic. Nice to see a warmer winter version.

  • I love this on you, Rachel. Great dressmaking! Particularly like the longer sleeve and cuff treatment, and the pockets.

  • It’s absolutely stunning Rachel! If this doesn’t inspire people to join the sewalong, I don’t know what will! ;o)

  • What a killer Dakota! I saw this on Minerva and whooped. Perfection in a winter dress. I had my eyes int he Dakota pattern….you’ve done it more than proud

  • Lady, do you ever get anything wrong? You look simply divine in this dress. Well done!

  • Very cute! Love the fabric!

  • This is the perfect autumnal dress. I adore the colour!

  • Love this dress Rachel – it looks wonderful on you. I am surely tempted to join my first ever sew along too…! Rachel 🙂

  • Love the dress Rachel, it looks wonderful on you. I am sorely tempted to join my first sew along as a result… Rachel 🙂

  • Gorgeous as always, darling! That colour just sings amoungst the autumn leaves.

  • It looks beautiful and so comfy! Great colour!

  • I just love seeing the snapshots of Autumn ~ and the dress is just brilliant! It certainly is a great fit on you … J

  • Wow, I didn’t really give Dakota a second look before but now I have seen your version I LOVE it! It looks like the perfect autumn/winter dress and in my fave colour too.

  • Rachel, This is your color! My goodness you look beautiful in this dress! You are a great marketing tool for this pattern 🙂

  • Beautiful.. both dress and you.. Love all the golden leaves in the photos..Such a pretty time of year. Happy sewing.

  • Oooh love this! I was a little unsure about this dress, but now I almost HAVE to have it 🙂 The ponte works wonderfully, and looks so comfy – I may have to just straight up copy it!

  • I wasn’t sure about Dakota but now I’ve seen your version I believe it’s a winner. Stunning – it fits you beautifully and you look amazing.

  • Sam

    This is gorgeous Rachel. I must admit I don’t like the original version of the pattern, but with the changes you’ve made its lovely.

  • This dress is absolutely gorgeous Rachel. It’s totally flattering yet looks soooo cosy and wam for winter – a perfect combination! I love it! x

  • Your version is gorgeous! I really love the changes you made. The one thing that’s kept me from buying this pattern is the low neckline. I see that on Nov.15th you will be showing how to alter the pattern. Will this include how to raise the neckline?

    • I wasn’t intending to but I totally can. I just made a note about it. Doesn’t require any pattern alteration. You just sew a lit more. Alana will be helping with the FBA post

    • Thank you Rachel! I thought it might require an adjustment so that’s good to know. Now I’m heading right over the Named’s website.

    • I’m sure you can hack the pattern to your liking. Having the centre front seam is great to play with different neckline heights.

  • Adorable:) I like the neckline..Love the colour, very Autumn;)

  • Pretty! I finally got some ponte on sale and can’t wait to cut into it. You just made it worse! 🙂

  • you look fantastic you should be on a bloody billboard. Love the dress.

  • You look like you are enjoying this time of year. The colours in the pic compliment your dress perfectly. How lovely.

  • Perfect, great color ! I like the way worked the sleeves and the cuffs.

  • Rachel, did you need to do a FBA for this garment? I’m planning to buy the pattern today but not sure on the size I should get and I’ve never attempted any pattern alterations before.

    • I didn’t. We have a special post on Fba. Compare your high bust and your busy measurement. If you have narrow shoulders I recommend using the high bust

  • Oh, Rachel, this is so pretty! Looks fantastic on you and such a lovely colour and fabric.

  • Holy smokes that colour is stunning!!!!!!!! Really pretty!!!

  • I love this version of Dakota and the colour! SO pretty. I had seen other versions and I was not sure about the pattern, but now I can see the possibilities!