I got a chance to test the brand new Waterfall Dream pattern for Finnish indie sewing pattern company Jujuna. Like the name suggests, the pattern is for a tunic/dress with a draping waterfall neckline. And it comes with a ton of sleeve and length options: you can make either a top, dress, or a maxi dress that's sleeveless or with short, three-quarter, or long sleeves. The size range is EU 32–56. I opted to make the long-sleeved dress in size 36.
The pattern recommends a flowing rayon (viscose) knit or a cotton/spandex knit. And it makes sense: sturdy knits such as ponte or interlock would make the neckline too stiff. The fabric I chose is a thin cotton/spandex in gray with big and small polka dots arranged in stripes. The knit has a nice drape to it, it is quite stretchy, and super soft to the touch. All in all, very comfortable to wear.
The pattern, like most Jujuna patterns, comes as a print-at-home PDF that you have to assemble yourself. I know many sewists don't like this part (and to be frank, I don't either) but it's a little inconvenience I'm willing to take to have the pattern delivered to me immediately.
The maxi dress size makes the front and back pattern pieces quite long which is why the pattern runs at a hefty 40 A4 sheets. That's a lot of pattern assembly! If I could change one thing on the pattern layout, it would be to arrange the pattern pieces so that you could only print out the sheets necessary for the length you're making. Now the front is upside up and the back upside down, meaning you have to print all 40 sheets (unless you're making the sleeveless version).
Once you get the pattern assembly out of the way, cutting into your fabric is much faster. Or it would've have been, had I chosen a fabric that was easier to work with. This fabric was very flowy and drapey so I had to be super careful to make the polka dot stripes a) go straight across the body, and b) match at the seams. To top that off, this particular piece of fabric was not cut straight AND you couldn't see the pattern from the wrong side. Lots of pins were used but it was definitely worth it: I'm very pleased with the stripe matching at the side and back seams.
There are only three pattern pieces: front, back, and sleeve. The front piece is cut on the fold but the back piece has a center-back seam. This seemed like a nuisance at first but the center back is actually a very clever place to hide some back shaping to take care of that sway-back problem. The back of the dress fits so nicely I might have to change my mind about doing center-back seams on knits!
I didn't have to alter the pattern at all. The sizing was just perfect but I did check the pattern pieces against a couple of my tried-and-true patterns to compare the fit. The only modification I did was to add side-seam pockets because I just love having pockets on a dress. The pocket template is from Tilly's first book Love at First Stitch. (Also, posing for photos without your hands in your pockets is hard!)
The look of the waterfall neckline is just lovely but it definitely needs the right kind of fabric. I kind of wish it was even MORE flowy but on the other hand this is modest enough that I think I'll get a lot of wear out of the dress. For evening wear, though, I'd consider going with a more plunging neckline.
It was quite refreshing to be on the other side of the pattern test table for once. The pattern gets two thumbs up from me: it's well drafted, well-fitting, and easy to sew. I'm definitely going to sew this again but next time with a fabric that I don't have to pattern match. A short-sleeved tunic for next summer — wouldn't that be cute?
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