Simplicity 9919 – Mermaid Costume

WARNINGIf you are considering this pattern, take flat pattern measurements before starting. I shortened the skirt 9 inches and took 2 inches out of the armholes/upper chest/upper back. The waist on the skirt, as directed to be made, is more than 5 inches too big for my daughter, and as you can see, she is swimming in the top.

The costume top is as large as the bottom. The back of the envelope says that a size 3 is for a 38 inch tall child. My daughter is 38.5 inches tall. I didn’t bother to shorten the hem on the top, but I had to take 2 inches (1 from the front, and 1 from the back) out of the armholes/upper chest/upper back. I expected the top to be large circumferentially; DD is very slender.

Is it too much to ask that the pattern fit the sizes as indicated on the back of the pattern envelope?

Instead of hemming or binding the top, I did a rolled edge on my serger using a varigated thread. I really like that look on lightweight fabrics.

Pattern Description:
Costume pattern for Disney characters Jasmine and Ariel (mermaid). The top is a bra on a shell, and the bottoms are either yoked pants or a yoked skirt. This is for the skirt, only. I’m still making the top.

Pattern Sizing:
Children’s 3-8. It runs very large.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it?
It’s hard to tell with the mermaid in the picture sitting.

Were the instructions easy to follow?
I suppose, but they were terrible. I think Simplicity has tried to dumb down the sewing methodology. Instead of interfacing, they tell you to use 3 layers of the fashion fabric one of which is called interfacing. Instead of telling you how long to cut the elastic, they give you a pattern piece called elastic guide.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
LIKE: DD wants to be Ariel for Halloween. There aren’t very many mermaid costumes patterns available.

DISLIKE: The instructions were just awful. It’s enormous.

Fabric Used:
Teal “confetti dot” knit.Β Green tissue lame for the ruffles, aka fins. Off-white poly chiffon for the shell.Β Hot pink tissue lame for the bra.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:
I used interfacing on the yoke. I lined the skirt and bound the waist because the confetti dot fabric was “owie”.

I cut 9 inches off the skirt length. Maybe it’s supposed to trail on the ground, but that just isn’t practical for a 3 year old. Because I cut off the 9 inches, I cut off the front slit/curvature. I debated putting the slit back on, but then the skirt would have been slit up to DD’s crotch, and that really isn’t a look that I favor for DD. I simply sewed the bottom ruffle on the bottom of the skirt.

I used my ruffler instead of gathering whenever possible.

The waistband elastic is about 4 inches too long.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others?
Probably not and no. I’m disgusted with this pattern. Instead, I recommend that you get a staight skirt w/elastic waist pattern and put a ruffle on the bottom. Heck, you could cut a rectangle of fabric for the skirt, put a waistband on, and add the ruffle.

I haven’t finished the top, but my hunch is that a top from a bikini pattern would work better than the shell/bra combo.

This pattern sucks.


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