Besides finally making this dress I was able to pull a Garden State. I made this dress out of bed sheets and have half a fitted sheet and two pillow cases leftover. I have a hard time finding non flannel plaid and this dress calls for 4 yards, and with pattern matching needing an unknown amount of extra fabric...25 bucks was a pretty good deal!
To get this perfect fit I shortened the top an inch, but then added an inch to the skirt to keep it hitting right above my knees. Each sleeve is in two halves and I took a full inch out of each half and still have plenty of wiggle room. I did the cuffs differently and skipped all hook and eyes, but I'll get into that later.
The back is the only part I don't love. I clearly had the back pieces both end in a black stripe, but I have to take a few hairs out of the neck-back since I'm a hair hunchback and now the overall line looks a bit wonky, but the pattern matches and it fits like a glove so I will just deal with it and stop nit picking.
I take great pride in my pattern matching. There are two front darts, side seams, two back darts, diagonal raglan sleeves, and a full pleated skirt and EVERYTHING IS MATCHED UP.
I need a fleet of dresses from this pattern. For real, it's perfectly dressy yet casual at the same time. I feel over dressed in a dress here in Iowa very quickly, but so far this dress just makes me feel bad ass.
The pattern calls for a hook and eye to close the collar in the front, so you can have to option of opening it for an even more casual look, but with this one I knew I would never open it so I just hand stitched (tacked?) it closed right at the points.
Yes, I need to trim some threads at the zipper...but the point of this photo is to tell you about how I also put a few stitches in the back collar so it doesn't stick up and will stay flat. When I had googled this pattern to see what others had done with it, a lot of ladies had the collar go crazy in the back and mine was starting to do the same even after some good pressing and stiff interfacing.
Inside view of said tack
I had skipped the sleeve and cuff details. The real way had an opening on the outside of the cuff and a small button closer. I just sewed the sleeve together then sewed a black band on the inside to hide the seams and be the cuff when I rolled it up.
After I had finished the dress, the sleeves were a bit longer than I would have liked, but with the band in place I couldn't just hem it shorter. So I just folded an inch in and sewed it. Like a sleeve dart? idk but it is hidden from the outside and I don't feel the flap on the inside, so if looks stupid but it works it ain't stupid.
I serged most of the seams, minus the pockets, I'm not super awesome at serging around pockets yet. I hemmed the bottom with hem lace, I used the whole package!
I also hand stitched the lining in on the inside. I used the same fabric as the front which got confusing during assembly. But it also gave me options for pattern matching when things were off here and there.
Now I'm just showing off my pattern matching. Find the side seam.
Darts? center seam? where?
Long story short I love this dress. I knew I would when I first saw the pattern cover so many years ago and I'm so glad I gave it another go and that my skills have improved enough to finally execute it.