I have been wanting to try this pattern for a while now after seeing a few others around that have inspired me. Sue from Fadanista, Knitting Jenny and Binding Off have all made lovely versions. I have been trying to choose patterns that suit my figure rather than just making patterns that appeal to me.
|Vogue 1382 Line Art|
I cut a straight size 14. The only alteration I made to the pattern was to add 4cm to the length at the hemline.
The fabric is a linen/cotton blend in natural and khaki, purchased from Spotlight at Rockingham on my recent visit to Perth. The lining is a mystery 100% cotton purchased from Bargain Box Fabrics in Batemans Bay. This is the first time I have sewed with linen and I love it. It pressed beautifully and was very easy to work with. These photos were taken after a day at work in the office and it hasn't creased as badly as I was expecting.
After taking this dress for a wearing test run at work today, I have decided it is a little too snug around the hip/bottom area. When sitting it really rides up (especially in the car) and there was a lot of strain put on the centre back seam around the seating area.
The photos above show the details: the seams have been top stitched where the contrasting fabrics join; the pockets have been top stitched (the pattern instructions said to hand sew the pockets to the dress?) and the invisible zip at centre back (notice the strained seam at the lower centre back).
For next time I think I might cut size 14 in the neck/shoulder area and grade up to a size 16 below the armsceye to give me a little more wiggle room.
The dress is fully lined with 100% cotton. I thought this would be cooler for the summer than a slippery poly lining. I really out smarted myself and made a terrible blunder during the construction of this dress. I was determined to eliminate any hand sewing and attach the lining entirely by machine...but I rushed ahead without fully thinking it through. I inserted the zip in the centre back and finished the centre back seam. Then I joined the front to the back at the shoulder seams. Then I sewed the lining together at the shoulder seams too. Next step was to attach the lining to the dress (all the side seams are left open at this stage). I sewed the lining to the neck and armholes and also to the zip. The seam allowances were graded and clipped and under stitched.I was super pleased with myself and proceeded to turn it all right side out through the shoulder. After a lot of pulling and wriggling I got it all pulled through...only to find that I was right back where I started, with an inside out dress.
It was late at night and I was tired and not thinking straight so I put it aside till the following night. After a bit of googling, I realized my mistake. You must have three seams open for this to work. My mistake was that I had sewed the centre back seam (and inserted the zip). I think if I had left this seam open it would have worked. I think the centre back seam should be sewn after the dress has been turned right side out. Anyway, I will be referring to this post before I attempt this again.
In order to fix my dilemma, I worked out that if I unpicked the shoulder seams of both the dress and the lining I could turn it right side out. After some very tedious unpicking (remember I had graded and clipped and under stitched) I made it work. Such a relief! I then proceeded to resew the shoulder seams by hand. This was quite fiddly due to the seams being graded and clipped, but I was saved by this lovely fabric that presses so beautifully.
Despite all my troubles with the construction of this dress, I feel that I have stretched my sewing skills and learned a lot. I am quite pleased with the standard of finishing that I achieved on this dress and I am so glad that I figured out how to make it work.
Unfortunately, I just don't really like it on me. I think it is the colour. I am usually drawn to bright colours and this dress is just a little too drab for me. Anyway, I would like to try it again maybe with a looser fit and some brighter colours.