Silk Noil Eme Box Top

I was on the hunt for close-to-home silk noil fabric when a lovely instagrammer suggested taking a look at A + R Fabrics (who are based out of Australia). I’m always a sucker for a minimal white website, but since I’d recently purchased some black silk noil from Canada, I got in touch to see if there would be any new colours coming in soon (spoiler alerts: there is) and Trin offered to send some of her black silk noil my way in order to give it a test run.

StyleArc Eme Dress Box Top
A and R Silk Noil StyleArc Eme Dress (top hack) with natural linen Ninni Culottes

Why silk? Why Silk Noil?
Silk will keep you cool in the summer and warm in the winter. It has natural wicking properties (it has absorbency equal to wool), and it’s the strongest natural fibre. Silk Noil (also known as Raw Silk) is made from the leftovers of the premium silk making process. It has a feel similar to cotton, with a lovely nobbly texture, but with the same drape you expect from silk. Because of the nobbly texture, this was a delight to sew and I barely pinned anything during the sewing and none of the pins I did put in left any marks. Silk Noil also takes up dyes readily, and it’s also the most home-washable of the silks (I prewashed mine in the washing machine). Also, as with all natural fibres, this bad boy will biodegrade naturally and won’t release any microplastics during washing

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A and R Silk Noil top with remnant rayon Glebe Pants

This top is another cropped top version of the StyleArc Eme dress, which I made a few small changes to- I lengthened the arms, omitted the sleeve facings and also frenched all the seams. I’m not sure if this is my perfect box top pattern (I’d like the neckline to be a little less wide, the sleeves a little more generous and I’d like a way to make clean insides without having to french around the underarm curve (which inevitably leaves puckers on the outside).

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I’m pretty sure I’ve had this top on for at least a portion of the day every day since I made it. It seems to be my go-to because the colour works with all my pants and the length is just right for all my high-waisted pants. We’ve had some warm and chilly days over that time, and the fabric hasn’t left me sweaty or cold on either day!

You’ll be seeing silk noil again on here soon, and I’m eyeing up the white silk noil for some avocado seed dyeing experiments

Silk Noil Eme top hack

Recently the lovely Michelle from Matchpoint Fabric celebrated a birthday by having a sale and it was all the excuse I needed to order myself some of her silk noil fabric that I hadn’t been able to find closer to home! Although I’m pretty sure that I played a large part in her silk noil being currently sold out, I really would recommend keeping an eye out for when there’s some back in stock

StyleArc Eme Silk Noil Side

When the fabric arrived (very quickly from Canada), I had a chance to feel my first silk noil! It was warm-to-the-touch, delightfully nubbled and the colour was a gorgeous dusty pink, which conveniently matches in quite well with most of my other me-mades.

StyleArc Eme Silk Noil

I wanted to make this in to a cropped box top, which I could pair with high-waisted trousers, and after my success with the Eme Dress from StyleArc I decided that I would use the bodice piece and add a wide hem at the bottom. Of course, my ‘winging pattern hacking’ instead of drafting new pieces always gets quite out of hand so the insides definitely aren’t as gorgeous as the outsides, but I’ll be repeating this dress-as-a-top again soon!

StyleArc Eme Silk Noil My Body Model

I’ve got my sketching with my My Body Model App custom croquis down to a fine art now. By using the Adobe Photoshop Sketch App on my phone, I add the screenshot I took of my custom croquis and have even had the idea of taking pictures of my fabric laying flat, and then using that as the fill for what I’m planning on making (not shown above, but this sketch will give you a good idea of what I mean).

Sketching the items out makes sure that I’m not making separates that don’t pair with anything else that I have, and also ensures that what I’m planning will look like I’m imagining it will, before I cut in to my fabric!

Stylearc Eme Dress in Tencel

Eme from StyleArc in brick tencel

Stylearc’s Eme Dress is touted as the roundneck sister dress to their popular Adeline Dress (which I’ve made so many versions of)! Stylearc sent me a copy of the Eme multi-size printed pattern, but quite ironically I thought I’d sew a straight size 22 and I don’t think I’ll bother grading for my (inevitable) next version of this dress.

The illustration does a better job of highlighting the cocoon nature of the dress and also shows the 4 darts at the hem which give the dress the shaping.
While I often find Stylearc instructions to be incredibly brief and also frequently confusing, I’m pretty sure these instructions were the strangest ones I’ve dealt with yet. It wasn’t a huge problem because there was nothing particularly unusual about the construction of the dress, but I’m pretty certain they never actually told me to sew the bodice to the skirt. Fortunately, I worked that necessary step out myself. I also managed to attach the sleeve facing (although I’m not 100% certain it was how they intended I should attach them).

Also, I skipped adding the inseam pockets.

Eme from StyleArc in Tencel

This fabric is a kind of sandwashed tencel from Harald’s Warehouse, which I visited for the first time over the weekend. The store had some real treasures that aren’t so commonly found including quite a lot of tencel, wool gabardine, and So Much More. Although the pictures look a bit like a struggles with the tencel puckering, the tencel was in fact a dream to sew and what looks like puckering is actually just scrunching in various places.

Eme from StyleArc

Size Details: According to the StyleArc size chart my various bits range between their size 22 at the bust, through to size 26 at the hips. Since I had success with their Adeline dress in a straight size 22, no grading, I also made the Eme in size 22. This still gave the ‘sack’ look I was after, but avoided me needing to grade.

My verdict- stay tuned for more of these dresses. Maybe with some patch pockets added.

Marsala Linen Adeline

StyleArc Adeline Marsala Linen 2

This Adeline Dress is made from lovely marsala linen from The Fabric Store.

Nice fabric is generally a little on the expensive side (you get what you pay for), but the Adeline can be made from 2 metres of fabric. That’s pretty rare in plus size sewing. So rare it probably explains why there are 4 of these in my closet (and counting)!

StyleArc Adeline Marsala Linen

Check out these lovely versions from Meg, and Lara of Thornberry (I also love this amazing version made for her mum).

Size details: I sewed this in a straight size 22, and had originally planned on sizing down. However, the hem makes it quite difficult to get in and out of cars with much grace, so I wouldn’t want any less fabric around the bottom

Adeline in Scribble Rayon

StyleArc Adeline in Rayon 2

It was love at first sight with this scribble rayon fabric from The Fabric Store. I took it home not knowing that it would become an Adeline Dress.

Fortunately I had enough fabric remaining that I could also make a Peppermint Magazine Peplum!

Style Arc Adeline Rayon

I didn’t bother putting pockets in this dress, which always annoys me. However, since the rayon fabric has tightened with each wash, shrinking down the dress, there’s not substantially less room available inside the dress for the in-seam pockets that I would have added, so I suppose that’s a win.

Papercut Kochi Silk

I was originally inspired to make the Adeline after seeing some gorgeous versions from Meg, and Lara of Thornberry (I also love this amazing version made for her mum).

Size details: I sewed this in a straight size 22, and had originally planned on sizing down. However, the hem makes it quite difficult to get in and out of cars with much grace, so I wouldn’t want any less fabric around the bottom