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Thursday, April 29, 2010

McCall's 6069 - Drape Neck Dress

Project Details:

Pattern: McCall's 6069 - View A

Fabric: Knit from Vogue Fabrics

Pullover, above mid-knee, semi-fitted straight dresses A, B, C have elastic waist casing, stitched hem and bodice variations; dress A is sleeveless; dress B has three-quarter sleeves; dress C is sleeveless with self sash; dresses A, B, C have optional back strap; optional purchased belt.

This dress was so easy that I really don't have a lot to say about it. I did my usual lengthening alteration -- 1 inch for the bodice and 2 inches at the hemline. There's nothing I didn't love about this.

I was looking for a QUICK and EASY rainy afternoon project and this one was perfect!

Friday, April 16, 2010

McCall's 5574 - Halter Dress

Project Details

Pattern: McCall's 5574, View C

Description: Dresses A, B, C, D have self-faced bodice and midriff, front gathers, back elastic casing, tie ends and A-line skirt in two lengths; dresses A, B have V-neck and ties around neck; dress A has purchased trim; dress B has contrast midriff, bodice back and tie ends, mock belt with purchased buckle; dresses C, D have front casing and ties around neck; dress D has contrast midriff, bodice back and tie ends; dresses A, B and C length is 2" above mid-knee; dress D length is 1" above ankle.

Pattern Size: 7-16, I cut a size 10.

Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes, it does.

Fabric: Yellow cotton interlock - 100% cotton.

Were the instructions easy to follow? I can't really say, because I didn't use them. And I doubt that another experienced sewer would need them.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? After the last dress I made, I needed something really easy before jumping back into another project for myself. I love the style of this dress... it's really cute, stylish and also age appropriate. I decided on this particular view because I didn't have to make a muslin or give any thought to the depth of the v-neck on the other one.

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: I added about 2.25" to the bodice front and back. When I pretreated my fabric, I guess I didn't anticipate as much shrinkage as I got. With that said, I didn't have as much fabric as I needed. So, I cut the front part of the skirt on the fold and the back in two pieces. That's why my version has a CB seam.

I stabilized the waist seam and that CB seam with clear elastic. I didn't want her to have "saggy butt" after sitting. And I also added clear hanger loops. I made them longer than the annoying ones that are one RTW so they would stay tucked in.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Vogue 1174 - Cynthia Steffe Dress

Project Detail:

Pattern: Vogue 1174 - Cynthia Steffe

Description: Close-fitting, strapless, lined dress has seam details, piping trim, princess seams, foundation with boning, side front pockets, pleats and darts, above mid-knee length.

Pattern Sizing: 4 - 18. I cut the 16.

Did it look like the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes, it does.

Fabric: 55% Linen/45% Rayon

Lining: China Silk - 100% silk

Notions: 12"/14" Invisible Zipper, Hooks and Eyes, Two 1/2" Hook and Eye Closures, 11/4 yds. of 5/8" Grosgrain Ribbon, 13/4 yds. of 1/4" Covered Boning, 2 yds. of 1/2" Seam Binding.

Were the instructions easy to follow? The instructions were good, there were parts that made me scratch my head... I'll get to that later.

What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I love that this is a designer pattern. This dress is actually still in the stores now and retailing for $345! I love that the dress had a "foundation".

But I didn't like the the way the foundation was attached. This is what had me scratching my head. I've never constructed a design like this. I would have *assumed* that the foundation would be on the INSIDE... as in between the shell and the lining, instead of the outside. Well, for this design, I was wrong. I do however appreciate that this dress is constructed with a boned foundation and a waist stay. This is NOT something you see often in RTW. I don't recall ever seeing a waist stay in HIGH END RTW. And I do a lot of snoop shopping. I have seen a lot of lower end RTW versions of this type of dress that did not have boning and I thought, "How flimsy." And I wondered if the strip of clear elastic around the inside of the neckline would really hold this dress in place?!

I really liked the piping. I thought that was a great detail!

Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made: I added 1" to all of the bodice pieces. I added 3" to all of the skirt pieces. I didn't want a "mid-thigh" length dress and thought that one stopping at the knee would be more "appropriate".

Like I said, with RTW dresses, they use a strip of clear elastic that sticks to the body to keep the dress in place. Well, instead of doing that, I put a 1/4" elastic strip in between the foundation and the lining.
Even though I made a muslin and "perfected" the fit, when I made the shell it was still excessive fullness. I understand that different fabrics reacts differently once you start handling them. But this one grew once I started sewing and applied heat to it. I added the elastic so that it would mold to the body. Before, the sweetheart neckline stood away.

I also added hem tape to the hemline of the shell and lace to the lining.

Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I wouldn't sew it again. It's simply too many more dresses I want to make. But I do recommend it.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Happy Resurrection Day!

"Don't be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen!" - Mark 16:6

I hope you're enjoying your holiday weekend! I'm currently working on Vogue 1174.

I've already completed the shell. Now it's time to make the lining and build the foundation.