Sewing Project: A Charley Harper Moneta | Mint Green Sewing Machine: Sewing Project: A Charley Harper Moneta

Friday, January 9, 2015

Sewing Project: A Charley Harper Moneta


  Hi everyone! As you may know, I'm a huge fan of the artist Charley Harper, who did many illustrations in the 1950s and 60s. You may remember I found a cookbook at a thrift store that was illustrated by him and I felt like I hit the jackpot! Needless to say, I was so excited when Birch Fabrics came out with a line of fabrics featuring his artwork. The only thing that kept me from buying every one of the designs was the rather high price (like $17 a yard!). I did, however, make room in my budget for some of this knit fabric to make myself a dress, and here it is!
 One of the reasons I used to justify this fabric splurge was the fact that I knew that I would get a lot of wear out of it. The Moneta pattern is absolutely one of my favorites! It's really quick and easy to sew and the dress is cute and really wearable- great for those days when you want I a cute outfit with minimal effort (or isn't that every day?). I made this dress several months ago and have worn it many times- usually with this exact same belt and cardigan. This is my third version of the Moneta- I made a green one and a striped one as well as this one.
 I sewed this dress on my serger and it came together in a couple of hours. I used my machine to hem the sleeves, hem, and neckline with a double needle stitch. I decided to make the design very simple to let the fabric stand out on its own.

One thing I would suggest is making sure you have the right needle for this project. I used a ballpoint needle, size 16. I was having trouble with my needles at first tearing my fabric (they were new, still in the package, but were from the 1970s or 80s- I had inherited them). I messed with the tension, the stitch length, everything with no success and then I finally went out and got brand-new needles and then everything was fine. Needless to say, I just threw the rest of those old needles away! Also, if you're using a double needle to hem and having issues, I would suggest buying one specifically made for knits (I bought this one). I was having a lot of trouble with the "universal" double needles skipping stitches and generally being a pain, but the "stretch" twin needle sews knits perfectly!

Pattern: Colette Patterns Moneta Dress
 Fabric: Charley Harper for Birch Fabrics Organic Knit in Red Eye Vireo
 Size: Large
 Alterations: Added 4 inches to hem.
Skill Level: Beginner to Intermediate
Thanks for stopping by!

8 comments:

  1. That is so lovely and so YOU! I can imagine how you would get a lot of wear out of that! I find the Moneta to be the perfect comfortable year round dress, but it's even better in the fall/winter. I also love how you tied your belt :)

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  2. This is gorgeous! I love your pairing of this fabric with this pattern. May you get lots and lots of wear out of the dress!

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  3. Very cute! Thanks for the link on the double needle. I've been having a similar problem (I don't think any of my current double needles are "universal," but have been skipping like crazy, and I haven't been able to figure out what's up).

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  4. It is beautiful and you look great in it.

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  5. I can only get stretch twin needles locally, the shop assistant told me they only come in ballpoint when I was checking it was the right one and I know thst isn't true

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  6. Lovely dress! I always struggle with my twin needles, even when they are stretch... I have taken to just using a zigzag even though I know the look isn't as professional. Maybe I just need to pony up for a brand-new stretch needle.

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  7. Super cute! I love Charley Harper.

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