Oh Colette. Their patterns are often so cute and just my style, but their fit issues have become legendary in the sewing community. Like many sewers I followed along with Rue-gate and the reorganizing and rebranding that followed. I’ve really liked all 4 patterns Colette has released since the Rue failure, but the samples have been pretty awful. Why don’t they make samples to fit the models? I just don’t get it. It makes it so hard to know if the patterns just don’t fit the models or if the drafting is terrible. Maybe both?
Anyways, I’ve been avoiding Colette patterns because like many others I was a little worried the quality was poor. It’s a real shame because with their increased size range Colette should be a go-to brand for curvy sewers and it’s just…not.
But then Colette released the Myrna dress and I loved it. I loved it so much I was willing to take a chance on Colette again and see if I could get the pattern to work for me. It has a few features that make this an easier pattern to fit.
First off, it features a cut on sleeve. This makes is way easier to fit through the shoulder. I have narrow shoulders and often have a hell of a time getting that part of a pattern to fit, but with this type of sleeve it was less of an issue. I will say the shoulders are pretty straight across on this dress. That works in my favor as I have a pretty flat shoulder line. I also found the sleeve opening to be generous so that I didn’t need to enlarge it. I have 14.5 inch biceps and almost always need to do a full bicep adjustment. Also the bust gathering is generous, so even though I wear a F cup bra I didn’t need to do a full bust adjustment.
However I won’t say the dress was perfect for me as is. I encountered one big issue that is apparent right in the pattern photos, the bodice is too damn long. And because I have a full bust that’s not so perky anymore, I chose not to alter the pattern at the lengthen shorten lines. Instead I took the extra height from the midriff piece in the front, 1 1/2 inches total. I was able to decide how much height to take out by measuring my sloper and comparing the length to the Mryna pattern pieces.
Ultimately the length adjustment was the only thing I changed for this version. I went by the chart and blended sizes as needed for my measurements, 14 for the bust and 16 for the waist and hips.
The dress was super easy to construct and I love the finished dress, but the fit is still not great. The whole bodice is too long still and too big. I put in a side zipper as instructed, but I can throw this dress on without even needing the zipper. I’d guess I could go down a whole size in the bust and waist and take out more length. I’ve been slowing losing a little weight, but not that much! I picked the sizes that correspond to my current measurements and yet…too big.
However I wore this dress to work last week and it still got favorable comments. It’s not a total loss. The fabric is big and bold. I picked it up on a destash from Mary of Idle Fancy fame and the colors are super fun. Plus the pattern was busy enough that I didn’t need to worry about pattern matching. I just tried to avoid getting a obvious spot right on my bust apex. I see I only kind of succeeded. Whoops!
Will I make another Myrna? Yep. I probably will. I think if I go down a size and take out a touch more length this could be a really solid pattern for me. Light and cool for summer, but totally work appropriate. Will I tackle more Colette patterns? Of that I’m not sure. I think I’m still unlikely to try anything with a set in sleeve, but I would be open to using sleeveless or cut on sleeve patterns in the future.
10 thoughts on “Colette Myrna”
I looks nice, but I see what you mean. It does seem a bit big on the top.
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It’s a good look for you, I’d invest the time to perfect the pattern, because I think you are very close. I admire your bravery in tackling the fit of a Colette pattern!
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I think it looks good on you, too! I’m not seeing any of the issues you mentioned. Keep at it! I will be following your blog to see what your next sewing adventure is….
Thank you Sue! It is one of my favorite dresses.
I think you did a lovely job with the dress and it is very flattering. Your blog popped up while I was researching the Myrna dress. I’m very petite and have had major fit issues with Colette, but I love the pattern and it’s on sale! I was wondering if it was worth it. Judging from your beautiful dress I want to say yes!! I have an A cup however,and I would deer how a sba would work…. hmmm…
Sorry I’m just now replying! I think it you wanted less bust room it would be easy to fiddle with the gathering at the bust and remove some width. Gathered bodices look really nice on small busts too.
Hi there! The dress looks beautiful! I’ve just started working on the Myrna pattern (thankfully on a muslin) and am having problems with the waist length, too. With the 3 yoke pieces, the front bodice is much longer than the back bodice making it impossible to sew the seams together. Did you have any problems with that? Did you use the one yoke piece rather than the 3? That’s what it looks like in your pic. I’m considering just lopping off the bottom yoke piece.
I definitely used the single yoke piece instead of the 3 piece yoke. Just seemed easier to get the fit right! Good luck with your Myrna!
This is a beautiful dress, what a shame about all the fitting issues. I am well and truly scared of trying any Collette patterns.
I’ve made another one and love it, so don’t lose heart. Some of their newer stuff is getting better in consistency.