I made this last summer. I know, it has been a long time coming, eh?
I started to make it a week before my sister's engagement party. Sounds like me, right? Hah! Sunni was throwing a sew along one day and then big box Joanns had a 99¢ sale on the exact pattern the next day! It was fate right? Obviously. I searched through my stash fabric and settled on another great silk crepe de chine from Mood, one of my first big fabric purchases in 2010. Even though I had never sewn with silk before, I came home sporting 3 cuts of beautiful silk. I used one of the other pieces for this dress from this past January. I have one piece left that I think I know what I want to do with. I will put that in my mental-sewing queue.
Anyway. I bought the print with my fabric-purchasing buddy because we thought it had a cute vintage-y style print at the time. When I took it out two years later, it looks a little more western than I had remembered, almost approaching bandana territory. But it was still cute and I thought would work great for the dress. I think I was right!
This is Simplicity 1880, a Project Runway pattern. This line from Simplicity I actually really like. The ease is not as great as the rest of their patterns, and I like the fact that there are multiple options for each pattern (sleeve type, necklines, pockets, etc.) I traced the pattern and then adjusted the neckline by taking a wedge out, to minimize the gaping I had on my first muslin. I am, without a doubt, small busted, and this was what I found during research to do an sba for a wrap neckline. If you look at the first photo, you might be able to see (maybe?) that I had to cross the fronts over more than I was supposed to. I probably could use to take out another inch or two from the neckline, which I hopefully will correct that in future versions. I noted this on my pattern before storing it, so that I won't run into the same thing again.
One thing I am not 100% happy with are the sleeves. They are self-lined and I am not crazy about them. Whether it was because it was silk, or operator error (or the two combined!), they were a complete pain to get in and I feel like they look a little bulky. If I do make this dress again, I will try to either not lining them or, as Sunni did, and cut them on the bias instead.
All in all, despite the sleeves, the dress came together pretty easily. I used French seams, my first in silk, throughout the entire dress. The one thing I will note is that the weight of the skirt is pretty heavy on the center seams and even after wearing it only a handful of times, I can see that the seams are being stressed and starting to pull apart. Next time, as I think Sunni did in one of hers, is put a waist stay to help with the weight.
Per Sunni's tutorial, instead of using a facing for the front neckline I made matching bias tape and bound the edges in that. If you look closely, and I assume no one will look that closely at my chest, the stitching wasn't the best, but again, who will know but me? And now you :)
School has started here in the Northeast today and it seems that summer is finally over. That means back to sewing for me. I moved a small desk that I found at an estate sale (only $2!!!) and have placed that back into my old sewing space. Our condo is still on the market so I will have limited sewing supplies, but I don't care. My summer vacation is over and now back to sewing and blogging. Maybe I will go buy a new notebook and some #2 pencils and make a new outfit for the first day back! Do they still sell Trapper Keepers anymore? I think that would be awesome to keep my patterns and notes in. I will have to look around for those :)
Anything on your sewing table for this week? Is summer (or vacation) over where you are? Does anyone remember the Trapper Keeper?!?!?
Have a great Monday!