So after much procrastinating I have finally finished The Dress. Being that this is the first piece of clothing I’ve ever made (excluding the clothkits skirt – which doesn’t count) I’m quite impressed. The seams are straight and I learned how to ‘stay stitch’, make and sew on bias binding, insert an invisible zip, make and attach a ruffle. Most importantly I learned to always follow the pissing instructions rather than taking shortcuts which you will be smug about for about 10 minutes until you realise that the pattern was right and you are an imbecile.
This is a free pattern from Burda Style called the Coffee Date Dress which on the whole was good, although it’s clearly written for experienced seamstresses which I am not.
It took a really long time to cut out the fabric as the pattern is set up to be printed on A4 paper which you then have to arrange, cut out and line up the pieces on the fabric, add the seam allowance and then finally cut the pattern out of the fabric.
The bodice went extremely well, the darts were easy, as was the ruffle and it was looking really impressive until I attached my iron-on interfacing (as opposed to the sew-on interfacing needed, although this was not specified in the pattern). I then realised that the interfacing was supposed to be used to do an ‘all-in-one facing’ which would have enclosed the neck and sleeve lines and been lovely and neat, bollocks. However, this forced me to be creative and make my bias binding, I did an invisible attachment on the sleeves, a regular binding on the neckline and was feeling quite pleased with myself.
I sewed the skirt pieces together and attached it to the bodice. This is when I realised that the fit wasn’t going to work very well. Unfortunately my top half is at least a size bigger than my bottom half and because of the two piece nature of the dress and the darts it’s very difficult to take it in at the waist without messing up the shape…
Anyway I discovered that inserting an invisible zip is much easier than a normal zip as you can have the teeth right next to the needle on the machine, and the sew line is much straighter because you are running it right up against the foot.
I hemmed it and once on, as predicted, it was too big around the waist, hips and bum, the bodice fitted perfectly though…
So I just pinned it and just cut a wedge off from the side seam, re-stitched it and voilà. It fits perfectly. Hoo-fucking-rah!
Unfortunately now it fits around my waist and hips the 16″ zip doesn’t give enough room to slip it off over my hips so I have to take it off over my head but I don’t care – it looks ace!
To be fair I think the problem is my inexperience rather than the pattern (maybe – the fact that is was originally for a petite person messed up the proportions for my ‘curvy’ shape) but still for a first attempt it’s pretty sodding good. I’m sure that my next project will be much better and a dressmakers dummy would make a big difference too (hint hint).
Any comments or suggestions welcome as ever!