What do you do on a rainy sunday at home? I love to cuddle up on the sofa with a cup of coffee, the cats and the game console. However I’m not the type for yoga pants and oversize t-shirts. I want to look nice and dressed, even when I’m alone at home. So I made myself a „cuddle-up“ dress. It’s soft, comfortable and still goodlooking.
Me and the cat chilling on the sofa

I stumbled on this pattern on facebook, it’s called „Niela’s Mysteria„. The pattern was not out for sale yet, but the brand, „PhiBobosZaubernadel“ was looking for people who could make test-garments for reviewing the pattern fit and the sewing instructions. I liked the fitted cut of the dress imediately and decided to take part in the reviewing process. So I got this pattern for free in exchange for my review. I don’t know the english term for that method of pattern reviewing, but in German it’s called „Probenähen“.

Nielas Mysteria Velvet dress

The pattern

As I wrote before, it is fitted dress, meant to be made out of knitted fabrics. There are many variants to sew from that pattern:

  • Normal long sleeves, bell sleeves or parted sleeves
  • A Hoodie dress with three different types of hoods (big, small, pointy)
  • No collar, folded collar or small collar
  • Tunic, Short dress or long dress
  • Optional with lacing on the front or backside

The variant with the bell sleeves and the lacing might be nice for medieval or renaissance dresses too. You can buy that pattern here at PhiBobo’s Onlineshop as a PDF to print at home.

I hate the cutting and gluing of the print-at-home patterns. I love cutting fabric and sewing, but I hate working with paper.

Cutting and glueing together the pattern

The fabric

That purple velvet lay around in my closet for a few months. In October I had already planned to make a cuddly lounge dress, but I just didn’t find the right pattern. That happens a lot to me, with a collection of more than 300 Burdastyle and other sewing magazines full of patterns, I’m sometimes crushed by the big variety of patterns and not able to decide on one. So when I saw the „Mysteria“ pattern, that velvet came directly to my mind.

First I wanted to make a hooded dress, but unfortunately I hadn’t enough fabric. I didn’t even have enough to make the full sleeves. So I decided to make the parted sleeves. I used some black velvet from an old pair of pants to complete them. To make it match, I used the same black fabric for the collar.

It was my first project out of stretch velvet and I was curious how that fabric would work out.

Sewing the velvet dress

Because of the review process there didn’t come any sewing instructions with the pattern. Since I was once of the first people who made this dress, there also wasn’t many feedback there yet. So I had to figure out myself how to do it. The bodice and the sleeves were quite self-explaining: Front, back and each sleeve are made out of three pieces. I had to adjust the fitting a little bit in the pattern and later again during sewing. The sleeve holes were a little too big and the fitting was too wide on the waistline. Thanks to the three parting seams in the front and back, the waistline fitting was easy.

The collar of that dress was tricky instead. I thought I was going mad when I needed to remove the collar for the third time, because I just couldn’t make it fit correctly. Luckily, some other test sewists on facebook could help me finally to finish it. If you want to sew that dress now, there is very detailed sewing instruction on how to make that collar.

As a last step I topstitched the seams of the sleeves and the skirt with the twin needle.

Just a dress for hanging around at home?!

Since I made that dress I have worn it so many times the velvet starts getting washed out. It’s so soft and comfortable. I can wear it with tights or leggings, I can walk or even run around the house, cuddle up on the sofa, cook or work and it never wrinkles. It’s also warm enough to wear on cold winter days. The fitting is still not perfect, mostly because it was just meant as a test garment for a very new pattern but I love it anyway.

When I made this dress I intended to wear it at home exclusively. But later I found even a few outfits to wear it outside the house. I found an old hat in my closet that I got from a friend’s mother. It has a matching purple color and goes perfectly with the dress. With lace tights and pumps the dress can even be quite elegant.

Nielas Mysteria ganz elegant