Finally. This dress... I will say up front that this was probably the most difficult dress I've ever made. This one dress represents 13 hours of fitting (three muslins, oy) and 9 hours of construction. And I still have to tack the facings to the seam allowances.
Apologies for the dark photos--I'm still trying to figure out my camera's white balance (and I thought I had it!) These were taken late last night, and I am heading out of town super early tomorrow, so wanted to get this posted before I take off!
So, the dress. I was afraid of this dress since I got the book, and for good reason. Here's a brief rundown of the adjustments I made:
- FBA of 1.5"
- short-waisted adjustment of 1"
- removed over 1" of width from the back bodice
- removed an additional 3/4" from the back bodice length, regraded front to match
- sway-back adjustment of 1"
- lengthened back darts by 2"
- used invisible zipper instead of centered one
YEAH. And, looking at these pictures, I realize I probably should've gone at least another round to reduce some width from the bottom of the front bodice, which is looking a little baggy, but...
I used a gorgeous linen/rayon blend for this dress. Pros: the color is a lovely deep periwinkle that is definitely MY kind of color, plus I think is flattering on me (plus it goes with all of my jewelry). Once I pre-washed the fabric, it got really soft and comfy. Cons: the fabric is incredibly shifty, which made it difficult to cut. REALLY difficult to cut. I pre-washed and hung it to dry and it got that soft, rumply look--which will not iron out. And yet, the dress holds its shape fairly well and it incredibly comfortable to wear. For a first try, it's definitely a keeper.
I didn't have time to make the neckline bow, and now I'm wondering if I should or leave the dress without. I do feel it needs a little something there... I'll be interested to see what everyone else does!
In all, I feel like the back is more successful than the front. I'm also wondering about making this as just a skirt. It would probably work well enough. I think the length on me is just perfect, too. Still, I'm ready to be done with this dress and move along, even though I know I'll have these bodice issues for the next dress as well. I'm heading to Chicago for the next five days (AWP! Anyone else going??) so it'll be nice to take a little break from my sewing room and spend some time with my Dear Jane instead.