Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Crafts: Date Night Dress and Simple Slip

I bought this pattern with my ten-year wedding anniversary dinner in mind. The flutter sleeves and fabric seemed like the perfect pairing.

But this is no love story. I had issues with the pattern.

It calls for quarter-inch seams throughout, and my machine wants to eat fashion fabric with seams less than 3/8 inch. So I had to sew the dress with larger seam allowances. The pattern has enough ease that this didn't affect the fit across my back or bust, but it did alter the shoulders, neckline, and made closing the sleeves/side seams a trial. As a result, the shoulders and neckline don't lie right, and the side seams didn't come together easily or neatly.

The Simple Slip was easy enough to sew, but the voile I used didn't fit close enough to the body to give a complimentary side view. It looked a bit sloppy, really. So I've opted for a form-hugging tank/camisole, and am wearing a half-slip I already owned. The Simple Slip will be re-made into something else, later on.

The dress is pretty shapeless, so a belt and/or shirring is required. Here I'm wearing only a belt, but I want to add a row of shirring to make the gathers and blousing more uniform. It's a bit of work getting the gathers and blousing right, and then you have to adjust them each time you stand up or make exaggerated movements (notice the uneven blousing in the pictures).

I made the belt from a lovely indigo linen-chambray I had, using a belt my mom made as the pattern. A ready-made belt would require new shoes, and an $18 pattern + $62.75 of fabric = more than enough already spent.

Short lengths and dramatic hi-lo hems don't suit me, so I added an inch to the front XL hemline and kept the L hemline for the back. There's a three-inch difference between the front and center back, but you really can't tell.

I won't make the dress again, but I may try it as a top. I'll just add a quarter-inch seam allowance to the pattern and wear a matching tank/camisole.

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