|Pattern Description: Misses' & Miss petite sewing pattern for day or evening dresses in two lengths with sash.|
Pattern Sizing: 14-16-18-20-22 I did the usual 18 at the shoulders, gradually extending to a 22 at the hips.
Did it look like the photo/drawing on the pattern envelope once you were done sewing with it? Yes, except my sleeves were a tad different (see below).
Were the instructions easy to follow? Yes, for the most part. Just watch when attaching the sleeves to the bodice. I had not made a dress like this before, and on the muslin, I had a brain lapse and freaked out that the sleeve head came up higher than the armholes--duh, it's supposed to--and I cut off the tops to even it out--not good! Fortunately I recovered my brain powers for the real thing, and it worked beautifully the second time around.
What did you particularly like or dislike about the pattern? I loved the style and the sleeve options. I love that this pattern is so versatile--it really could be for day, evening, or in between. The belt helps make a nice silhouette, but the dress itself is still very comfortable without being frumpy.
Fabric Used: A rayon/wool challis blend that I bought from Etsy--the pictures don't do it justice. In real life, it's a beautiful deep plum shade with teal, orchid, and black accents in the paisley. Lightweight but warm. I lined it with Bemberg lining.
Pattern alterations or any design changes you made: First of all, I was wearing this to a winter wedding, so I chose to line it, especially so as to not have to mess with a slip. This also helped since the fabric was a tad scratchy. To line it, I cut out the sleeves, front, and back of the dress in the lining fabric, albeit a tad shorter. I sewed the lining together as per the directions for the dress, except that I gathered the upper front and sleeves rather than pleating them. I basted the lining to the inside of the dress before I sewed the neckband on.
I also lined the sleeves as described above. I originally planned to make the version with the cuffed sleeves, but once I finished the cuffs, they were a tad too tight and didn't quite lay correctly (I may have shortened the sleeves too much when adjusting my pattern). So I just decided to cut my losses in terms of time (the wedding and my flight being in less than a week by that point), and I cut off the cuffs and did a very narrow hem. Thus I ended up with the sleeves from View A, albeit at a three-quarter length, and was much happier with them.
Finally, I was thankful for the other reviewers who pointed out that this pattern ran a tad small in the waist/hips. This held true for me on my muslin, so when I cut out the actual fabric, I cut a line through the center of the front pattern and added about two inches in width from the waist down, as well as adding about an inch on the sides (both front and back). I also did my standard "full derriere adjustment," basically slashing horizontally through the pattern where I am widest and moving it down two inches, then tapering back to the original pattern line at the sides. This prevents that nasty issue of having my dresses and skirts always being too short in the back (and if you have this issue, you know what I'm talking about!).
One last thing--I decided that my time was better spent NOT trying to turn tiny fabric loops for the back closure, especially given my fraying fabric. I happened to have some narrow ribbon in my stash that matched perfectly, so I used that for the back closure instead of the fabric loops. You can see a close-up of that if you click on the link to the pictures.
Would you sew it again? Would you recommend it to others? I don't know that I would sew this again anytime soon, as I have so many other patterns waiting in the wings! However, I would recommend this pattern to anyone interested in this style. I just don't think I need two versions of it.
Conclusion: Overall, I'm happy with this pattern and with the dress! I would recommend making a muslin for this one to finesse the fit, and I do think the lining was a good addition. It made the dress hang more smoothly.