|Pattern Description: |
Misses' dress has ruched upper front bodice, curved seam lower front bodice, cut-on dolman sleeve, and full gathered skirt. Neckline finished with bias tape.
8-22. I cut an 8 at the shoulders and bust, 10 at the waist, and 12 at the hip (not that the hip really mattered, give the volume of the gathered skirt).
A cotton print purchased from H&M Fabrics in NYC for $2/yd in November 2010. The bodice is lined with a cotton batiste from Vogue Fabrics a couple years ago and the skirt with a rayon from Fabric.com.
Time to Make:
This has a fair number of moving parts, though the fitting was not difficult. I spent about 12 hours on it.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern?
I like the vintage look and the shoulder coverage.
I am not crazy about the way the curved upper/lower bodice seam cuts across the bust rather than cupping under it. For my small bust, this doesn't really matter, but it might look strange on a larger bust.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope?
Were the instructions easy to follow?
I reviewed them, and they were fine.
Pattern Alterations or any design changes you made:
-I made self bias tape using this continuous loop bias tape tutorial, with the refinement of partially cutting apart the fabric before sewing the tube, explained more fully here.
-My polka dot fabric was very sheer, so I went with underlining rather than lining for the bodice. For the skirt I did a hybrid. I wanted pockets, and I didn't want the pocket bags to shine through the skirt. I cut the front pocket bag out of white batiste, and the back out of the polka dot, so it wouldn't be *quite* so noticeable.
I treated the skirt and lining as one for stitching in the pocket. Then I clipped into the seam allowances about an inch below the pocket, and stitched French seams in the two layers separately. This gives the skirt a nicer flow than if two layers were hemmed together at the bottom, but ensures opacity for the pocket.
-I added piping to the seam between the upper and lower bodice using the tips and techniques shown here. It just seemed like it needed it to echo the neckline. I did not invent this; I know somebody has done this on this pattern before. I thought it was Joy of 21 Wale, but a quick look through other reviews isn't revealing it. It rather disappears into my print, but it makes me happy to know it's there.
-I lowered the front neckline by 1 inch, as it was unflatteringly high. I think it could use a touch more.
-I took two HUGE darts in the back neck. The dart width is 7/8", meaning each dart takes up 1 3/4 inch. The back neckline was *ridiculously* gapey. I do have a forward head and rounded upper back (aka terrible posture), but I don't see how anyone could wear that as drafted. I kept making sure the shoulder seams were exactly on my shoulders and not falling to the back because I didn't see how it could possibly be that bad, but they were placed correctly.
To get a continuous bias finish at the neckline, I started the zipper a few inches below the neckline at center back. The dress is not drafted with a CB seam, and it is designed with a side closure. I prefer a CB zip, so I just the center back with seam allowance instead of on the fold.
-Because the bodice is underlined, I stitched the armscye hem to the underlining by hand for an invisible finish. This dress is meant to have shoulder pads and the distance from chest to shoulder is a bit tall. I should have shaved it down. The right shoulder was quite gapey so I took out about 3/8 inch of length at the shoulder, tapering to nothing at the neck.
-I shortened the skirt 2 inches in cutting, and shortened it another two inches before taking a very deep 3 1/2 inch hem. It is drafted long!
I have had Vogue 8728 on my list for years. In fact, two years ago (or was it three?) I altered the pattern and drafted a stay for the ruched upper front bodice, though I ultimately decided that in my lightweight fabric it was better to underline the piece than to do an un-ruched stay. Every time I saw someone else make the dress, I was intensely jealous. And yet, somehow I was never into sewing it up. I really don't know why. Finally, I decided the time had come! The serger was threaded in white, and I am participating in the stash contest to move older pieces out.
And now I finally have this dress! I like it, and purposely left in a lot of ease at the waist. A cotton dress on a hot day is a nice comfort.
All photos are here and the blog post is here.