The kids are dropping like flies right now, some kind of cough/cold thing is working through the house, I was not sure I would get the time to finish this post but thankfully with only four hours of Monday left a dress update!....
This is a fairly simple pattern which made me so happy , consisting of four front pieces , one gathered panel and two back pieces. Below is a picture of the the left and right upper bodice which are cut on the bias and the lower left and right skirt pieces with the ruched panel, all cut on the grain.
Its got a lot of detail and after half a dozen attempts at working out the best order for construction it finally occured to me to work from the top layer down. Hindsight is a beautiful thing! So if anyone is interested , this is what I came up with...
Join left skirt to right skirt, there is a pleat leg that runs through both sides once joined, which is kind of cool, I don't think I have seen that before.
Then pleat pleat pleat, there are a lot, both in the skirt and bodice pieces. My personal preference after trying both ways was to do them all from the right side of the fabric, it made the folds deeper and crisper. The skirt has a pleat within a pleat which is much clearer and looks amazing if done from the right side.
Gather the small panel for ruching, its marked in cm not inches...so 3cm on one side, 8cm on the other, pinning J on the right side skirt to J on the panel, then sew right side upper bodice to skirt and then left upper bodice behind. There are notations all over for accurate matching which made it so much easier with all the layers coming together.
I 'm using a lightweight silk as I was not sure a thicker fabric would work as well, all the seams on the bodice intersect at the lower panel leaving six seams that will have to be hand sewn together in the fashion fabric and then graded and individually sewn to the organza to stop any ridges from showing. Not a great picture but even in this very thin muslin the middle section was rising noticably from the right side after I graded all of this.
The only problem I have so far is that i'm using a 42 and I wear a 44.....I ran out of patience waiting for them to restock and thought just how much smaller could this be? I wish I had looked at the Marfy size chart before starting this! Its a eye opener....
The 42 has only a 1.5" difference in the waist and bust to a 44 but 4" in hip size, I thought it must be a mistake as thats a huge jump but it was so tight when I finally squeezed it on! I ended up letting out the center back seam 1" either side and adding 1/2" to all the other side seams, it fits much better in the muslin but I added huge seam allowances to the silk, so I can hopefully tweak it properly once I baste it for a initial fitting.
So on to the most important thing, after much deliberation I chose to use 1.70 yards I had left of a Valentino silk I bought early last year for my Chanel jacket lining, I bought extra planning on making a neck tie blouse to match the jacket as was tradition in the 50's I believe but I could not decide if I would ever wear it, and thats always a good indication to leave well alone!
The larger prints I had thought that would be perfect were just to busy on the short style of this dress, they completely overwelmed it.
In a excellent stash busting move I used all but the smallest handful of my silk, there was very little choice about how to lay it out because in reality I did not have enough although I tried for hours....and now its very roughly pinned to the dress form I can't decide if it will work or not?
The front is very light, with no visable pattern at all on the bodice and the back is all party!!! Its all going to come down to those side seams when they join to pull it all together. I did try to keep a large portion of the pattern on the front skirt to make it more cohesive with the back and the front ruching panel should pull it in a little more as I included as much print as I could on that as well.
I have the fabric and organza underlining all cut and thread basted so with some trepidation about both fitting issues and fabric choice I will start to baste all those seams together tomorrow and find out if this is a keeper or not!
and on a sewing related note, did anyone see the new Marfy's that just arrived on their site and McCalls/Marfy .. some of them are a little odd - tiered jumpsuit anyone?..but these really caught my eye, I placed my order my first thing this morning!
Love, love, love the dark green dress and the rest are gorgeous and a little more commercial this season, which I really like. It might encourage people to try these amazing patterns!
Audio book was another listen of The Descendants. Who did not love this movie? I read the book soon after surprised by just how much they had left out, while maintaining a great script. I can't recommend either the audio or book enough, there is so much more to the story.
Music, the new Lumineers album... happy happy happy!
and I finished Gillian Flynns Sharp Objects. What a debut novel....it was more than a little disturbing though, she likes the dark side of peoples personalities.
and in my free time :-0 I started watching a new Craftsy Draping course. I have always been facinated by Project Runway and their ability to drape and sew at such speed , while I drape nothing and sew at the speed of a snail. The instructor is not really at ease in front of the camera but its so facinating to watch it all come together. I can see it being helpful incorporatating flat pattern and draping in fitting my clothes in the future, once of course I have physically draped a dress or ten but I highly recommend watching just to see the magic!
Hoping to have my dress finished this week although I forsee a whole lot of handsewing which always takes so much longer than I imagine.
Have a happy healthy week, back on Monday!